BIG BASS EXPLOSION AT NEW LAKE PICACHOS!!!
[Editor: this article first appeared on www.ronsfishingblog and may only be used by permission of Ron Speed Jr.]
Wow…just WOW! Folks, “WOW” doesn’t do justice to what I just witnessed and experienced at the awesome new lake, Picachos! I have bass fished for over 45 years now and been fortunate to do it on some of the world’s very best bass lakes. That includes Guerrero when it first opened, Comedero when it first opened and then later when it became one of the best trophy bass lakes in the world. This also includes El Salto, Toledo Bend when it first opened and many many other great lakes. I can tell you right now that what I experienced two weeks ago at Lake Picachos ranks second to none! Absolutely no question this lake is the best NEW bass lake I’ve ever fished! Most lakes when they first open are pretty much about ridiculous numbers of 2 – 4 pound bass with an occasional 5, 6 or 7 pound trophy. Well that’s NOT the case with Picachos!
In my previous two updates about Picachos, I’ve been very reluctant to mention the big bass possibilities at Picachos. I knew there were some in the lake and we’ve caught bass to 9 pounds and weighed the current lake record of 12.5 pounds, but I wasn’t exactly certain about how many. My father and I have both been a “tell it like it is” outfitter for all our years in this business and I had to be absolutely certain before claiming this lake can and will produce BIG BASS! Well, color me 100% convinced that Picachos is absolutely loaded with bass from 7 – 9 pounds! In fact, it’s filthy with them! Yes, it’s filthy with bass of 2 – 4 pounds as well but not limited to just that size.
On April 1st, my group of 6 plus myself, arrived at Lake Picachos around 2 pm. This group included pro angler and founder/lure designer of Rage Tail Lures, Steve Parks, better known as “Big O,” as well as Terry Oldham of Oldham Lures (best jigs and spinnerbaits on the market), Mike Leggett (Outdoors Editor for 30 years at the Austin American Statesman newspaper), Steve Knight (Outdoors Editor for over 30 years at the Tyler Morning Telegraph newspaper), Ed Lewis (longtime customer of Ron Speed’s Adventures) and his friend Leon Nichols. All, like myself, have been fortunate to fish the best bass lakes in the world.
That first afternoon, we all decided we just needed to knock the edge off and go for numbers. That’s extremely easy to do on this lake as all one needs to do is head to the shoreline and start throwing your favorite lure, mine being a big spinnerbait. I was fishing alone on this afternoon. I went to the mouth of the first cove, put the trolling motor in the water and made my first cast at 2:50 pm. For the next 3 hours, I didn’t move the boat more than 200 yards and landed 68 bass. Most were weighing 2 – 3 pounds but I had about a half dozen of 4 and 5 pounds. Edge knocked off! After arriving back at the lodge, all were sharing stories of the great action and quality of fish each caught that afternoon. At the lodge were David and Cindy Bednar, both are regular customers of mine in Brazil and Mexico. They had already fished 5 1/2 days at El Salto and were now on their third day at Picachos. When asked how they were doing on the fishing, they replied, “OH WE LOVE THIS LAKE!!!” David and Cindy are more interested in numbers rather than size and spend most of their time on the lake fishing shoreline. They were averaging around 100 or more bass per day at Picachos, and needless to say, they were very very pleased with the fishing.
The next day, Terry and Steve (Parks), rigged up a portable depth finder and set out to find schools of big bass. It wasn’t until that afternoon around 3 pm that they finally hit the jackpot and found Honey Hole #1. In almost three hours of fishing, they landed 93 bass with 35 over 5 pound and 17 over 7 pounds, to include a half dozen of 8 pounds and three over 9 pounds! Just prior to dark, they found Honey Hole #3, again, loaded with bass 7 pounds and bigger!
Over the next several days, Terry and Steve would locate 4 more locations holding these huge schools of big bass. There are too many stories to tell in this one update but I would be remiss if I didn’t share at least two of them now. First: on Day 4, I was fishing with my good friend, Mike Leggett. The previous day Mike and Steve Knight had caught around 150 bass in the 3 – 5 pound range on a road bed in the back of a cover on the opposite end of the lake. Mike really wanted to go back there for a second round. So away we went. We started catching fish on and near that road bed as soon as we arrived. Same size as the day before — mostly 3 – 5 pounds. I kept looking out toward the mouth of the cove and some deeper trees along the arroyo. They had BIG BASS written all over them. I even mentioned to Mike that sometime that day, we needed to go check them out. However, we stayed the entire morning fishing near the back of the cover and the area close to the road bed. We finished the morning fishing with 122 bass — largest 5 1/2 pounds. That afternoon we went back to that cove but started working trees in deeper water along the creek channel. It wasn’t long before Mike tied in to a 6 pound bass! The wind off the Pacific was also getting up like it does most afternoons and made it tough to hold the boat on that tree line. So we had our guide tie us up to a tree and were fishing parallel along the tree line. I looked behind me and saw a gap or break in the trees, about a 10′ x 10′ gap. What a great ambush location for bass! I pitched my 3/4 oz Oldham spinnerbait to the back of that gap and WHAM! Rod nearly yanked from my hands! As the fish got closer to the boat, I saw he was in that 7 – 8 pound range BUT, there were at least 4 or 5 big bass that were of equal or larger size, trying to take the spinnerbait away from my big bass! I yelled to Mike, “QUICK, THROW YOUR SPINNERBAIT BEHIND MY BASS!” Mike quickly pitched his spinnerbait in there and WHAM! Now we’re doubled up with big bass! Both weighed a little over 7 pounds! This went on non-stop for the next 45 minutes, big bass after big bass to include a beautiful 8.13 pounder by Mike! We finished the day with exactly 200 bass for the day with the largest being 9 1/2 pounds by Mike.
Skipping to the last day…. On this day we only fished a 1/2 day as planned before loading up to head to Mazatlan for our last night stay at the 5-star El Cid Resort. After a somewhat slow morning fishing Terry’s big bass honey holes, slow because there was zero wind and very calm and slick on the surface, I decided to escort Ed Lewis and his fishing partner Leon Nichols to another area of the lake where I had found some quality bass previously. This was right at 9 am when we headed out. Turns out, we we left about 2 minutes too soon as Terry found ANOTHER Honey Hole not too far from where we had left. When we ran in to Terry back at the lodge at noon, he told us ALL about it! Moments after we had left Terry’s fish, he saw a bass blowing up on a shad approximately 100 yards from his boat. He put his trolling motor on high-hum and quickly headed toward the spot. First cast he hooked up with what felt like a big big bass, AND a biggun it was — just shy of 8 pounds even! Next cast, another big bass hook up: 7 pounds! Third cast… ANOTHER BIGGUN! It was while landing the third big bass that the entire school of big bass blew up the school of shad! Terry said and I quote, “I know you guys won’t believe this but I literally had 7 and 8 pound bass hitting the side of my boat and crashing into the trees while chasing shad!” Terry proceeded to spend the next 2 1/2 hours catching big bass after big bass. He finished with 35 bass over 7 pounds!!! He also claimed to have gotten a hold of three bass that he never turned…. gone! Lost to the thick brush some 20 yards away! What an unbelievable experience! Terry backed up his story with photos as he took the time to snap off at least 20+ photos of bass he caught over 7 pounds during that insane feeding frenzy!
There you have it, my friends! There are so many more stories about our 6 days of fishing that I would love to share with you but there’s not enough room in this update. I’ll share with you if you’ll call me. Let me finish by giving you our approximate and very “conservative” final numbers. Our group of 7 anglers landed over 4500 bass in 6 days of fishing on Picachos! Of those 4500, over 200 weighed 7 pounds and above. Our four largest bass weighed 11.01, 10.6, 10.4 and 10.01!!! Most were landed on 3/4 and 1 oz spinnerbaits as that’s what most in our group were using. However, Big O was busy landing big bass after big bass on his new Rage Tail Hawg…both flipping trees in 25′ of water as well as casting it Texas-Rig to the open water and feeding shelves he and Terry found. No question about it, the Rage Tail Hawg is deadly! Bass simply can’t lay off it. For more info on Rage Tail Lures, please visit their website at www.ragetail.com …and also the Rage Tail Facebook page www.facebook.com/ragetail?fref=photo …also, these numbers do not include David and Cindy Bednar’s catches. Doing the combo of both lakes, they ended up catching 1123 fish over the 2 weeks (437 on El Salto in 5 1/2 days and 686 on Picachos in 5 1/2 days). Needless to say, they’ll be back! This summer pattern that these bass are currently holding to, will continue from now till at least August…maybe longer. NOW is the time to get down there and experience what this group did two weeks ago. We’re still on them now! Call us TODAY to book your trip to the hottest and newest bass lake in the world….fabulous Lake Picachos! Call 1-800-722-0006 today!
Ron Speed, Jr.