Lake Fork

Because Life is Better at the Lake

James Caldemeyer's Lake Fork Trophy Bass Fishing Report March 9, 2019

Lake Fork Trophy Bass Guide Service
Lake Fork Guide James Caldemeyer is a full-time bass fishing guide on World Famous Lake Fork in east Texas. James began fishing Lake Fork in 1994. He knows where the big bass live and is devoted to helping his clients catch these trophy bass. James also competes as a professional in the Bassmasters and FLW Tournament Series.

March Mayhem on Lake Fork has commenced once again and what a great month it is to catch giant bass! The spring season has already started off well with lots of big fish being caught on the lake despite lots of unpredictable spring weather. There will continue to be more big bass action to come as more bass move to the shallows this month and begin their spawning activities. Many anglers will head out to the lake in pursuit of these trophy bass and a chance at their own catch of a lifetime. Spring break is also always a great time to get the kids out to the lake so be sure to grab them up and bring them to Lake Fork this month!

The water level right now on Lake Fork is ideal for spring fishing. The lake is sitting right at full pool. Most of the major creeks are slightly stained due to recent winds and rains with most of the clearer water being found on the southern portion of the lake. Water temperatures are lower than they normally are this time of year after the consistently cold and wet winter most of us have experienced in Texas this year. Temperatures are reaching the mid 50’s degree mark already though and a few warm days will really kick the spawn into gear. When you start finding areas that are holding consistent 58 - 60 degree water temperatures or better, you will find the bass on beds.

With that being said, obviously most of the fishing being done in March is shallow water patterns and techniques. Most of my fishing is centered on pre-spawn patterns until the bass become committed to the spawn. I like to strategically target big female bass that are staging and feeding up before they actually move to the nests. I feel that these big bass are more vulnerable to being caught this way than they are when they get on the beds and every fisherman going down the bank is tossing at them. This pattern pays off big especially when you find the right area and a congregation of bass. The areas that I am targeting these pre-spawn bass in are creek channels, drains or ditches, points, and shallow structure. Most of these fish will be relating to some sort of cover whether it is grass, stumps, boat docks etc. The key to finding these big bass in these areas is the presence of bait within the area. It stands to reason that big pre-spawn female bass that are eating heavily to prepare to spawn are not going to be in an area where there isn’t anything to eat. Watch the activity on the water as you fish and keep a close eye on your electronics so that you are staying in areas that are holding good concentrations of shad. I’ve been able to use my new Garmin LiveScope very effectively to look around as I fish and it vividly shows every detail under the water as I fish these target areas so I see the bait and the fish in the area before I even start catching them.

Once I find the area that I am looking for, I begin targeting the bass with several different techniques depending on the conditions. Around grass in 2-6 feet of water I am throwing a lot of reaction type baits like lipless crank baits in red or shad colors, suspending jerk baits in gold, silver, or clown colors. If you want to catch giants you’ll want to throw big swim baits like the 3:16 Lures Rising Son. This bait is an incredible big bass bait and its action is unmatched as well as extremely durable. Many have tried to duplicate this bait over the years with little success. Don’t settle for imitations. Get the real Lake Fork swimbaits! You can find them in stock at Lake Fork Marina & Motel or at the 3:16 Swimbait Store on Hwy 515 west of the lake. As the water warms and the surface temperatures reach the 58-60 degree mark the bass will begin spawning. You will find most of these bass on beds in 2-6 feet of water and very active! Another one of my favorite baits for targeting these bass as they spawn is a weightless Berkley Powerbait “Jerk” or the “General”. Dead sticking these baits in the flats and spawning areas is very effective. You must remember that the bass have moved from a feeding bite and to a territorial bite. You are presenting your bait in a manner that invades their space and they strike it. Moving the bait a lot will defeat the purpose so be sure to really slow down! When you think you are fishing slowly, slow down some more! Another big favorite of mine for spawning bass is the Santone Lures “Piglet” shaky head with a Berkley Powerbait Rib Snake. Best colors are black/blue, blue fleck and green pumpkin. This is a great combination for using the same presentation when the wind gets up and will not allow you to fish these areas effectively with the weightless technique. You also can’t go wrong on a windy day with a Santone Lures spinner bait. I will usually opt for the 3/8 – 1/2 ounce M-Series in white or white/chartreuse. Also be sure to check out the new Santone Z-spin. It will flat out catch em too!

I hope this information helps you in pursuit of a trophy bass this year on Lake Fork. If you are thinking of coming out this spring and would like to book a fishing trip with me this year, feel free to contact me anytime. I still have a few dates available, but you’ll need to contact me soon. I am booking up fast for all of 2019 already so get your date reserved now. If I’m not available, I will recommend another great guide that can help you. You can ALWAYS count on talking to me “personally” when you call to book your Lake Fork trip because I care about my clients! I would enjoy the opportunity to take you or your group fishing and help you catch the fish of your dreams! You can contact me by email at or you can call or text message me at 903-736-9888 Also, please visit my website to find out more information about Lake Fork bass fishing and my guide service at If you are in the market for a new boat this year, it’s a great time to look into the new 2019 Ranger 520L and 521L as its Ranger’s flagship model and is very impressively laid out with features. If you haven’t seen it yet you can stop by Diamond Sports Marine and Fred will be glad to show you around. He even has a few rigged out with the all new Mercury Pro XS four stroke. My new 2019 boat has arrived and is ready for clients to experience this coming year also! Test rides are also available so feel free to contact me or call the dealership at 903-383-7829 and we will get you out on the water for a ride in one. I would like to thank all my sponsors that support me fishing the FLW Series and guide service on Lake Fork: Toyota, Carhartt, Ranger Boats, Mercury Outboards, I Am Second, Leer, Berkey, Abu Garcia, Garmin, Santone Lures, Costa, Power Pole, 3:16 Lure Company, Rigid Industries, Bass Forecast, Elite Tungsten, Bass Boat Technologies, and Fabtech Motorsports. I already enjoying a successful start to the 2019 fishing season and God’s blessings. I pray that each of you are blessed as well!

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

Tight Lines and God Bless,
James Caldemeyer


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Lake Fork Weather Forecast



Hi: 77

Friday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 57


Mostly Sunny

Hi: 84

Saturday Night


Lo: 55


Mostly Sunny

Hi: 84

Sunday Night

Thunderstorms Likely

Lo: 60


Chance Thunderstorms

Hi: 72

Monday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 47

Lake Fork Water Level (last 30 days)

Water Level on 10/18: 401.07 (-1.93)

Lake Fork Fishing Report from TPWD (Oct. 10)

FAIR. Water stained; 80–83 degrees; 1.71’ low. Largemouth bass are fair on plastic worms, Alabama rigs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and topwaters. They appear to be starting the fall pattern in shallower water. This is great news for the lunker fisherman and continued reputation of producing the biggest largemouths in Texas. White and yellow bass are good on Alabama Rigs. Crappie are fair on jigs and minnows in the stumps or man–made structures. Catfish are good on prepared bait and cut bait.