In September I started targeting standing trees in DEEP water…..as on Wilson Lake. I know the dragging bite is still on in September, but I have had some really good success fishing in and down around the base of trees in 60 to 100 feet of water.
I use a Carolina rig with an inline egg sinker, not a sinker slide. If there is current, I use 5 ounces otherwise I’ll use 3 or 4 ounces. Mainly, I want to keep the bait straight down under the boat.
The presence of a thermocline can have some bearing on how deep you catch fish but I have caught the majority of my bigger fish with this technique below the thermocline. I will scan trees for fish/bait and position my boat between trees.
You will lose some tackle, but if you work slow enough to pinpoint the trees on your sonar, you can sit right between them. Sometimes the fish are in and around the really deep trees and other times, they are in trees in that 60-foot range. I know not all lakes, (Wheeler in particular) don’t have the depth that Wilson does, but this has just been one of my favorite early fall patterns to catch fish consistently.
When I fish this way and there isn’t current I have used up to 10 rods. And I want some of them right off the bottom. I have had a few “debacles” when bringing up a big fish, so a warning is in order. One day I was using 6 rods and when I landed a 55-pound blue I brought up the other 5 lines with it. LOL.