Smith Mountain Lake Striper Tips
by Point Runners Striper Guide Service
Striper Fishing Bait Tips
Smith Mountain Lake contains the 3 most popular live baits for Striper Fishing: Gizzard Shad.....Threadfin Shad.....Alewife Shad
A durable cast net is a must for catching your own live bait
Using Gizzard shad on Smith Mountain Lake in the March-April Timeframe can produce large Smith Mountain Lake Stripers. A large Gizzard shad post spawn (Late May) can be ticket for prime-time Striper Fishing after the Spawning period.
The Smith Mountain Lake striper prefers the Alewife bait fish in the heated months of summer on Smith Mountain Lake. The alewife baitfish tends to come to a dock light; marina light; or just about any light at night (after 9pm or early in the morning before 5am). Just because you do not see them doesn’t mean they’re not there!
There are 3 good ways to find bait fish here on Smith Mountain Lake:
- Under a dock light at night can be the most effective
- Seen on you depth finder as a Bait Ball
- Bait that flips on the surface and then cast into them. Look in the shallow flats and the back of coves for flipping bait
- 3/8 Mesh net is recommended for Alewife /Threadfin Bait Fish
- 5/8 Mesh net (at least 1.5 Lbs/Ft) is recommended for Gizzard Shad
Striper Bait Tanks & Livewell Systems
The most vital part of the Bait Tank is the filtration and the aeration.
- The Dannco Venturi System is priceless for bait tank aeration it is by far the best aeration mechanism in the Bait Tank industry.
- The Keep Alive System is also a good aeration system but the flaw of inherent design leads to untimely pump burnout do to the impeller constantly slicing and dicing the air bubbles
- A 20% water change every 6 hours is also recommended for healthy lively bait.
- Salt has to be replenished after all water changes
Stripers love Live Bait not half dead and sick bait!
While I am Striper Fishing in the summer months on Smith Mountain Lake the bait tank I am using must be to keep the summer heat from elevating water temperatures and killing my bait.
If it’s not fresh lively and kicking I don’t use it.
If you carry the bait caught on Smith Mountain Lake remember to have oval or round bait tank that filters and circulates the water. Square tanks or boat live wells will force your bait in the corners and they will stress themselves to death. Bait that Dies = No fishing
Filtration is vitally important. These baits can lose their scales, slime coat and practically purge everything else. If these items are not properly filtered out it will inherently kill your bait. Bait that Dies = No fishing
Recommended Striper Bait Tanks (at least 30 Gallons)
- · Super Bait Tank II
- · Creek Bait Tanks