Lake Mead Legendary

by ahanagata


Sunrise on Lake Mead


  I was just on Lake Mead doing some Bass fishing. In case you don’t know, Lake Mead is one if not the premiere Bass fishing lake in the U.S. There are some real lunkers pulled out of that lake well over 30 lbs. I didn’t feel like heading out on the water alone, and as I always say, there’s no substitute for local knowledge. Recently, I was told about Lake Mead local legend Jim Goff, so I decided to give him a call.

  If you ever decide to choose a guide anywhere for any activity one thing you want to look for is experience in that particular region. For Bass fishing on Lake Mead you can’t do better in that arena than Jim Goff. He’s 71 years young and he’s been fishing Mead since he was a teenager. When I say local legend I mean it, he’s written on the subject for just about every outdoor publication that cares about fishing and the real proof is when we were out on the lake. Jim knows everyone on the water. There was one chap that didn’t personally know Jim but when our boat came floating past, his reaction was ‘you’re Jim aren’t you?’. This is the sort of guide you want to have, they know the area and they have an extensive network of people they exchange information with so they know what’s working at that particular time.

  Another indicator that I was in good hands, was the way that Jim scanned the Lake looking for a good spot to fish. He scanned the lake the way you see predators looking for game, and that’s exactly what we were. You can have the best gear, the best boat, even the best bait but if you don’t put your line in the water where the fish are at; you might as well be trying to fish in your swimming pool. Jim took note of everything from the way the water looked to what the birds were doing. He had a mounted fish finder, but I imagine if he didn’t have it we would have done just as well.

  Most of my knowledge in the realm of fresh water is trout fishing in the high country. Since I haven’t found an ultra light backpacking boat, I usually fish from shore. I’ll bet on me anytime when it comes to trouting from shore or river. Bass fishing, 9 out of 10 times is done from a boat. I imagine that success would be far more limited if you didn’t have access to a boat as we fished quite a few spots not reachable from shore. Not that it can’t be done, I’ve bass fished from shore…it’s just much harder and you’ll catch far far less fish. If you happen to be in a boat with a guide like Jim, you’ll catch fish and your reeling arm will get a work out. In short if you want to hedge your bets, head out with Jim he’ll make you look good and you’re friends back home will be asking you for bass advice for years to come.

  After my legs hit solid ground I decided to sit down with Jim and ask him a few questions I thought you all would appreciate. Listen close I’m about to share with you some knowledge from a man that’s been Bass fishing longer than I’ve been alive! With over fifty years of experience, it’s safe to say that Jim Goff has more experience catching Bass on Lake Mead and the surrounding waters than just about anyone alive…

TheSavageGentleman: What would you say is the biggest misconception about Bass Fishing on Lake Mead?

Jim Goff: Most people do not even realize that Lake Mead is one of the most prolific Striper Fisheries in the U.S. 900,000 Stripers are taken from these waters every year. The Nevada Department of Wildlife removed the limit on Stripers three years ago to help reduce the numbers. The estimated population of Striped Bass in Lake Mead is 11 million!

TSG: What would you say are the biggest mistakes beginners make Bass fishing on Lake Mead?

JG: Most anglers don’t get onto the water earlier enough, I’ve found you will catch 80% of your fish within the first two hours of dawn. Beginners often underestimate the value of being able to cast accurately. Most anglers these days aren’t taking the time to learn from environmental ques like reading the bird activity. Many beginners also try to save money and purchase poor quality tackle; buy the best tackle you can afford and learn how to use it properly.

TSG: What are the best times for Bass fishing on Lake Mead?

JG: The Prime months for Stripers on Mead are September and October.

TSG: What are your favorite baits for Bass on Lake Mead?

JG: My favorite lures for Stripers are the Storm Swim Baits in four inch size. For top water the Rebel Jumping Minnow. For deep water jigging, the Spinnow Minnow or Kastmaster.

  If you’re thinking of taking a trip to Vegas, head down the road to Lake Mead to take a break from the flashing lights and buzzing bandits and get out on the water. You’ll be glad you did. The risks are much lower and the payout is high. I suggest you give Jim a call and learn how to work the lake from a legend. You can find Jim Goff here at


Thumbs up Jim Goff!


Bon Voyage Savages, Live Wild. Eat Well.

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