Some areas of the United States have limited or overcrowded space for anglers to fish. In fact, it’s hard for anglers to get out and go fishing. However, anglers are going to find water. Some will try ponds. They can be the best option next to building your own tank.
Located throughout the United States, retention ponds have become fishing oasis for anglers. Unlike detention ponds that only hold stormwater runoff following storms for a short period of time, retention ponds maintain a reservoir of water all year long and hold rain from runoff following rain storms indefinitely. These retention ponds can be found everywhere from subdivisions, along roadways and everywhere in between.
Of course it’s hard to launch a boat since these retention ponds don’t have boat ramps. “They don’t have boat ramps, but are easy to put a kayak in on them along with being inexpensive. Plus it’s really relaxing out on the water with limited access and the fishing can be phenomenal on them,” said professional bass angler Bill McDonald.
McDonald finds many of the retention ponds by Googling Google Earth. “It’s amazing the number of retention ponds you will find and some of them close by you,” said McDonald.
Although, McDonald is fishing from a kayak, he is hardly roughing it. His Coosa HD Jackson Kayak (www.jacksonkayak.com) is a fishing machine designed for anglers. He can stand up and fish or sit down fishing from an elevated comfortable seat.
Other features of the Coosa HD Jackson Kayak include hinged hatches, elite Seat 3.0, removable center console, rod tip protector, under seat tackle pockets with Plano boxes included, rod stagers, drag chain chute, Goal Zero Ready, Yakattack Gear Tracks, Power-Pole Micro Anchor ready, Tackle Management and Plano Boxes, RAM Rod Holders, Therm-a-Rest Lumbar Support, transducer scupper, two-layer standing pad, heavy duty seat attachment buckle, hull storage, GoPro Gooseneck, flush mount rod holders, tankwell, removable skid plate, rod butt stager, adjustable ergonomic foot pegs, day hatch, ergonomic handles, Fish Grips, Line Cutterz and Sealline Seat Pouch.
“When you are out fishing these retention ponds keep it simple. I use one waterproof Plano tackle box that fits right under the seat. You can use a jig for bottom bouncing or a big worm. If you want to fish the middle column, an angler can use 8.0 wobble lure to fish it near the bottom, in the middle or burn it just under the surface. For topwater fishing, I like the Strike King (www.strikeking.com) Sexy Dawg,”- Bill McDonald
Some of these retention ponds have little if any cover to fish or ambush points where bass will be located. “Many of them are just open bowls with no cover; however, some have grass, cattails, rock and even wood in them. The best thing to do is just fish all the cover you can see or find,” said McDonald.
If your kayak doesn’t have a sonar unit, McDonald recommended anglers count a lure down to the bottom. “Most lures fall about a foot per second so if your jig takes 12 seconds to land, you can bet that you are in about 12 feet,” said McDonald.
Depth and water clarity also play a major part when fishing in retention ponds. McDonald keeps it simple. If the water is dirty, he uses a dirty lure like a dark colored lure like black and blue. In cleaner water, I will use a lighter colored lure like watermelons or green pumpkin colors.
One other thing McDonald keys on when fishing retention ponds is the ledge that may run around the pond. “Most have a ledge that runs about the ledge eight feet down for safety. Make sure you remember that fish can stage in and around them and make for a perfect ambush point for bass,” said McDonald.