Apr 10, 2012
The VIP art of lake and (big!) bass management
“There’s an art to managing these lakes,” says Marc Deschenes, owner, operator and guide for VIP Adventures in Summerville, South Carolina. “About 90 percent of the fishermen who come here want to learn to catch fish and catch fish in the same day, so I have to make them as fisherman-friendly as I can.”
Grass carp (white amur) have eliminated the coontail and other aquatic vegetation once found in the VIP pits. Deschenes has made an effort to make his shorelines “fisherman friendly,” but large portions of several of the lakes – including Pit #3 that I fished with Klein and Lane — have an abundance of overhanging timber.
Deschenes replaces his brush piles with new ones each season, zip-tying newly cut wax myrtle to the marker rebar and removing the old brush to limit oxygen-depleting decay.
The key to fish growth, of course, is forage, and the VIP sand pits offer bass food aplenty. At the base of the food chain are threadfin and gizzard shad, bluegill and crappie. Deschenes also adds 150 pounds of crawfish to all of his lakes each season. He estimates that his craws reproduce two to three times per year. At least one of the lakes — Lake #3 — also received an additional forage boost from a tilapia planting this season.
“We have one big happy food chain!” Deschenes boasts.
– Mike Pehanich
Contact Marc Deschenes at VIP Adventures 1-843-708-5473, and tell him you read about his sand pits in Small Waters Fishing.
See Klein, Lane Unlock Secrets of the Sand Pits to learn how Bassmaster Elite Series pros Gary Klein and Bobby Lane cracked the code on these South Carolina sand pits!
See Post Spawn Sand Pit Bass to learn how Bassmaster Elite Series pros Mike Iaconelli and Boyd Duckett caught their VIP bass.
Every issue of Small Waters Fishing contains vital information on sizing up small waters from natural lakes to farm ponds!