UPCOMING EVENT: Bass Fishing League - 2016 - Lake Okeechobee

/tips/2016-06-29-stetson-blaylock-s-recipe-for-a-wacky-rig

Stetson Blaylock’s Recipe for a Wacky Rig

From March until the end of the fishing season I’m going to have a wacky rig on deck. It’s a really effective way to fish anytime the fishing is tough, or if the fish are up cruising banks. Anytime fish are about 5 feet deep or less, I can catch them on the wacky rig. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-02-watson-s-toad-tricks-

Watson’s Toad Tricks

In the summer, on those hot, slick days, you just have to fish until you run into bass that are up shallow cruising for big shad or bluegills. You have to cover a lot of water. You might go all day and only get four or five bites on it, but generally they are going to be good-quality fish. In the spring, I throw it all around bedding areas, around fry and anywhere a shallow bass might be. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-01-terminal-tackle-storage

Terminal Tackle Storage

The No. 1 key to organization is your tackle box. Bass Mafia has the best options for me, and the company’s boxes are the most durable and the best at keeping it all together in a certain little spot. Sinkers, beads, rattles and little swivels are hard to keep up with, but the Bait Coffin has so many little dividers that you aren’t taking up a great big space with just a bunch of little bitty swivels. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-31-finessing-the-shad-spawn-on-bridges

Finessing the Shad Spawn on Bridges

When you get to the time of year when bass are postspawn, the shad start spawning, and one of the first places they show up is around bridge pilings. The shad use the bridge pilings to beat the eggs out, and the bass follow right in behind. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-25-watson-on-whopper-ploppers

Watson on Whopper Ploppers

I like to throw a River2Sea Whopper Plopper, a Zoom Horny Toad and a buzzbait a lot. The best rule of thumb I can give you is to stick with the Horny Toad when the water is slick. If there’s a little chop on the water you go with a buzzbait. If there’s a good chop on the water the Whopper Plopper really shines. It’s a loud, big-profile bait, and they can find it. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-06-a-dirt-simple-worm-rig-for-the-spawn

A Dirt-Simple Worm Rig for the Spawn

I love to power fish as much as the next guy, but around the spawn and the immediate postspawn, when I need to put fish in the boat, I often turn to a dirt-simple – and somewhat gaudy – finesse-worm rig that excels in shallow water. It’s easy to set up and skips like a dream, which could help you reach shallow bass around wood cover and docks that you might otherwise be missing. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-03-28-how-to-make-jigs-fishless

How to Make Jigs Fishless

My brother and I came up with the method I use now just playing around in the garage. We used to bend the hooks over or cut them off perfectly good jigs before. Sure enough, we’ve used it now for a couple of years with good results. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-12-07-focus-on-isolated-cover

Focus on Isolated Cover

When fishing gets tough on the main lake in late fall, sometimes I go into the backs of creeks and pick off bass around isolated wood cover in relatively shallow water. “Isolated” is the key word. Any piece of wood cover that is by itself along a bank is prime – the bigger the cover, the better. If it’s a fallen tree, bass might be holding anywhere from the bank out, depending on the depth. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-11-19-first-aid-for-your-boat

First-Aid for Your Boat

One of the best moves I made early on was to familiarize myself with how things are rigged in my boat: electronics, trolling motor, Power-Poles, trailer lights – whatever. Now I rig up just about everything myself, and if there’s an issue with something, I probably know how things work well enough to fix the problem. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-11-18-quick-lure-modifications

Quick Lure Modifications

Over the years, I have compiled a list of items that are oftentimes not associated with bass fishing but that play critical roles for me each time I'm on the water and need to modify baits. These little tools and trinkets can be used to improve your success rate, but will not be found in a local bait shop. Instead, they’re found in the aisles of local hardware and craft stores. To recognize their value, you have to think outside the box a little bit. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-11-13-spinning-rod-skipping-tactics

Spinning Rod Skipping Tactics

I skip a jig or soft-plastic jerkbait on casting gear, but I use a spinning rod when I’m not getting many bites or in areas where I think the fish are getting more pressure than normal. That’s when the finesse technique and the spinning rod become a really strong game plan. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-11-11-fishing-a-senko-on-top

Fishing a Senko on Top

An unweighted Yamamoto Senko, rigged on a wide-gap hook, has caught a lot of bass for me. Most often, I use it where the fish have been hammered and have seen about every other lure there is. This is probably in an area where the bass aren’t replenishing and are just sort of hanging out and feeding once in a while. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-11-04-are-you-sponsor-friendly-

Are You Sponsor-Friendly?

There’s no doubt that some companies are constantly bombarded by fishermen who want to be on their pro-staffs. From my experience, the most successful fishermen are the ones who realize that companies sponsor them to help sell products. This entails actively promoting a company and its products, being well-spoken and never missing a chance to plug a major sponsor, and just generally projecting a positive image. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-10-14-creek-fishing-in-the-fall

Creek Fishing in the Fall

Conventional wisdom has it that in Tennessee River lakes shad migrate up creeks, and bass follow them in the fall. But which creeks? READ MORE »

/tips/2015-10-12-wake-baits-for-fickle-fall-bass

Wake Baits for Fickle Fall Bass

Sometimes fish just don’t want to break the surface to get a lure, but will go after it when it’s just below the surface. Wake baits are great for such times. They have a reputation for being good lures for the spawn and post spawn, but I fish them a lot in the fall when the bass want something a little different. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-10-07-how-to-choose-topwaters-in-fall

How to Choose Topwaters in Fall

As the cool nights drive baitfish to the shallows, bass see a prime opportunity to fatten up for winter. It’s the perfect scenario for a topwater approach: loads of bait, ravenous bass and skinny water. Best of all, you can forget stowing away the surface lures once the sun peaks. These bass are more than willing to crush a topwater rain or shine, morning, noon and night. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-09-24-changing-the-profile-of-a-buzzbait

Changing the Profile of a Buzzbait

Fishermen are starting to catch on to the importance of profile when using buzzbaits, especially in the fall when the fish are more particular. When you’re fishing a buzzbait and the fish either miss it or just swirl at it, usually it’s a speed thing or the profile in the water isn’t right. They’re keying on something, and you’ve got to figure it out. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-09-18-flipping-the-mats

Flipping the Mats

A great pattern this time of year is flipping for bass that are feeding on bluegills in grass mats along shorelines. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-07-29-fishing-flooded-trees

Fishing Flooded Trees

Lakes that don’t have much current develop thermoclines in the summer where the water temperatures differ and form layers. Depending on water clarity and other factors, the top of the thermocline might be 20 to 30 feet from the surface, and a lot of times you can spot it on your fishing electronics. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-03-make-your-own-rod

Make Your Own Rod

For a while now, I’ve been wrapping my own fishing rods. I’m not knocking the rods that are produced for the mass market, but there are certain things that I want in a rod. So the small adjustments I can make by tweaking the components are worth the trouble and time it takes to wrap my own. READ MORE »