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dale.m

A Couple Questions From A Confused Fisherman

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Hey everyone.

I've been bass fishing for the past year and have fell in love with it. Ever since my first big catch, the bass bug has bit me hard. I love it soo much that tomorrow me and my fishing buddy are going to buy a jon boat so we can fish bigger ponds and lakes.

Being a novice, I'm still learning various techniques and lure choices for different scenarios that I face on the pond. Once situation I still can't figure out is fishing perfectly clear weather. Let me explain to you the situation I encountered tonight...

I went to a murky pond first. It has rained the past couple days here, but today was clear, sunny, and warm. I initially threw in a moss and a black jig with trailers around some cover where I saw some larger bass lurking in the shade. With no success, I went to the northern side of the pond, put on a pumpkin colored plastic worm, and threw in around an old laydown in a cove. After a couple dozen casts with no success, I decided to try a black and blue buzzbait around some docks to try and pull bass out from underneath. I still wasn't having any success, so I decided to pack up and try another pond.

The water in the second pond was very clear. I started out with a dark buzzbait in a cove with lilly pads. Still, I received no strikes. I threw on a natural colored medium diving crankbait and fished out towards a drop off in the pond. I had no success there either. Finally, because it was getting dark, I tied a medium sized hula popper and tried casting around the lilly pad banks. During the entire evening from 5pm to 9:30pm, I didn't receive one bite.

I enjoy being out and fishing, even if I don't catch anything. However, it is still frustrating when the fish just seem to elude anything I throw at them. Were the fish just not biting, was I in the wrong place, or was I using the wrong lures. Being a novice, I can't really figure out what I was doing wrong. How do some of you guys handle clear, sunny and warm days in either murky or clear water.

Thank you!

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"How do some of you guys handle clear, sunny and warm days in either murky or clear water."

A clear, sunny and warm day may mean that a cold front has just passed through your area and the bass will have lockjaw for one or two days.

Murky water - Bass need to see your bait. In heavily stained or dirty water throw something with charturese color and a rattle so the bass can have a better chance to see it after feeling it move through the water. Use dark colors for plastics and throw a wacky rigged black Senko or a Junebug trick worm on a shaky head. Firetiger crankbaits may work, too. Chatterbaits can work, too. Use one with a white or white/yellow skirt.

Clear water - If you can see them, they can see you! Stay as far away from where you want to cast as possible. Try watermealon or green pumpkin plastics. Pitch and flip to everything in the water and along the shoreline. Crankbaits such as a Bandit 100 with a chartruse body and blue back may work.

The bass will tell you what they want. Maybe they want a popper or buzzbait in the early AM; followed by a sexy shad crankbait; then they will hit your plastics. And of course, you may want to throw a Chatterbait or a spinnerbait.

You have to try to find the pattern. Sometimes you find the pattern and sometimes you don't.

Read the fishing articles on this forum plus the articles by Woo Daves at www.woodaves.com

Woo won the Bassmaster Classic and he is a great guy who is willing to share his experiences with you.

And suscribe to some bass magazines. Join B.A.S.S. and FLW and get their magazines. Check out the various DVDs available on various techniques and baits. Start a library with articles taken out of your magazines for future reference.

In other words, try to learn as much about your green enemy as possible.

Good luck.

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One more hint: When reading articles by the pros forget the brand names and the equipment they are hawking.

Just note the details of the tackle and their sizes, etc.

For instance, if Woo says he fishes with a BPS Extreme 7 foot rod, you interpert as a "7 foot rod" and leave the brand out. Any 7 foot rod you have will suffice.

Remember, bass are sneaky and you have to know them and their habits to catch them.

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Great advice, from Sam.....I saw that you threw a half dozen different lures over the course of maybe 2-3 hours. You also mentioned that this is your second year of serious bassfishing. Perhaps, and this is only a suggestion, the KISS principle should prevail for short evening trips. My suggestion would be smaller twitch baits(suspending) and 4" black 'T'rigged rubber worms, and that's it. Gentle twitches around cover will leave twitch baits on the surface and sharper twitches will bring them to midrange. The worm will go inside weeds and under docks. If you eliminate too much lure selection then you can concentrate on pattern development. JMHO

Grampa

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Thanks for the tips guys! I'm heading out again Saturday morning on my new jon boat! Looks like the weather will be mostly clear and warm in the morning. I hope to put some of these new techniques to work!

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I also want to leave you with this tip. A lot of people tend to jump spots way too quickly. Spend a little more time at a spot. Sometimes it's a matter of chucking everything you have until they hit. Or sometimes it's a matter of ticking them off to get that reaction bite by casting the same lure to the same spot several times. Even that Van Dam fellow will tell you that he'll cast a buzzbait to the same lone stump 15-20 times before he gets a hit. My buddy, George, will fish a spot for 5 minutes and then get frustrated and wonder why he don't catch anything. Grant it, we are chained to bank fishing, but you still have to be willing to spend a little longer especially if the bass are lockjawed.

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Many of the ponds I fish have crystal clear water, you see them ----> they see you, catching them is more a matter of approach and not of which baits you will use. If they can see you well, then don´t let them see you, don´t come to close to the water edge, make longer casts, don´t have the sun behind you, you may have to kneel down, blend with the foreground. I don´t believe in downsizing or having to use "natural" colors, have caught plenty ultra clear water bass with big baits and outrageous colors to make me a non believer of downsizing and or as natural as you can go.

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Many of the ponds I fish have crystal clear water, you see them ----> they see you, catching them is more a matter of approach and not of which baits you will use. If they can see you well, then don´t let them see you, don´t come to close to the water edge, make longer casts, don´t have the sun behind you, you may have to kneel down, blend with the foreground. I don´t believe in downsizing or having to use "natural" colors, have caught plenty ultra clear water bass with big baits and outrageous colors to make me a non believer of downsizing and or as natural as you can go.

X2

I do believe in stealth though when fishing, especially from shore, clear water means you have to be slow and soft in your approach, not just at the waters edge but with the way your bait enters the water as well.

Your bait needs to come to them from angle they least expect at a slow and methodical approach.

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The only mistake you may have made was your timing; fish the clear water during low light late afternoon and the murky water during the mid day early afternoon. You learned where the bass were in the clear water, they should still be there. You lure selection was OK, you fished a little faster than the lack of bass activity that was apparently happening at the times you fished; easy to catch active bass, difficult to catch inactive bass. Bass become active for about 20 minutes or so each 3 to 4 hours...being at the right spot at the right time makes bass fishing a lot easier.

Tom

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Agree with Sam, learn everything you can. As to the experience you described, it's not enough to draw any conclusions. You can start out by employing the conventional wisdom for the conditions, but remember, bass are always breaking the rules.

Were the fish just not biting, was I in the wrong place, or was I using the wrong lures.

I've been at this 43 years and still am asking the same question.

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I went back out to the same second pond today and took some of your advice. I was more patient, zoned in on the bass, and chose a lure to fit the conditions. I resited the urge to change lures after 15 minutes with no luck, and caught a 2lb bass shortly after on a bluegill colored swim jig and trailer. I had to leave shortly after, but I was satisfied with this new approach to fishing. I also got to use my new Abu Garcia Veritas rod today and it worked incredibly. I could feel the bass I caught much better than the cheap rod I was using before. I set the hook perfectly in the fish. All in all, it was a successful day! Thanks guys.

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Raul and Nitro, at a Bassmaster University a few years ago Hank Parker told us to walk at least 50-feet from the bank of a pond or lake when moving from place to place.

This is because he says the bass can not only see you but they can feel you.

I don't know about the "feel" part but I know they can see you.

Just supporting what you guys posted.

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