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Been bass fishing for around 20 years and have a garage full of stuff. The question is do you guys fish better if you just take 4-6 of your confidence colors and leave the rest at home or do you bring stuff you don't normally use to experiment with? Been struggling this year and think I just have to many options in the boat.

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I've been pushing the jigs hard this year more so that any other year of my life. They have been my confidence bait when nothing else, even live bait for bottom feeders, works. However this year, I am starting to run cranks alot more.

 

I only have 7 combos, so I usually bring all of them. I may only use 2-3 but I have it. I have been also, bringing one rod, with one style of bait and only using it to gain confidence too.

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If I can only take a few rods and baits and be comfortable with it then it usually means I have them figured out pretty well so yes I do fish better then. Otherwise I take whatever I have room for that I feel there is even a slight chance I'll need it. Leave something at home that you think there is any chance you might need and that will be the only thing the fish will be biting that day. 

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I'm forcing myself to experiment with lures not normally used or that I need to reconfirm uses. I carry one small organizer box with partitions that hold a limited number of confidence baits. But for all others I carry individual lures in zip lock bags. These are baits I either made myself or lures I want to try again. They run the gamut of lure designs: many different types of soft plastic, a few spinnerbaits,  a few jigs with different trailers and a few crankbaits. When a baits is successful, I document its success in my decades old log book and replace them with new lures in bags that I have hanging on a rack.

 

For some reason I can't seem to want to try lures from a large tackle box no matter how organized and tend to use the same old lure for hours. At least when a lure is bagged separately, it becomes special and I can focus on when and how to use it. I know that a limited number of colors do fine for most lure designs and types so it's just a matter of action and size  - still limiting to a few.

 

Variety is the spice of life, but too much variety without a plan and some thought leaves me in the same old rut of carrying lures never used or put to the test nor remembering what a pro said that got me to buy them. My best advice is to learn what you have and limit your tackle to what does best in situations you will encounter after building on your experiences. Keeping a log is the best way.

 

Today I found out that a trailer I poured this winter worked great for jigging or swimming a jig. I worked a large beaver I poured in wetland flat waters and caught bass and pickerel.

I took out a Blade Dancer and again caught bass and picks - time to retire the lure until next year and replace it with a new one never used.

 

Stored lures don't catch fish.

 

Frank

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I store all my "reserves" in the man cave. I carry one 3600 bag 

which keeps the selection down below 100 baits, lures and

terminal tackle

 

 

:fishing-026: .

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In my mind, the focus is what the fish are doing and the conditions the environment is dishing out at the time, not lures all by themselves. Sure there are lots of "fish-catchers" in your boxes, but which one's are applicable in the moment? And which one's do you know how to apply with confidence? And which one's might you want to add by experimentation to your GoTo list in those conditions?

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When I use my small tin boat I will review the lake I am fishing along with the conditions with respect to the season, and then I will determine what baits to take with me.  When I am in my bass boat, I will still do the same review but I take everything I can.  Unfortunately no matter how well I am organized, on occasion I find myself trying to remember which container I have a bait stored in when I take so many containers on the big boat.  I have my containers labeled though the labels are worn and probably need replacement.  I think I may need to draw up a "schematic" of where everything is in my bass boat.   :smiley:

 

It would probably help if I would stop being lazy when I take everything.  I need to store the baits I expect to use in one box like I do in the small boat.  Then I would only be looking in the other boxes when I'm hitting the wall and need to try something different.

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Been bass fishing for around 20 years and have a garage full of stuff. The question is do you guys fish better if you just take 4-6 of your confidence colors and leave the rest at home or do you bring stuff you don't normally use to experiment with? Been struggling this year and think I just have to many options in the boat.

 

Lately I've been paring down what I take on outings. Minimalistic approach... For one, it's easier in my kayak to not have 4 or more rods. I take 2.

 

As for colors, I have 3 3600 size boxes I take with my soft plastics, a couple hard lures. Definitely more than 4 colors, but I probably only need that many.

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I dont have a garage full of gear but I have enough that I need to pick and choose what I take with me. In my kayak, I can bring my worm binder, 2 3600 boxes and several more bags of soft plastics. I Usually bring mainly what I have a lot of confidence in, then several lures that i think could possibly work or that I just want to try out. I can take 3 rods when kayak fishing and I use up to four when shore fishing.

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In my mind, the focus is what the fish are doing and the conditions the environment is dishing out at the time, not lures all by themselves. Sure there are lots of "fish-catchers" in your boxes, but which one's are applicable in the moment? And which one's do you know how to apply with confidence? And which one's might you want to add by experimentation to your GoTo list in those conditions?

 That the best reply I've read that describes what I've started trying to do with the many lures untested for many situations. Knowing that will be invaluable and cut down on all the wishful thinking lures.

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...wishful thinking lures.

Wishing that the fish will come to you, meet you most of the way, is a false hope most of the time. Or at least no way to beat the random odds with any consistency. The flip-side is going TO the fish -meeting THEM most of the way. The latter takes an education, which takes time reading, observing, fishing, experimenting. Can't think of a better way to spend a life.

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Can't think of a better way to spend a life.

 

or retirement!

 

What I meant Paul may apply not only to me but that when I'm in a tackle store or thumbing through a catalog I'll be impressed by a lure -especially if it's on sale - , fantasize myself catching a nice bunch of fish on it and order a stupid amount just in case the lure goes up in price or is discontinued.  Wishful thinking for sure and what keeps my collection growing (though at a much slower pace!)

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Yeah, do you buy one or three, or more, to try out? I'd like to say "Let 'em go. There are lots of good lures out there." But... I have some favorites I'd hate to lose. One is a favorite early season crankbait, an old Tom Seward "Natural Ike" square-bill shad style with a nice wobble, slow rise, and great finish. I have 2 left out of 5 I had bought in the mid 80's! Lost #3 to some wood last spring. :(

 

I also like the Sebile FlattShad lipless, and have adorned one hunk of submerged timber with 2 of 'em. That's over 30 bucks! I have one left in that size. Do I order another?

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Same situation here! I only have two left of Helin's Flatfish in a certain color and size that always catch fish in certain situations and I'm afraid a pike will eat them.  Same for the original POs crankbaits before the company was sold and the quality went out the window.

Those baits are at least 30 years old!

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They aren't going to be retired though. Never understood owning a gun you're afraid to get a scratch on. Use 'em! Shame to do otherwise.

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i normally fish from land so i just do like i do when i go flats fishing i just bring 3 or 4 baits in my pocket in a worm bag and thats it

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I usually bring about 20-25 rod and reel combos every time I go fishing, I also bring just about all of my tackle as well. I depending upon the lake and time of year prioritize which baits are most readily available, to me in the front of the boat. I do like to have many different options just incase... better to have too many than not enough...

Mitch

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