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Top Of Your Personal Game

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Tell me (us) about an occassion when you felt like you were on the top of your game and why.

 

I guess one of my better performances was on a day when we were catching bass in stands of flooded cattails.  The bass had been pretty consistently biting texas rigged creature baits and crawdad baits and my buddy and I were nearing probably 30 bass apiece.  Maybe more.  Some clouds began to move in and a light wind began to blow.  As though a light bulb had gone out, the bass all but stopped biting.  We considered moving on but it was obvious to me that the bass were still there.  They had just become tight-lipped.  I remembered (or had imagined) reading that sometimes, when the bass stop biting, it's best to downsize before quitting or moving on.  So I got my spinning rod out, tied on a little 2/0 hook and 1/16 ounce bullet weight and switched to a little 2 inch creature bait (Power Hawg).  I'm not going to say we picked up as many as before but it definitely improved again.  I felt like I had finally and REALLY applied something that I had learned.

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This past summer fishing a huge flat it was bright and sunny. I was bombing a Silver Shiner Sreaming Eagle spinnerbait and knocking the tar out of them. A storm blew in bringing wind and complete cloud cover, it got really dark. The fish turned completely off, switched to the same bait in Water Mellon Seed and kept right on knocking the tar out of them. Didn't catch many with size, but if I'd have put them all on the bank, the water level would have dropped a foot. Brian.

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This past summer fishing a huge flat it was bright and sunny. I was bombing a Silver Shiner Sreaming Eagle spinnerbait and knocking the tar out of them. A storm blew in bringing wind and complete cloud cover, it got really dark. The fish turned completely off, switched to the same bait in Water Mellon Seed and kept right on knocking the tar out of them. Didn't catch many with size, but if I'd have put them all on the bank, the water level would have dropped a foot. Brian.

 

Doesn't that just feel GOOD?!

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One time at band camp....... Diffrent story. Was throwing a t rigged creature bait and the sky's became overcast ahead of a storm last year. I switched to a spook and became a spook master for about 3 hours. Was throwing a full size spook it was the sexy shad color and the big girls wanted to dance. Caught 11 between 3 & 5 lbs with 20 total. It was a day of legends. Next week could not buy a bite on a spook.

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Though I understand your premise, I will say that my "game" doesn't really change from one day to the next.

 

 There are times however, if I am fortunate enough to be able to get out on a body of water enough days in a row & or repeatedly for a period of time, where I'll be there where & when the fish turn on.  It's all about being in the right place, at the right time and with the right bait.

 

  In between those times, I'm doing everything I can think of to locate, hopefully active fish and attempt to illicit a strike. 

 

On those rare occasions when I haven't been out in a while and start getting bit right away, I just say thank you every time I reach for the net.  This happens much more at night.

 

A-Jay

 

 

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Im canoeing and fishing a smallmouth river below a flood control dam. They open the gates .It appears the fishing is over as the water is rolling. Im gliding past this big eddy and notice some baitfish scattering. I pull in and step out on a downed tree .For the next thirty minutes to hour I catch a bass on every cast. I dont even remember the lure I threw. 

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I had a day this summer when the bass were really fired up eating a 6" bull shad and an 8" BBZ. I probably only landed a dozen fish, but almost all of them were in the 3-6lb range, and I lost a fish that was probably 8lbs, just couldn't keep his head under water.. This all took place from dark thirty until about 2 hours after sunrise on a river roughly 20 yards wide. The water was clear enough for me to see every strike!

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Best day i felt like i had and figured out a pattern was 2 years ago home on leave in northern michigan. We got done salmon fishing and was like ahh what the heck lets go bass fishing. It was early november and about 50 degrees out. We got on the water around 3pm at this area that has 2 lakes one smaller and one connected thats a lot larger. Well it got COLD all the sudden and windy and sleeting then calm down and back again but stayed around 30 degrees can't remember water temp. So we were fishing slow trying to get bites with jerk baits and slow fishing tubes and small baits,. Then we decided well maybe there feeding up shallow feeding up during this storm, Well glad we did. We moved into the magic number apparently of 7ft on these grass flats that had grass like carpet on the bottom and it was on. We continued for 3 hrs to catch bass in the 3-5lb range with a few smaller ones mixed in. Stopped counting at 75 bass. We were throwing green pumpkin 3/8ounce football jigs with chigger craw trailers. After it hit the bottom we would swim it back right above bottom and they would inhale it. Also had a lot hit right below surface pulling jige outta water. Man greatest day ever bass fishing. Hope to move back to michigan someday.

 

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2014, my partner and I made money.  We fished 8 tournaments and after it was done, gas, food, baits and even fishing equipment we made money.  From the first tourny in March we just felt dialed in.  Making good decisions at the right time.  We had a one two punch.  I would use more moving baits on the front deck and he would slowdown and pick areas apart.  He ended up angler of the year from the back of my boat and i was third.  I swear there is nothing like putting a plan together and it work out.  We lost one fish that I recall.  We dialed back our line size and that was a major key in our success in my opinion.  Noticed this on our annual trip to guntersville over the years.  i would catch a few more fish than he did and when he switched line size it was like a switch came on.  We took that and put it to use in every tournament situation we had last year.  Just something to think about...  I am so fired up for this year.  I am headed to Gville in a few weeks and I have a game plan that is sure to produce.  Bill Dance said it best, "Confidence is the best bait in your tackle box". 

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There's been several times I was catching larger than average sized fish for a lake and spent the whole day with the same rod in my hands feeling like I could call my shot, that's about as good as it gets. 

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looking back, the times i have felt most on top of my game usually had very little to do with where the fish were or what they were doing.  for me, it usually had more to do with where my mind was and what it was doing.  i have found my least productive days to be the times my mind was cluttered with something else - work, problems, anger, frustration, or just general discontent.  when i bring these things to the lake with me, it's probably going to be a long, difficult day - even if the fish should be biting.  i find myself just going through the motions.  i'm oblivious to important clues around me.  i try to force things.  i find myself wasting time on baits, spots, or techniques that aren't producing.  and when i do get bites, i fail to connect the dots so that i can fine tune a pattern.  anything less than instant success tends to weaken my determination and resolve.

 

on the other hand, the days i have found to be most productive were the times where my mind was free and unburdened.  i was able to concentrate solely on fishing - finding them and catching them.  all of my mental energy was available to assess what was happening around me and i was able to make the necessary adjustments in a timely fashion, on a few rare occasions even anticipating things before they happened.  every cast seems calculated and purpose-driven. success just make me try harder, but so does adversity.  and days that shouldn't have been all that good based on the conditions i was dealt have turned into banner days. 

 

for me at least, it just seems like when my mind is right, my fishing is right. 

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Um let me think.....nope i got nothin. I'll let you know when I find it.

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There has been a few times when I felt like I was on my game. It sure is a great feeling. The first occasion that really sticks out in my mind happened a couple years ago. I was fishing an area with a black jig with a black trailer. I was catching a couple fish good ones over 3 lbs. One of the fish spit up three brown and orange crayfish in my boat. After that I decided to switch to a brown and orange jig. That sure was the ticket. I started getting a lot more bites and the fish got bigger. When I hadn't got a fish within 10 casts I would then throw a crayfish colored crank bait and then catch a couple on that before switching back to the jig. I fished that most of the day and looking back I should have never left it. That day at that spot I caught 20 largemouth, 19 of them over 3 lbs. The only one that wasn't 3 lbs weighed in at 2 lbs 15 oz. It was one heck of a bite. My 5 biggest bass that day weighed in at 32 lbs 9 oz. That has been my best day weight wise I have ever had. In my mind it all happened because I changed my lure color. It also turns out that the crayfish congregate there every year at the same time of year. Last year I had another great day at that spot. When I am fishing that spot I anchor. This past year wasn't quite as fast fishing as two years ago. I did figure out though that when you get a bite on a brown and orange jig it will be a good one. Every half hour I would get bite and it would be a fish over 5 lbs. I landed 6 over 5 including one over 7 but lost 2 including the biggest of the day. It is a great feeling to "call you shots" especially when the fish you are catching are big. Looking back I get that " I am on my game feeling " when I make adjustments small or large that in turn lead to me catching several larger fish, pushing my 5 fish weight upwards of 30 lbs which in my opinion is pretty good for fishing in New England.

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