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Alan Reed

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There seems to be a lot of information available for the beginning bass fisherman and how to get started and technique specific instruction. There is also a lot of information on seasonal movements and position on any given body of water to identify thr high percentage areas.

 

As a tournament Angler the obvious goal is to move to from catch more bass to catching more bigger bass. It is just trial and error on the water?

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I see a Buck Perry thread in the near future

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There was a question posted a few months ago regarding catching bigger bass and the conscience of answers seemed to be that if your getting bit then stay on that particular bait but to catch bigger bass you need to either upsize your lure or move to deeper water. 

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There is a lot to be said for time on the water. With time you realize that there's certain baits and areas that produce larger than average bass. Lots of good books out there to read up on targeting big bass. Glen Lau's Bigmouth Forever is on Youtube and really opened my eyes about what a bass is capable of doing and their behavior. 

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Time spent wisely on the water is the best teacher.

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5 hours ago, soflabasser said:

Time spent wisely on the water is the best teacher.

Expand on what you me by wisely.

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31 minutes ago, Alan Reed said:

Expand on what you me by wisely.

Eliminating non-productive or small fish water helps enormously. Search for the spot within the spot. 

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Read as much as you can either on the web of in some excellent books.  One thing I have learned,  get any bait in a bass strike zone and you have a good chance of catching it.  You must find out where they are that day, that hour, that minute.  Conditions will move them from place to place.  A senko or a U-Vibe will catch bass of all sizes almost anywhere in the country.  Its not so much what you throw, but where you throw it, and how you present the bait that hour.  Bass of all size eat big and small creatures in the wild.  A 4" senko will work, as well as a 12" worm.  There is no one meracle bait, there is just the fisherman's ability to put it in the strike zone, and work it how they want it, at that time.

 

Sometime bass will be deep, sometime shallow, sometime in thick cover, and sometime on outside edges.  Plastics, Texas rigged will handle all these different scenarios without hanging up.  Time on the water and increased practical experience will solve a lot of your current problems.  Good luck on the journey.  

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23 hours ago, Alan Reed said:

to from catch more bass to catching more bigger bass

 

20 hours ago, RHuff said:

but to catch bigger bass you need to either upsize your lure or move to deeper water

 

16 hours ago, Bluebasser86 said:

With time you realize that there's certain baits and areas that produce larger than average bass

 

2 hours ago, CroakHunter said:

or small fish water

 

I'm watching this question from @Alan Reed very closely as this is exactly where I need to go with my knowledge know too.  So when I do my studying and head to my first spot on a lake that I know for sure has 7lb and 8lb bass in it and I'm catching 1.5lb to 2.5lb bass is that not going to be the right spot for a 5 or 7lb bass?  Do the dinks and the hawgs not hang out together?  I've been of the thought that when I'm pulling 2lb bass out of an area I am in the right GENERAL area or pattern, but slightly off on the EXACT location or pattern.  Am I likely way off or am I close?  Thanks to @Alan Reed for posting this one. 

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17 minutes ago, BigAngus752 said:

 

 

 

 

I'm watching this question from @Alan Reed very closely as this is exactly where I need to go with my knowledge know too.  So when I do my studying and head to my first spot on a lake that I know for sure has 7lb and 8lb bass in it and I'm catching 1.5lb to 2.5lb bass is that not going to be the right spot for a 5 or 7lb bass?  Do the dinks and the hawgs not hang out together?  I've been of the thought that when I'm pulling 2lb bass out of an area I am in the right GENERAL area or pattern, but slightly off on the EXACT location or pattern.  Am I likely way off or am I close?  Thanks to @Alan Reed for posting this one. 

All my big bass have come from the heart of cover or structure. Not the edges. With a slow retrieve with the utmost focus on my line and surroundings. 

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On 8/26/2018 at 3:09 PM, Alan Reed said:

Expand on what you me by wisely.

There are a lot of things you can do to up your game in bass fishing if you want to.

 

1. Find someone who is a much better bass fisherman than yourself in the waters you fish and become friends with him/her. Fish with them as much as possible and do your best to learn from them. This will speed up your learning curve much faster than reading anything online or in a book.

2. Do your best to learn from every fishing trip.

3. Do your best to learn how to read the water.

4. Do your best to learn how to fish the different seasons and strive to be good bass fishermen throughout the year, not just a season or two.

5. Do your best to master a couple lures instead of fishing dozens of types of lures but you really don't fish them enough to the point you master them.

6. Understand that no matter how much you know there will always be someone who knows a certain technique better than you and knows how to fish a certain body of water better than you. Knowing this means it would be best to keep a open mind and do your best to learn from everybody who is willing to teach you what they know.

 

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Since you're specifically referencing tourney situations, I'm going with your answer of a lot of "trial and error on the water." It's one thing to specifically target big fish on your own time and water, but a completely different scenario to do it under the constraints of a tourney. Looking at the recent Elite event that just finished up, some of the best pros in the world ended up at the bottom of the pack because their average was just 3 pounds per bass while the winner and top guys averaged 4.5-4.75 pounds per bass. While some guys are a little better overall in the stats dept. (KVD, etc.), the bottom line in my opinion is nobody really has the answer to your question figured out...and if they say they do, they're either fooling themself, or their name might be "Angler X" (subtle FLW reference for those that know their tourney history) :lol:

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1 hour ago, Team9nine said:

the bottom line in my opinion is nobody really has the answer to your question figured out...and if they say they do, they're either fooling themself, or their name might be "Angler X"

Team9Nine, the longer you're hear, and the more of your posts I read, the better I like you.

 

The above quote needs a soundtrack.

 

Let's go with Otis Reddings' version of "Tell it like it is".

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2 hours ago, Team9nine said:

Since you're specifically referencing tourney situations, I'm going with your answer of a lot of "trial and error on the water." It's one thing to specifically target big fish on your own time and water, but a completely different scenario to do it under the constraints of a tourney. Looking at the recent Elite event that just finished up, some of the best pros in the world ended up at the bottom of the pack because their average was just 3 pounds per bass while the winner and top guys averaged 4.5-4.75 pounds per bass. While some guys are a little better overall in the stats dept. (KVD, etc.), the bottom line in my opinion is nobody really has the answer to your question figured out...and if they say they do, they're either fooling themself, or their name might be "Angler X" (subtle FLW reference for those that know their tourney history) :lol:

Sure everyone even the best in the world have bad days, weeks and tournaments. But there is something that the best have learned that the rest of strive to have. Which is what sparks my question.

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In my guide service, I have taken out fishermen who want to do any number of things.  Pattern water, catch numbers, learn the lake, catch a trophy just to name a few.  If they want to catch a trophy there are some things I tell them up front.  Time of year makes a difference.  Current weather and lake conditions make a difference.  Fishing ability makes a difference.  Trophy hunting is an all or nothing experience because the schoolers don't swim with the big mammas.  So I normally take the trophy hunters out for a few schooling fish just to get past the fact that the guide knows what he is doing and then move on to the hunt for big fish.  Totally different fishing in different spots for different fish.  I also tell them there's a good chance of blanking, it's just the law of averages.  The pro's are usually set up for the best fishing on whatever body of water they are on to keep the catches big for the fan base.  That's why the trail starts down south and moves north as the season advances.  Put them on those same bodies of water in the "off peak" time frame and they would have more of a problem bringing in big sacks.  Also remember they have experience on those bodies of water and more than likely or have sources letting them know where the quality fish are hanging out.  Bottom line know your water and put together the fine points that up your chances of catching the bigger fish.  

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For me, tournament fishing and recreational fishing is different, but focusing on improving the overall size while maintaining numbers is the key. For me, finding the fish is the most important.  In doing so, I find myself selecting different baits on lesser know spots.  It's the journey 

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8 hours ago, Alan Reed said:

Sure everyone even the best in the world have bad days, weeks and tournaments. But there is something that the best have learned that the rest of strive to have. Which is what sparks my question.

I think trying to define or quantify "this special something" is a bit futile myself, because more than one guy has "it," but everyone has their own theories, experiences, approaches and techniques that make them who they are. Asking them (personally) what makes them so good usually leads to some non-inspiring answer. If it were simple and straightforward, we would have all read it somewhere already and all be just as good, competing against these guys on tour instead of hanging out on a fishing forum. Forge your own unique style and path.

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14 hours ago, BigAngus752 said:

 

 

 

 

I'm watching this question from @Alan Reed very closely as this is exactly where I need to go with my knowledge know too.  So when I do my studying and head to my first spot on a lake that I know for sure has 7lb and 8lb bass in it and I'm catching 1.5lb to 2.5lb bass is that not going to be the right spot for a 5 or 7lb bass?  Do the dinks and the hawgs not hang out together?  I've been of the thought that when I'm pulling 2lb bass out of an area I am in the right GENERAL area or pattern, but slightly off on the EXACT location or pattern.  Am I likely way off or am I close?  Thanks to @Alan Reed for posting this one. 

Do the dinks and runts hang with the bigger bass? Have the larger bass that I've caught in the last month staged themselves differently? Has pressure in the area have them locked jawed? I'm not sure. 

 

I'm pretty anal and when I get something in my head I go with it and stick with it until death. Sometimes I'm right. Sometimes I wrong. Saturday and Sunday I was wrong. This past weekend I felt my way to nice bass was going to be split shotting and drop shotting. 

 

My fish all weekend were 11"-12" bass. I had a few big hit. Hits bigger than these fish. I believe the nicer fish were right there near those runts. Maybe smaller bass shutdown differently. 

 

To original poster, great post also. 

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1 hour ago, Team9nine said:

I think trying to define or quantify "this special something" is a bit futile myself, because more than one guy has "it," but everyone has their own theories, experiences, approaches and techniques that make them who they are. Asking them (personally) what makes them so good usually leads to some non-inspiring answer. If it were simple and straightforward, we would have all read it somewhere already and all be just as good, competing against these guys on tour instead of hanging out on a fishing forum. Forge your own unique style and path.

Yeah, that "special something" is inside each individual. Watching videos or even asking the person and listening to the answer for hours on end won't cause osmosis to infuse one with it. It isn't as obvious with competition where there is no clearly apparent physical or psychological advantages, but they are there none the less. I could ask Lebron how to take off from the baseline, put a hip on the D without loosing balance and dunk over the guy coming over the weak side, and watch all his YT videos, and I still couldn't even reach the net with a step stool. Same applies to fishing, and everything else.

 

 

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13 hours ago, Team9nine said:

Looking at the recent Elite event that just finished up, some of the best pros in the world ended up at the bottom of the pack because their average was just 3 pounds per bass while the winner and top guys averaged 4.5-4.75 pounds per bass.

 

While I agree 100% with everything you've posted on this topic, we need to understand in Pro tournaments we're talking 3-4 day events.

 

For the rest of us Joe's it's a one day event, it's easier to hold a 4-5# average for a single day than 4 days.

 

In the tournaments I fish the strategy is kicker fish, the bigger the kicker fish the smaller your next 4 can be. 

 

Some anglers have the mindset of putting 5 of any size in the boat asap. Down here we start the tournament targeting kicker fish.

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I take 2 things away from watching the Elite guys. 

 

1.  They are all really proficient in one or two presentations and they rely heavily on it. 

 

2. They understand weather, lake conditions and patterns. 

 

 

 

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32 minutes ago, Catt said:

 

While I agree 100% with everything you've posted on this topic, we need to understand in Pro tournaments we're talking 3-4 day events.

 

For the rest of us Joe's it's a one day event, it's easier to hold a 4-5# average for a single day than 4 days.

 

In the tournaments I fish the strategy is kicker fish, the bigger the kicker fish the smaller your next 4 can be. 

 

Some anglers have the mindset of putting 5 of any size in the boat asap. Down here we start the tournament targeting kicker fish.

 

This is getting back to the point main topic which is targeting the bigger fish in a way that works in a tournament. That is obviously different than some one that is going out seeking the fish of a lifetime every time they go out knowing many times that means they are not going to get a single bite.

 

What is the strategy difference you employ to target the bigger tournament fish? 

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46 minutes ago, Catt said:

 

While I agree 100% with everything you've posted on this topic, we need to understand in Pro tournaments we're talking 3-4 day events.

 

For the rest of us Joe's it's a one day event, it's easier to hold a 4-5# average for a single day than 4 days.

 

In the tournaments I fish the strategy is kicker fish, the bigger the kicker fish the smaller your next 4 can be. 

 

Some anglers have the mindset of putting 5 of any size in the boat asap. Down here we start the tournament targeting kicker fish.

I agree overall, but even then, you'll find "success" all over the map. Some try to target bigger fish first, while some target a limit, then change tactics for a kicker fish. Still others simply go fishing and let the chips fall where they may. We could probably all name local "sticks" who fall into each of those categories. Most all agree though that "luck" creeps in a bit more in one day events compared to multi-day derbies.

 

Note: In Indiana, a limit is a rare thing in many tournies as we have some of the toughest fisheries in the country. As such, where you fish (base your answer/strategy on) will change the answer as to what approach might work best.

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On 8/25/2018 at 6:31 PM, Alan Reed said:

There seems to be a lot of information available for the beginning bass fisherman and how to get started and technique specific instruction. There is also a lot of information on seasonal movements and position on any given body of water to identify thr high percentage areas.

 

As a tournament Angler the obvious goal is to move to from catch more bass to catching more bigger bass. It is just trial and error on the water?

 

35 minutes ago, Alan Reed said:

 

This is getting back to the point main topic which is targeting the bigger fish in a way that works in a tournament. That is obviously different than some one that is going out seeking the fish of a lifetime every time they go out knowing many times that means they are not going to get a single bite.

 

What is the strategy difference you employ to target the bigger tournament fish? 

While I do not fish competitively, catching the heaviest legal limit has been my objective each trip for a while now. 

When I look back at my early years / stages of bass fishing and perhaps how & why I've struggled the most (even today) the reasons were many.  Interestingly (but certainly not surprisingly) much of it was succinctly noted in a response  by @Catt to one of @Alan Reed's previous posts ~ 

For me - these 9 ideas / concepts, that often take at least 1/2 a life time on the water to identify, sum up and answer the OP's question well.

Get the majority of the below list right, and you'll be well on your way to where you are looking to go. 

 

:smiley:

A-Jay

 

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Look at MLF.  These guys are the best in the business but they are catching 1 or 2 pound bass and thrilled to get them.  Why are they not out there targeting double digit bass.  Because they know there are a lot more smaller bass then big bass in any body of water.  You go to target just big bass and your often in for a long day of fishing, with little results.  Like the guide said in an earlier post, I let them catch some schoolies and then go after a big one, because that could be the end of catching that day.  If you knew the secret to catching big bass consistently, you could easily be a millionaire.  To me its all about location, more then anything else.  Fish aquarium lakes, with catch and release only, and feed stocked trout several times a year, and your odds go way up, but you still have to be a skilled angler, or just plain lucky.  Learn the body of water you fish and how anglers caught big fish on those waters.  Then go target the locations where big fish hang out.  It's as simple as that!  But never simple!

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