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Frustrating one fish patterns.


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     This past year I had more difficulty finding a pattern while bass fishing, than any other time in my whole life fishing for multiple species.

One day I fished a favorite lake and, started off fishing main lake points with crankbaits.  After marking fish and bait in the 12-16 foot range, on the south side of the point I threw a marker out and started casting.  After casting at the spot from different angles I caught a bass.  Hoping I found a pattern, I continued to make casts from that angle.  After a few casts with no bites I switched color of crankbaits, with no success, then switched to a different size of crankbait, while also trying different retrieves.  After spending way to much time on crankbaits I gave up and decided the bass must want a slower presentation.  First cast with a Carolina rig I caught a nice 6 pound bass. Now I was sure I had found the right spot and presentation, but after many more casts from different angles, no bass.  I tried different plastics and different retrieves, but nothing.

      Not wanting to give up on main lake points I went to another point with the same results.  First few casts a bass on a crankbait, then nothing, first cast with a Carolina rig, a big bass but after that nothing.  Some times I left to the next point, other times I would threw the whole box trying everything before giving up.  One time the first cast with a jig landed me a nice bass, then nothing.

      Finally I decided, main lake points might not be the best pattern. I then tried the back of a small bay.  First cast at a laydown with a spinnerbait landed me a 5 pound bass.  Next twenty lay downs nothing.  Switch to a Texas rigged worm, and caught a bass on the first cast, then again nothing.  I then went to another bay with lots of laydowns but no bass.  After trying 4 bays with no success, I tried a bluff wall.   First cast parallel to the bluff with an underspin, a caught a 3 pound bass, which was the first and last bass of the day, caught on bluffs, or om underspin's.

      The same thing happened almost every time I went bass fishing on a variety of lakes.  I could find a location, and lure to catch a nice bass, but could  not manage to repeat my success at that spot, similar location, or with the same lure.  One lake I was desperate and decided to try a more finesse technique.  I brought a spinning rod rigged with a drop shot, and after catching a couple small bass on a crank along a rock wall extending from shore out in to the lake I decided to try the drop shot.  First cast I caught a 4 pound bass.  That was the last bass I caught along that wall, and the first and last bass of the day on a drop shot.

       Does anyone else suffer from this dreaded one fish pattern syndrome, and if so what do you do to overcome this frustrating fishing sickness?

 Maybe I found the best pattern, but didn't realize it.  I should simply make only one cast with any lure, and only make one cast at any location.  If I run out of lures to try, then I can buy more lures.  The Bait Monkey would love that pattern

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Our lakes often get on a specific lure and depth pattern, if you don’t figure that out it’s pick single fish day if you are lucky.

Tom

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First thing I do is avoid the pattern syndrome altogether, thus avoiding the frustration and fishing sickness of which you speak. Those kinda thoughts will make short work out of the sport and perhaps end it altogether or at the very least skunk ya to death. Fishing is not ALL about catching fish, imho. There's plenty more to it however one may define it. Often times when I just go out to have fun and explore and relax, caring little about what I catch if anything, I tend to catch more nice fish than when I am totally focused and serious, sometimes even netting a giant trophy catch! I've surprised myself many times doing exactly that and say to myself that there must be something to it, perhaps subconscious or however subtitle, there must be some rational as to why that happens the way it does. Sometimes just letting go and following the instincts is the best bet. Try it. 

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I’m not a fishing expert. To me it just sounds like you caught the active bass on those given areas for that given day.  Sounds like you’re looking for the answer that just wasn’t there. Some times the “pattern” really is just covering water.

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The term pattern, is a bass fisherman's deal.  Bass don't care. 

My advice is to switch gears.

Stop fishing like a 'client', and fish like 'The Guide' that you are and have always been.

:smiley:

A-Jay

 

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3 minutes ago, A-Jay said:

Stop fishing like a 'client', and fish like 'The Guide' that you are and have always been.

Let’s sell my wife on this great advice lol. Seriously though, you are correct. Guides fish the fish not the pattern. 

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Pattern??

 

One of my biggest tournament wins came after I caught four fish on four different lures in four completely different locations.  Then five minutes before the end of the tournament I caught the big fish of the tournament while dead sticking a trickworm.  Dead sticking wasn’t intentional,  I just stop fishing to talk to a buddy in another boat.

 

It helps to be lucky sometimes.  😉

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2 hours ago, king fisher said:

     This past year I had more difficulty finding a pattern while bass fishing, than any other time in my whole life fishing for multiple species.

One day I fished a favorite lake and, started off fishing main lake points with crankbaits.  After marking fish and bait in the 12-16 foot range, on the south side of the point I threw a marker out and started casting.  After casting at the spot from different angles I caught a bass.  Hoping I found a pattern, I continued to make casts from that angle.  After a few casts with no bites I switched color of crankbaits, with no success, then switched to a different size of crankbait, while also trying different retrieves.  After spending way to much time on crankbaits I gave up and decided the bass must want a slower presentation.  First cast with a Carolina rig I caught a nice 6 pound bass. Now I was sure I had found the right spot and presentation, but after many more casts from different angles, no bass.  I tried different plastics and different retrieves, but nothing.

      Not wanting to give up on main lake points I went to another point with the same results.  First few casts a bass on a crankbait, then nothing, first cast with a Carolina rig, a big bass but after that nothing.  Some times I left to the next point, other times I would threw the whole box trying everything before giving up.  One time the first cast with a jig landed me a nice bass, then nothing.

      Finally I decided, main lake points might not be the best pattern. I then tried the back of a small bay.  First cast at a laydown with a spinnerbait landed me a 5 pound bass.  Next twenty lay downs nothing.  Switch to a Texas rigged worm, and caught a bass on the first cast, then again nothing.  I then went to another bay with lots of laydowns but no bass.  After trying 4 bays with no success, I tried a bluff wall.   First cast parallel to the bluff with an underspin, a caught a 3 pound bass, which was the first and last bass of the day, caught on bluffs, or om underspin's.

      The same thing happened almost every time I went bass fishing on a variety of lakes.  I could find a location, and lure to catch a nice bass, but could  not manage to repeat my success at that spot, similar location, or with the same lure.  One lake I was desperate and decided to try a more finesse technique.  I brought a spinning rod rigged with a drop shot, and after catching a couple small bass on a crank along a rock wall extending from shore out in to the lake I decided to try the drop shot.  First cast I caught a 4 pound bass.  That was the last bass I caught along that wall, and the first and last bass of the day on a drop shot.

       Does anyone else suffer from this dreaded one fish pattern syndrome, and if so what do you do to overcome this frustrating fishing sickness?

 Maybe I found the best pattern, but didn't realize it.  I should simply make only one cast with any lure, and only make one cast at any location.  If I run out of lures to try, then I can buy more lures.  The Bait Monkey would love that pattern

Sounds like you’re doing great to me …🤷🏼‍♂️

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Some days the pattern is one in a row.

 

Some days the pattern is none in a row.

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I have days like that sometimes. You wouldn't believe how many times I've been using a bait with no luck and decide it is time to make a change and I will catch one on it. I still change it out to something else to see what will happen. Sometimes it helps and sometimes I have to make a bunch of changes to try to catch them.

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Heck, yeah, kingfisher, that happens to me...some days...and some days, I do find a pattern...and then, some days, the pattern suddenly ends. Bass are, as Gollum would say, tricksey! And Gollum should know because he eats fish! And if can't catch 'em, he ain't eatin' and that makes him oh so mad. 

 

Angry The Lord Of The Rings GIF

 

So, follow zcoker instead of Gollum. Z is happy when he's catchin' and Z is happy when he's not catchin'. 

 

 

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Damned be the day when I catch 7 or 8 fish including a 4 and a 5 pounder mixed in. By most standards I think that would be considered quite a successful outing.

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11 minutes ago, gimruis said:

Damned be the day when I catch 7 or 8 fish including a 4 and a 5 pounder mixed in. By most standards I think that would be considered quite a successful outing.

    I didn't want to sound like I have to catch a big fish every cast. A reminder, I am fishing lakes in Mexico with almost zero fishing pressure.  The bar is set higher than most lakes in the US.  On some days a 5 pound bass is considered an OK bass, and catching less than 30 total bass in a day is a disappointment.  I realize 7 or 8 random bass with with a couple over 4 pounds would be considered a great day on the lakes many anglers on this forum fish.  It isn't the number or size of bass that is frustrating.  It is catching one and thinking I have found the type of structure, depth, and lure the bass are going to want for the day, only to discover It was pure, luck.  Instead of solving the puzzle, I spent way to much time trying to get the wrong piece to fit the puzzle.   

      I find it more satisfying when I don't catch any bass at first, but after trying different locations and baits, I find where they are located, what they want and not only catch some bass, but am able to replicate the success on other similar places on the lake.

       I know when I can only catch one bass on a lure, or location, that I am just not recognizing a piece of the puzzle.  I am sure there are more bass willing to bite, I am simply not able to recognize and replicate what made the one I caught hit my lure.

       I know not even pros can find a pattern every time, and there are so many factors involved, that even the most skilled and observant angler will often miss a piece of the puzzle, but it happened more this year than in years past and was frustrating.

      It would be interesting to hear what other anglers do when they catch a bass on the first cast, and no bites after that.  When do they decide to change up location, lures, etc.   Is patience the best option, or cover the water a better plan.  I did have some success giving an area I caught a singe bass a rest, and coming back later with the same lure and as luck would have it catch one more. 

     It would be interesting on those days to have FFS. but I'm sure that could also add to the level of frustration. 

     

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I hear ya. You want to win. You want to be in control. Yet I really think that your over thinking this. I mean, even in the best fisheries on the planet, there's going to be "off" days, even after that first cast catch. There's no piece of the puzzle to be had anywhere. No pro around or no great fisherman or no great electronic marvel can ever win over that fact. Just the way it is. One learns to take what they can get out of any situation. Regardless, I think most here would just LOVE to have your problems down there in those fabulous unpressured lakes lol. 

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5 hours ago, thediscochef said:

Patterns are for sewing

 

I'm out of likes, but I like this!

 

Here ya go, I have one to spare.

-Kent

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This past year I noticed how many times a new lure caught a bass I the first 5 casts and then went cold. 

Had me retying alot.

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8 hours ago, Koz said:

In my opinion, one fish is not a pattern.

That was them whole point of my post.  The frustration of catching one bass, but not being figure out why the one fish would bite, while not being able to repeat my success, and establish a pattern.

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On 1/4/2023 at 3:00 PM, king fisher said:

     This past year I had more difficulty finding a pattern while bass fishing, than any other time in my whole life fishing for multiple species.

One day I fished a favorite lake and, started off fishing main lake points with crankbaits.  After marking fish and bait in the 12-16 foot range, on the south side of the point I threw a marker out and started casting.  After casting at the spot from different angles I caught a bass.  Hoping I found a pattern, I continued to make casts from that angle.  After a few casts with no bites I switched color of crankbaits, with no success, then switched to a different size of crankbait, while also trying different retrieves.  After spending way to much time on crankbaits I gave up and decided the bass must want a slower presentation.  First cast with a Carolina rig I caught a nice 6 pound bass. Now I was sure I had found the right spot and presentation, but after many more casts from different angles, no bass.  I tried different plastics and different retrieves, but nothing.

      Not wanting to give up on main lake points I went to another point with the same results.  First few casts a bass on a crankbait, then nothing, first cast with a Carolina rig, a big bass but after that nothing.  Some times I left to the next point, other times I would threw the whole box trying everything before giving up.  One time the first cast with a jig landed me a nice bass, then nothing.

      Finally I decided, main lake points might not be the best pattern. I then tried the back of a small bay.  First cast at a laydown with a spinnerbait landed me a 5 pound bass.  Next twenty lay downs nothing.  Switch to a Texas rigged worm, and caught a bass on the first cast, then again nothing.  I then went to another bay with lots of laydowns but no bass.  After trying 4 bays with no success, I tried a bluff wall.   First cast parallel to the bluff with an underspin, a caught a 3 pound bass, which was the first and last bass of the day, caught on bluffs, or om underspin's.

      The same thing happened almost every time I went bass fishing on a variety of lakes.  I could find a location, and lure to catch a nice bass, but could  not manage to repeat my success at that spot, similar location, or with the same lure.  One lake I was desperate and decided to try a more finesse technique.  I brought a spinning rod rigged with a drop shot, and after catching a couple small bass on a crank along a rock wall extending from shore out in to the lake I decided to try the drop shot.  First cast I caught a 4 pound bass.  That was the last bass I caught along that wall, and the first and last bass of the day on a drop shot.

       Does anyone else suffer from this dreaded one fish pattern syndrome, and if so what do you do to overcome this frustrating fishing sickness?

 Maybe I found the best pattern, but didn't realize it.  I should simply make only one cast with any lure, and only make one cast at any location.  If I run out of lures to try, then I can buy more lures.  The Bait Monkey would love that pattern

 

I'd say you found the pattern- fish fast and keep moving.  That's my favorite way of doing things.  Pull up to a spot or stretch of bank and have 5 rods laying on the deck.  Throw them all and move on.

 

When you fished the same lakes on another day, did you catch fish from the same spots as the previous days?  In the laydown example for instance, does that laydown hold them each time you go (albeit only one of them) or do they keep moving?  

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1 hour ago, casts_by_fly said:

 

I'd say you found the pattern- fish fast and keep moving.  That's my favorite way of doing things.  Pull up to a spot or stretch of bank and have 5 rods laying on the deck.  Throw them all and move on.

 

When you fished the same lakes on another day, did you catch fish from the same spots as the previous days?  In the laydown example for instance, does that laydown hold them each time you go (albeit only one of them) or do they keep moving?  

 

I'm a mover too. I watch guys on videos who will spend five to fifteen minutes pounding a wee spot, but for me, it's one and done. If there's a tree, I'll cast twice, one on each side, but then I'm moving again. 

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1 minute ago, ol'crickety said:

 

I'm a mover too. I watch guys on videos who will spend five to fifteen minutes pounding a wee spot, but for me, it's one and done. If there's a tree, I'll cast twice, one on each side, but then I'm moving again. 

 

I'll do a bit more than that, depending on how the fish are doing that day.  If the fish are hungry and really aggressive, then sure keep covering water.  But that's maybe 20% of the days on the water.  More often than not they are in a neutral mood and aren't going to hit the fish thing that comes through.  If I'm fairly sure there should be a fish in a tree I'll cast a couple times on each side with a moving bait and if nothing there I'll drop a jig or plastic on its head.  You can still fish them fast- just pick a spot on the tree, pitch it in and let it hit the bottom, 2 shakes, and repeat for another part of the tree.  hit each crotch you can see in the tree and work down along any long straight piece of trunk.  If a fish won't hit a moving bait or a jig, then I'll leave it.  

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