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I've noticed so many youngsters on this site (early teens/teens) and something came to me.  I am turning 40 soon, and this is going to sound like a dumb question but....  Do any of you guys my age or older even RECALL bass fishing when you were teenagers?  I went fishing all the time with my grandfather up until my early teens, and we sure as hell weren't fast fishing artificial lures or doing anything that required any kind of presentation.  I don't think I even remember coming across a bass.  It was all salmon eggs and bobbers for us.  Anyway, my point being,  I didn't discover the bass fishing that bass fishing is today until my late twenties.  I sure would have loved doing what I am doing now when I was a kid.  Anyone remember back that far?

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Yes, I fished with my Dad with crankbaits and t-rigged worms during the 70s.  When I was younger we fished for everything and usually we used live bait.  The real bass bug didn't bite my Dad until I was around 14, which was in 1974.  From then on we used lures.    

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My dad took me fishing to a small lake just outside El Dorado, Arkansas. We fished by the spill way and I was try to learn how to cast one of my dad's casting reels. I had been casting an artificial but can't recall what it was after all these years. My dad said we had to go so as I was waling toward the truck I let the lure trail in the water. Something big hit that lure and it is a good thing it did not hook up because as it was it almost caused me to fall of the spillway and into the water. That must have been around 1962. Born 1949.

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Oh yeah-a lot of good memories from that time of life.  My dad started me perch jerking when I was a little kid and we progressed from there.  The bug bit me worse than it did dad, so I ended up teaching him instead of him teaching me.  My best friend and I fished every chance we got in junior high and high school, and we tought ourselves how to use different lures-jiterbugs, Big-Os, and the ever reliable Mann's Jelly Worms.  

And you know what?  I still get that Night-Before-Christmas feeling when I'm going out the next day.

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So far you old guys are blowing my theory with t-rigging and crankin in the 70's.  My grandfather must have been a lousy angler!  Anyway, you all are lucky.  I didn't start seriously bass fishing until I was 26.  I just can't imagine how obsessed with this I would have been if I had experienced it as a teenager :)

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The first plastics that I first remember were a pre-rigged purple worm by Creame complete with a little propeller, and fished C-rigged. Some of the others many I no longer recall the manufacturers, but one I really liked was made in Louisiana and was a ribbon tailed worm called a Baby WaterMacasin that we fished unweighted and snaked though lily pads with great results in the summer. Mister Twister was really hot for a while when they made the scene. It seems like Bass Pro Shops first catalogs came in a magazine (Texas Bassing or something of that nature) that I subscribed too and consisted of only a few pages and may have even been a mail order club you joined at first. Some of the crank baits that come to mind were a thin fin, river runt, hellbender, Devil horse, carrot top, and the revelutionary Big O. 6:1 was smokin' for a baitcasting reel and Kingfisher was a choice boat. Lake Fork was still a couple of creeks and the first true "Bass Rig" that made a lasting impression on me was an 18' silver/red metal flake Skeeter with a massive Mercury Black Max (115hp. I think) and about a 30 lb. trolling motor probably Shakespere at a boat show when I was 15 or 16 that was absolutley "It" for the day, with a whoping price tag of $18,000.

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I was fortunate enough to live on the river as a kid and I can remember reading Bassmaster, Field and Stream and Smallmouth magazine. We grew up using grubs, inline spinners and small crankbaits on that river. I can remember seeing spinnerbaits, plastic worms and topwaters being used in those magazines but all the lakes those guys were fishing looked like swamps compared to our river. I can remember the first time I used a Hula Popper and one exploded on it. HOLY @#%!!

My point is...I'm 36 and have been using lures since childhood but it took me quite a while to really catch on to bass fishing the way we do it today.

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When i was a kid it was all about gills ,catfish and the striped bass. My dad would take us trout fishing all the time. I fished that way untill about 3 years ago when I turned 34. Then one day bam I was hooked. All it took was one small bass on a rattle trap and i havent looked back since ;D

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Guest the_muddy_man

Well  I grew up in Brooklyn and my first fishing was for snapper blue fish and small mackerel off the docks in sheepshead bay  Then onto small strippers with spoons in the Narrows. My dad wokrked hard to get us out of the neighborhood for a few summers onto Greenwood Lake on the NY/NJ border it was there that I first caught a bass on a Rapala Original Floater and an old metal Mitchell 300 reel.

 Then I got a subscription to BASSMASTERS and found out about Plastic Worms (Manns Jelly Worms Still use em) and

then I remember Fred Youngs Big O and some kind of Spoon made by George Perry and it seemed to really take off from there

  I never got into the tourney thing but thats what really put things where they are todaySo from the 60's to the late 70's is when all this was goin on Thats my recollection Bill Dance,Tom Mann,Homer Circle and Al Linder were the guys I was reading about then and 2 others an underwater photogropher Glann Lau and George Perry and his stuff on structure fishing ohh and last but not least this big shiner/big bass guy Doug Hannon

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I would always use crankbaits.  I used a plastic worm a couple of times, but I never had the patience for it. I really started fishing plastics a just a few years ago.

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I am 39 and fished exclusively for bass in high school. I mainly fished t-rigged worms with a free floating bullet weight. I also used crank baits and the ocassional top water lure. Most of my success was with soft palstic worms.

I had to leave my main high school and drive to another one at lunch to take a drafting class, and finished out my day at that school (wasn't that a screwed up way to run a school system?). On the way I would drive by the back side of a large mill pond. I would often stow my fishing gear in the back of my mustang and stop on the way to the other school to get a quick fishing fix. If I had any luck, I usually didn't make it to school for the rest of the day. ::)

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Guest avid

As a kid in the 50's on Long Island I would fish for snappers (baby bluefish) Flounder, bluegill, chain pickerel, trout and bass.  used spinners with everything. Back then we used to be able to go to the docks and catch dozens of blowfish. These fish were so delicious they were called "chicken of the sea"  Then the huge Russian trawlers came around and ruined that fishery.  It never recovered. We would throw out crab traps filled with dead fish peices and catch a bushel or two of blue claws, and with our rods catch buckets of snappers or blow fish.  This was the salt water.  But Long Island has lakes and streams that I would ride my bike to and fish for the freshwater species.

I think my first artificial lure was a jitterbug.

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A friend of my fathers had a good size fishing boat,he would take people out fishin for haddock,cod,flounder,etc. My dad took me with him when I was pretty young to help work on the boat,with his friend and his buddys son who was my age. I have good memorys from those days,I learned to clean fish good,my dads friends son and I would fillet fish for quarters on the ride back :) Anyway I've allways fished since back then.My dad passed away 18years ago and I love those memorys 8-)

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I grew up dirt-poor in Miami, Florida, back in the 1940's and 50's(just had my 67th b/d on the 12th).  I remember one evening when my Dad took me to a bridge that spanned a canal in Coral Gables, Florida.  He fished for grunts and snappers with a handline; just a weight and a hook, no rod, no reel and some pieces of cut-bait.  He'd drop it down by one of the pillars and wait for a nibble.

I remember once when my parents went on a charter boat off of Miami.  It was a free trip, provided by his employer.  They caught some nice red snapper.  I had to stay home.

I didn't get the Bass fishing 'bug' until we moved to middle GA when I was in my 30's.  I met and worked with what would become my best friend until he died;  killed by a teenager escaping from the police after stealing a car.  He hit my buddy head-on :-[.  Lonnie was from the Florida panhandle and had grown up on the Perdodo River.  He was a master at casting his Abus, skulling his little jonboat, and catching many, many Bass.  He taught me the value of good equipment and how to use it.

I don't use handlines now ;).

Dan

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kb here    yeh dan and i are the old timers    iam 71 years old   my first casting rod was made of steel and was square not round  read on a t shirt    OLDER THAN DIRT    #!  you remember candy cigarettes   #2wax coak-shaped bottles  with colored water inside #3 soda popmachines with dispenced bottles #4blackjack chewing gum #5home milk delivery in glass bottles  with cardboard stoppers #6you had a party line #7watched black and white newsreels before movie   #8owned a pair or pf flyers #9had a telephonenumber  with a word pre fix[br549]  #10collected s and h green stamps .darn i remember all of them   kb

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I just turned 45. My dad and I fished a lot together when he was still alive. However, he was into salt water fishing, so we did a lot of that down in Mexico back in the late 70's and early 80's. I really didn't even fish fresh water at all until I was a senior in college. I didn't fish specifically for bass until I was in my late 20s--around 1990.

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Guest avid

My first fishing rod was a pistol grip fiberglass rod with a round basic level wind reel. It was guaranteed instant birdsnest but spinning reels werent' invented or at leasnt certainly not popular or cheap.

Remember winky dink, gumby, and Bill Ding?

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I started bass fishing in 1967 at the age of 10.My grandpa was a local legend fishing and hunting wise but we were never close.Istill heard all of the stories from kin etc.Funny thing I was the only grandchild to follow the love of the outdoors.I grew up on the Emory river in Tennessee fishing multi-species,but was fascinated by bass.At age 50 Istill am.

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I remember catching my first largemouth bass with remarkable clarity,

which is surprising given the fact that it happened around 1949 or 1950.

I was casting a creek chub injured minnow, a topwater lure with spinners fore & aft.

Probing the shoreline of the Muscenetcong River, NJ, I really wasn't expecting

to catch anything. Then during one of my retrieves the slick surface was disturbed

by a V-wake heading directly toward my lure. That sight was forever etched in my memory,

and nearly 60 years later the infection has never subsided.

I'm very fortunate to live in an era that witnessed the creation of B.A.S.S., the emergence

of Bill Dance, Roland Martin, Al Lindner, Fishing Facts, In-Fisherman, ad infinitum.

I watched the lure manufacturers transition from Arbogast, Creek Chub and Helin

over to Zoom, Yum and Gambler. I used to stick the oar down in the water as a depth gage,

but now I use a depth sounder. I used to get my cross-fixes using landmark bearings

and a bearing compass, but now I use a GPS. About the only thing that hasn't changed

in the past 50 years is Micropterus salmoides

lgmouthbass1.gif

Roger

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And you know what?  I still get that Night-Before-Christmas feeling when I'm going out the next day.

I still do too. I am fishing a charity tournament this coming weekend, and I will spend every evening fussing with the boat, tuning lures, organizing the boxes. I grew up in South Louisiana at the mouth of the Mississippi. It really was the "Sportsman's Paradise" when I was a kid. I knew people who didn't have a car, but still had a boat. LOL You could fish anywhere and catch fish in those days 60s & early 70s. Salt water, brackish water, and more fresh water than you can imagine. I remember catching LM bass in the river on a plastic worm and wondering if anyone else knew about these awesome fish. I still have the first decent Shimano reel I bought in my late teens. It works and I still fish it sometimes. Great memories.

Ronnie

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So far you old guys are blowing my theory with t-rigging and crankin in the 70's. My grandfather must have been a lousy angler!

I think maybe you were not fishing for bass with salmon eggs and I would not say he was a lousy angler maybe he just liked trout and other fish better?

WE were taken out and my dad took us for everything:

bass, trout, catfish.

but he used mostly live bait and worms..

I got Hooked on Fishing. and as a teenager when all the other kids were trying out pot and booze

I was either racing dirt bikes or learning what I could about bass fishing

The old straight tail original creme worms were the standard go to bait as well as rapala jerk baits.

I remember my first baitcaster , that was handed down to me had black braided line that was more like clothes line on it... and a green fiberglass rod (what a set up that was)

But I landed fish and was happy

We used to rent  row boats at the local state park and try our best for those big bass...

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Was the late 60's for me, it was lucky 13's and bomber spinner baits, and in-line shyters on the Devils River.      Virgin waters!!!!!!!

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59 years here.  When I was growing up, we didn't fish for bass but for rare occassions.  We were much more interested in table fare---primarily catfish, or crappie and bream.  Some folks did bass fish, and we often wondered why because you didn't eat them.  Tasted too grassy.  This was before filleting days and the skin was thought to be why the taste was so strong.  My dad had several bass lures and would fish for them depending on who he was with, etc.  Still have his old lures.  I started bass fishing when I came home from the military.  My dad was gone by then.  Fishing Facts magazine, George Pazik, Buck Perry, Charlie Brewer, Spence Petros...that's where you got the REAL information, learned so much about structure, cover and presentation.  Been in love with it ever since I started.

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just turned 54 last week and have been fishing as long as i can remember.my earliest bass fishing memories was going jigger fishing w/ my dad and uncles at nite,swatting skeeters and watching out for gators.my first bass were caught on shiners in the late 50's.in 64' we moved to n.c. and lived on 3 small lakes in a valley( large ponds today)full of bass.my arsenal consisted of a hula popper, a jitterbug,mepps spinners, and rigged and un rigged plastic worms.grape was the big color then.i can remember many days catching a 100+ bass.i would of been 12 then.i got my first bass boat in 73' a 15' terry bass boat w/ a 55 chrsyler i think,might of been a 35 h.p. a t.m but no depth finder.in 76' i opened clems bait and tackle,only problem is when someone came in and told me of a bite id close up and go fishin.the youth today have so many advantages but i wouldnt trade my fishing experiences for any of the modern ways to learn bass fishing.

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Thanks for responding with all the great posts fellas.  I just wish I could go back to my teens armed with all the knowledge and equipment available now.  It would be amazing, but I doubt I would have ever finished school or gone to college.  Fishing would have consumed my young mind.

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