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Guest avid

I was reading an old "Inside line" magazine put out by Gary Yamamoto.

The article was about using electronics.

the author was trying to improve his interpretation of the readouts on his depth finder.

He would see some baitfish and a creek bed and what looked like bass so to confirm this he would drop in his uderwater  something vu camera and sure enough there were bass.

I just started laughing.  I mean what's next?  The GYCB Bass seeking missle?

This used to be a sport.  

Man vs. beast on an equal footing.  

Now with the technology (computer chips in lures, 3 dimensional fish locators, underwater cameras, electronic calls to stimulate baitfish activity, and on and on etc.) it has now become sophisticated science.  

My question is.  At what point does all this high tech wizardry take the "fair chase" element out of the game?

My own answer is that it already has.

What's yours?

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Next thing you know, we'll all be fishing live bait.

The only technology I am really opposed to is something that actually "attracts" bass. It's one thing to track them down, but I think it's quite a different situation to herd them in. The analogy in hunting is a baited field. I don't think the line is black and white either, there should be a lot of latitude for compromise.

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Amazingly all of the high technology has done just about nothing to change the game. Seeing a fish does not make it bite. It still boils down to who can make the most casts, and the most accurate casts, after which it is up to the fish to bite or laugh.

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Dude we are what is known as Old School   8-)

Twitching bars on reels, heated lumbar supports in bass boats, gadgets that make sounds like bait fish.

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Toys for boys. The basics will always be the key to catching bass some of which are:

1. Finding da Fish!

2. Using the right bait and presentation to find and catch fish.

3. All the other stuff that matters (ie sharp hooks, good line, good hook sets, adequate rod and reel, etc)

I'd have to say that the majority of fish I catch are shallow and away from the boat on a long cast.

Fancy electronics (even Biosonix) don't matter to me in most situations where the cast & search is 30' away. Better lures and line seem to have improved the sport, but only marginally for some, a great deal for others.

I guess what it comes down to is that future innovations will help the marginal angler, but do little for the versatile angler that learns from experience, knows the waters he fishes and that can adapt to different situations. All else is toys for boys.

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Just as GW was getting at.....you still have to get them to bite.You can find fish all day long but making them bite all day long is a whole different story.

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Maybe I missed something, but I didn't see where you said the dude actually caught the fish -- findin 'em is one thing -- catchin 'em is another.  Last year I was fishing with a guy -- he had his depth finder working, his GPS all marked and his trolling motor hummin -- we sat in the boat and wached this lady pulling 6#'ers out of the water with her cane pole while we pulled a blank. :'(

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I say give me more toys! If it helps me catch more fish then great! I really haven't came across anything that will actually make em BITE my baits. All these toys do is help you find em. Getting them to bite is still up to you.

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I think using one of those Aqua-View underwater cameras is a big waste of time. I would rather fish than just continuously put a camera in the water, take it out, move to another spot, and then put it in again until I see a bass. And anyway, once you find the bass it might not bite. Then you'll waste even more time throwing every lure you have at it. I think it's more fun to find the fish on your own. Using an underwater camera would take the fun out of it. I don't even like fishing clear water because I look around and don't see any fish and then rush to move elsewhere. The same thing would happen with one of those underwater cameras.

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For the everyday guys like us I think a lot of it is overkill.  It's like the guys with the $5,000 set of golf clubs who shoots in the high 90's everytime he walks on the course.   However, I can certainly understand all that stuff for the pros.  If there were big $ on the line then I would be in favor of anything and everything that gives you a leg up.  However it doesn't make any sense to spend thousands of dollars on the top equipment to win the local lake, $20 entry fee tournament.  

Thank goodness my fishing buddy is the one who spends the money on the cool toys, and then I can use them for free.    Oh...don't tell him I said that.   :-X

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All dem toys don't make you a better angler just like $5,000 golf clubs don't make you Tiger Woods   ;)

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In most things, I am "old school" but then I just bought an Aqua Vu camera. My reasoning is not to look for fish to then fish for with the camera as I feel that is a waste of time. My purpose for the camera is to learn the structure in my lake better faster and to better understand the relationship between the lake environment, the bait be it shad or crawfish and then how all this affects the bass. The water is ultra clear so I can boat around slowly looking up and down the structure of the lake from the walls of the sides of the lake, the creek channels, islands, humps, drop offs, and points while making notes on its structure and any interesting spots or concentration of bass I see. I can also then mark any such location on GPS for return latter. I am not able to learn to skin-dive due to health problems but that would allow the same things to be learned. Explore the underwater world where the fish live to try to better understand their relationships with their prey and environment through the changing seasons. The more I can understand those relationships the more I can predict where the different bass will be at different times of the year under differing conditions. After all isn't that what being a good fisherman is all about understanding the fish you seek to the point you look at the conditions and can think under those circumstances were the different bass be it largemouth, spotted, or smallie will be an what they will be feeding on; learning to think like the prey?

My father used to anchor and sit in the hot sun in one spot often for 12 hour sure that sooner or latter a fish would swim by that would bite. I always approached fishing the same way I hunted. I learned all I could about the dear from where it slept, ate, watered, it's travel trails and emergency escape trails. I did all that through tracking and observation so I am trying to apply this same thing to fishing.

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Guest avid

"you still have to get them to bite.You can find fish all day long but making them bite all day long is a whole different story."

We all know this is true to a certain extent (thank God) but virtually every interview I read with a pro makes it pretty clear that the big challenge for them is finding the fish. Once they have found them, they feel confident they can make them bite.

As far as making the most casts, accuracy etc. sounds great and again there is a certain amount of truth to it. But you can cast all day to places that aren't holding the abundance of the fish and you will still have a poor day. Gadgets like the biosonix and the later refinements that will surely improve it, are working hard to do just that. It's only a matter of time before they start getting irrefutable results.

As far as attractants. All baits, live, scented, metal, wood, and plastic are designed to "attract" fish. Granted, artificials make it more sporting because you are fooling a fish into thinking a hunk of plastic is real food. But I'm sorry, and no doubt ancient in my thinking, but the idea that using live bait is not sporting while fishing from a $50,000 fully equipped bass boat with tv cameras, sonar, fish locators, and a host of other hi-tech gadgets is IMHO absurd.

The only reason I can see for live bait not being allowed in tournaments, has nothing to do with "sport".

It's good business to require competitors to use artificial bait

It's bad business to limit the gadgets they can use to catch em.

Avid has spoken  

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I agree with you wholeheartedly Avid......as a card carrying geezer I can honestly say I either am too lazy or not smart enough to figure out how to use most of this stuff. Sooooo.....I'll just be grateful to catch what  comes my way and enjoy the process of catchin em to the best of my limited ability.....as our friend Muddy would say  

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Gadgets like the biosonix and the later refinements that will surely improve it, are working hard to do just that. It's only a matter of time before they start getting irrefutable results.

Avid has spoken

This is something with which I have decided crosses my line. I do not own a biosonix and will not own any future advancement. The makers of gadgets will try to make the lines as blurred as possible but each of us has to decide what goes to far. I said above about the use of a camera I will use one to learn about my lake and about the fish, I love to catch but I will not use it while actively fishing. Each of us make choices just like hunters in choosing to hunt with longbow, recurve, compound, bare bow, loaded with gadgets, crossbow, flintlock, muzzle loader of antique design or modern, black powder cartridge, modern rifle, or handgun. All may be legal but each person decides the limits they wish to impose upon themselves. Self-imposed limits can increase the feel of accomplishment only if they mean something to the one imposing the limits upon themselves. Not everyone would enjoy hunting with a longbow as I did many years shooting it by pure instinct. Neither would everyone enjoy shooting a deer a 1000 yards using highly specialized rifles and equipment. My point is all of us enjoy our sport differently and as long as they follow the law, I for one will not look down on their individual choices. I may not fish likewise but then that is my choice.

When I first moved to the ocean and started to learn to fish saltwater and old fisherman once said to me Son as you grown more experienced the lighter the tackle you will fish. At the time, I really did not understand what he was talking about. Being young, I bought a Penn International 80 reel for offshore use that weighed 109oz. Fifteen years later I was using highly modified a Penn International 12LT to fish the same fish that weighed 28oz. As we age and gain in experience our views likes and dislike, evolve, as does our fishing tackle. Often we may find we turn full circle fish the same light lines we once as children could hardly wait to get away from but now find pleasure in the skill required for its proper use and that feeling of satisfaction in a job properly done when we release our advisory. The only unchanging element of this world is constant change.

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Us old-timers have done exactly what Paparock is proposing but with a depth finder and a topo map, a little more time consuming yes, any less effective certainly  not.

This sport like most has become possessed by the almighty dollar; there are people who honestly believe the best anglers are the ones who have the most expensive equipment.

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This is an interesting subject, which always ends up with the crowd who think that super-duper fish finders, aqua-view cameras, super-sonic fishing lures (or whatever) are an "unfair" advantage.

However, I realized long ago, that there were a whole bunch of guys out there, with all of the latest, greatest, technological fishing devices that money can buy, who almost "never" do any better (if even 'as well') as some of the guys out there with nothing fancy.

So anyway, from my personal standpoint, not only are the guys with all of these high tech toys "not" giving themselves an "unfair advantage", but often times, when they get themselves too caught up in all of that techno garbage (instead of just getting a line out there and fishing !) they are actually putting themselves at a definate "disadvantage ! ........but this is always good for a laugh :-)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My goal is to catch the most big fish, and the biggest fish, that I possibly can. If their were some sort of "super fishing orb" that I could set in the middle of my boat, and it would call big fish from every direction, "Heck yes I'd use it" !!! If 10 lb'ers then became too easy, I'd try for 15's. If those became too easy, I'd switch to 20's !

The "only" reason I don't use a bunch of techno garbage, is because I don't see the guys who are using it, doing so much better than me. But if this changes, I'll be the very next one to jump on that wagon ;-)

Peace,

Fish

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Guest avid
This is an interesting subject, which always ends up with the crowd who think that super-duper fish finders, aqua-view cameras, super-sonic fishing lures (or whatever) are an "unfair" advantage

I know this is going to sound like doublespeak, but I don't think it is necessarily an "unfair advantage" to use a CIA equipped bass boat. Gadgets are fun. I would love to observe the underwater world in my home lake with an acqua view camera. I would be a liar if I said that upon finding a super bass spot, that I wouldn't come back and fish it.

No, I'm not talking about "unfair advantage" Every pro or every angler has the right to use whatever gadget that is legal or within the protocol of their particular tournament.

What I'm saying is that for every gadget that is purchased, something is lost.

Many of us old geezers and the older geezers who came before us, really got to know nature. You didn't feel the need the fly around a 300,00 acre lake at warp speed tossing search baits as fast your arms could move.

The world moved a little slower back then. We (I"ll speak for myself)....I don't just notice the birds, I enjoy them, identify them, and learn from them. I learned to identify the different weeds and shoreline flora and learned things like the best predictor of spring is not the calender, but when the crocus emerge. I"m talking about things that made fishing a highly valued outdoor experience that was not deemed "unsuccessful" because I didn't catch many fish.

When you log onto BassResource.com you see quotations. There is one from lauri Rapala where he talks about seeing minnows and so he would stop rowing and watch them. He noticed that some appeared injured in the way they moved. So he carved the most famous lure in bass fishing history to imitate this movement.

I'm am in no way condeming the gadgets. Like I say, I think they are fun. What anyone chooses to purchase is their business and if it adds to their enjoyment than it was money well spent.

I'm only suggesting that we do not forget that we do not NEED all this stuff they are trying to sell us.

go out, take a few deep breaths, enjoy the scenary a little, thank God for this beautiful place.

Then go and hammer a few hogs

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Well put Avid.

BTW, I never miss the minnows and the birds :-)

Peace,

Fish

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It all comes down to how you really see the presence of these "toys" in the sport. As most people said, it's quite one thing to locate the bass and yet a totally different story to make them bite!

Here in Cyprus we are restricted by law to fishing from the shores of the reservoirs. During low water periods I often take photos of the exposed lake bed so I know (more or less) where there is interesting structure for me to fish when the water level goes up. During March 2005, a Greek friend who came over for some bass fishing (no bass in Greece, he makes an annual pilgrimage here) brought with him that depthfinder that you can actually cast a sensor and retrieve while looking at a screen. Initially I got excited using it, because I could get a very clear idea of the bottom. But at the end of the day, I realized that we ended up spending most time casting the depthfinder sensor and trying to locate fish (which could be bass or carp or anything else - we weren't really sure) instead of actually fishing to our strengths. Sure enough, we got a pretty clear picture of the bottom, but we would no longer fish as concentrated and determined like we did before. We again tried it a couple of days later with some more friends, same thing. Halfway during that outing I and another person stopped using it, we started fishing without paying any attention to whether the sensor indicated the presence of fish, and we ended up with much better results than the other guys. Next day we again did the same thing, again we both caught about double the amount of bass that all others caught combined. He hasn't brought it ever since. But to put things straight, we didn't think it was "unsporty" - rather we felt it distracted us and detracted from the pleasure we got in our particular way of fishing.

Obviously, I can't tell if my reaction to this otherwise neat gadget would be the same if I fished from a boat. But I felt that it distracted me from concentrating into the actual bussiness of catching the fish.

Regarding attractants on lures, I'm very positive about them, but mainly due to the fact that they cover the odors emanating from my hands, rather than because of their success in attracting bites. Actually, the most positive thing I found regarding attractants is that bass tend to hold on on lures with attractant for a split moment more, allowing better strike/hooking ratios.

But, as far as actually attracting bass in a given area by artificial means, I personally believe it sort of becomes unsporty. Bass are creatures with a very strong character - they eat what they like, when they decide they want to eat, in the color they decide they prefer at the particular moment. With my lures I am trying to figure out where they hang out, what sort of "meal" they want, what properties (size, color, texture, etc) they want - and if they don't want to eat it, then I will still try to persuade them to attack it for reasons they (the bass) only understand. To attract several bass in a concentrated area by artificial means, and try to change their moods by changing (in a sense) their environment, then it becomes unfair to the bass - that's how I feel of course.

All of the above of course are strictly my personal opinions - it is up to each individual to decide how much - or little - challenge he/she wants with his/her fishing. And as far as no laws are broken, then if someone feels happy to catch bass by attracting them / seeing them via aquaview / locating them via depthfinders / finding them via knowledge and intuition - fair enough!

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All of us have the freedom to do as we wish, as long as laws aren't broken.  Having said that, I agree whole -heartedly with Avid.  I do use a fish finder.  A fish finder requires skill to interpret what you see on the screen.  Also, fish buried in cover often don't show up on a fish finder.  A fish finder gives me some idea of the structure down below, but I don't have a perfect picture.  This is as far as I will go with fishing technology (and GPS to mark areas).  I enjoy the game of trying to find the fish.  When I don't have a fish finder available, the act of finding fish on deeper structure is even more of a challenge.  The Biosonix device is just too much for me.  With lures, I have to impart the action that gets the fish to bite.  The next thing you know, they'll be selling perfect electronic shad replicas that have all the movements and sounds of a school of shad without any effort on the part of the angler.  The joy of fishing is made up of two major things for me:  the challenge of finding and fooling the bass, and the interaction with nature.  I don't want some device fooling the fish.  I want to be the one who fools the fish.    

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you had said > The next thing you know, they'll be selling perfect electronic shad replicas that have all the movements and sounds of a school of shad without any effort on the part of the angler <

So what would you say about the times (and their have been several) when I put on an actual, live Shad, and still couldn't get bit ?????

Just curious,

Fish

PS, I have said this before, but personally speaking, when I fish live bait, I put as much effort and 'work on my part' with it, as I do when I fish an artificial lure (or even more so, when compared to a simple cast and retrieve lure, such as a swimbait)...... and furthermore, I believe that the guys that do not fish live bait this way, will never be as successful with it, as they could be.

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Guest avid

I couldn't agree more

Perhaps in a simpler time when lures, and tackle were much more primitive than they are today then maybe it was an advantage to bait fish.  But I wonder how many tournament pros at the elite level, Ike, KVD, swindle etc.  would sit and wait for a fish to mosey along and maybe eat their live bait.

I don't think these guys are built that way. They became champions because they aggressively seek out the active fish.  they not only have learned bass behavior they have mastered the potential of the existing electronics and keep pushing the envelope further.

But putting that aside, the current technology has PERHAPS even tilted the scales in favor of a highly skilled modern day bass fisherman.

I wonder if they had a contest on lake x with 5 top pros,  vs. 5 recognized guys who specialize in shiner fishing who would win?  the pros get all the fancy do dads, the shiner boys get a jon boat, trolling motor and a bucket of live bait.

Interesting conept don't you think?

Anyone want to invest?  ;)

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