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Catt

The simplicity of consistently catching bass

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Knowing what structure is, knowing how to truly identify it, knowing how read it, and then fishing it effectively, is the quickest, surest means of consistently putting bass in the boat.

"Take nothing for granted," Buck states flatly. "Never assume bass are shallow, because they may be deep. Never believe they will hit a fast-moving lure, not a slow one. You've got to work an entire structure from shallow to deep with lures that touch bottom [but do not gouge trenches in it], and at different speeds, to be certain the place has been completely checked. If no fish are found, move on to the next good-looking structure and repeat the process. By checking two or three or more structures in this manner throughout a fishing day it's a good bet an angler sooner or later will hit a school of active, feeding bass. When that happens, you can fill your limit fast, and you gotta work quickly, because a school won't stay on a break or breakline long. Elwood L. " Buck" Perry

Of every thing Buck said during the entire week long class the above paragraph has stuck in my memory more than any, I can recite it verbatim. The sooner you accept what is stated in that paragraph as gospel the sooner your catch ratio will increase 10 fold.

Yea but Catt it can't be that simple Buck has failed to mention highland/lowland type lakes; the west coast, east coast, or third coast regions and he definitely fails to mention spring, summer, fall, or winter. Wrong dude it is that simple and it works on every lake found anywhere in the world; ask any of the most productive anglers on this site including guides, tournament anglers, or big bass gurus and you will get the same answer it's all about location. The timing can even be off and you can still catch non-active bass; but find the proper location and couple that with the proper timing and you had better hold on tightly to your rod!

Consistently finding bass is a process of elimination and duplication. Eliminate patterns and waters that are non-productive and duplicate waters and patterns that are productive.

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Awesome info, thank you!

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Excellent!

8-)

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By checking two or three or more structures in this manner throughout a fishing day it's a good bet an angler sooner or later will hit a school of active, feeding bass.

Thats funny. Keep moving 'til you find 'em..... :D

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By checking two or three or more structures in this manner throughout a fishing day it's a good bet an angler sooner or later will hit a school of active, feeding bass.

Thats funny. Keep moving 'til you find 'em..... :D

I think it means until you find active, feeding bass which does not mean there are no bass on the other structures.  

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Wow, that is some great info.  I always love to read stuff like that, especially with my first tourney coming up this weekend.  I'll definitely keep it in mind.

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That will be printed out and posted on the wall. Thanks, Catt!

My thought exactly! Thanks Catt!

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"You've got to work an entire structure from shallow to deep with lures that touch bottom [but do not gouge trenches in it], and at different speeds, to be certain the place has been completely checked."

very informative.  thanks catt.  couple of questions though.  first, why would you not attack a structure from deep to shallow?  if the object is to maintain maximum bottom contact, would this not be the best method as you are less likely to lose contact with the lure?  not to mention deep to shallow creates the funnel attack presentation.  

second, why would you limit yourself to bottom bumping lures?  it seems to me that by doing this you are eliminating 2/3 of the water column.  what about fish that might be suspended over the structure?  although usually difficult, these fish can at times be caught- but it would be unlikely to catch them with a bottom bumping lure.  perhaps mr. perry was not considering these as active fish.

not criticizing at all buddy, just trying to understand.  thanks again for posting this.  

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I assume that for Catt that 's the way it works for him.I fish crankbaits and spinnerbaits the most and I like to slice through the different levels of the water column with them, I 'm not fond of bottom bouncing baits ( worms & jigs ) and only cast them after I 've sliced through the water column.

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I think some of you are missing the point in Catt's post. He was quoting Buck Perry "The father of structure fishing".

Mr. Perry was teaching how to find and catch bass that are not on the bank and that was before sonar was used for fresh water fishing.

His spoonplug in various sizes was his fish finder and fishing lure. His presentation allowed for light bottom contact by letting out more line as the water got deeper before changing lure size, thus the shallow to deep route and lack of "trenching".

I remember hearing him talk about being out in the middle of a body of water and catching bass, whooping it up so the bank beaters would notice him catching when they were not so they would ask him about his technique. He was a good teacher, but some have to be shown something different works before they will believe it. That is pretty much true today.

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Anyone serious about fishing for bass should read Buck's books.  Period.

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Location, location, location is everything. Seasonal periods and lake classifications help the fisherman eliminate a lot of unproductive locations and focus on locations that have the right conditions for bass, IMO.

Buck Perry was promoting his spoon plugs, a trolling system using metal spoons shaped like Flatfish lures, that ran at different depths. Troll around the lake long enough and you will run across active bass because you can cover a tremendous amount of watrer. Buck Perry is considered the father of structure fishing and desevers the title. He promoted fishing outside structure when nearly everyone else was pounding the bank.

WRB

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There is no ONE SYSTEM for always catching bass. I read Mr.Perry's work, on a reccomendation from Catt, it was very informative. I still have a problem with schooling bass, b/c techincally they do not act as an organized school, in many ways They act t like thier cousins the Blue Gills and Sunnies by agreagating by size and close to food and shelter. They do not act in a unit for feeding and defensive formation massing.

 I am not an expert fiserman, but one with a little bit of experience and knowledge, When Mr.Perry wrote his book it opened up an underwater deep fishing system that works. In todays world I find it's best to know when to fish deep, when to be on the weeds, when to be on the points and rocks and yes there are times when fishing shallow will get you a nice fish or two.

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-paul- think about it for a minute

If you are in 30' while casting to 8' by the time you lure is half way back to the boat your lure is no longer in contact with the bottom correct. But if I'm in 8' casting towards 30' my lure is in constant contact with the bottom all the way up the hill back to the boat correct.

Second if the bass are suspended they are most generally inactive so why bother targeting these bass? On the other hand active bass will at times suspend over structure targeting bait fish on or near the surface.

I suggest everyone take a breath and reread the first three sentences Take nothing for granted," Buck states flatly. "Never assume bass are shallow, because they may be deep. Never believe they will hit a fast-moving lure, not a slow one.

Most people let seasonal patterns and lake classifications cloud their thinking when it comes to effectively fishing structure. Most publications will tell you to abandon deep water structure during spring for shallower water and while some bass will venture shallow others will remain deep never seeing a shore line in their life time.

I spent 5 days in one of Buck's seminars and not once did he mention Spoon Plugs; as for trolling that was one effective means of finding offshore structure since depth finders were not the norm during the early years. Buck used spoon plugs, I used Hellbenders while others used Mudbugs.

If nothing else I got y'all to open your minds & do not worry I like to be critiqued as much as anyone but be advised I will critique back!

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Quote from Catt: If nothing else I got y'all to open your minds

and thats what you do best! I read a quote from that pro guy Iconelli that went something like

Fish today and not your history

I am trying more and more to do this. When Mr.Perry wrote his book , a loy of folks were not putting any pressure on what seems like most of the bass population There were no electronics, and it seems a lot of the material was written fishing m large man made impoundments.

While I fish a smaller impoundment, my favoriteare mid sized natual Northern Lakes. What I am grateful for , the way Catt helped me with this material, that while there are not many ledges and no original creek beds or flodded road beds, there is structure and cover that might harbor bass in these lakes more than others

And I just have seen from experience there are times YEAR ROUND that I do better in shallower water than deeper water. I do better on weedy flats in natural lakes in 10 plus feet of water than anyother place.

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-paul- think about it for a minute

If you are in 30' while casting to 8' by the time you lure is half way back to the boat your lure is no longer in contact with the bottom correct. But if I'm in 8' casting towards 30' my lure is in constant contact with the bottom all the way up the hill back to the boat correct.

o.k., cool.  we are on the same page then.  i usually fish uphill (that's what i meant by fishing deep to shallow).  i just wondered if there was a better way.  glad i'm on the right path.

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Catt, getting bass fisherman away from the bank isn't easy, it's like they are tied there by the length of a cast. Been trying to get fisherman to look back over their shoulder out toward the main lake for nearly 40 years.

Your posts are excellent, we just don't see eye to eye on the seasonal elements of bass fishing. I'm not a bed fisherman, so I spend nearly 95% of my time on the main lake structure areas where, IMO, 90% of the big bass live that I'm fishing for.

Keep up the good work.

WRB

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OK, that sound great for impoundments.  I have used that strategy for fishing the local phoshate pits with a lot of success.   BUT

will someone please translate that to natural shallow lakes.  For example, Lake Kissimmee.  35K acres of MAX 18' of water where a 1' depth change takes 25-50' to find.  There is NO structure other than brush piles complements of a hurricane or two that happened before I started fishing.  Thanks to you guys I am starting to have some consistent success pulling the fish out of the cover off the bank but I really would like to understand how to find them elsewhere.

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I have no experience with Kissime, but i do with natural lakes. The name of the game for me is WEEDY FLATS, especially in water deeper than 10 ft. I even fish over them at night with topwaters, with good results. Read the Perry book, it is an excellent starting point

On natural olakes there are humps, while there arent many ledges there are weedy and rocky slopes that hold fish. Docks can hold them and there are some very large rocks and some deep pockets to look for and these always produce for me.

 You want to find out about Fla lakes i would ask Rolo or Avid, they seem to do grat on those lakes.

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