Swinging jigs

Swinging jigs

The swinging jig — made popular by Bassmaster Elite Pro Tommy Biffle — is a serious fish catcher. My guess is that’s because it’s a darn near perfect imitation of a baitfish rooting on the bottom. Every angler should have a handful of them in his or her tackle box. There are dozens of different makes and models out there. Some have traditional round heads and some have football heads. Each has its place. But I think a head that’s […]

Let’s walk-the-dog

Let’s walk-the-dog

Many anglers think of topwater presentations as something of a fun deal. They really don’t think of them as a primary pattern or something that can be used on a regular basis. That thinking limits their ability to put bass in the boat because a skillful topwater angler can often out fish other anglers two-to-one. That’s especially true if he or she chooses the right lure and presents it properly. The best lure and the best presentation — at least […]

Giant Spinnerbaits

Giant Spinnerbaits

I’ve written about spinnerbaits in the past. They’re one of several older, super good lures that have fallen out of favor because other baits have come along that are newer and more popular. That’s too bad because they serve a serious purpose. I never leave the dock without a handful of them in my boat, and within that handful will almost always be a few giants. Before we get too far into this thing, though, we need to define giant. […]

It’s About Changing Direction

It’s About Changing Direction

Anybody who has followed my career and what I’ve said about crankbait fishing over the years knows that I always want to change direction with my crankbait as I wind it back to the boat. I can’t remember a time when I threw one out and just brought it back through open water. As far as I’m concerned that’s a wasted cast. There are a lot of ways to get a change of direction. You can move your rod tip […]

The Wacky Jig Head

The Wacky Jig Head

There’s a product out there that I want you to know about. It’s made by VMC and it’s called the Ike Approved Wacky Weedless Jig Head. It comes in four weights and three colors. It’s armed with a razor-sharp EWG hook that’s protected with a light wire weedguard that’ll help prevent hang-ups but won’t interfere with your hookset. It’s a really versatile piece of tackle. I designed it for three specific fishing scenarios. The wacky rig The first, and I […]

How to Choose a Reel with the Right Gear Ratio

How to Choose a Reel with the Right Gear Ratio

A big part of success when you’re bass fishing is proper bait presentation, and a big part of proper bait presentation is speed. To some extent that’s a function of the gear ratio of your reel. It’s true that you can speed up a low gear ratio reel by cranking fast and you can slow down a high gear ratio reel by cranking slow. I won’t deny that. But it’s a lot of work. It’s much better, and a heck […]

Speed Worming

Speed Worming

There’s a regional technique out there — in the South mostly — that’s been around for a while. It’s called speed worming, and it’s super effective. Basically it’s about speed, splash and a little noise with some subtlety. I can’t think of any reason why it won’t work everywhere. So, here goes… Start with a paddle tail worm with a somewhat thick body. The Berkley Havoc Subwoofer is exactly that. I designed it for speed so it’ll run true no […]

How To Pick The Right Jig

How To Pick The Right Jig

A jig is not a jig. They are not all created equal. Specific jigs work best under specific conditions. I sort my jigs into three categories, and then I think about size. Rocky bottom applications When I’m fishing a jig in rock I want one that has a wide head. As you look at it the head should stretch out left and right from the center point. A football head is an excellent example of what I’m talking about. The […]

A Bass is a Bass, is a Bass

A Bass is a Bass, is a Bass

My Italy trip was fantastic. It’s a really neat country. On one level it’s very different from the United States. Everywhere you go there are lots of old ruins and marble, some of them thousands of years old. I live near the historical city of Philadelphia. We have lots of old stuff that has great significance to our country, but there’s nothing that old. On another level, however, it’s just like the United States. Of course, I’m referring to bass […]

Catch everything that swims

Catch everything that swims

 This time, we’re going to talk about how to catch everything that swims, everything that’ll eat a minnow anyway. As you can see in the film one of the best ways to do that is to fish with an ultralight jerkbait. We fished with Rapala’s smallest size Husky Jerk and X-Rap. Either one of them will do a good job when the forage is small, conditions are tough or when both of those things combine to create a challenge for […]