How To Find Fish | Bass Fishing

I still for about 99 percent of the time,
I don’t want to talk to anybody. I talk toFaircloth, I talk about techniques and stuff.
But I still, I still live up to my name, I’mnatural and I don’t know of anybody else,
really, for sure, that does that. Most guysresearch pretty hard. I still, man, those
bombs I have, I’m telling ya it’s just becauseI didn’t quite figure it out. I just missed,
you know, and then until usually in the areathat I find, that I won’t find enough areas,
and then I’ll get pounded by a bunch of otherElite guys, and then I have nothing else. That guys that have advantage of maybe research,
they have other stuff if that gets beat up,they usually have other avenues that they
can go to and still catch them decent. Butsometimes I can’t get enough going, and I
usually, those are the ones I bomb in. But usually I start off, you know, water clarity
is number one. You see what kind of what itlooks like. You know, a lot of times I don’t
know what a lake looks like until I actuallyget there in the morning and launch a boat.
But water color and clarity, water temperatureis big, time a year, weather. Weather a week before the tournament, that’s
what I will do. I will, like, a week beforethe tournament start watching the weather,
like, every day, couple times a day, sometimes,I watch winds. And, I don’t do any logs and
stuff. I just, kind of, remember. A lot ofguys do logs, they do log stuff, but if you
look at every day, a couple times a day, andI do. Like, when it’s a week away from the
next tournament, I’ll start checking that. And you can check current and water flows
if you want. But that just let’s you know,kind of, like trade winds and that can make
a difference, and some bodies of water. Ifthe wind blows normally from the south, southeast
most of the time, that will, kind of, positionfish for you. And, if you do get a wind shift,
you know, you’ll know that it’ll scatter them. Like, if the wind does, if all of a sudden
is blowing from the north, or like a opposite,like 80 degrees off, that will also change
the way the fish hold on spots. You know,a complete wind shift, a lot of times, will
just scatter them. Instead of being here,they might spread out. They might suspend
up a little. They might move to the otherside, or that’s kind of what I do best. I just try to find, I usually find fish pretty
good again. But that’s only because I reallyfollow everything, wind directions and the
way the spot lays on the lake. But that’shelped me a lot, probably because I haven’t
got help. I’ve always been, kind of, learnedlakes myself, and it allows me to be a really
good at finding them. And fishing these littlelakes, like Shasta and stuff, it is a small
lake compared to most lakes we fish. It’shelped me, I mean, all different lakes I fish,
it’s helped me to, when I do get to a lakenow, no matter where I’m at, I know what kind
of lake it is, over the years of fishing somany different lakes. I’m trying to think what else. Do you start deep or shallow? It depends on where I’m at, I mean
that’s what was I was going to get into. Thebiggest thing I look for, in some lakes it’s
really hard to find is bait. I mean, somelakes you fish you just don’t see bait. It’s
weird. It’s like in the grass, or it’s tooshallow. I love lakes when I can start graphing and
see balls of shad. That’s so easy for me tofigure those out. I mean, half the time it’s
like that where you actually see big ballsof shad and you start to see the bigger shad,
smaller shad, the white bass, all the differentkinds of fish. That’s when I kind of get all
excited and I start and I kind of know whatbass look like. But most of a lot of the places we go, you
just don’t see bait. I mean, you’ll see twoballs a day and that makes it tough, but that’s
really like, like me lately, the last fewopens we had, you could graph bait, which
I mean, that’s where the fish were at. I mean,if you just want to fish and start fishing,
you wouldn’t catch them until that bait wasaround and then why fish. Why not just graph
until you find the bait then fish. It madesense, but that’s kind of how Lake Mead’s
been, either touch, you’ve got shad in itnow, so you can actually graph shad. But as far as like some lakes I go to that
you can’t always graph them and you can’tfind them that way, a lot of times you just
have to go fishing, which happens the otherhalf of the time where you actually have to
throw a bait and catch them. And then you’vegot, a lot of times I don’t know what that
lake’s like and exactly what it’s made of,so I got to figure out what they’re going
to bite and then once I figure out that, Igot to make sure that’s what they’re biting
the best. And then once I figure that out,then you have to go fishing. I do find a lot of my fish back East it’s
casting a crankbait. I mean, that’s reallygood search bait. Some lakes I throw a spinnerbait,
like Lake Mead for instance. My number onesearch bait is usually’s a spinnerbait. Because
if they’re not going to hit, at least you’llsee them come up on it and turn on. So I can
locate them that way, but back East, it seemslike the number one – the number one search
bait is usually crank, I guess. Square bill,throw it out deeper, you get into the deep
divers. This time of year back East, we’redoing a lot of deep diving crankbaits. That’s
really big. Swimbaits are good in the grass, if you’ve
got a lot of grass in a lake. Spindle worm,Megabass makes a really good one. It’s like
the original, one of the originals like swimbaits,like the actual, looks just like a Skinny
Dipper, but they made it 20 years ago. It’scalled a Spindle worm or Dippers. You know,
the Keitech’s are good and a lot of timeswe’re putting those on jig head and or just
a Texas rig hook, depending on how snaggyyour grass is, but that’s a really good search
bait for find them in the grass. This time of year, I imagine they’d probably
hit a frog really good. I don’t know if youguys kept smallies frogs ever. Not really?
I wonder why that is. I mean, I’ve caughta few on a frog, usually the largemouth, but
I’d say I’ve talked to Russ a little bit. The lakes around here it sounds like I’d be
throwing a lot of like Dipper type baits,Keitechs and that really works good in the
grass, probably top waters, but it’s dependson where I’m at. It changes. If I had my choice, I mean, I know I crank
more to find fish when I’m looking for them,and most times it’s a square bill. And the
time of year and kind of the position thefish, that’s another thing I really try to
figure out as quick possible is what stagethey’re in. If they are in post spawn, or
if they’re in late post spawn, or early postspawn, if they’re in summer pattern, and that
tells me what size baits they’re going towant, if they’re going to want a big bait,
or a smaller bait, a fast bait, a slow bait,or a suspended bait. A lot of times the time of year will tell
you that, but it’s not necessarily . . . theweather’s been wacky, a lot of times you have
to pay attention to maybe when they were lastspawning or if there’s any fish spawning still,
or condition of the fish. Whenever I catcha fish I’m paying attention to their mouth
and their body to see what shape they’re in. Their lips, post spawn will tell you if they’re
starting getting thicker yet. When a fish is right after post spawn, he’ll
be at his thinnest. His mouth is usually whereit’s usually easiest to tell. And that’s when
my hook will work really good. But their mouth’llget thin and that’s why I’ll occasionally
have those flurries of losing fish and stuffis because they’ll tear through their lip
and it’s just their mouth’s really weak. That’swhy in the early spring a lot when they’re
feeding good, you never lose them becauseit’s like their lips are three times as thick.
My hook punches through, it never comes out. As we’re getting to that time of year, that’s
why this O’Shaughnessy would be killer forthat, when the fish have the thin lips. Then
you get to a time when you can look at a fishand I’ll look at him, I’ll check him out,
I’ll hold him and push on his belly and I’llcheck his teeth out when I first catch a fish
on a lake and check his tail out. You cantell if he’s spawned a month ago, or if he’s
on the up rise, he’s starting to get healthier. You can kind of tell. Their shoulders get
a little thicker, their mouths get a littlemore cleaner looking, a little thicker, healthier.
And so I check the fish out a lot. I lookat them. That tells me a little bit of the
story. Usually, you hear guys tell you likeevery time they catch a fish, it tells you
a story a little bit. Like each fish you catchbuilds your confidence basically, but each
fish you catch also tells you kind of what’sgoing on. I’ve got to do that back East without hooking
too many too, which is really hard. Becauseyou don’t want to sit there and catch a bunch
and usually I try not to. A lot of guys don’tdo and there’s some guys that still go out
there and catch until the last day of practice,but that’s not good either for me. That’s
why it’s kind of hard is because most of thetime I’m fishing, I’m actually shaking them
off. That’s tough. I still love it though. I can’t wait until
the time the first day of tournament comes. That’s when I can let loose and start hooking
them. Probably most of you guys are probablytournament guys and I believe in keeping the
fish in the water. If you do hook one, especiallyif it’s nice one, I don’t want to pull that
fish out of the water at all. So if he pulls,I’ll let him go. I’ll let him just have his
way, basically, and then when I get him tiredout a little bit. I don’t want to stress him
out when I hook a fish I know it’s a goodone. I know I’ve caught some of the same fish in
the past. Here and there I do catch the samefish again. So if I catch a three, or four,
or five, or six-pounder, when a fish pulls,I get it off. I’ll even free spool it and
let him run. I don’t want to stress him. Idon’t want to like feel like he’s getting
yanked to the boat and he’s getting punished. And when they get in the boat and usually
they’ll calm down, you get him worn out alittle bit and they’ll kind of chill and I’ll
kind of put my hand underneath him and I’llnever pick him out of the water. If I had
to get my pliers and I’ll usually not liphim either, I’ll just hold him and get the
pliers, or my hand, get the hooks out andjust kind of like lay him down and let him
go. “Please bite again. ” But you see whatI’m saying.

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