“Why didn’t you repeat the same cast?” my fishing partner for the day asked as I began a crankbait presentation.

I had just caught and released a bass from the first branch split of a deadfall and had made my next cast a little farther out the same tree. I didn’t have a good answer, except that the spot that had produced seemed small to me.

“Anytime your crankbait hits a piece of cover and you catch a fish, try to hit the same spot on the same cover from the same angle with your next cast,” he continued. “That fish was there for a reason, and there might be another one.”

He was an experienced bass angler I trusted and respected, and I had nothing to lose. Therefore, when I brought in that cast, I mimicked the one that had produced. Probably not surprisingly, I caught a bass that could have been a twin to the first one. Then I made a third cast to the same spot with the same result! No bass responded to attempt number four, but I had learned my lesson, and it is one that has stuck with me through the years and has frequently been reinforced.

Sometimes the bass’ most likely ambush points and orientation in cover are obvious because of current breaks, shadows or defined cover features. Often that’s not the case, and if you don’t put a crankbait in the right spot and bring it across at the right angle, you may never know a fish was even using a piece of cover.

That absolutely means that you should repeat any cast that produces a fish. The spot it hit and the angle it was moving might have been perfect, and other bass might be set up same way. If it’s a river or lake you fish regularly, try to note specific casts that produce well. Even if a specific spot only holds one bass that will feed any given day, that spot might replenish and produce one or more other fish another day.

For any significant-sized bush, downed tree or dock, it’s also important to make a lot of casts, hitting different specific spots and working from different angles. In fact, if a piece of cover spans a variety of depths, it’s often worthwhile to hit the shallow end with a Bandit 100, slightly deeper spots with a 200 and the deepest parts with a 300.

If the water is clear and the cover is somewhat sparse, give the cover a good look at you approach it, identify what you think would be the key holding position, and make your first cast so the presentation will put you lure in front of a fish in that position. Then try the next most likely position and work from there.

For stained water or extra dense cover, where fish are less likely to see your lure from afar and get spooked, you can simply start on one side and work methodically around the cover. Of course the denser the cover is and the dirtier the water is, the more important it becomes that you make a many casts and work every part of a piece of cover.

Pay attention to the types of areas that produce fish. If every bass bites on the shady side and in 3 feet of water, you can skip a lot of casts to other kinds of spots, even if they look very good. Still mix up the angles, though, and make multiple casts to those spots that look right. And definitely don’t forget to repeat the exact catch when you do catch a fish.