When the leaves are falling and Arkansan Mitch Looper is on the water, chances are that several of his rods have crankbaits tied on. He knows the fish are hungry and making frequent trips to the shallows to feed as the water cools, so he keeps different sizes ready to reach a variety of depths and employs several techniques to fool fall’s feeding largemouth bass.
Striper fishermen know that a Cotton Cordell Red-Fin fishing lure is without rival when it comes to imitating big gizzard shad wallowing near the surface. The same principle applies to largemouth fishing anywhere the bass grow to jumbo sizes and make good use of big gizzard shad, according to Arkansas trophy bass expert, Mitch Looper.
Autumn is a time of power-eating for largemouth and smallmouth bass, as they pack on as much weight as possible in preparation for the coming winter. It’s also a beautiful time to be on the water. The trees are in full color and pleasure boat traffic is minimal. Add to that the fact that bass ought to be pretty cooperative and you’d better get out there before the snow flies.
My daughter’s boyfriend shows some interest in bass fishing, and as much as I hesitate to say this, I kinda like the kid. The problem is that the only fishing he’s ever done has been with a hook and bobber. It took a while for me to get my mind around the fact that he just didn’t believe you could catch a fish on something without a minnow or worm impaled on it.
It’s not your Bubba’s Mississippi River. For most Southerners, the Mississippi River is a big, rolling, muddy, deep and dangerous river. That’s just the way it is. It’s like your second grade teacher – she was old and fat and quick to anger. She’ll always be that way to you. You’d never imagine that she once was a young and virile teenager.
Norman Freebeck of Florence, Ala., considers the bone-colored Bomber Long A his secret weapon when fishing near the (undisclosed) dam along the Tennessee River, and the lure outperformed his expectations on Sunday, July 18, when a single cast netted not one but two chunky largemouth bass. Doubles (two fish on a single lure) aren’t completely unheard-of, but Norm’s double weighed almost 10 pounds.
Only one lure sounds like the chugging, spitting, dog-walking Cotton Cordell Pencil Popper. That action and sound attracts stripers and big bass from long distances resulting in heart pounding vicious strikes; however, there is more to fishing a pencil popper than just casting it out and walking it. You have to know when to fish it and where. After you know when and where, you should fine-tune your presentation with size and color pattern to maximize your catch-rate.
The Elite BASS pros will be fishing Alabama’s Lake Guntersville May 7-10 in an event dubbed the “Southern Challenge.” Rest assured, Alton Jones, Dave Wolak, Edwin Evers, Terry Scroggins, Matt Reed and the rest of the best will pick that lake apart, but for the rest of us, I asked Jimmy Mason, a bass guide on the lake who also fishes tournaments, for some advice on fishing this lake known for size and quantity of bass.
It’s been said that catching fish on topwater lures is the ultimate fishing thrill. If so, then fishing the flats is the ultimate extreme -- the X-Games of topwater fishing. Flats like the those located around Tampa Bay in Florida have an abundance of redfish, snook, tarpon, and sea trout all willing to smash a topwater lure with vengeance.