Hug a bass, Top 10 baits breakdown, Analyze your veggies

Forgot to say last week, “happy” Memorial Day — in quotes cuz I don’t feel that word “happy” there. To me it’s more like “grateful.” You know what I mean. Thanks much to all who served and still serve in our military — the toughest job, period — and their families. (Please do not tell me the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day!)

We recently lost Etienne J. Murphy — an Army Ranger, father of two and bass-head, just 5 days into his first deployment. Bless you bassin’ brother:

> In high school, Murphy told a local news outlet he decided to join the military when he saw the World Trade Center towers come down as a 6-year-old.

Doesn’t get more stout than that.

>> If you’re getting the BassBlaster for the first time it’s cuz a bud signed you up!

Today’s Top 5

Hug you a bass! 

Was gonna run this as the shot of the day, but man, just too many great things a-happenin’ here:

Best thing about this is the dog. Does he think his human bud is nuts? Check. Is he jealous anyway? Yep. Is he a-wonderin’ why anyone would wanna be a person? Probly.

Bass looks like he’s singin’. Reminds me of Elitists doin’ some singing with fish like:

MS River FLW top 10 baits breakdown. 

Upper Mississippi River FLW outta La Crosse, WI was won 2 weekends ago by MD FLWer Bryan Schmitt with 61-06. Dude knows how to fish local rivers (James and Potomac), and said he used that knowledge to figger this one out. All but 3 of his fish came from here:

> …a barricaded pond on the lower end of Pool 8. …a section of water near the main river channel that was surrounded by sandbars which protected fish in multiple phases of the spawn.

> “I don’t know if it was there from years and years of current building up the sandbars, but at some point local authorities may have added riprap to make it stay. It had two main trenches that ran through it and had plenty of deep water. At the very top there was a hole in the rock jetty that let current flow in.

> “It had all the right variables — just enough current to bring food in, grass and spawning habitat, and the deep water for when they were done.”

One FLW story said his main bait was a prototype Riot Baits Swim Jig (black/blue) “with a swimming trailer,” and another FLW story said his main bait was a vibe jig in sexy shad…though the other story said it was black/blue too….

Right Spidey? I hear you, mang! Here’s what the entire top 10 looked like:

Swim Jig = 30% — Actually surprised this % wasn’t higher since that’s standard issue up there.

Flip plastics = 30% — Most often mentioned: Zoom Z Craw.

Vibe jig = 20%

10% each = Jig, Swing-head jig, Tube, Swimbait, Senko, Topwater (Pop-R), Shakey head.

With rising water, darker colors like black/blue ruled.

FLW MS River call-outs. 

Here we go:

Watch out Bertrand, there’s an FLWer named Josh who’s rockin’ the fire-engine red chin fuzz too — and he looks meaner’n you man:

Is this guy not incredible or what? Finished 5th. If you don’t recognize him, just ask every single bassin’ fisherman you know til someone IDs him:

David Dudley fished the standup jighead he designed, and I love the name of the bait co: Perfection Lures.

Is WI’s Matt Stefan (8th) the long-lost twin bro of MN pro Austin Felix (7th)?? Think I’m seein’ some Gagliardi in there too?

Learn about lakes while driving? 

This is pretty cool:

> “You can learn a lot about structure driving down the road if you’ll just look around. You’ll see places where the land forms points, ridges and humps, as well as old sloughs, roadbeds, pond dams, drains, flats, creeks and rivers.

> “When you’re looking at the land, imagine what it would be like if it were submerged by 10-20′ of water. Think about how the fish would relate to it.”

Crazy I never thought of that. I do think about hunting when I’m looking at land, but not fish-holding structure.

Here’s where I’m starting to graph on this one:

I can tell you that animals go active, and they go negative. And, it seems to me that it happens with all of them at the same time — warmblooded or coldblooded and regardless of whether they fly in the air, run on the ground or swim in the water. 

Bill Lowen with an innerestin’ observation. Wonder if nutcases that act like animals do it too:



1. FLWer Randy Blaukat’s Ranger still for sale.

2. TN: U N AL wins Cabela’s college derby.Sloan Pennington and Hunter McCarty had 44.33 over 2 days. My fave line:

> Both of the anglers actually said they enrolled at UNA to learn to be better ledge fishermen.

I’m sure their parents are thrilled to hear that lol….

3. CA wants rolling 12-month licenses.

Instead of expiring Dec. 31 as they do now. Article says annual CA fishing license sales have gone down 55% since 1980. Dang.

4. NY: Virus killing gobies in Cayuga Lake.

Has killed “thousands,” which is the equivalent of removing 3 pieces of candy from this:

5. MN governor catches walleye in bass opener.

On Mille Lacs. Hilarious cuz even though anglers catch the snot outta walleyes there, state biologists claim walleye pops need protecting so they are playing up the smallie fishery there…as in catch/keep. That’s why the governor was there, to fish the “bass opener” and publicize bass.

Quote from another article for more perspective:

> Don Pereira, fisheries chief for [MN], said the success of last year’s [Elite] tournament came as a surprise. “We knew that bass fishing was good on Mille Lacs, but we didn’t really have an idea that this would happen. What happened last year, it was spectacular.”

So the guy in charge of fish in MN had no idea that the smallie population was off the chain at the state’s most popular fishing lake:

6. OH: New ramp open at Berlin Lake.

Made possible by tearing down the wall:


7. TN: 2 guys caught with 38 bass.

Also mooned the guy who then reported them. Bad move fellers….

8. FL: ’92 Harris Chain Bassmaster might have saved Apopka.

Sorta…maybe was the thing that helped the state finally recognize that Apopka was polluted:

> Ordinarily, 2-person teams needed to haul in 16 bass with a total weight of 50 lbs to walk away with the $35,000 first-place check. This time, the winning team brought in just 14.6 lbs. [Not teams of course…won by Cali’s Mike Folkestad.]

> The competition took a hiatus for 10 years but confirmed what lots of anglers suspected: The bass were just about gone, the water quality affected by a half century of farmers allowing too much phosphorus runoff into the lake.

Here’s the page for that derby. No results…?

9. IN: HS QB gets fishing scholarship to Dallas Baptist.

You hear that Robison? That coulda been you man!

10. New Garmin VIRB 360.

Potentially cool. Some folks tell me the VIRB is better than a GoPro.

11. TW’s Memorial Day sale ends TODAY!

Git on it while you still can!

Line of the Day

Bass numbers in the lower Yakima River increased from a few last April to hundreds of thousands in May.Fish biologist talkin’ in an article about catch/keep smallie fishing. Gonna assume either he was misquoted or bass out in WA reproduce faster than gerbils.


Had Greg Vinson’s Rayburn worm wrong — doh, sorry. It was a 11″ Netbait C-Mac in bama bug. My mistake.

Tip of the Day

Great veggie tips from Greg Vinson.

Do you just see “weeds?” Sometimes I do. I mean, not really. But when I ain’t ketchin’ squat, it all starts to look the same, you know? Greg and is fellow Elitists “ain’t got time fo’ dat” so here’s a few from a good Bassin’masters tip:

> Bass have a tendency to move into the same types of vegetation even though it’s growing in different parts of the lake or river. And they seem to be especially fond of two or three different types that are growing together.

> …analyze the thickness of the weed growth where you got your bites. Did it happen in the thickest part? If so, how thick were they? Or, did it happen in the holes or on the edges? If it happened on the edge, was that edge on the deep or the shallow side? And what about the shade? Where was it?

> …were they growing on a point, a drop, a flat or a pocket? That matters a lot. Bass do not position themselves randomly. There’s a reason why they move and stage in particular places.

> While you’re thinking about those things, pay careful attention to the time of the day, the weather and the general fishing conditions…. Bass will often move in and out of weed cover as wind speed and direction changes, and as the position of the sun changes.

> Fishing pressure is a big thing too. Sometimes it drives them back into the thickest part of the weeds, but at other times — like when everybody’s fishing the thick stuff — it’ll drive them out to the edges.

> …they’ll often give you a clue as to what’s on the bottom. Florida…Heart pads and arrow heads typically grow where there is a harder bottom that’s more suitable for a bed than regular lily pads that tend to grow in muck and goo. You can use that information to help you find bedding bass if they’re actually on the beds. If they’re just moving up, you might be better off fishing ordinary lily pads.

Quote of the Day

They put up a good fight, and h*ll, you whoop their a** and let them go to fight another day.

– Dang straight! That’s Gregg Allman talkin’, whom we lost this weekend. Didn’t know he was a big fisherman (sounds like all/mostly salt). Here he is singin’ “Come and Go Blues” — betcha didn’t know he could play geetar too:

[One reason I blank out the letters of bad words: Your email servers won’t let the BB in with bad words.]

Shot of the Day

Pretty cool! Would you fish ’em? More importantly: Would they catch a bass? Abso-tively:


9′ great white jumps into man’s 15′ boat.

In Australia, told the Coasties on the radio:

> “He said, ‘I’m injured, I’ve broken my arm, I’ve got lacerations and there’s a shark in my boat.'”

Gotta ask: WTHeck is a guy doing fishing in 15′ boat on the ocean around great whites??

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Git on these yo!

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Jay Kumar is the guy who created, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a whole lot more in bassin’. Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup of the best in bassin’, and is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o’ bass.

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