Double-digit ditchies! Massage your plastics?? Flip mats in winter

Today’s Top 5

Fat-tay melons of the DD kind.

Leadin’ it off from ZIMBABWE…which I believe is somewhere southeast of FL. David Collyer caught this 14.6-lb “lump of lard” (he said, lol) in a tourney at Lake Mutirikwi. A 14-lb tourney bass!! Said: “It is a very unusual size over here, that is my PB and in a tournament as well. I caught it on a modified spinnerbait” #stout dude!

Kelly Jordon’s bud Mark Mitchell caught this Lake Fork, TX 14.4-lb swoll-pickle on black/blue “craw worm:”

Check out this donkey kong 12-04 melon @caroncrawdadfishing caught at an undisclosed location on a @burritobaits Bacca swimbait:

How ’bout Elitist Chaddeus Morgenthaler with this 11-08 caught on Chickamauga, TN. Jacked it with a Megabass 110 jerkbait (gp pro blue 2), 10-lb Gamma Edge fluoro, 6′ 8″ ML Team Lew’s Lite Rod and a Team Lew’s Lite Reel:

Crazy story about it:

> “10 minutes before I caught it, I caught a 2-lber, go to put it in the boat and the bait flies off the fish…. I threw my hand in front of my face, and the rear treble goes through my finger and comes out the other side. I can’t jerk it through, so I clip it and back it out. I was just fun-fishing [guiding] so I didn’t change the hook.

> “When I hook the big one, it’s on 1 hook — the rear treble, and [now] that’s only got 2 points to begin with! The whole time I fought her she only had 1 hook in her. I just couldn’t help but laugh. Just a ‘meant to be’….”

Btw, Chad checked with Trip before going — apparently the rules say once a lake’s announced a guy can only go if he’s never been there before or a licensed guide, both of which applied.

Last one: Dean Rojas thought he caught a bass but it was 4.4 lbs (!!) of Lake Havasu, AZ redear — fat-tay for sho:

Do you massage your plastics??

No you don’t! But…saw this in Target Walleye, kinda BassBlaster’s step-cousin — walleye pro Korey Sprengel says he can change the action of his swimbaits (in his case Berkley Ripple Shads) by stretching and massaging ’em. Says it breaks up the salts and minerals (?) in the bait, which loosens up the plastic to make it a little more limp:

> A stiffer swimbait is going to have a tighter action…lot of times good for cleaner water cuz it’s more natural.

> Dirtier situations…a wider [action] is going to move more water and make the bait roll more.

He also says he likes a looser swimbait in cooler water because he can work the bait slower yet still get the right action out of the paddletail.

If you want the full 2-min vid, here ’tis on Facebook. Korey’s apparently is a walleye hammer, which I guess is like a ham sandwich with no mustard…or bread…and maybe even no ham? Hahaha!

Maybe you can just hit some plastics with a foam roller before throwin’ them in the boat….

Btw I did text Aaron Martens to see if he thought of this first — which he probly did — but haven’t heard back yet. Heard he’s at a Doritos convention so I get it….

2 new swimbaits for you to check.

“New” as in you might know about ’em already but now they’re available:

1. Storm Arashi Glide

Brandon Palaniuk had an XL hand in makin’ this bait so you know it works:

> It’s kind of a lot of the good things from a lot of the other [glide] baits that we grabbed and pulled into this bait….

Brandon talks about how the colors are super important on such a visual bait, and even tho the color “oikawa mesu”…

…doesn’t look like a US baitfish “it looks a little bit like everything and it’s enough to make those fish trigger” along with the action. More in the vid:

2. Lunkerhunt Gambit

Small taste, full vid with happy vibin’-type music here:

> …has a hollow-body weedless design that allows it to run true around cover and in open water. The Gambit comes pre-rigged and is 4.5″ long. It weighs 5/8-oz…has a solid 5/0 hook….

> …swims well under all speeds. High speeds, low speeds, moderate speeds, and even when crawled and paused along bottom. …available in 8 [colors].

The Gambit’s on its way to TW, should be there soon. If you need to scratch and itch right now, you can find it on the Lunkerhunt website….

Worldwide webz bait ‘stravaganza!

Quick story: Told James Watson he should change his first name to “Webb” so he could be “Worldwide Webb.” He wasn’t diggin’ it…. True story. Maybe.

Anyhow, stuff that caught my eye from around the webz:

Clockwise from top L:

Cool recipe of a 4″ Reins Craw Tube with a Lifted Jigs Flippin Tube Jighead.

Purple candy (?) Ned worms made with a Do It Molds mold — would you fish that color?

Not sure what the name of this Zappu jig is but maybe should be called “hammer head?”

The Perfection Lures Pre-Rigged Neko uses a SPLIT RING for an O-ring. Not sure if that’s David Dudley genius or what, but I wanna try it.

Clockwise from top L:

Biovex Hyper 7 — Dang if it had one more blade I’d be all over it…heehee!

“Koike shrimp big.” [Forgot the link sorry.]

Arbogast Buzz Plug looking kinda cool…and ratty…and modern again?

Chartreuse hot dog thing — No idea what this is but I’m real curious about the action.

Is B.A.S.S. getting more politically involved again?

Politics #sux but does have some affect on our bassin’. Back in the pre-ESPN Ray Scott and Helen Sevier days, B.A.S.S. was politically active and it helped. It helped habitat, it helped fishermen, it helped policy, it beat back the nutcase antis, etc.

That continued a little under ESPN and still goes on, but not as much as maybe B.A.S.S. “should” do given its heritage and “footprint”…and membership. So I saw this and was encouraged:

> B.A.S.S….and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) formalized their partnership….

> “B.A.S.S. has partnered with CSF for many years working to further sportsmen’s causes by engaging with both state legislators and Congress,” said Bruce Akin, CEO of B.A.S.S. “The memo of understanding signed last week sets forth formal goals for both organizations that enable us to champion conservation issues impacting sportfishing at both the grassroots and national level.”

> …B.A.S.S. Nation state conservation directors will work closely with CSF regional staff to identify and track legislation that affects aquatic resources and access to fisheries. These conservation directors can then leverage the wide reach of B.A.S.S.’s media platforms to issue calls-to-action when anglers need to voice their opinions to elected officials.

> CSF has also committed to working alongside B.A.S.S. to educate members on how to more effectively champion sportsmen’s interests in the legislative process, and provide opportunities at the chapter level for members to engage with their respective state caucuses and members of the Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus.

Is this a big deal? Don’t know. I see it as a good and necessary sign.

Here’s what gettin’ involved in politics looks like to me — look how much the pig is diggin’ it:

Shout-out to all the B.A.S.S. staff and Nation guys who have to do the wrasslin’.


1. Scott Martin was named after Ray Scott??

Never heard this story — and Scott is fishin’ all the Opens next year, not the FLWs, where he’s been big-time dominant:

> “My dad literally called Ray Scott from the payphone at the hospital to tell him he had a new baby boy. He told him they hadn’t picked out a name yet and Ray said, ‘I’ll make you a deal…If you’ll name him after me, I’ll give him a lifetime membership to B.A.S.S.’

> “My dad decided that sounded like a pretty good deal.” Since neither of [Scott’s] parents was in love with the name “Ray,” they officially named him “Scott Roland Martin.”

Love it!

2. Larry Nixon might have right shoulder surgery.

Said it’s just “worn out,” plans to fish at least part of the FLWs next year. Dude is a warrior, a hammer, and you know it must be pretty bad if it hurts to fish a Senko or put on rain gear….

3. What Boyd Duckett is saying.

> The old model is the company focuses on profit, and one byproduct is that the employees — or, in that case, the anglers — might benefit, but that wasn’t the priority of the business. But taking care of the anglers is our priority. …we focus daily on how we can help the anglers achieve their goals and get to where they want to be as tournament professionals.

> B.A.S.S. has great heritage for sure, but they can never be the same as they were in the past. The landscape for tournament fishing has permanently changed, and MLF has caused that change. But that shouldn’t make anyone feel like they have to make a choice between the 2 brands! Although we are very different, both are good companies and both have a lot to offer the fans.

4. Elitist Caleb Sumrall says you can’t learn it all in LA.

> “Being from south LA you can’t learn all the techniques you need to be good on the Elites.”

But you do learn other things in south LA, like dancin’ with reptiles:

5. Why Kurt Dove is fishing the new FLWs.

> For me, there’s no question that the Pro Circuit is my best opportunity to have the most financial reward in 2020 — not only from a potential winnings standpoint with the paybacks, but also from a sponsorship viewpoint.

> Anglers that perform well in the Pro Circuit events are going to get rewarded with media exposure, and their sponsorship associations are going to get rewarded with exposure that wasn’t previously available.

6. When Denny met Ozzy (vid).

Denny told the story on the most recent StrayCasts show — I’d forgotten about it til I heard it again. Best lines from Denny:

> “He said a lot of things but I didn’t understand any of it.”

> “He had more metal on him than I had in my spinnerbait box.”

Popcorn had a good line too, ’bout Ozzy bitin’ the head off a jig.

Why that story hasn’t been bass fishin’ legendaryness I don’t know except cameras weren’t in phones back then. Pat reeled this off ’bout Denny: Flipped jigs with Ozzy, on a Wheaties box, won $1 mil. Not keepin’ score but Irwin Jacobs had a hand in all of that….

7. Trip Weldon’s fave dog breed is a rat terrier.

I’m sure that choice is related to his profession, just don’t know how exactly…. Lol Trip! Factoid is from a real nice Jerry McKninnis tribute. Great gettin’ to know Trip a little better through his posts cuz at tourneys he’s kinda like this…

…except o’ course he’s got a B.A.S.S. patch on his sleeve….

8. OK: Tulsa/Grand won’t host the 2021 Classic.

Sounds like B.A.S.S. wanted to go there but a lawsuit involving hotel taxes means the city couldn’t come up with the $$$ for it.

MLF is also watching to see if Tulsa can get this deal resolved.

9. TX: Bassmaster Texas Festivus will be at Fork.

10. FL: Aquatic herbicides are killing more than just plants.

Check this quote, from bass-head Jason Blair about Okeechobee:

> “I came out here outside Lock 7 a month ago on a Wednesday to pre-fish for a tournament fishing Saturday”…he had unlimited bites. “I came back that Friday, the day before the tournament, to check my spots. I saw 5 airboats spraying all the vegetation with herbicide. I caught 2 fish in 4 hours.”

> Blair actually returned to the area the following day on tournament day. He caught no fish.

> “I came back a week later and there were a bunch of birds flying above the dead vegetation. I went in to take a closer look and the stench was horrific. It smelled like raw sewage. As I got closer, I noticed there were flies everywhere. The birds were feeding on the flies which were feeding on the dead snails and dead fish and everything else dead in there.”

Sounds like it’s time for a change man. Spraying what’s basically RoundUp into our lakes can’t be good for anything.

11. Are these 2 new Berkley baits?

If Google translate is right they are. For some reason Berkley baits seem to pop up in Japan first. L is the 3″ Powerbait Hollow Belly Fintail, and R is the 3.5″ Powerbait Champ Claw HD:

12. Win you a couple boats.

Buy a ticket for a chance:

Randy Howell’s Triton — believe TODAY is the last day to enter.

The Bass Pastor’s Nitro Z-18.

13. AL: Headland HSer signs with Montevallo U.

Love it! Gotta shout this out, his HS coach talkin’:

> The kid is not only phenomenal on the water, but he’s a phenomenal person off the water. He’s been on mission trips all across the world sharing the gospel of Christ to other people. He takes every one of these young guys and tries to instill in them what has been instilled in him through other people, and teaches them how to fish and how to adapt to different lakes and different situations.

Outstanding! Great how that was covered, wish we could see it for all college bassin’ commits (that’s a hint for someone out there).

14. NY: One of B.A.S.S,’ yak derbies…

…may be on the St Lawrence outta Massena. Might be a lotta sleigh-rides with those smallies….

15. Pure Fishing/Berkley has new North American prez.

Dave Bulthuis, I don’t know him. Seems like his last gig was Costa.

16. KS State grad started Mule Fishing company.

Sounds like he’s mostly making finesse jigheads. 2 things:

> You’ve seen me call bigs “mules” in the Blaster so love the name!

> What up with KS and finessin’? Believe that’s where Ned Kehde of Ned Rig infamy resides. Maybe Brent Chapman should ditch his flip sticks…just sayin’ Brent hahaha!

17. Australian lake-fishing advice.

> Catching barra [bass-like feesh] in this lake is the same as any other lake — follow the wind to find that warmer water.

Anyone do that here?

18. Lookit these Chinese pond mussels found in NJ.

First time found in the US:

Guess how they got there — Asian carp import:

> …the ponds contained bighead carp….

Hopin’ states and the feds get serious about this import stuff….

19. White River Marine looking for an industrial designer.

Ranger, Triton, etc — Johnny Morris’ boat company.

20. Big boats are now called SAVs??

“Sports Activity Vessels.” Guess we fish outta BKTs — Bass Ketchin’ Tubs? Or SBRs — Slick Bassin’ Rockets??

21. Check this Shelby Super Duty.

For all you Ford guys. Skeet, you can probly get one in yella…. Does ‘Yota have someone like Shelby crankin’ up Tundras?

Line of the Day

The northern snakeheads are affecting the number of popular fish life, including wide-mouth bass and carp.

Wide-mouth bass?? Have heard “bigmouth bass” before, but not wide-mouth…or “fat-mouth bass” or “jumbo-mouth bass”? I kinda like “mondo-mouth bass” to….

On right now…

Note: The TackleWarehouse links in this email are affiliate links, meaning if you go through them to make a purchase I might earn a commission…at no cost to you. Click here if you want to learn a little more about links in the BB.

Tip of the Day

Marty Robinson punches mats in the winter.

Who knew?? Innerestin’ info from

> “Punching mats is a great approach in the winter and because the grass isn’t as thick, I switch to 25-lb P-Line Tactical fluorocarbon instead of using braid because I think you definitely get more bites. If it is really thick and dark inside the mat, you can use heavy braid because I really don’t think they can see it.”

> Robinson likes to use the Zoom Z-Craw Jr…. “It comes through the grass great and also has a nice swimming action.

> “Some guys like to get right on the mat and that works sometimes, but I think you can really spook some fish getting too close. I stay back some and think it helps me land more fish.”

Quote of the Day

“Now I’m reluctant to seek out new sponsors.”

Casey Ashley with what some might see as crazy-talk. BUT he’s always sorta done it in his own style and at his own speed and it’s worked out pretty dang well for him so far. He also said:

> In my first year as a pro, I won an event and made the Classic. I was the young gun on tour and thought that the money would start pouring in from sponsors. Well, it doesn’t work that way. I picked up a few and fortunately, to this day, I’m still with them.

[My 2c: The money doesn’t pour in, but a new pro for sure has to do well to get sponsor interest.]

> Before winning the Classic, meetings were like blind dates, and those sponsors didn’t know me from Adam’s cat.

After a long interwebz search, finally found Adam’s cat:

Shot of the Day

Love the expression on this kid’s face! Think it’s either pride or thinkin, One day I’m gonna ketch an even bigger one…. @ballisticboats shot


Check out SD’s new anti-meth campaign logo (for real):

Makes it look like the whole state’s on it?? And the website is:

Meth’s nothing to joke about at all but that’s pretty dang funny…and maybe genius in terms of awareness….

Ya got me
Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup

of the best, worst and funniest in bassin’, as curated by me — Jay Kumar. I started, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a bunch more in bassin’. The Blaster is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o’ bass so thanks for readin’!

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