BassBlaster

Melons of the week, Land Chatterbait fish, 15-min timeout for bass?

Today’s Top 5

Monstrous obesities from the black bass melon lagoons!

Kickin’ ‘er off with the guy who invented the Strike King Rage soft-plastics, Steve Parks, ketchin’ ’em somewhere south of the border on a Magnum Rage Bug. Featured first cuz looks like the fish are so big Steve needs a weight-liftin’ belt to haul ’em in…and he’s a pretty good-sized dude! #getmetheremang

Here’s 10.5 lbs of PB from Lake Fork, TX caught by Brent H off a stump in 9′ using a bubbashot with a 6″ Roboworm (witches T):

Bobby R and his pops drove all the way from NC to Fork, and it paid off: Pops got him his first DD, this 10.18 — on a Carolina-rigged Yamamoto D Shad (watermelon red):

How ’bout Stevie S. from MO whackin’, smackin’ and stackin’ this 8 on an olde-skoole Storm Chug Bug (silver/black back) with a red sharpie spot on the belly:

That shirt is a great way to give away yer fishin’ spot mang lol!

Dude thinks a bass can be caught again 15 mins later.

Biologist talkin’ in a vid:

> “There’s been studies done to try to figure out how long a bass can remember. 15 minutes, that’s it. 15 minutes.

> “You jerk its lips off, throw it in the boat, let it flop around a minute, take the hook out, throw it back, and 15 minutes later you can probably catch it again if it’s got that propensity to strike.”

No friggin’ way. If the bass are super young and/or super skinny/hungry, or you’re fishing a Billy Dance private lake, maybe. But no way on a public lake, no way if the fish is big, and especially no way if you hooked it solid and dropped it in the boat.

Not sure about smallmouths, but would be surprised if even they come back after 15.

Also the BB covered a study recently that said:

> …although a 60-day closure was enough to increase catch rates, these positive results were short-lived, and a return to naivety [fish being dumb again] was not observed until after a 6-month closure.

> …of interest is the more rapid decline in catchability during the 8 weeks when fishing resumed after the closure….

> This study demonstrated that continued fishing effort contributed to a decline in catchability that can be attributed to learning.

So there mang!

Who needs a plug knocker…

…when you’re as lucky as @mike_boyd_tx:

> Caught my trusty ol’ chartreuse powder blue back [10XD?] with the hook rash marks. Had to break it off last summer. What are the odds? Glad to have you back in the arsenal.

Then he posted:

> A few years ago at Fork I lost my last barfish [colored] 10XD. Tied on a different pattern and went to another spot. First cast caught a barfish pattern 10XD. Incredible!

“It’s not about fishing against fish but about outsmarting your competitors….”

Randall Tharp talkin’ competition — innerestin’ since most of the time you hear guys saying they’re fishing against the fish, not each other. More Tharp updates:

> On KY Lake: “It shocked everybody how difficult it was to get a bite in a lake that’s got so many fish in it.”

> On the launch of his new ARK Honey Badger Rods at the Classic: “We sold every one we had. It’s the coolest thing I’ve been part of this year.”

> On the Classic: “I won’t retire before that is on my mantel.”

Yo Tharp, maybe this is the issue mang:

FL FWC’s final report on Nik Kayler incident is out.

As reported here:

> The FWC finding confirms much of what Kisiah and other people involved in the tournament and the search already have said about what was believed to have happened next.

> Kisiah told investigators that sometime in mid-morning, the boat was going 15 to 20 mph when it ran into high winds near the center of the lake, and was swamped, throwing Kayler. Kisiah made a 180-degree turn to find him, but the outboard motor died. He tried to restart the motor, without luck, and resorted to the much tinier trolling motor, but a new wave threw him into the water.

> By the time Kisiah was able to get back to the boat, Kayler “was no longer in sight,” the report said. With the boat taking on water, Kisiah used the rope that serves as a “kill switch” to lash himself to the trolling motor’s mount. The trolling motor then also died in the wind and waves, “leaving Mr. Kayler without rescue and Mr. Kisiah adrift.”

> …the report concluded…”The recovered GPS and engine data did not indicate the vessel was operated in a careless or reckless manner.”

Glad there’s closure for everyone. Bottom line is we lost a brother, and more importantly, Nik’s family lost one of it’s own. Hope the Lord blesses everyone affected.

Be safe out there folks.

News

1. Greg Hackney sums up the Sabine Reever.

> “It’s kind of a crapshoot. The key deal is going to be getting that big bite. There’s going to be a guy with 4 of those little bitty ones and a 4- or 5-lber every day. You can’t target 3-lbers here. You’ve got to fish for bites and hope you can catch a big one.”

Stevie “still ain’t” Wright noted that the min size is 12″ this year, had been 14″. That’ll help with the number of fish weighed….

Steve said Bill Lowen digs these kinds of derbies, which I assume is cuz Bill grew up fishing the OH River, which has like 10 fish in it…. LOL OH Reever peeps!

Almost forgot: Hackney texted me this shot from the Sabine, said it’s legit — what do you think? I’m thinkin’ the eyes look real man:

2. Alton Jr also on an interesting pattern.

It ain’t flippin around bigfoots but:

3. More Sabine highlights.

Mark Daniels Jr is one of several pros considering opening his own aquarium:

Brandon Lester too:

But Marty Robinson found one — what kind of fishery is it when you have to blot out your location for ONE fish:

Not sure where Gerald Spohrer was fishing but it sure as heck wasn’t near no dentist’s office:

Johnny Crews posted this’n, but believe that’s just a shot on his phone from a lake back home: #sandbaggin’

Last but not least, this gem from the G-man (Gem-man):

> That’s the look you have after pumping 45 and 1/2 gallons and your boat only holds 46.

4. Chris Lane teaches kids how to catch fish.

Uh, good job with that man:

Lol, actually from his 11th annual Chris Lane Kids Fishing Camp on Gville on Memorial Day weekend. #stout

5. Todd Faircloth’s post-spawn tips.

> I’ve had tremendous success with the 5″ Strike King Ocho — this soft bait is so versatile. I can fish it a multitude of ways to match the conditions. I can TX-rig it with or without a weight. I can rig it wacky style, put it on a shakey head or any number of other ways, and it always gets bit.

6. Is this KVD’s secret?

> It is said that no point in Michigan is more than 6 miles from an inland lake.

Wow.

7. What lines Zona likes for topwaters (vid).

> Long casts: 30-40 lb Seaguar Smackdown braid with short 20-lb Seaguar AbrazX fluoro leader to prevent braid tangles with hooks.

> Poppers and floating jerks: Seaguar Rippin Mono because it floats better and the bait won’t react as fast as with braid.

8. Bradley Dortch’s new bait?

Posted without much info:

Never heard of Area 51 Fishing but I dig the name and logo….

9. Steve Quinn no longer at In-Fisherman?!?!

This is shocking to me. It’s like saying McDonald’s won’t serve meat anymore…or something like that.

I get that when big companies buy smaller ones they “consolidate,” say corporate nonsense like “best positioned to leverage our competitively advantaged capabilities,” and peeps lose their gigs. But Steve Quinn at In-Fish??

Not sure who’s left at In-Fish, but if I was there I’d buy a plane ticket asap. Dang.

A huge and deep THANK YOU to Stevie Quinn for educating us all so well over the years, and for being a great example of a relentlessly positive dude…which makes me wonder why Danny Quinn at Rapala didn’t turn out that way (hahaha DQ!). Here’s Steve lovin’ life man:

10. TWRA spending $500K to fight Asian carp.

> The TWRA will promote in-state carp processing plants to make it profitable for commercial fishermen to harvest large numbers of the fish. The only effective way to remove significant numbers of Asian carp from a specific body of water is by netting…netting is not practical for commercial fishermen because there are no ready markets for the catch.

> Once the TWRA’s proposed processing plants are operating, it is believed markets will open up for the fish, perhaps as pet food or fertilizer.

Doing SOMETHING is good.

Meanwhile 100x that amount — $50 mil — has been allocated to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes.

11. AR: Big Bass Bonanza anglers get free Navionics maps.

Competitors also will be restocking the river with 100K fingerlings as they fish, which is pretty cool.

12. FL treating hydrilla in Lake Hatchineha this week.

And restoring habitat in Lake Istokpoga.

13. FL investigating turtle dieoffs.

So far no conclusions but since they’re water critters it doesn’t sound good?

14. TX: Zebras in Austin not a good thing?

Possibly, but this quote is questionable:

> With less of the single-celled algae available for other animals, sport fishers angling for game fish like largemouth bass in Lake Austin can expect to see [bass] get smaller in years to come. Largemouth bass feed on shad fish, which feed on plankton.

> “No shad, no bass,” McGarrity said. “If you have this competitor eating their food, catfish may do better, but the bass game fish aren’t going to fare well.”

Fewer shad may hurt the bass pops, but I’m dang sure bass don’t just eat shad…. TPWD peeps, for proof just check BOOYAH’s 30 days of blowups on their ToadRunners and Pad Crashers. Heck, there’s even turtle baits!

15. WA/ID: Invasive mussels found at border.

Hitchhiking in a boat. Rumor is they had 50 grand in cash, fake passports and a collection of jigheads, some still with fluorocarbon on ’em.

16. Changes to School of the Year college rankings.

17. Win some Mountain Dew stuff…

…maybe includin’ a trip with FLWer Chad Grigsby. Git on it Feider!

18. NY: 4-time youth champ.

Didn’t get this year’s on it yet but he won it: #stout

19. How they hat in Italy.

Euro bassin’ is cool but I think they need a lid-wearin’ education:

20. New Rapala Mossy Oak Elements apparel.

Pretty cool and 100% needed if you’re as pale as the guy wearing it here:

21. T-H Marine buys Troll Perfect.

Wow another one! Rumor is Jeff Huntley at T-H may be getting investment advice from Uncle Si:

Hahaha Jeff! Check the Troll Perfect on Tackle Warehouse.

22. New Japan-only fishing tackle site.

Not just bass and am not recommending it cuz I don’t know anything about it, just a heads up if you’re obsessed with Japanese stuff. Bait selection doesn’t look so hot….

Reminder that Tackle Warehouse has a bunch o’ JDM (Japanese Domestic Market) stuff here.

23. Yammy has a new 425 hp outboard.

Cannot accommodate a 250 cowling…KIDDING!

24. Vote for your fave Outdoor Channel peeps.

Vote so they can win golden moose. Seriously. Always do it to vote for the bass-heads, BUT this year the OC makes you fill out your name/addy/email to vote = l-l-l-l-l-l-lame.

25. WI guy duped investors with fake fishing lure company.

From here:

> …told prospects he expected sales of $100,000 a month at Screamline Lures. He promised ownership stakes to the major investors and returns within a year to others.

> But state investigators say it was all a big fish tale. Reynent was charged Thursday with seven counts of embezzlement, accused of taking more than $350,000 of investment in his company and spending it all on personal expenses and gambling from 2015 to 2017.

26. Dude in Indonesia fishing tourney catches…dead body.

Yikes. Yep, thought it was the winning fish for a while too….

27. Salty anglers name their tourney boat “Backstabber.”

Lucky they don’t have Trip as TD:

Trip does that all the time to Elite rookies…. One time Trip gave Casey Ashley a hard time just cuz Casey was head-bangin’ to Ozzy’s “Breakin’ All the Rules” waiting to put his boat in. Trip’s crazy about that rule stuff man….

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Don’t think Casey even knows who Ozzy is….

Tip of the Day

How Brett Hite lands his Chatterbait fish.

Says your gear is the key, to think of it more like a crankbait than a jig and don’t hit ’em hard on the hookset (my grade on that = F!):

> 7′ 3″ H (but glass) Evergreen Combat Stick glass rod

> 20-lb Sunline Sniper fluoro (not braid!)

Quote of the Day

I don’t expect anything other than being myself whenever I’m fishing.

– Yeah dude Amen. That’s MS high-schooler Joe Gray talkin’, in the news for possibly getting drafted by MLB — which he was, by the Milwaukee Brewers. Here’s the full quote:

> “It’s mind-boggling that something that simple can help me think straight. It gives me something away from the field and all the tight situations I get put in with expectations. I don’t expect anything other than being myself whenever I’m fishing.”

Heck yeah man, keep on feeshn and good luck in the bigs!

Shot of the Day

@plinefishing posted this shot of a nice smallie caught on their CX Premium — but this pic is here cuz it shows that while skinny bassers are rare, they’re out there! Hahaha bass-heads!

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 BassFan.com, 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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