Potomac winning baits, Guntersville in trouble, Combs patterning tip

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Today’s Top 5

I never go negative.

The Hack Attack talkin‘ ’bout winning attitudes. Said:

> I never wish bad luck on another competitor. I do not hope they lose a big one, that their fish move or that they have motor trouble. Wanting someone else to have problems is not a strategy, and it’s not a tactic. It’s sorry.

FaceTimed him and was like, “Hack, I’m with you on that quote dude but what if someone’s blood type is, you know…B negative?”

He hung up. What my screen looked like:

Potomac Costa won on a spot.

Meaning NOT running the tides. If you’re surprised you shouldn’t be because most of the bigger Potomac derbies are won thataway. Just cuz everyone says you have to run tides doesn’t mean Beyonce is a clone or the NBA rigged the finals…but they did.

NY guy named Casey Smith won at the Potomac with 51-06 over 3 days (avg 17 lbs/day), beating VA’s Charlie Machek (that rhyme with “paycheck”??) by only 1.5 lbs. How Casey did it:

> Smith caught most of his weight from a broad grass flat in 4-6′ along Aqua Po Beach, just south of Aquia Creek. “I found a ditch that led down into a hole and the fish were sitting right on the corner of where the ditch met the hole.

> “I have to give all the credit to my roommate Chris O’Brien for figuring out how the contour laid out in that area.”

> …Smith realized that running the tide…was not as productive as he’d planned. On day 2, the discipline to park on a promising area rewarded him with the tournament’s only 20-lb bag.

Here’s what FLW says he used (edited):

> …mostly threw a 4.8″ Keitech Swing Impact Fat (bluegill flash) on a 6/0 wide-gap 1/4-oz belly-weight hook. He also caught fish on a 7/16-oz Gambler Southern Swim Jig with a Yamamoto Swim Senko (purple), and 1/2-oz Z-Man ChatterBait (watermelon) with a Keitech Fat trailer.
Potomac Costa top 10 breakdown.

Here you go, what the top 10 used %-wise, most to least:

> Senkos/worms = 50% (Yamamoto Senko most-often mentioned)

All you wuss-rod fans, check this shot of 3rd-place finisher Ron Nelson with his automatic fish-ketchin’ rig (wacky-rigged Senko):

> Swim-jigs = 40%Joe Wood (8th) used a little 1/4-oz Strike King Hack Attack Heavy Cover Swim Jig (black/blue) with a contrasting Reaction Innovations Little Dipper trailer:

> Bladed jigs = 30% (Z-Man Chatterbait most-often mentioned)> Topwaters = 30% — 1 frog, 1 Hornatious Toad, and…

…check Jeff Coble (9th), triple A-level stud (he’s back!?!), with the one bait he used the whole derby, an old-school but still deadly Rico popper (bone):

> Flip plastics = 20%> Swimbait and spinnerbait = 10% each

Guntersville hurting?

Sounds like crazy talk but apparently not:

> …fishing guides as well as weekend anglers are in general agreement that in the last 5 years or so, fishing has been on a downturn….

> “It used to be that just about anybody with a reasonable knowledge of bass fishing could come here and catch a nice bunch of fish once they learned the basics of the lake,” says Mike Carter, one of the busier guides on the lake. “Now, it’s almost impossible for people without inside knowledge here to catch much of anything.

> “I’ve talked to a lot of visitors in the last year who have come here and just about struck out, and who say they will never come back….

> …every community hole that in the past produced great catches now gets hammered a dozen times a day, with boats lined up to fish the known spots — any fish that bites immediately goes on a ride to weigh in, and those that remain get wise….

Pretty sure the reason is either global warming, snakeheads, Asian carp, Trump, Hillary, Republicans, Democrats or Whiplash:

Oh snap that’s just Mickey Rourke walking his dog in Hollyweird. Here’s Whiplash:
But…Gville is #5 in the Southeast on Bassin’’s new list of top lakes (T-Bend is #1 overall again). Sounds like someone ain’t tellin’ it truthful, so we needs one o’ these:
How to load your boat.
Just roll it:
Anyone fished out of one of those hangar 18 craft yet??Hangar 18 is in the infamous Area 51. Dave Mustaine and the boys wrote a song about it — like to hear it, here it go.


1. Matt Reed bails from Elites.

Financial reasons = smart and courageous. #props

> “I haven’t performed well over the past two years, and when you have to fund yourself as much as I do and you don’t catch them, you just run out of the ability to continue fishing.”

> “The remaining schedule is all on northern fisheries. For me, that’s at least 1,600 miles one-way. After entrée fees and expenses, it would have cost me roughly $23,000 to $26,000 total to fish the last three tournaments. Even if I cashed a $10,000 check at all three tournaments, I would only be making around $4,000. That just doesn’t seem like a smart thing to do.”

He’ll guide more on Fork and Falcon. Find him here.

2. Why Hackney has a big screen.

> “I’m completely sold on that 16” screen. I can split the screen and do the same thing with that big screen as I can do with two smaller screens, and I don’t have one screen hanging off the side.

> “Plus, when I’m running a pattern, my map is so big on that [Garmin] 7616 screen that I can look at more real estate on my map. I simply run a bigger map than guys with smaller screens, and I feel like a get a cleaner picture.”

3. B.A.S.S. gets Busch as Cayuga sponsor.

Wow last-minute! How it got pushed thru — apparently B.A.S.S. CEO Bruce Akin’s real last name is Banner:

Want to see Bruce change colors, just tell him how great Auburn will be this year.4. FLWer Jamie Horton on BassEdge Radio.

5. TX: Bass Champs guaranteed $50K for 1st at Rayburn.

Dang son!

6. TX: Bass boats banned from Wheeler Branch Rez.

Fear of zebra mussels getting in through livewells and bilges.

Hate to tell ’em the zebras a-gittin’ in anyway.7. AR: Magnolia Lake being fertilized.

Some folks stay off lakes after they’re just fertilized but:

> “…Lake Conway Reservoir showed…in the immediate days following [fertilization] showed a slight increase in fish caught.”

8. AR: Simmons Bank Big Bass Bonanza Jun 24-26.

Simmons Bank was founded by Richard Gene Simmons:

Pretty sure that’s not true….9. VT: Bass boat swamped on Champlain.

Just 1-2′ waves, but gotta wonder about the wind. That place can get like a wind tunnel. Two adults and one child rescued by the Coasties = #stout.

Also: a new study on Champlain’s fish. Biologists want to know what makes them so dumb.

Okay…they’re studying mercury and algae levels in fish.

10. TX: Big Bass Classic this weekend.

> …participants can fish their choice of Lake Wright Patman or Lake Millwood….

Win a Tracker and a championship ring (could be pretty cool).

11: MN: Wear your PFD or else.

> …most people who die in boating accidents are adults who weren’t wearing a lifejacket.

Probly true in all states.

12. Al Lindner: Derby shirts now and then.

Check his sponsor patch jacket from the early days of B.A.S.S.:

Guess ducks are all the rage across the pond:

> …won the battle of the ducks in the Angling International-sponsored Best New Product Awards…. The Danish company’s 3D Suicide Duck (above)…[won] the Hard Lure category and then going on to power its way through to the Innovation of the Year and Visitors’ Choice awards.

16. Angler’s Port Deal/Steal of the Week.

2013 Skeeter 20i with 2012 Yamaha SHO with Y.E.S. until 4/1/20, and only 8 hours on the motor!

Tip of the Day

Dion Hibdon said that once at a seminar Combs attended. Here’s more from Bassin’ — great stuff:

> What he meant is that while occasionally you can catch a random big fish, more often than not when you catch one, it’s telling you everything that you need to know to catch more big fish.

> On the second practice day at Texoma I fished without success for about 3 hours before I ran back to where I’d caught that big fish [day 1 of practice]. I unlocked the first clue: He wasn’t in the big willow tree. He was in a piece of buck brush. I’m still not sure why my fish were in that sort of cover when all of those big beautiful willows were available….

> Since he was in the top of the bush, the 3/4-oz weight pushed the lure right out of the strike zone. I switched to a 1/2-oz version, and later to a 5/16-oz, and with those changes the number of bites increased.

> The other change I made was from the Strike King Rodent to a Strike King Rage Bug, which has more of a swimming action. Once again, I started to get more bites.

> I went from getting just a handful of bites up to 30 or so each day. That’s a huge difference based on just one fish. It propelled me to a 16th-place finish….

Guess if you’re fishing somewhere where a 5-lber is like a once-in-a-lifetime fish, scale that down to 3 lbs?

Quote of the Day

There’s a lot of sharing of information. And everybody helps everybody.

– ‘Yak feeshn champ Matt Ball on kayak derbies. Also said:

> “Sure, everybody wants to win, but it’s not cutthroat. These tournaments are as much a social gathering as anything, and you get to meet a lot of good people.”

So…the opposite of bassin’ club derbies where everyone’s thinking like this:

Shot of the Day

Ish Monroe posted this sick shot. In the middle is a new Missile bait, launching at ICAST:
Johnny Crews, the head Missile, didn’t want to say much about it yet, but texted this: “It’s another bait created out of necessity. Compact craw with action is the theme.” More coming out about it next week.



Alien contact could be 1,500 years away, say Cornell astronomers

> ….will present their research at the American Astronomical Society’s meeting in San Diego….

Seriously? Research?? Here’s how we all get famous:

Alien contact could happen as early as tomorrow, bass anglers say

> The fishermen, who are at least as sane as Ivy League researchers, will present their findings at the annual Stump Holler Bassin’ Club Meetin’, 3D Shoot ‘n Meat-Smoke at Cooter Landing State Park.
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Fish the best!
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Git on these yo!

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. Get the Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster app:

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