Westernbass Magazine February 2012, Page 21

Westernbass Magazine February 2012, Page 21

found those spoon fish that guys are talking about; but there are some big spots still scrounging around the rocks for crawdads. This means the jig bite is getting good and I love to fish with jigs! This can be the best bait to target the bigger tournament bass we need to get that check.

I suggest finding the areas that are holding the forage. If you find the bait, you will find the fish. For spotted bass, I like to use a plain football head with a YUM Gonzo Grub in green pumpkin or a football jig with a brown skirt and a green pumpkin YUM Gonzo Grub Twin Tail trailer. I use a Dobyns Champion Extreme 744c casting rod; but if you have a Champion 734c that will do the job just fine.

These rods are 7’4” and 7’3” respectively and both have a soft tip for casting accuracy along with a strong backbone to subdue those big fish. The best thing about these rods is the sensitivity. This allows me to detect those subtle bites that you would miss with a lesser rod.

Depending on how deep I find the fish and how they are reacting to my jig I will vary the weight of the football head from ¼ to ¾-oz. The weight of the jig can be the difference between a few small fish or getting a tournament-winning limit. You need to pay attention to all the variables pertaining to the bites you get during practice. How deep did the bite come, how fast was I moving the bait, dragging or hopping the jig. If the bite came while hopping the jig this is where the weight of the jig can be important. A heavy jig might be getting a reaction bite where a light jig might get more bites because the slow fall will keep the bait in the bass’ zone longer.

You need to “listen” to the fish, meaning pay attention to where the bite came from, how fast or slow was the bait moving, what kind of structure or bottom make-up was the fish holding on. If you get a bite and you find that the tails of your Gonzo Grub are

ISSUE 1  February 2012