FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE
It’s no secret that one of the best baits you can throw at lethargic bass in chilly water is a suspending jerkbait. Just in time for this year’s prespawn brawl, here is a new twist on the darting, diving minnow imitator that’s sure to put a twinkle in the bass’ eye without putting a big dent in your tackle budget.
With the magnum crankbait craze spreading in 2014, it makes sense that rod companies would start building rods specifically for fishing jumbo plugs. We analyzed three tournament-worthy rods built for launching crankbaits ranging from standard deep-divers such as the Strike King 6XD up to today’s true jumbo plugs like the Strike King 10XD. Here’s how they fared.
Here’s a one-of-a-kind square-bill that crankbait junkies might want to think about adding to their shallow-water arsenal. I’m hesitant to call the Big Bubba new because Strike Pro actually unveiled it awhile back.
With a name like DieZel, I expected the MinnowZ from Z-Man to be one rough customer. What I didn’t expect was something tough enough to catch several dozen bass and still not need replacing. Then I remembered the nifty 4-inch swimbait is manufactured using ElaZtech, a super-soft, yet incredibly strong material that has made a name for itself as one of the most pliable and durable soft plastics used in the fresh- and saltwater fishing industries.
Just when you thought the soft-plastic worm market couldn’t get any fatter, Florida-based Gambler introduces a heavyweight surface swimmer that is designed to perform significantly better than others with a paddle-tail caboose. It’s called the Burner Worm, but it does way more than the name implies. To hear Walmart FLW Tour pros JT Kenney and Jim Tutt tell it, Gambler’s newest soft plastic is perfect for buzzing on top or crawled beneath the surface without ever missing a beat.
There’s a new bladed swim jig in town from Strike King, and this one is sure to shake things up once the bass fishing masses catch on to some big changes it brings to the table. Not only does it rattle your rod tip and attract violent strikes from afar, it helps solve a couple of nagging problems inherent in a posse of its predecessors – poor hookup ratios and frustrating hangups.
New technology offers advantages to put more bass in your boat
When you’re fishing with an old-school bass angler, nothing will sour his face faster than seeing you slip a smartphone out of your pocket to peek at your email. As understandable as that attitude is, no one can rightly deny that today’s phones provide a tremendous amount of useful stuff. Such a device can be as valuable as your graph or a good landing net. In fact, your phone is more like a toolbox than a tool because each app serves a separate function.
Choosing the proper jerkbait for varying springtime conditions
Take in an early spring tournament on just about any fishery, and you’ll see dozens of anglers jerking, twitching and snapping a bevy of slender minnow-shaped jerkbaits. Yet the same select and relatively small group of anglers usually cashes the bulk of the checks on many lakes during the spring. Somehow, they manage to set themselves apart.
Rapala DT Series in depth
For some reason, crankbaits overtook other lures this year in the speck of cyberspace inside my head that is my attention span. My wife gets annoyed that I can’t hear other words when I’m singularly focused on one task or noise. The problem is compounded when it involves something to do with fishing.
FLW Outdoors Magazine editors impressed by new line of Yamaha four-stroke outboards
Waking up Tuesday to rain at 6 a.m. didn’t dampen the excitement of testing the new Yamaha outboards. The air was cool but not cold, and the rain was spitting and misting on the 45-minute drive to the test facility in Bridgeport, Ala. A quick safety meeting got everyone on the same page, and then a rundown of the SHO outboard came next.
FLW Outdoors Magazine editors to test new line of Yamaha four-stroke outboards
Game changer? It’s definitely going to be a drool inducer. We were invited to an early viewing of the new four-stroke outboards from Yamaha. Monday we were only privy to images of the new outboards, and Tuesday we’ll actually get to put them through their paces on several different boats.
New line is a game changer in 2009
Approximately one decade ago the Yamamoto Senko hit the market and transformed the bass-fishing industry. A few years later the shaky head and finesse worm had a similar effect. In 2005 Bryan Thrift introduced the ChatterBait, and in 2007 Jay Yelas won the FLW Tour Angler of the Year by throwing an under-the-radar swimbait. This season, no singular bait stood out. Instead, a fluorocarbon line was the product with the most profound impact.
Blade baits polarizing subject for walleye anglers
When walleyes are concentrated behind river wing dams or in reservoirs feeding on bait balls near the thermocline, nothing beats a properly presented blade bait for enticing a limit of fish.
An in-depth look at a relatively simple bait
Pop. Pop. Splash. Splash. Set the Hook. Grab the net. Then drop that keeper in the livewell and fire back out there again. The action can be fast and furious when bass are schooling or rummaging shallow bushes looking for an easy meal, and they readily fall victim to popping topwaters. There are literally dozens of popper varieties on the market, and we sampled a large pool of manufacturers’ offerings.
Take your drop-shot rig beyond a finesse presentation
For anglers who live east of the Mississippi River, the term “drop-shot” often brings thoughts of deep water, wimpy rods, spinning reels, 6-pound-test and plastic worms the size of spaghetti noodles. While many Eastern anglers automatically place the dainty drop-shot into the finesse category, some Western pros do not see it that way.
Routine trailer maintenance may reduce the pain at the fuel pump
With gas prices being what they are, a $20 bill won’t get you nearly as far down the road as it used to. Not surprisingly, just about everybody is looking for good ways to get more distance for their buck.
No need to get fancy when walleyes strap on the feedbag
Catching walleyes isn’t complicated this time of year. The same methods and presentations that worked for your grandfather still work today. Here’s a refresher on some of the basics.
When Lowrance chose the term “high-definition” for its new system, it may have simply been because their depth finders offer aquarium clarity. But the name has much deeper meaning.
Snap-jigging triggers savage strikes
Just when you thought you had jigging down cold, it’s time to heat up the pace. Jigging for walleyes and saugers has traditionally been a slow, subtle, meticulous affair. But snap jigging is definitely against the ordinary walleye grain. It blends speed and erratic lure action to simultaneously cover water and force fish to respond to your lure. Even walleyes.
From competition to recreation, experts to beginners, tournaments to fantasy – new Web site serves as nexus of all things fishing
MINNEAPOLIS — FLWOutdoors.com has long served as the authority on FLW tournaments, but the Web site has branched out in recent months to address a far larger fishing community. The redesigned site now offers an array of new tools, dramatically expanded content and networking capabilities to bring that community together at a central location – FLWOutdoors.com, the ultimate fishing resource.
Select ‘FLW Outdoors’ TV shows added to video stable
Did you forget to set the TiVo when FSN aired the exciting conclusion of the 2008 Walmart FLW Tour regular season? Maybe you want to go back and watch highlights from the Forrest Wood Cup or see the first fantasy-sports millionaire get paid. And who couldn’t use tips on how to fish a plastic worm from veteran bass pro Larry Nixon?
Subtle adjustments to the classic Lindy Rig can turn finicky walleyes into willing biters
By middle to late summer on many natural lakes, there are no secrets. Stable and predictable patterns establish each open-water season. Main-lake structure and classic basin patterns are the basics for putting together a solid program together each summer on many of the most renowned walleye fisheries.
Fishing style, location determine best trolling-motor choice
Few pieces of fishing equipment are utilized more frequently and undergo more abuse than a trolling motor. Think about it. How many times did you put the juice to the plastic prop on your last fishing trip? Fifty times, 100, 500? Now, imagine spending a day on the lake, river or bay minus a trolling motor. If you’re like most anglers, you might feel naked out there without one.
The 2008 International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades (ICAST) ended last Friday, and my head is still spinning from all the cool new products I sampled firsthand in Las Vegas. It’s one of the highlights of the year in the sport-fishing industry, when the world is introduced to what tackle manufacturers have been creating behind closed doors in secret labs for the last several months – and even years in some instances.
For best results, replace finesse tactics with swim tactics near boat docks
Largemouth bass are object nuts. Mother Nature genetically programmed bass to position themselves around submerged cover and structure. Give a bass timber, bushes, stumps, brush or grass, and chances are good it will be as cozy as a bug in a rug.