RedHead Reality Series Limited Edition Duck and Goose Calls

New at Bass Pro Shops is our RedHead Reality Series limited edition duck and goose calls. These calls are a great addition to our Reality Series line and for a limited time they come with a free offer.

 

RedHead and Ducks Unlimited With the purchase of our:

You will receive a free one year membership to Ducks Unlimited. The Ducks Unlimited member ship is a $35 value! If you haven't seen the great things Ducks unlimited is doing, please check out their website at: www.Ducks.org.

 

RedHead Black PearlRedHead Reality Series Limited Edition Acrylic Mallard call Black Pearl:

  • Easy-to-use, deadly effective duck call that supports wetland conservation
  • Delivers full range of realistic hen mallard sounds
  • Premium double-reed acrylic call designed by champion caller Buck Gardner
  • Great for beginners or experts
  • Constructed of custom-turned acrylic with a custom aluminum band
  • Includes free 1 year membership to Ducks Unlimited (Limited time offer)

 

 

 

 

 

 

RedHead Mallard Green/OrangeRedHead Reality Series Limited Edition Acrylic Mallard call Green/Orange:

  • Easy-to-use, deadly effective duck call that supports wetland conservation
  • Delivers full range of realistic hen mallard sounds
  • Premium double-reed acrylic call designed by champion caller Buck Gardner
  • Great for beginners or experts
  • Constructed of custom-turned acrylic with a custom aluminum band
  • Includes free 1 year membership to Ducks Unlimited (Limited time offer)

 

 

 

 

 


RedHead Honker

RedHead Reality Series Limited Edition Acrylic Honker Call Black/Ivory:

  • Short reed, custom acrylic goose call is great for beginners, as well as experts
  • Easy-to-blow call reproduces the full range of honker talk
  • Constructed of custom-turned acrylic with a custom aluminum band
  • Includes free 1 year membership to Ducks Unlimited for limited time

 

 

 

 

The free Ducks Unlimited offer will not last long! The offer expires February 15, 2014 so get your calls why you can.

Also be sure to check out our whole Reality Series line at Basspro.com for more great products to help you achieve the game you are after

 

Thank you,


Grayson

0 Comments »

Lipless Crankbaits

 

The lipless crankbait is a timeless classic that has been catching fish for over half a century! The bait has 3 main aspects that make it so successful; such as, sound, vibration, and versatility.

Generally lipless crankbaits have a built in rattle chamber filled with small beads that give it the classic sharp rattling sound that is a proven fish catcher. Other styles of lipless baits have recently emerged with a different concept of sound which consists of one large bead which makes a knocking sound when retrieved.

The design of the bait is what makes the lure vibrate as it comes through the water, vibration is one of the key triggering mechanisms that make fish strike. Bass have what is called a lateral line along their sides, which is a sensory organ that picks up vibrations in the water, this is the main reason why bass can feed so effectively at night, even in complete darkness.

I say the lipless crankbait is very versatile because the fact that it sinks, as well as having numerous ways it can be retrieved. This sinking quality makes for a bait that can be fished from top to bottom in basically any depth range you are trying to target. The way you work your lipless crankbait is everything and when the water temperature is warm then a steady fast retrieve is often perfect for triggering an aggressive fish. While the fast retrieve works great in the right time period; such as, late spring and early fall there is another way to work the bait that is absolutely deadly in the cold water months of the year. The technique is called yo yoing the bait, simply letting it fall and hit the bottom or structure and then ripping it up and popping it off of the bottom. This hopping action accompanied with the sound and vibration can often make a cold fish come to life with a quick reaction strike. Lipless crankbaits can also be effectively worked in grass by using that falling and ripping technique which is very effective on bodies of water with large amounts of submerged vegetation, such as the Tennessee River System, as well as Florida.

So from 2 feet deep to 25 feet deep the lipless crankbait flat out catches fish. Whether they're suspended over 25 feet of water or hiding in shallow vegetation it doesn't matter. I've personally had success ranging from catching my biggest smallmouth ever in the state of Washington, a 5.98lb beauty on a SPRO Aruku Shad, to catching big largemouth in South Florida on a Strike King Redeye Shad. It is simply a type of bait that every angler needs to have in his/her fishing arsenal!

The original lipless crankbait was designed by Bill Lewis, called Rat-L-Trap. This was and still is probably one of the best fish catching baits on the market. This style of bait was so popular that it lead to almost every hard bait on the market having their own model of the lipless crankbait. But don't be fooled these baits are all different from each other, each having it's own qualities and innovations. There are a few specific models that really shine in my opinion. Below is a list of my top 3 Lipless baits I use, and the time and place that each specific bait really shines

Bill Lewis: Rat-L-Trap- This is the original and was arguably the very most influential lure ever created in the history of bass fishing. They have a consistent vibration with great product quality control, as well as being offered in numerous deadly fish catching colors which they continue to improve to this very day. They range in sizes from their Tiny Trap which weighs 1/8 of an ounce all the way up to the 1 1/2 ounce super trap. Most Rat-L-Traps contain the proven fish catching rattle chamber with small beads, but they also have recently introduced the Knockin-Trap and the Silent-Trap, which bring some variety to the table. I generally use the Knockin-Trap when fishing cool or cold water below the 50 degree range. Something about the knocking single ball in the bait really triggers the cold water fish that are not typically aggressive. I will pick up the silent model when fishing bodies of water that have heavy fishing pressure, in those types of situations the subtlety of a silent bait really seems to pay off. This is definitely a bait that I have in my tackle box at all times.

SPRO: Aruku Shad- The Aruku shad is a high quality lipless crankbait that consists of a loud rattle chamber as well as having a fast fall rate. It is one of my favorite baits for catching small mouth bass, which are generally very aggressive and are triggered better by the fast fall and the loud sound chamber. The fast fall also allows me to fish the bait at a high rate of speed and still keep the bait in the strike zone of the fish when fishing slightly deeper water. This bait isn't ideal for fishing shallow submerged vegetation but is definitely a bait that will really shine when fished in the right situations such as in deep water or around rocks.

Strike King: Redeye Shad- The Redeye Shad really burst on to the scene in a big way when Bassmaster Elite Series Angler Kevin Vandam won the 2009 Bassmasters Classic on Lay Lake using his signature series bait. Vandam was fishing in very shallow cold water in the back of a creek where the fish where staging, preparing for the upcoming spawn. The Redeye Shad has a slow sink and is a great option for fishing around shallow grass or wood cover. It also has a unique way that it falls, with a gentle wobbling action which is a big reason why it does so well in cold water. They come in many different models and sizes similar to the Rat-L-Trap. Choose your bait by matching the size of baitfish you are imitating as well as the depth you are fishing and hang on tight, when you get it right and figure out the proper retrieve this bait will help you load the boat in a hurry.

You see there is really a time and a place for where each specific lipless crankbait should be used. It takes extensive time and experience to figure out which bait fits the situation you currently find yourself in. I hope this gives you a jump start into a life time of successful fishing trips using lipless crankbaits. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Weightless Baits Catch Big Bass

 

In this day and age there are numerous of ways that an angler can rig a soft plastic bait. To name a few you have the, Carolina Rig, Texas Rig, Shakey Head, Drop Shot Rig, Mojo Rig, and more. These are all great options in the right situations throughout the year. But one way to fish soft plastics that gets less attention than the rest is fishing them weightless. In this case the only weight you have is the hook and the bait, and trust me this is a great way to catch big bass.

Silver GhostSome of my best tournament finishes I've ever had came from fishing with light tackle and weightless baits that have a slow, almost irresistible fall. One of my go to baits that works great in the spring and also in the fall is a weightless Bass Pro Shops Shadee Shad or a Zoom Super Fluke. When rigging my Shadee Shad I use a 3/0 Gamakatsu EWG Hook and I do what is called a texpose method for making the bait completely weedless. What I do is rig my bait just like a normal texas rig worm, where I come all the way straight through the plastic and then slightly burry the point of the hook into the worm. This results in a hook that is ready to release and stick the fish, as well as a perfectly straight Shadee Shad once rigged. Figuring out how to rig your fluke bait as straight as possible is very important, if the bait is off center on the hook just the slightest bit then the bait will spin and not swim like it's supposed to. One great thing about the weightless Shadee Shad is that it is a very versatile presentation. I like to very my retrieve when fishing it. Specifically, I will at times work the bait extremely fast making it twitch like a fleeing shad on the surface of the water and then when I come over a piece of cover or have a fish roll on the bait I can stop it and just let it slowly sink, which will trigger a lot of strikes. So weather they are extremely aggressive and chasing or if they want a slow falling presentation this bait is going to cover it all. It works near lay downs, docks, rocks, and seawalls, as well as in open water situations! It's definitely something that all anglers need to have in their arsenal.

Purple Brown

Another excellent bait that was truly designed to fish weightless is the Bass Pro Shops Stiko. This bait looks like nothing but catches fish like crazy! Rigging it weightless is by far my favorite method and I rig the bait exactly the same as I rig my Shadee Shad, using the texpose method. The key to the Stiko is generally the less you do with the bait the more fish you catch. I like to let the bait do the work 90% of the time, just casting it out and letting it sink slowly. The way it falls and wobbles on the way down parallel to the bottom is just to easy of an opportunity for a bass to slowly swim up and inhale the bait. When fishing the Stiko or any weightless bait you always need to watch your line looking for a little twitch when the bass takes the bait, as well as watching for your line to swim off if the bite was too light to be detected. Now occasionally I will twitch and pause the Stiko just like I fish a Shadee Shad, I do this specifically when I'm fishing around shallow scattered or matted grass, when doing this don't be surprised if a fish blows up on the bait just like they would on a topwater Spro Frog! Another bait that I rig and fish the same is a Zoom trick worm as well as a lizard. These techniques work exceptionally well when fishing during or close to the spawning period for bass, when the water is in the 60 to 72 degree range!

So whether you spend your time fishing big lakes and reservoirs, or small private ponds you will be blown away at the success you can have fishing weightless baits. I generally like to fish them using a 6'10" or a 7'3" TFO Tactical Series Spinning Rod, accompanied by a Pflueger President 30 Spinning Reel, spooled up with 8 to 12 lb Trilene 100% Flouro Carbon line. The spinning tackle makes for easier casting with light weight baits as well as the opportunity to skip these baits like a stone way up under cover such as docks or overhanging trees. If you are fishing extremely heavy cover and are very talented then a bait caster can be used, but your simply not going to be able to get as far up under the cover as with the spinning reel. So head over to Bass Pro Shops where you can get everything you need, because the weightless soft plastic bite is on now! I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Great Headlamp for Hunting!

Now that it is mid-October, I am sure that many of you have taken to the woods for the first deer hunting of the season in Alabama. In all of the excitement of that early hunt, make sure you don't  forget a headlamp.

The Browning Pro Hunter Maxus Headlamp has incredible power, providing exceptional results and is great for late night tracking, camping, or that early morning hike to your tree stand or blind. 

FEATURES :

  • Three brightness levels and flashing h
  • Memory switch returns to the most recent setting when you turn the light on
  • Focus control with adjustable spot-to-flood beam
  • 100,000 hour LEDs -never need replacing
  • Ultralight and ultratough construction
  • Comfortable elastic headband
  • Tilts up and down to direct the light where needed

DESCRIPTION :

  • Lamp type-LEDs b
  • Color of emitted light- White, Red, Green
  • Lumens:   High- 80, Medium-50, Red/Green- 6-8   
  • Battery type- 3 AAA Alkaline
  • Battery life: High- 6 hours, Medium- 10 hours, Red/Green- 30-45 hours
  • Distance: High- 80 meters, Medium- 60 meters, Red/Green- 15 meters

Still not convinced?  Come on in to your Leeds Bass Pro Shops Camping Department or visit  www.basspro.com and see our great selection of headlamps and flashlights. We will be glad to help you choose what is best for you.

Until next time, stay safe and GO CAMPING!!!    

 

 

0 Comments »

Junk Fishing 101

Junk Fishing 101

For each specific time of year there are generally one or two patterns that really shine. In those situations if you are not fishing one of those specific patterns or techniques than your fishing results and definitely tournament results will show it. The key seasons for dialed in patterns are the middle of spring, summer, and winter. At these times the weather although different from one another is generally stable for a period of time. But there is however the often dreaded transition time period where fish seem to be neither hear nor there. This can be extremely frustrating and can sometimes baffle even an experienced angler. While tough at times, it does offer a unique opportunity to do what many know as junk fishing. If you've ever heard the phrase," I through the kitchen sink at them", this is just that. The key times of year when junk fishing really comes into play is during the spawn to post spawn transition from spring to summer, as well as the summer to winter transition. During either transition period you better keep an open mind and don't leave any technique or lure un tested.

During these transition periods I will often have as many as 12 or more rods on the front deck of my boat all rigged with different baits. Fast moving, deep diving, shallow running, finesse fishing is a good way to look at what a junk fishing pattern is. Now it is extremely important to keep an open mind during this time period and to remember one consistent fact. While the fish are very spread out one pattern holds true, this pattern is, if you find the bait you will find the fish. During both of the major transition periods feeding is the one common thing that is on the fish's mind.

Having a wide variety of baits to choose from is important and one of the main ones that I like to start my day with is a topwater lure, that I can cover allot of water with before the sun gets up. Baits such as the Spro Dawg 100 and the Zera Spook, are great early morning and late evening choices that can put a couple big roaming fish in your boat. This bite can slow as the sun gets up but occasionally under the right conditions you can actually throw the topwater bait all day long covering as much water as possible. But that is not the case all the time so generally once the sun is up I will switch over to some sort of crankbait. My crankbait I choose depends on the size and type of baitfish I am seeing. So if you are fishing shallow cover in the spawn to post spawn season and you are seeing things such as an abundance of bluegill then I would definitely go with a bigger square bill style crankbait such as the Strike King 2.5 or a Spro Fat John. Now if you're fishing during the fall transition period then generally a smaller shad imitation lure will get you more bites such as the Spro Little John MD in a shad color. Now these techniques and many others will work great for targeting shallow roaming fish during either transition periods, but remember there are also fish that will be out in deep water at this same time and trying to catch them can be very rewarding as well.

So if I have tried the shallow water bite with limited success then I will often completely switch gears and begin to use my Lowrance electronics. I like to begin my search for deep transition fish by graphing around areas that are neither here nor there. Places such as secondary points leading in or out of spawning pockets or creeks as well as looking at deep river ledges that are close by to main river flats. Transitioning fish in the summer and the fall will use these in between places as stopping points to feed. They are generally relatively close to shallow and deep water. Fishing medium to deep diving crankbaits is sometimes a great way to trigger these fish into biting and if you find the right school of fish it is not uncommon to catch fish after fish on one specific piece of deep structure. Once you have a group of fish located that are feeding deep on baitfish you need to be ready to slow down if the fish seem to suddenly shut off, and work them thoroughly with carolina rigs or shaky head worms. Having this versatility will maximize the amount of deep transition fish you can catch on one spot. One thing to remember about the deeper transition fish is that they will often suspend, specifically in lakes that have and abundance of shad, or blue back herring in them. If you are seeing surface schooling activity or, large amounts of bait fish on your depth finder then there are a few baits that you need to have ready to catch these suspended fish. The first is an umbrella rig such as the Bass Pro Shops Flashy Times rigged with some sort of soft plastic swimbait. Other baits such as jerkbaits and spoons can also work very well on the suspended fish.

So keeping an open mind is really what junk fishing is all about. Many tournaments I have fished during transition periods I have caught fish on topwater early, shallow crankbaits mid morning, flipping cover mid afternoon, and targeting deep suspended fish later in the day. This fast pace multiple pattern type of fishing is not easy to master but if you have a wide variety of techniques in your angling arsenal then making the adjustments and switching things up throughout the day will become more and more natural to you. So get every rod you own and don't be afraid to throw the kitchen sink at them during the tricky but fun transition periods. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Fall River Fishing

 

 

Photo: Spro little john

The leaves changing colors, days getting shorter, and water temperatures getting colder, are a sure sign that the fishing is about to change in lakes, rivers, and reservoirs, across the country. While you don't have to worry about dehydrating yourself with intense heat, this more comfortable time of year can actually be a very frustrating time to really figure out and pattern the fish. During the fall of the year the fish are very scattered and roaming around looking for food. In one single day you could catch fish in 1 foot and then switch gears and go catch a fish in 30 feet. While junk fishing or throwing the kitchen sink at them can be a successful approach, there is an option that in my opinion is at times easier to figure out. Abandoning the wide open lower end of lakes and reservoirs and heading up to the river is a great option when trying to figure out what to do in the fall of the year.

The way I look at it river fish quite simply have less places they can hide. Rivers are pretty simple you have a winding channel with flats, drop-offs, rock piles, lay down logs, shoreline vegetation, and shallow creeks and backwaters. The thing I really like about a river, is that all of these types of structure are generally in close proximity to one another. Where on the lower main lake end of a body of water there are multiple levels of depth changes, channels and structure, which the fish will move back and forth on throughout the year. Sometimes these main lake fish will move half a mile or more to go from a spawning pocket to a creek channel and then on out to a main river ledge or point. In a river often 100 yards is all a fish has to move throughout the year making river fish easier to pattern during scattered out time of year like the fall.

Just like figuring out any part of the lake in the fall finding the bait fish is a very important step. To do this I use my Lowrance HDS 8 Fishfinder, as well as physically looking for schooling fish or balls of bait on the surface. Baits such as spinner baits and crank baits are extremely effective for covering stretches of river bank, in order to search for aggressive fish. If the reaction baits aren't working then baits such as Jig and Pigs, and Texas Rigged soft plastics are also great choices for pitching to shoreline cover. A key thing to always remember in a river system is that current is everything. Current positions the bait fish and the bass use the current to there advantage in order to ambush the bait. Bass will often sit just on the edge of current areas in current breaks caused by lay down trees, stumps, rock piles, and points. An accurate cast or better yet, pitch is crucial for catching river fish with the current running. An underhand pitch is my method of choice because of the accuracy and gentle presentation it can achieve.

When fishing soft plastics or jigs around lay downs and stumps I try to look for little eddies where there is a backup in the current and then present my bait as close to the cover as possible in the slack water. When using this technique bites come quick, often as soon as the bait begins to sink, so being able to either pitch left handed or use a left handed real is critical for hitting the fish quick and getting them out of the cover before they get you in trouble. When fishing points or rock piles I generally throw above, or upstream from my targeted current break and with a semi tight line I feel the bait as it washes down over the structure. With either technique your cast angle and accuracy is critical, but once you master it these river fishing techniques are extremely rewarding, and not to mention a boat load of fun! It is very important to use a strong rod such as a, TFO Tactical Series 7'3" Heavy Action, and a good high gear ratio 7.9:1 Pflueger Patriarch Reel in order to horse the fish out of the often cover littered banks and fast moving water. When fishing your moving baits such as Spro Little Johns and Stanley Spinner baits you should target the same current break areas. I often use a short roll cast to accurately place my bait where I can run it through the slack water past the cover. Another key to river fishing is boat positioning and understanding how to work your boat in the current in order to give yourself the best casting opportunities. If you have a 36 volt trolling motor and the water isn't overly swift then you can slowly move your boat against the current up stream, casting ahead at a 45, or more, degree angle. If you don't have a strong trolling motor to make headway or the current is just too strong then back drifting, holding your boat and then letting it slightly drift down for each cast can work very well.

So if you're having trouble catching fish this fall, check the current generation schedule, and abandon the open water lower end of your local lake or reservoir, and head up to the river portion of your lake for some awesome fishing action. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Bass Pro Shops Marine Department TRIPLE CROWN BONUS Promotion until October 31, 2013

Hurry on in to you Bass Pro Shops Marine Department, and take advantage of the tremendous        TRIPLE CROWN BONUS promotion that we have going on right now.  Bass Pro Shops in Leeds, Alabama is offering a new promotion on 9 different Lowrance and Garmin Fish Finders and Chart Plotters!

This is how the TRIPLE CROWN BONUS promotion works. You purchase one of the qualifying units listed below and receive 3 extra bonuses. First, you get 3 times the rewards points, and you know how valuable that is and how quickly they add up. Then you get FREE Standard Power Pros Accessory installation, and this alone can be worth a lot of money in your account! Think of how nice it would be to pull your boat into our Tracker Marine service bays and let our professional install your new electronics, and have the Standard Power Pro Accessory Installation done for free! But that is not all. The final jewel in the Crown is a Free 3 -Year Gear Guard Protection! Imagine having the peace of mind of knowing that if something happens during the first 3 years you have our Bass Pro Shops Gear Guard Protection Plan protecting your electronics, and this protection is free! It can’t get much cheaper than that! The Standard Power Pro Accessory Installation cost and Free 3-Year Gear Guard Protection plan together will save you a minimum of $200, and the savings could be much higher!

The Lowrance and Garmin Fish Finders and Chart Plotters that qualify for this promotion are these listed below.

lowrance

Lowrance Elite-5X HDI – This is an amazing unit with built in 83/200 KHZ sonar and 455/800 KHZ down imaging. This Hybrid Dual Imaging unit has a 5” high resolution color screen. A great value for $399.99!

Lowrance Elite-5 HDI – This is another amazing unit, and our biggest seller so far for this TRIPLE CROWN BONUS promotion. This HDI unit has the 83/200 KHZ Sonar and the 455/800 KHZ DownScan imaging, and it also includes GPS with a built in GPS antenna and a detailed US map. It offers the same 5” high resolution color screen as the previous unit. A tremendous value at $499.99

low

Lowrance Elite-5 HDI Gold – This unit features the 83/200 KHZ Sonar and 455/800 KHZ DownScan Imaging, and includes GPS with built in GPS antenna and a Gold level map for additional detail. It offers the same 5” high resolution color screen as the previous units. A tremendous value at $569.99

 

 

 

Lowrance Elite-5 HDI Gold – This is considered an offshore unit, and features the 50/200 KHZ Sonar and 455/800 DownScan Imaging, and includes GPS with built in GPS antenna and a Gold level map for additional detail. It offers the same 5” high resolution color screen as the previous units, and is a tremendous value at $669.99.

low2

Lowrance Elite-5 HDI - This is considered an offshore unit as well, and features the 50/200 KHZ Sonar and 455/800 DownScan Imaging, and includes GPS with built in GPS antenna and a standard map.It offers the same 5” high resolution color screen as the previous units, and is a tremendous value at $599.99.

 

 

garmin

garGarmin echoMap 70s Inland –7”WVGA Touchscreen Display with Advanced HD-ID Sonar. This unit includes a 500 Watt 77/200Transducer. It comes Preloaded with Garmin US Lakes Cartography, and is compatible with the Garmin BlueChart maps. This unit features wireless connectivity, and is a tremendous value at 1099.99

 

 

Garmin GPSMAP 547xs –This unit has a 5” VGA Display, with Advanced HD-ID Sonar with 50/200 KHZ transducer. This is preloaded with the Garmin US Offshore and US Lakes Cartography. It features wireless connectivity, and is a great value at 849.99.

garmin

 

Garmin echoMAP 50s Costal – A great value at $599.99.

 

 

 

Garmin echoMAP 50s Inland –5” VGA Display with Advanced HD-ID sonar. This Unit Includes 500W 77/200KHZ transducer. This Unit comes Preloaded with Garmin US Lake Cartography. It has wireless connectivity and is compatible with Garmin BlueChart maps. A great value at $549.99

Well, these are the 9 models that we are offering for the TRIPLE CROWN BONUS promotion, so please come on over to your local Bass Pro Shops in Leeds, Alabama, and let us help you out with the latest and greatest electronics for your boat. Of course we offer many more models than the ones that are featured on this sale, so we probably have what you want and need. Remember, this sale ends on October 31, 2013, so you still have time to make your dollars count and your dreams come true!

Look me up when you get here, but if I am busy with another customer, any one of our well trained associates in the Marine Department will be glad to help you. Thanks, and we will see you here at Bass Pro Shops just off of i-20 in Leeds, Alabama.

Thanks, Jim Mann

0 Comments »

Pet Event at Bass Pro Shops

Pets

Saturday November 2nd we are having a Bass Pro Shops pet event that will include a Vet Clinic, Groomer, pet adoption and dog breeders! It will surely be a fun filled day for you and your furry friends.

Coming to a Pet Event will be Higrove Veterinary Care.  Their staff will be here to talk to you and answer any questions or concerns you may have. Higrove will also have their pet Groomer with them to go over products and techniques that will help you keep you pets clean and soft.

We also have two dog breeders coming to our Pet Event:

  • Hickory Nut Kennels from Cullman, Al will be here with their Labrador Retrievers and English Setters. Hickory Nut is breeders of companion, hunting and service dogs.
  • Smoke Ridge Kennel from Warrior, Al will be here with their Irish Setters. They offer field-bred, hunting Irish Setters.

Adding to this event, we are having a Pet costume contest! Dress up your pets in costume for a chance to win one of our 1st, 2nd or 3rd place prizes! Prizes will be announced the day of the event.

We at Bass Pro Shops hope to see you and your pets on Saturday November 2nd. It will be a great day for you and your best friends and remember, Pets are always welcome here at Bass Pro Shops!

 

Thank you,

Grayson

 

1 Comments »

The Jerkbait, A Year Around Fish Catcher?

When trying to imitate a wounded shad their are very few presentations better than jerkbait fishing. Typically the jerkbait is thought of as a winter and early spring time bait, and while it does shine in that specific time period the jerkbait can cover a far wider range of seasons. Growing up in the Northwest jerkbait fishing was very limited and not as effective based on the fact that there are no shad. In much of the country however shad are the primary forage for bass throughout the year. While certain seasons are more effective that others this abundance of shad in many of our lakes and reservoirs makes the jerkbait a very effective technique no matter what the water temperature. While the technique doesn't change the style of jerkbait I prefer, and the way I work my bait does from season to season.

The peak season for jerkbait fishing in most anglers minds is late winter on through to early spring. With cold water temperatures a large amount of the shad population will die off. When this happens you will visibly notice shad slowly twitching around just below the surface. This is a dead giveaway that you need to have a jerkbait in your hand. There are two jerkbaits I will have tied on in this cold water situation, a Spro McStick, as well as a Smithwick Rogue. While the McStick suspends the original Smithwick will actually float slowly, rising when you pause it. The suspending quality of the McStick is what makes me choose it about 90% of the time. In cold water I will fish this bait extremely slow, giving the bait quick sharp twitches and then letting the bait sit for a long pause. During this pause is when a suspending bait works it's magic. Remember bass are cold blooded so when the water is cold their metabolism is slow making them weary about expending to much energy. The suspended bait offers an opportunity that is difficult for a cold hungry bass to resist, they can slowly move up towards the bait using very little energy and lightly attack the bait. In extreme cold conditions a pause of 30 seconds or longer is sometimes necessary. Keep an open mind and very your retrieve to figure out what they are keying in on from day to day. Also don't be afraid to alternate to the slow floating rogue, this slow float will sometimes trigger more aggressive fish into biting.

As the water warms and the annual spawn begins to happen the jerkbait bite, while you can still catch some fish on it, tends to slow down. It's the post spawn feeding period when I pick my jerkbait back up and start to hammer down on them again. What I look for is schools of bass that are aggressively feeding up on shad, in order to replenish their weakened bodies after a long spawn. While topwater baits such as Super Spooks and Bass Pro Shops XPS Professional Series Walkers work great for this situation, a jerkbait can also be very effective. I normally find my schools of bass near a spawning pocket or flat on some sort of secondary point or break line. The bass will stop at these points throughout the lake to feed up before heading out to the main channel. Often you will find these late spring fish suspended as well. I have had some great success working a deeper diving Spro McRip through fish suspended at around the ten foot depth range. For this style of jerkbait fishing I like to work my bait with a fast aggressive retrieve with short pauses throughout the cast. To get the bait to reach deeper suspended fish I will work it on a spinning rod with 8lb test Trilene 100% Fluorocarbon. This technique will continue to catch fish all throughout the summer so always keep ready to go if you see suspended fish on your depth finder.

As the summer ends and the water starts to cool my jerkbait is always on the front deck of my Nitro Z-8 boat. During the fall months is when the shad make their annual movement into shallow pockets and flats in the back of creeks. These feeding fish will hammer a suspending jerkbait worked around the cover they are holding on. Seawalls, points, flats, and docks, are all great key shallow water structures to focus on. A good thing about fall fishing is when you find one fish, it's normally not the only one in the area, so it is possible to hit a stretch where you catch multiple all very close to each other. As well as the fact that generally these fall fish are easy to pattern and find success doing the same thing in similar areas all up and down the lake or reservoir. Just look for the key ingredients, shallow water pockets and flats, an abundance of cover, an abundance of shad and then hold on tight, because when you put those factors together the predatory bass are almost guaranteed to be close by. I will generally rely on my McStick 110 just like in the late winter to early spring time period.

In my opinion for those of you blessed enough to live on a body of water that has a large shad population, some sort of jerkbait should always be readily available. The jerkbait can be a winning pattern in certain times of the year, especially in the late winter to early spring, but no matter what the season it's a bait that should be in your arsenal and will put more fish in your boat. For more blogs about how to add more tricks to your repertoire, check out my blog, Expand Your Fishing Arsenal. And if you ever have any questions you can go to my website, www.joeyfishing.com, and write me an email, I'd love to help in any way possible. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Halloween Event at BPS

This weekend, join us as we kick off our 13 days of Halloween! Below is a schedule of events:

Saturday October 19 - Sunday October 20

  • Free pictures 12pm - 5pm
  • Free Crafts 1pm - 5pm
  • Saturday ONLY - Costume Parade 4pm - 5pm
  • Sunday ONLY - Scavenger Hunt 2pm - 3pm

Monday - Friday October 21-25

  • Free Pictures 5pm - 8pm
  • Free Crafts 6pm - 7pm
  • Free Trick-or-Treating 6pm - 7pm

Saturday October 26- Sunday October 27

  • Free pictures 12pm - 5 pm
  • Free crafts 1pm-5pm
  • Saturday ONLY Costume parade 4pm - 5pm
  • Sunday ONLY Scavenger Hunt 2pm - 3pm

Monday October 28-Thursday October 31

  • Free Pictures 5pm - 8pm
  • Free Crafts 6pm - 7pm
  • Free Trick-or-Treating 6pm - 7pm

 

halloween

 

0 Comments »

Match The Forage Catch The Bass

If you watch the trends of fishing lure production you will see certain hot colors trending from season to season. Understanding when to choose those colors is the key. The ability to select proper colors throughout the season depends on what type of forage you are trying to imitate. It's simple, if you can match what the fish want then you will catch more fish. When talking about bass, while sometimes they will eat anything that comes near them, there are a few standby forage options that they will target throughout the year. These forage options are shad and bluegill, and this is what I will try and imitate the majority of the time.

Shad are a perfect food for a bass, they have no spikes, they are soft and tender, and they group up in big schools known as shad balls. So they are easy to eat, easy to digest, and the fact that they group up in schools makes them easy to target. Shad are generally silver or transparent color with a hint of blue or green on their back. Most bass across the country will eat shad all year long to some extent, but there are key time periods when shad become number one on the menu. Throughout the late spring and early summer the shad will periodically spawn, at this time they move extremely shallow in large numbers and the bass absolutely gorge themselves on this easy to find meal. Throughout the summer and winter months the majority of the shad will suspend and while bass still eat them they are harder to target in this open water scenario. When fall hits the shad again move shallow into pockets and flats in the backs of creeks and this again is a time when shad colored baits will work best. When the shad are in there suspended mode there is no better way to catch them then on an Umbrella Rig such as the Bass Pro Shops Deadly 5 Flashy Times. The swim baits I choose are always in a shad color, the Bass Pro Shops Sassy Sally and the Boss Shads are 2 of my favorite options, again in shad colors. Now during the shad spawn I like to use fast moving shad imitations such as Stanley swim jigs, Stanley spinner baits, chatter baits, BPS swim baits. In the fall of the year shallow running crank baits such as the Spro Little John in either a Nasty Shad or a Spooky Nasty Shad are always on the front deck of my boat. Always keep track of what the shad are doing based on the time of year and select one of the baits I talked about in a shad imitation color and you will have some great days on the water fooling the bass.

Another major food source throughout the year is bluegill. On any given lake there is a population of bass that will live shallow basically all year long never moving out into the deep water. The reason these residential shallow fish are able to do this is because bluegill spend the majority of the year in shallow water. There is one really key time when almost everything I target is bluegill related, that is from early to mid summer, when the bluegill are spawning. I don't know what it is about them but for some reason the big fish in that time period seem to want to eat bluegill. For a shallow water angler this is the forage that they are generally trying to imitate not just in the summer but throughout the year, and it can be done in a variety of different ways with some certain colors that really shine. One of the very best presentations to imitate a bluegill is by flipping soft plastics to shallow water cover such as docks, grass, and fallen trees. When I'm flipping shallow cover with soft plastics I always use Bass Pro Shops Tournament Series baits. One of my favorites is the Bass Pro Shops River Bug. They are offered in a variety of different colors that imitate a bluegill such as watermelon bluegill, okeechobee craw, or their new color and one of my personal favorites, sprayed grass. Another bluegill imitator is the Bass Pro Shops Magnum Flipping Tube. My color choice for the tube bait is generally a smoke purple blue flake, or a melon seed/blue flake. With either the tube or the river bug I rig them on a 4/0 Gamakatsu Flipping Hook with a pegged 1/4-1/2 ounce BPS Tungsten Flipping weight. One other little tip is dipping the tail of your bait in Chartreuse to imitate the little chartreuse on the tip of the bluegills tail, I believe at certain times this will get you a few extra bites. If soft plastics aren't your thing then a jig with a soft plastic trailer will also work very well. Other moving baits such as square bill crank baits, swim baits, and swim jigs in bluegill colors, can be very effective when reaction baits are shining.

Always remember bass will eat almost anything that looks like an opportunity to get a meal and if bass got as big as sharks we would all be in trouble. By selecting colors that imitate shad and bluegill you can rest assured that you are always offering something that the bass are used to seeing as food on a daily bases in their natural environment, and this will help you put more fish in your boat. For more articles you can like my JoeyFishing page on Facebook or check out my website at www.joeyfishing.com. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Fall Camping

Fall is an excellent season for camping: lower temperatures and fewer bugs make hikes more pleasurable, there are more opportunities for wildlife sightings, the leaves are changing colors, and many campgrounds lower their fees after Labor Day.

Before you begin that fall camping adventure, there are a few things you should consider:l

 

  • Check the weather before you go.  Depending on where you go, be prepared for a chance of snow, rain, or severe weather.
  • Wear layers- Daytime temperatures may still be warm, but evenings are usually cooler, so you may want to pack thermal underwear, hats, gloves, extra shoes, and a winter jacket.
  • Bring cold weather sleeping gear for lower temperatures than you expect.  You should also bring a mattress pad or foam for an extra layer between you and the cold ground.
  • Invest in a good tent.  Before your trip, set up your tent in your backyard to make sure it is functioning properly- test all zippers, and make sure it has a full rainfly.
  • Arrive early- days are shorter in the fall, so allow yourself plenty of time to set up camp before dark.
  • Bring insect repellent for those lingering bugs.
  • Bring easy to cook foods that don't require a lot of preparation or refrigeration: remember to clean up after eating.

There are also many safety issues that you should consider for fall camping:

b

  • Be aware of wildlife- animals are always a concern, but they can become even more dangerous in the fall. As their food supply dwindles,they become more determined in their foraging. NEVER feed the wildlife-they continue to come back for more and could become very aggressive when you stop feeding them. It is also dangerous for the animals, because they may be eating something that is not in their diet and could become ill.
  • Seal up any food you may have in airtight containers, or in your car, if possible, to keep from attracting wildlife. 
  • Prepare for rain and snow-bring water tight containers and a tarp in case of rain.
  • Pack extra plastic garbage bags for lining backpacks or protecting other items from water damage.
  • If you use a small propane heater, be sure it has a safety shut-off, and is labeled for indoor use.
  • Be ready  for emergency retreat: bring extra money and be prepared to use it to eat out or stay in town if necessary.
  • If the weather is still warm, bees are still active. Watch for hives and nests, and bring  sting relief ointment, just in case.

As with all camping trips, a little careful planning and preparation can make a fall camping trip one you will remember for years to come.  Before you travel, come visit your local Leeds Bass Pro Shops, or visit  www.basspro.com  and see our great selection of camping gear.

t

Until next time, stay safe and GO CAMPING!!!

 

0 Comments »

API Outdoors Treestands

Every successful hunt starts with the hunter scouting before the season. Looking for signs, activity and trees to hang stands. But what if you do not have a tree stand? API Outdoors has you covered. From Climbing tree stands to tripods, API has a stand for you and your hunt.

 

 API Grand SlamAPI Grand Slam Extreme climbing tree stand is a great stand for the hunter that moves hunting locations throughout the season.

  • Fits trees 9"-20" in diameter
  • Folding footrest
  • 20"x27" top climbing section
  • 20"x28" platform
  • padded climbing bar, armrest and adjustable seat
  • Weight capacity: 300lbs
  • Tree stand weight: 27lbs

 

 

 

 

 

 

API Baby Grand DeluxeAPI Deluxe Baby Grand Tree Stand is a great, comfortable tree stand to hang on a tree to keep it there all season long. Perfect for your "Honey Hole".

  • SureGrip platform for added traction
  • 24"x30" Platform
  • Attaches to tree quickly and quietly
  • Folds flat for easy storage
  • Padded backrest and armrest
  • 19"x12"x2" padded seat
  • Folding footrest
  • Maximum weight capacity: 300lbs
  • Tree stand weight: 21lbs

Don't forget that with every lock-on tree stand you need a way to get up to your seat! API also offers climbing stick to easily access your tree stand. Check out their sticks right here:

API Stackin' Sticks

 

 

 

 

 

Ultra Steel 2 person  The API Ultra Steel Two Person 18' Ladder Stand gives you the same season long hunting stand with the added room for another hunter. Perfect for taking that new young hunter along.

  • Large 40"x33" platform
  • 37"x14"x2" cushioned seat
  • Flip up seat
  • Padded shooting rail
  • Height: 15' to platform, 16.5' to seat, 18' to shooting rail
  • Maximum capacity: 500lbs
  • Weight: 86lbs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

API Grand Stand SkypodThe API Grandstand Skypod 16' Tripod Stand is the perfect stand for hunting over cut-overs or large green fields.

  • 16' tall to shooting rail
  • Large 42"x42" deep platform
  • 20"x15"x2" seat cushion
  • Full 360* seat rotation
  • Padded armrest and backrest
  • Height: 13' to platform, 14.5' to seat, 16' to shooting rail
  • Maximum weight capacity: 300lbs
  • Stand weight: 130lbs

 

 

 

 

All API Outdoors stands meet the TMA (Treestand Manufactures Association) standards by an independent testing agency and come with a TMA - certified full-body safety harness with climbing belt, suspension relief strap and a instructional DVD.

Stop by Bass Pro Shops and ask a Hunting associate to take a look at our full line of API Outdoors products.

Thanks,

Grayson

0 Comments »

Easy to make Fall Centerpiece

Here’s an easy Fall Centerpiece for your table.  

 

Items needed:

  • Pumpkin(s)
  • Regular straws
  • Stick candy
  • Drill

 

  1. Select a pumpkin or pumpkins that fit(s) your tablescape.
  2. Select a drill bit that is close to the diameter of your straws. I used a 7/32 drill bit for my project.
  3. Begin by drilling a hole in the center behind the pumpkin stem.
  4. Cut several straws in thirds so you can insert them into the drilled holes (the straws keep your candy sticks from getting pumpkin pulp on them.
  5. Insert the first straw in your drilled hole and place the first candy stick in it to determine spacing you will need .
  6. Drill the next hole offset from your first hole , placing a straw and a candy stick in it as well.
  7. Repeat this process until the pumpkin is full of your holiday treats.

 

 

 

 

Leeds Pumpkin Centerpiece 1

 

0 Comments »

Outdoor Fireplaces & Firepits

Not ready to give up those nights in the great outdoors, even though there is a chill in the air?  You may want to consider purchasing an outdoor fire place or fire pit.  Warm and inviting, a fireplace or fire pit makes a backyard or patio a focal point. The smokey smell and crackling sounds are relaxing, and the warmth of the flames makes it possible to extend your outdoor entertaining well into the fall months.

Here at Bass Pro Shops, we carry a variety of outdoor  fireplaces and pits, including the Landmann Haywood Fireplace with Wildlife Cutouts. This fireplace is lightweight and easy to transport to any outdoor gathering.   

                                                          

Features:

  • Wildlife cutouts
  • Sturdy                                                                                                                                                        h
  • Tall spark screen to keep embers contained
  • Large hinged door on spark screen for easy access to fire
  • Built in wood grate
  • Four sturdy legs for stability
  • Includes poker
  • $89.99

 

You can also find the Landmann Patio Lights Deer and Tracks Fire Pit. Featuring an sturdy cold-rolled steel construction and heat resistant paint finish, this durable outdoor fire pit will last for years to come.The full diameter one inch thick safety ring can be used as a footrest or convenient handle for easy transport. The full size enamel cooking grate transforms your fire pit into a portable grill. Weighing less than 35 pounds, the lightweight design makes it easy to take to the beach, lake, campsite or cabin. 

  

Features:d

  • Large pivoting door 
  • Decorative cutouts that cast wildlife shadows while you enjoy the warmth of the fire
  • Spark screen with handle and poker included
  • Measures 29.5x23.5-inches
  • $139.99

 

 

How about a fireball that floats in mid-air? Check out this unique Ball of Fire Outdoor Fireplace. This fireplace offers a 360-degree view of the fire, providing plenty of warmth on decks, patios, or just in your backyard.

b

Features:

  • Large pivoting door with and extra large handle for easy access
  • All-steel construction
  • Measures 30.25 by 32.75 by 34.75 inches
  • $219.99

Come on by your local Leeds Bass Pro Shops or visit  us at   www.basspro.com and don't miss out on those great fall nights outdoors. 

Until next time, stay safe and GO CAMPING!!!

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Catch More Fall Bass

 

To consistently catch bass no matter what the season you must have an understanding of what type of baitfish the bass are feeding on and what the water temperature does to that specific species behaviors. This changes as the weather changes and one important rule to remember is, if you find the bait you will find the bass. In the fall of the year the baitfish of choice for the majority of bass around the country is the abundant populations of shad. The reason for that is simple, every fall the majority of the shad make there annual movement into shallow water creeks and pockets. The bass will be close behind and will really key in on this opportunity to corner the bait in shallow water situations. When looking for shad I like to check the backs of major creeks as well as pockets, I like to idle into the area and visibly look for balls of shad disturbing the waters surface which in calm conditions are easy to see. Now if the wind is blowing and the water is choppy then this visual searching is not possible, and in that case a good Lawrance HDS 8 Graph can allow you to find the bait no matter what the conditions.

Once you've found the shad there are a few baits that you need to have in your boat when targeting fall shad eating bass. The first and probably one of the best fish catching baits ever invented is the spinnerbait. The type of spinnerbait I like to use varies from season to season. In the fall when I'm trying to imitate the shad I like to use a small to medium size bait in some sort of natural white or shad looking color. Which blades you choose is also very important, and to imitate the shad I always use silver blades. Which size blades depend on what size of shad I see while fishing. I always like to pay attention to the size of the bait I see while fishing. If the majority of the shad are small then I use small blades, if I see large shad then I will use large blades. If you notice that the shad are small then a 1/8oz Stanley Wedge Plus in a firecracker or white color is a great choice. If the shad are big then use a larger 3/8 or 1/2 ounce bait. One very important thing to always remember when deciding to use a spinnerbait is whether or not the wind is blowing. When the wind is blowing a spinnerbait is hard to beat. Look for pockets with shad and fish the windiest corners of the pocket and have a blast catching some very aggressive bass.

Another rig that possibly is even more effective then the spinnerbait is the Umbrella Rig. The original model of this style of rig is called the Alabama Rig made by Manns bait company. The rig hit the market two years ago and has quickly become one of the very most effective fish catchers on the market today. This past year the Yumbrella Rig as well as my favorite the Bass Pro Shops Deadly 5 Flashy Times. I like to fish my rig with 5 of the Bass Pro Shops Boss Shads. These swimbaits come pre rigged with the jighead and hook built into the plastic, and are a very effective affordable way to set up your rig. All you have to do is figure out which depth the bass are feeding at and reel you rig through the school. These rigs draw explosive strikes with the bass crashing through the ball of shad. Don't be surprised to catch multiple fish on a single cast when using the deadly 5. I have personally caught three spotted bass on one cast as well as catching a 15lb striper a 1 1/2lb spot, and a 1 1/2lb largemouth all on one cast. I promise you this is a fun way to fish.

Some other great shad imitators are crankbaits, jerkbaits, topwater baits, and these all will catch fish in the fall of the year. The size and style of bait I use again relates to the size of the baitfish. One of my favorite fall crankbaits is the Spro Little John MD. This is a small bait that will still dive to depths around 8 feet which is perfect for catching bass that are targeting shad in shallow water. I generally will go with a Spro McStick, and for my topwater I like a Spro Dawg that with a twitch of the wrist will effortlessly walk across the surface of the water. All the baits I have talked about are reaction baits. They are designed to be moved fast and induce a quick reaction strike which is very effective on aggressive bass. Always remember that these reaction baits don't always work and you need to keep and open mind and understand when to switch it up to a slower moving technique. My hope is that this information will put more fish in your boat. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

0 Comments »

Food Dehydrators

Now that the fall harvest is here and deer season is just around the corner, it is time to start thinking about preserving all of this bounty!!!  Why not consider purchasing a food dehydrator?

Food drying is a way to preserve fruit, vegetables, and meat that has been practiced for thousands of years.  Food dehydrators use a source of heat and air flow  to reduce the water content of foods.  This helps to keep bacteria from growing and spoiling the food, extending the shelf life.

Here at Bass Pro Shops, we have a great selection of food dehydrators to help fill your needs, including several RedHead Dehydrators.

RedHead 6 Tray Dehydrator:

This dehydrator has a rectangular design with no center hub like traditional round dehydrators, allowing you to dry long uniform strips of jerky.  It is ideal for drying meats, fruits, herbs, and flowers.

Features:                                                                

  • Removable, stackable trays for dehydrating large or small batches
  • Forced air circulation for the most efficient drying 6
  • Vented lid for dehyration control
  • Digital time and temperature readout
  • 550 Watts
  • $69.99

 

RedHead 10 Tray Dehydrator:

This dehydrator has an advanced dehydration control system that is ideal for drying jerky, meats, snack sticks, fruits, and vegetables.

Features:

  • High capacity                                                                                                                                 
  • Rear mounted fan for forced circulation 10
  • LED digital timer-up to 40 hours
  • 10 removable trays
  • Digital temperature  controller (95-155° F)
  • Comes with two bonus mesh sheets
  • 1,700 square inches of drying area
  • 800 Watts
  • $219.99

 

RedHead Stainless Steel 10 Tray Dehydrator:

Dry large quantities of food quickly and easily with this large capacity stainless steel dehydrator. With 10 trays included, you have 2,300 square inches of drying area.

Features:

  • Forced air circulation-no tray rotation required
  • Digital timer- up to 15 hours                                                                                                                                    ss
  • 95-155°  F.  temperature control
  • 10 removable trays
  • Overheat protection
  • Comes with bonus 14.25"x16" cut to fit mesh screen
  • 1000 Watts
  • $299.99

 

`Come on by your local Bass Pro Shops, or visit  www.basspro.com to see our great selection of dehydrators and accessories. We'll see you there!

Until next time, stay safe and GO CAMPING!!

 

0 Comments »

Cold Smoking

Many of you spend countless hours smoking ribs, chicken, sausages, and Boston Butts. Have you ever considered purchasing a cold smoker?

s

Cold smoking doesn't cook the food-it is the process of adding a smoke flavor at low temperatures (usually from 40-100 degrees F, but no more than 120 degrees F). Cooler temperatures allow the meat to retain more moisture, have a better smoked appearance and remain protected against bacteria.

Since cold smoking doesn't substantially cure or cook the food, most foods are usually brined or salted before they are cold smoked.  This ensures that bacteria  doesn't grow on the food during the process. These foods, such as bacon, should be fully cooked before they are eaten. It is not always necessary to brine or cure- some foods can be cold smoked to enhance the flavor before grilling-examples would be chicken, pork chops or steaks.

Meats are not the only foods that can be cold smoked-cheeses are a very popular choice, including cheddar, swiss, mozzarella, and provolone.  Other popular choices include nuts, chipotles, plums, and many other fruits and vegetables.

c

At Bass Pro Shops you can find the Masterbuilt Cold Smoker Kit. This kit:

  • Fits all Masterbuilt Digital Electric Smokers
  • Attaches to the wood chip loading port of the smoker
  • Provides continuous smoke for up to 6 hours at temperatures as low as 100-120 degrees F.
  • Uses regular wood chips
  • $59.99

So, on your next shopping excursion, stop by your Leeds Bass Pro Shop, or visit  www.basspro.com , and see our great selection of smokers and accessories.

Until next time, stay safe and GO CAMPING!!!! c

0 Comments »

Keys To Locating Productive Brush Piles

Across the country fish use many different types of structure or cover to live and feed in. Weather it's rocks, docks, lay down logs, or brush piles, as the year goes on and the seasons change you will notice certain ones being more productive then others. And trust no matter how random it can sometimes seem, there is a rhyme and a reason to why they are using cover in a specific area or more importantly depth range. It is based on factors such as time of year, weather conditions, water color, water temperature, and last but not least the amount of baitfish in the area. Most species of fish are predators and if there is no food there then obviously the fish will go elsewhere if they have the option. In this article I really want to focus on brush piles. Whether they are man made or natural from trees and debris falling in the water the simple fact is that most times of the year there are fish holding on some sort of brush.

Brush piles are a perfect place for baitfish such as bluegill, and shad to live around and hide in. With the presence of the bait fish the predators such as bass are going to be close by. Now throughout the year like I said some brush piles will be more productive then others. As the water temperature changes the fish move, and this is related to the thermocline level. This is the level where the water temperature is the most comfortable to the fish and where the water is the most oxygen rich. The hotter the water temperature the deeper the thermocline will be. In lakes that have clear water the thermocline will also be deeper so don't be surprised to find fish in extremely deep water in the summer on a clear lake or reservoir. To find the this productive healthy water depth having good quality electronics such as the Lowrance HDS Gen2 Fishfinder is important. Just idle around your local lake or reservoir and pay attention to what depth you see the majority of the baitfish. Next check suspecting areas where brush piles might be placed that are close to that same depth range and there is a good chance that baitfish and bass will be near by.

So now that you have the proper depth figured out the next step is actually physically locating the brush. People will sink man made brush piles in a variety of different places such as points, creek channels, river channels, or probably the most common, docks. In my opinion the easiest to find brush piles are near docks. They are easy to find because of a few keys that are normally a dead giveaway that a fisherman lives there and has possibly sunk brush around his dock. Two things I really like to look for are lights, and rod holders. These are definitely things that should be paid attention too when looking for brush. The next step to this simple method of finding brush is physically stopping and casting a weighted soft plastic and feeling around the bottom with the bait. This is a no electronics fool proof way to find brush. Now if you have side imaging technology then this process is much easier. All you have to do is idle by the front of a row of docks and your graph will show you which docks have brush around them within 200 ft of either side of your boat. In order to find brush on the points and dropoffs having electronics is critical and will really make your search easier and more effective.

Once I have brush located no matter where it is there are a couple really important things I like to do. The first is marking the piles physically before I start to fish them which is very important for brush that is way out on points or sometimes in the middle of the river on a ledge. To do this I use a Bass Pro Shops Marker Buoy. There are a couple ways to do it, you can drop the buoy right next to the brush or one of my favorite methods dropping it where you want the boat to be positioned, and then using a reference point on the shore to line up and cast at. Normally when I'm fishing brush for bass I will use slow moving baits such as Jigs, Carolina Rigs, Texas Rigs, and Shakey Heads. Fishing these slow on the bottom I will crawl and work my bait through the cover letting it lift and then fall in the limbs. I always try and do this on a semi tight line, if you have to much slack in your line the fish will often pull you deep into the brush which makes them almost impossible to get out. So be ready to set the hook quick and get the fish moving up and out towards the boat. I like to use pretty heavy tackle when fishing my jigs, texas rigs, and carolina rigs for that reason exactly. I like to use Trilene 100% Fluorocarbon line from 17lb to 25lb test, on a heavy action rod and a high speed reel. The only exception is when I'm using a shakey head set up and in that case I will use either 8lb flouro, or a 20lb braid mainline with a fluorocarbon leader. At certain times of the year baits such as Spro Little John DD crankbaits and heavy 1oz spinnerbaits can be very effective when bumped into the brush. I would suggest going to Bass Pro Shops and picking up a weighted lure retriever or retrieving pole for getting your baits free from deep brush.

So go out on your local body of water and look for the key ingredients. First find the depth the baitfish are using whether it is 2 feet or 30 feet, next locate and mark the brush, and finally present your lure properly to the waiting fish. Always be patient and if you are getting frustrated and having limited success just keep searching because you never know when you might run into the right brush pile that is holding the mother load of big fish. I'll see you on the water!!!

Joey Nania

 

 

 

 

 

0 Comments »

Gearing Up For Archery Season

Deer Target

Deer season is getting close and that means everyone is getting their bows out to start practicing. Most hunters take this opportunity to get the bow out of the closet, knock the rust off it and start slinging arrows. No one wants to get out in the woods unprepared. This warm up time will make sure that your bow is still shooting like it was last year.

But before you shoot you should always check your bow out to make sure it still looks safe to shoot. Check the limbs to be sure they are not cracking, check the string to make sure it is not fraying, check your release D-loop to be sure it is not fraying and check all of your accessories. Also be sure to look over each of your arrows very carefully. Every component of your bow can be very dangerous if it is not in perfect shape.

If you want to have your bow worked on you can bring it by our Archery department and one of our associates will help you out. They will look over the bow, fix anything that is wrong and give you some tips and pointers. Everyone in the archery department is highly qualified and very knowledgeable.

 

 

Red Head Blackout Bow Package

 Everything that I have talked about so far is irrelevant if you do not have a bow. Pictured here on the left is our Redhead Blackout bow package. It is the top of the line bow of our RedHead series and it is a serious shooter and for a price of $599.99 you get all the performance of a $800+ bow.

Here are the specs on the RedHead Blackout bow package:

  • Throttle Cam Tech
  • Rotating draw length modules
  • Adjust draw length between 26.5'' and 30.5''
  • Limb-mounted bearing assembly
  • Highest-tolerance fully machined riser
  • IBO Speed: 333+ fps
  • 80% let-off Single Cam
  • 3-pin sight
  • Hostage™ arrow rest
  • One-piece 5-arrow quiver
  • 5" stabilizer
  • Installed string suppressor
  • Installed peep sight and sling

 This package bow would be a great contribution to the rest of your hunting gear. Come by the Archery department here at Bass Pro and Audie, Ben, Kraig, David or Rick will get you fixed up with a bow and let you test fire all the bows that you like.

Bow season starts October 15th so be sure to start getting ready!

 

Happy shooting,

Grayson

0 Comments »