BassWestUSA - July/August, 2009, Page 57

Are You Fishing The Ultimate?

times, but if I fish a good point, and there’s a brush pile I visibility see or mark, of course I’m gonna log it with a waypoint. “Docks, on the other hand, are a no brainer,” he said. “They come in all shapes and sizes, provide excellent shade and ambush points, and hold trophy fish. You’ve just got to be an excellent dock fisherman out here, no doubt about it. “As far as grass goes, big fish will use isolated grass mats/beds and especially grass around deep water access. Hydrilla is excellent grass to fish with swimbaits, Hawk’s if you can find it. Secret “These factors make the south a lot different than the west in where to search for trophy bass. But a big bass is a big bass no Money Maker matter where you live and the angler intent on catching that per- sonal best must learn their water and figure out which dock, grass- bed or piece of wood is the one that has ev- erything a trophy fish desires.” Along with these differences there are a Gilley few similarities to the west that Peters uses in his quest. “Most anglers as- sociate the south with dirty, shallow waters filled with lily pads and other vegetation,” he noted. “What’s surprising is the number of large, clear reservoirs throughout the region that resemble the west- ern waters I grew up fishing. In these cases, the angler can fish them much like the reservoirs out west by targeting main-lake points, creeks, ledges and isolated structure.”

It all comes down to re- search, water clarity, big baits, the right cover and/or structure and boat position. You follow those five rules anywhere and commit your- self to focus on catching tro- phy fish only and you’ll find the weight in your livewell increasing dramatically

for Different Situations

Different Baits

“The deal is there aren’t really any known anglers out here that target big fish like there are out West,” Peters said. “You might say Doug Hannon, but other than him, there isn’t a group like Mike Long, John Kerr, Rob Belloni or Nico Raffo, to name only a few. What you do have, and I mean no disrespect by saying this, are lots of diehard and highly talented, tournament-savvy anglers. I know this from experi- ence since I’m fishing against these guys on the FLW Series. - they really amaze me. “Since moving back here, I’ve developed a group of about 7 friends who all focus on big fish,” he said. “We seem to be the only ones targeting trophy bass in the west-coast fashion and we’ve been on them pretty good. That’s why I started southernswimbait.com; to record and log what we feel is trailblazing some of these lakes while showing the anglers back here that swimbaits work in the east as well as the west. The site is dedicated to sharing the knowledge and information on catch- ing trophy bass. It’s taken 5 years to educate the anglers but it’s finally catching on. “On one hand, you want to be low profile yet you recognize that you want to share your experiences,” he added. “So far, we’re having a lot of fun with it and are pretty much addicted to it all. There’s plenty of bigfish water in the south and we haven’t even scratched the surface – I’m serious. “On a side note, I absolutely believe a world-record bass could be caught in the south. There are some high teen fish that get caught here, and we’ve seen and caught low teens – you just can’t rule it out. And as the bigbaits gain in popularity here and more Westerners move back here to fish, the book will be re-evaluated on trophy fishing in the South vs. West.”

Changing paradigmS

July/August 2009

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