“Tips From the Top 2014” is a compilation of quotes and tidbits about fishing. The tips you are about to read have come from many sources: television, radio, print, web and word of mouth. They were chosen because they transcend fishing methods and species. This year’s compilation are not all from the year 2014 but were discovered during this year. These tips are not necessarily about bass fishing or even from the fishing industry, but they possess the ability to teach all of us how to be better anglers.
"The defining factor is not resources, it is resourcefulness". - Tony Robbins / TED Talk - The Forces That Motivate Us
"When confronted with no tide or slack water conditions fish the wind" – Captain C A Richardson / Flats Class TV (photo yeticoolers.com)
"You don't want just a map marked with spots, you want the conditions that go with those marked spots" - Jim Saric / The Musky Hunter TV (photo outdoorhub.com)
"When fishing large bodies of water and faced with postfrontal weather conditions fish the adjoining rivers. The river will be more postfrontal friendly" - Spencer Berman /Musky Guide & The Musky Hunter TV Guest (photo spencersanglingadv.com)
Hank Cherry's 5 Simple Rules of Bass Fishing - 1) Fish Close, stay close to the boat ramp spend more time fishing and less time running around the lake. 2) Fish Smart Fish Fast, search suitable structure that matches seasonal patterns, work through those areas quickly until you connect with the fish. 3) Look for the Overlooked, subtle ambush spots located on 'nothing banks' can hold fish that don't receive fishing pressure. 4) Visit the Docks, near access areas, if you locate a fish or two on one dock then other docks will hold fish too. Hit the hard to reach areas that most anglers won't, it doesn't take much water to hold a big fish. Docks holding fish are worth repeat visits. 5) Use a Few Good Lures, keep lure selection simple. When you limit your techniques to your comfort zone and less time running around you'll have more time for fishing and catching fish. There is always a good population of bass near public accesses, and during tournaments those fish often are ignored. - Hank Cherry B.A.S.S. Elite Series Pro / BASS Times (photo bassmaster.com)
People still get hung up on color way too much. Color doesn't matter. - Danny Wade - Renowned San Diego Saltwater Surface Jig Angler / Danny Wade’s Ugly Beauty from The Bight a Journal for the Saltwater Angler (photo facebook.com)
When targeting open water muskies don't just look for balls of baitfish or muskies in open water. Use sonar information to calculate percentages and the likelihood of getting a strike, as well as fish attitudes and the level of aggression. By using sonar graphs to determine how close muskies are positioned to their food, as well as how tightly the baitfish are balled up, you can determine these factors. - Mark Lijewski Expert Deep Water Wisconsin Musky Angler / Musky Hunter Magazine article Learn From the Best by Spencer Berman (photo manglefly.com)
How much do you need to know about insects to go trout fishing? Believe it or not you can fish your entire life happily and successfully without knowing a bit of entomology, it’s really pretty straight forward. You see fish rising on the surface of the water, you capture a sample of the insect, you pull it out of the water you place it on the lid of your fly box and you match it to what you have in your fly box. Hopefully you have something fairly close. Size is most important, shape is second most important, if you can match color that’s good but don’t sweat the color. – Tom Rosenbaur / Orvis Fly Fisherman and host of WFN’s Pro Talk (photo orvis.com)
"The more I learn the less I know" - Captain Tommy Locke Eastern Gulf of Mexico Saltwater Fly & Light Tackle Inshore Angler / Flats Class TV (photo recreationspecialist.org)
Inshore Tarpon Fishing - When casting a live baitfish to tarpon schools your approach and cast must be extremely stealthy. Quiet on the boat and a well-positioned cast that’s not too close to the tarpon is critical. The bait fish can't land in the water and freak out right away because it's immediately next to predators. It has to be the tarpon's idea to move in onto your baitfish. – Captain C A Richardson / Flats Class TV (photo yeticoolers.com)
Trolling may be considered by some to be a 'lazy' way to fish and it can be. You could set some rods out, eat a sandwich and have something to drink if you like but if you are trolling right you'll be working just as hard if not harder than when you are casting. Electronics, trolling speed, watching the vibration of the rod tip, lure selection, line length, boat position, current, depth control … there is so much you have to stay tuned into if you are going to maximize your trolling efforts - Pete Maina / Next Bite TV Show (photo petemaina.com)
Snook are primarily nocturnal feeders. The key to catching them during daylight hours is to be at their 'feeding station' when the tide is pushing the maximum current on these locations. Whenever the tide is pushing into a corner or a change in the mangroves you'll find fish. You have to learn how to find feeding stations and the right time to be there. - Captain Tommy Locke Charlotte Harbor Florida Inshore Guide / Flats Class TV
The height of the tide is one of the most critical factors when it comes to locating game fish consistently. Ask yourself this simple question: Where is my favorite fishing area and when does it produce the best for me? Is it high tide, low tide, or somewhere in the middle? Once you understand this elementary concept of “fish positioning,” you will be well on your way to patterning game fish based off the height of the tide. And you’ll likely duplicate your success from your own favorite fishing hole in new areas. - C A Richardson / Flats Class TV (cnyonthefly.com)
That is it for this year's list. I hope you’ve enjoyed these little quips as much as I did. For this freshwater bass angler I am always intrigued in that many of the best lessons of fishing, for me, come from sources outside of bass angling. These tips really get me thinking; the true value is in understanding the core of the message. Then you deconstruct and reassemble the information to fit your style of fishing and that is a fundamental of the BBZ.
Is there a technique from crappie fishing that makes you a better bass angler? Is there a saltwater technique you use at the lake to catch fish? Can your angling methods prove useful in different fishing disciplines? Let us know what tips you would add to this year’s list!
(Title photo worldangling.com)