One of the best ways to fish during the winter months is to flip mats or matted vegetation. Often and on many lakes, instead of heading out deep when the water gets cold, bass will snug up under the canopy of matted vegetation. I flip this type of cover with an ounce and a quarter Strike King Tour Grade Tungsten. heavy weight to be able to punch through the vegetation. My favorite bait to use is a Strike King Rage Bug in Green Pumpkin. It’s a small compact bait that you can rig totally straight, and I really like the Owner Jungle 4 oz. hook for this set up with a bobber stopper on top and a heavy weight line. The key to fishing this bait this way is to make repetitive pitches into the mats. Pitch it on all sides of the mat, cover it fully and then jiggle it so it can get through and free fall all the way through. It’s a total reaction bite, so you want to be sure to let it get all the way through the canopy and to the bottom. Then when you get it in there, yo yo it up and down, fishing it slowly. This is a great way to catch some giant fish this way in the dead of winter. Good luck!
The first tournament of the 2017 FLW Tour was at Lake Guntersville, AL. I was ready to get the season started and starting off at one of the best fisheries in the country always feels good. The first day of competition I had 15 lb. 2 oz, and was in 38th place. Fishing was really TOUGH. One of the biggest problems was the large amount of floating eel grass. It’s really hard to fish a moving bait slowly when there is grass floating on top of the water. I caught most of my fish on a Strike King ½ oz. Red Eye Shad, and a few on a Strike King Pure Poison, but there definitely were not many bites to be had. I only weighed in 8 fish during the two days for a total weight of 23 lb. 6 oz., which was just enough for 49th place. I’m ready to hit the water tomorrow on my home lake, Lake Travis, and am hopeful it will be a better event for me. I’m feeling good about it and am ready to get out there!