Lately I've been asked a lot about how I consistently catch good fish. Usually i'm pretty shy talking about that stuff because I dont feel like I am a great fisherman by any means. But I'll try to explain a little bit about what I think sets me apart from other fisherman.
As a kid growing up I read and watched first hand how anglers biggest mistakes can be their unwillingness to change. Often times I've gotten accustomed to using just one technique or one lure and stuck to it. Even when I knew other methods would work better. Thinking about it now it seems dumb. But when you're on the water and the pressure is on your tendency is to want to stick to something you're comfortable with or what you have faith in. The problem with that is just because what you have faith in was working yesterday doesnt mean it's going to work for you today.
Every good fisherman knows a lot of times you aren't fishing the lake. You're fishing the conditions. No lake you go to will ever be the same day after day. The water temperature changes, the bass stages change, the grass beds come and go, and it's either pre frontal, frontal, or post frontal. What makes fishing challenging is figuring out that puzzle. What are they going to bite during the conditions you're fishing? If you do it right, you might just collect a check at the end of the day or a picture of a trophy bass.
Recently I had a conversation with a tournament director and we were talking about what we thought makes a good fisherman. He told me he thought the person who caught the biggest fish is the best fisherman. I agreed but only to a certain extent. I told him I thought the measure of a good fisherman is the person who can consistently catch bass under any circumstances and any conditions. If a fisherman catches 5 bass for a total weight of 3lbs and 30 other people couldn't catch a thing then guess what? That fisherman deserves the credit for outfishing the other competitors. Thats just as much an accomplishment as catching a 30lb limit to win a tournament. The bottom line is that fisherman outfished the other competitors and found a pattern that worked when noone else could. In other words, he figured out the puzzle.
Something I constantly ask myself when I read an article or see a show about different fishing techniques is. "How can I apply this to what I do and what conditions will it work best?" The next step is trying it and getting it to work with your style of fishing. Recently someone asked this question and it led to him making millions of dollars. Maybe you've heard of the Alabama rig? So next time you're out on the lake and what you're using doesn't seem to be producing fish the way you want, try changing it up. The more versatile you are the more fish you'll catch, and dont be afraid to try new stuff. Who knows, maybe you'll invent the next big thing!