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    Colorado, Indiana and willow-leaf blades give spinnerbaits different actions that excel in situations that are widely different.

    A spinnerbait primer

    For many fishermen, spinnerbaits have taken a back seat to a lot of new lures and trends in fishing: swimbaits, umbrella rigs, vibrating jigs and swim jigs. All are excellent lures and have replaced a spinnerbait for many fishermen. 

    November 27, 2013 at 3:00am
    Dave Wolak catches plenty of big fish on his three jig trailers.

    Playing the jig game

    One of the benefits to filming a television show and working with professional fishermen is you get to learn their secrets. Dave Wolak and I started a show called “Carolina’s Perfect Cast” that airs on the Pursuit Channel at 9 a.m. on Saturdays and 7:30 a.m. on Thursdays.

    September 26, 2013 at 9:00am
    Catching a 6-pound bass is fun any way you can do it, but especially fun if it’s with a bait or technique you really enjoy.

    How to fish? The fun way

    When I was a youngster growing up in Raleigh, surrounded by arguably the best lakes in the country — Falls, Jordan, and Harris — I was influenced by all kinds of professional fishermen. I wanted to flip like Denny Brauer, crank like David Fritts, and be able to read water like Rick Clunn. The one thing I never wanted to do is scream like Ike ... but that’s another story. Maybe I could attach, “Bless your heart” which in North Carolina you can attach to any insult and make it all better.
    July 01, 2013 at 7:00am
    Take care of the bass you catch and release and you’ll have them to catch and release again and again.

    Why fish slime matters

    Afew months ago, I accidentally dropped a bass in the bottom of a dirty old johnboat at my favorite pond. I felt bad, as it was covered in sand when I let it go. Two months later, I took a friend and his son back to the same pond. Every fish we caught was beautiful — except one my friend’s son caught. It had sores all over it. I think it was the fish I dropped in the bottom of the boat.
    May 08, 2013 at 9:00am
    Big bass moving in to spawn are at their most vulnerable during March, because they’re feeding so heavily preparing for the spawn.

    March is tough to beat

    March is when most of the big bass are caught in North Carolina. One reason, I think, is because it’s when most people start fishing. For whatever the reason, it doesn’t get much better for bass fishermen in North Carolina. Bass are on the move this month, and you should be, too.
    March 08, 2013 at 9:00am
    Once you locate fish in an area, working slowly with a jig can produce some great catches.

    Keep it simple in winter

    With all the fancy fishing items we have available today, sometimes it is best to get back to basics for winter fishing.

    During the coldest months, fish can actually get quite predictable, since fishing pressure does not dictate their locations. Locating fish and catching them are two different things, since their metabolisms are slower and need for food is less.
    January 07, 2013 at 9:00am
    When water temps reach the magic level, you’d better be holding onto your rod.

    Magic fall number is 60

    Bass fishing has really gotten into its comeback from the slowdown of August and September as the water is cooling down. If you are a regular reader, you might remember an article a couple of years ago called “National Buzzbait Week” — a coin termed by my friend and next-door neighbor, Steve. He is retired now, but he once told his boss he was going to take off the last week of October because of National Buzzbait Week. You should be excited about that week, but it does, like everything in fishing, depend on the conditions.
    November 12, 2012 at 9:00am
    Dustin Wilks helped design Culprit’s Incredi-Craw to fill a hole in his arsenal.

    Cut down on your junk

    All fishermen have great hopes of finding the next great lure; companies are always searching for the same thing. So what happens? We end up with so much tackle that we are confused and overwhelmed when we hit the water.
    September 24, 2012 at 10:00am
    Any number of factors may go into a bass striking a lure when it’s not hungry.

    Draw the ‘right’ reaction

    Much is written about bass and reaction strikes. Making a bass bite when it is not actively feeding is what separates a good fishing for a whole day from good fishing for a few minutes. Tricking bass into biting that are not in the “feeding mode” is one of the things that makes fishing so fun.
    July 30, 2012 at 7:00am
    A frog bait is extremely effective around heavy cover when bass are on a topwater pattern.

    Why May is my favorite

    When asked my favorite month to fish, it is a close call between May or January, but I think May gets the nod because of good weather and aggressive bass. In January, you can have the water all to yourself and really get on quality schools of fish that stay put. In May there is a lot of movement, but it is all in the pursuit of feeding.
    May 01, 2012 at 7:00am
    Lunker bass are on the move this month from deep water to the shallows, becoming active and more likely to make a mistake and swallow your lure.

    Big-bass month is here

    March is probably the best month for North Carolina anglers to catch a giant bass. We have so many good lakes with potential for double-digit largemouths.
    March 01, 2012 at 9:01am
    Aluminum jonboats can be a pleasure for bass anglers.

    Boat-buying advice

    January can be really good for fishing or really cold and miserable. It seems like every year around boat show season, it is one extreme or the other. It’s either snowing or beautifully warm in the low 70s.
    January 01, 2012 at 1:00am
    A warm day, a big spinnerbait and a good plan can result in a big bass — sometimes unexpected, sometimes not.

    Rollin’ slow in December

    December is my favorite month for slow-rolling big spinnerbaits for big bass. While our North Carolina bass can be doing just about anything with our wild weather patterns, one thing remains steady: big bass are lazy and always looking for an easy meal. A big, slow-moving target gets them to bite.
    December 01, 2011 at 12:07pm
    Topwater baits are particularly effective in the fall, when bass are really keyed in on shad movememts.

    Follow the shad, but try not to follow the herd

    A few Octobers back, I discovered a magic cove on Falls Lake. There were so many bass in there that you could simply cast a big Zara Spook down the middle, over 20 feet of water and catch one nearly every cast. It was so much fun, I went almost every day until the water was in the low 40s in December. I could still catch some on top when it was 48 degrees, which is rare. As it dipped lower, though, I had to really slow-crank a Shad Rap to catch them. Then one day near Christmas they were all gone — it was not a Merry Christmas. I never relocated that school again.
    September 28, 2011 at 1:58pm
    Topwater baits are a great choice to have tied on when you’re junk-fishing, casting to likely looking targets that many fishermen won’t give a second look.

    One Man’s Trash...Junk Fishing 101: a class to be taken

    The 2011 Bassmaster Elite Series was an interesting year. The stars and lakes did not line up to make all the tournaments offshore structure events but were conducive to junk-fishing the bank. Junk-fishing is basically doing a little bit of everything and catching one fish here and there all day.
    August 01, 2011 at 1:22pm
    All postspawn bass aren’t hard to catch, but at some point in the weeks after the spawn, they’re all hungry.

    'Buzz' away those postspawn blues

    For most fishermen, “postspawn” is a dreaded term. To them, it means that bass will be inactive, tired and unwilling to chase and bite lures.
    May 24, 2011 at 11:44am