How To Catch, Clean, and Cook Walleye & Bass

Catching Bass and Walleye is not that difficult and there are several types of baits that will produce fish, but the method and bait you decide on using can make a big difference in the strike and fight. So if you want to experience the best striking action continue reading!

Most Aggressive Bass Strikes

There are several types of baits one could use for catching Largemouth Bass and some of those baits will produce more fish than others. But are you after quantity, quality, or just good hard hitting action?

I prefer the sensation of seeing and feeling the Bass Strike, which limits me to top-water baits that require a continuous retrieval. Baits such as the Frog, Jitterbug, & Buzz Bait are just a few that fit this requirement. Next you will need to trial a few of these baits to see which one produces the greatest strike action. What I mean is a strike that not only is aggressive on the hit, but one that feels like someone just jerked your arm off. Let me put it like this; no matter how prepared you are for the upcoming strike, the hit is so fast and hard that you’re always caught off guard.

I have found the best top-water bait for producing the hardest strike is the Bass Buzz Bait (yellow/orange). Why, the line is always tight and the retrieval is moderately fast, so the fish is attacking a moving bait. And since the line is taunt majority of the hitting force is absorbed by your arm, which is an awesome feeling.

Modifying The Buzz Bait

I was going through a lot of Buzz Baits and even wrote the company about it. They were kind enough to send me a few replacements, but it still did not fix the problem. The issue with Buzz Baits is they have a weak point at each bend in the metal rod, especially when catching bait jerking Smallmouths. So I have made the following modifications; I first tie monofilament around the end where you attach a swivel, then I epoxy (5 min epoxy) both that monofilament and the skirt (both sides). These modifications help with the following; The distance from the propeller & hook are fixed (no more separation, no more breaking or flying apart after two Smallmouths), easier to get the bait to surface and ride on the surface during the retrieval, and the skirt will last a lot longer.

Most Aggressive Walleye Strike

Again, first ask yourself what are you after, quantity, quality, or a good solid arm wrenching strike? For me it’s the hard hitting arm pounding hit, so I use the 200 and 300 Bandit Crankbaits. The Walleyes seem to hit these on the run and what your rod can not absorb your arm surely will.

As with the Bass Buzz Bait the crankbaits are retrieved moderately fast so there is little to no slack allowing the strike to be absorbed by the rod and your arm, which again is an awesome feeling. Of course the amount of force that is transferred to your body will vary depending on the line you’re using and the action of your rod tip.

Cleaning Walleye & Bass

When it comes to cleaning Bass and Walleye I use the same method as with Crappie and Bluegills, Filleting. The only differences are; you will want to take out the bones that connect the fillets to the top edge of the ribs and remove the cheek meat on the Walleyes as shown in the video.

Cooking Walleye & Bass

There are two methods I like to use for cooking Walleye & Bass. The only difference between these two methods is part D, which can be skipped.

A. Clean the fillets in cold water (no bones)
B. Place fillets on a paper towel and let air dry for 1 hour
C. Season fillets with Garlic and Blackened Pepper (both sides)
D. Shake in Flour with Lawyer’s salt
E. Place in fry pan and cook with oil

Smallmouth Bass Fishing

Catching SmallMouth Bass

In mid June the Smallmouth Bass feed aggressively in rocky bottom areas, looking for small crabs and dragonfly Nymphs. So if you’re looking for a fight take up Smallmouth Fishing!

Smallmouth Action

When it comes to a great strike the Smallmouth is right up there in the top 10. Depending on the bait and presentation you can feel the strike all the way up through your shoulder. Sometimes I think they are trying to take my arm off or break my wrist. For me these Bass are a catch and release fish, so I fish them just to experience the action, and what action it is.

Smallmouth Bass Baits

When the Smallmouth are feeding in the rock bays it’s not that hard to catch them, but the key is what type of strike do you want experience. For a jolt of a strike use a Shad Rap, for a visual strike and a fight all the way to the net use a Buzz Bait, and for continues action try a leech.

The Hardest Strike – The Jolt

The hardest strike I have found is with a Shad Rap, I like the Bandit 200 and 300 series for this. When they hit one of these it’s a jolt on the wrist and arm, A jolt you never seem to be ready for. But the Shad will limit the number of Smallmouth you are going to catch since you are fishing on the drop-offs and in deeper water.

The Best Fight

The best fight and fishing method I prefer is with the Bass Buzz Bait. Here you will not feel the strike like with the Shad Rap, but the fight all the way to the net will be incredible. The Smallies will make sure to give you plenty of air time as well. My only issue with the Buzz Bait is after two or three Smallmouth the bait is basically destroyed or has broken in half, but I now have a solution for that. Something I just tried last weekend and you will see it in the video.

Catching With Ease

If you’re after catching a lot of Smallmouth then try a leech, even in shallow water of 3 to 4 feet. I did an experiment with my two youngest sons where we took leeches and used a good size jig. We then tossed that out with no bobber, straight-line. I set the phone timer and after 30 minutes and we had caught 25 Smallmouth between two and three pounds. Now the strike is light and the fight more like a Largemouth, but the action was continuous and the boys had fun…

How To Use A Bass Buzzbait – 2018 Bass Fishing!

If you enjoy Bass Fishing then what is better than using a top-water bait and seeing the strike, or catching the action on video, well nothing! One of the best top-water baits for Bass is the Northland Buzzbait.

How To Use A Buzzbait

The two most common methods for using a Buzzbait are; to keep it 2 – 4 inches below the surface or to retrieve it just fast enough to keep it on the top of the surface. Both are very effective, but I prefer the top-water method as there is nothing more exciting then seeing that big strike.

Tips For Keeping Your Buzzbait On The Surface

Here are a few tips for getting and keeping your Buzzbait on the surface;
1. Make sure the distance between the propeller blade and the lead body stays short. If this gap gets to large it will be much harder to get and keep your Buzzbait on the surface, requiring a faster retrieval speed.
2. Close the bail on your reel and start your retrieval just as the bait hits the water. This will also improve you action and bite.
3. Once you have your Buzzbait on the surface then slow your retrieval down a bit, allowing the propeller blades to create more water turbulence.

The Buzzbait I Prefer To Use

I have tried many different brands of Buzzbaits and have found the ⅜ oz Northland Buzzbait works best. The skirt color will vary depending on the clarity of your lake, but I get my best acton on the Yellow/Orange & Green/White skirts.

Video On How To Use The Buzzbait

Video On The Buzzbait In Action!

R & R Fishing! 2018

Relaxing & Enjoying – Fishing In The Rain

It was the first weekend of August and raining as the thunderstorms were rolling through, but the wind was calm and there was no lightning in the sky. So I decided I would just go out and relax on the water, fishing for whatever would bite and enjoy this incredible day (I love being in the Rain). So I grab my rain jacket and my poles and off I went for anything that would bite with little effort on my part.

Catching Bass

I first tried for Bass using a Yellow/orange NORTHLAND Buzzbait (⅜ oz), which produced a lot of action, but struggled finding any bass over 2 pounds. I then tried going deep, using the Bandit 300 and still the same result, no big fish. So where are they, why are then not biting, and do I just try later and focus on something else? So I decided to switch to my Walleye rods and stayed out in deeper water, casting for Walleyes.

Catching Walleyes

Here I was using the Bandit 300 (Yellow / Bumblebee) and casting the ice fishing Rapala (green, glow, and bronze). We tied into four walleyes, one being over 20 inches but lost that Walleye when trying to net him. We did manage to land three smaller Walleyes. After an hour of Walleye fishing I decided to relax even more and grabbed the Bluegill rods and started casting for a few Bluegills.

Catching Bluegills

For bluegills I used a small jig with flashabou skirting on it, tipping with a Gulp Maggot (pink). The bluegills ran small 6.5 inches to 7.5 inches, but we caught plenty for a meal or two.

How The Day Went

It rained off and on, there was no lighting or thunder, and the wind was not to be found. The action was great, but the fish ran small, which is unusual for this lake. So a perfect day for relaxing, fishing, and enjoying the weather! “You know a day fishing beats any day working”.

Bass Fishing In Late July – 2018 Action!

Best Bass Fishing 2018

I look forward to the third weekend of July as this is the time the Largemouth Bass really get active and destroy whatever you toss on the surface. So why do I prefer top-water baits instead of diving crank-baits on the weed edges and drop-offs, because I like to see the action of the bite/hit.

Topwater Bass Baits

Depending on the weeds and if they are close to the surface I will either use a Bass Popper or Buzz Bait. I prefer the Popper as the bass seen to hit this harder than the Buzz Bait, but I use the weeds and drop-off to help me decide on which top-water presentation to use.

Fishing The Weeds On A Gradual Drop-Off

Here the Buzz Bait works the best as the bass are just laying under the weeds, waiting to strike anything that ventures into their feeding area. Also the Bass Popper will just keep catching weeds as the back end of the popper is weighted down by the back treble hook.

Fishing The Weeds On a Quick Drop-Off

Here I use the Bass Popper as it frustrates the Bass and gives them plenty of time to locate their prey and attack. The Popper is used with a jerking action and reel, which is much slower than the continuous reel action of the Buzz Bait.

Best Bass Action Of 2018

Here is a short video of our Bass action this past weekend along with a few Pictures. You will see it was very windy and the waves were white-water, but the Bass did not care.