The New York Bass Forums banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
lurecrafter
Joined
·
296 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
'What' do you fish for could be: reason(s) you fish, what fish species or both.
As for myself, my obsession used to be only for bass. I have boxes of bass lures in my basement as well as many rod/reel combos mostly for bass fishing. The tournament thing for over a decade with four different tournament clubs, climbing my way into the top six of each and fishing different lakes and one river, no doubt put me on a steep learning curve.

Was the cost of fishing tournaments worth it? No doubt - at least for me! But what changed? Could be no more getting up at 4:30 am to be on the water ready to launch. No more motel expense for two-day tournaments or the 14mpg gas used to get to places over a hundred miles round trip. Could be the infighting and cliques that ended clubs and relationships. But after a while you can only learn so much with most of the anglers you fish with in club events - the great majority not attuned to becoming more versatile when it came to different waters and equipment. So what next?

Versatility means knowing where to fish, what to use, and how to use it depending on the water fished, time of year and many other factors. The choices are immense and the search/discovery never-ending. But only for bass? Fine, large bass put up a good fight but so do other fish species - especially when caught on light tackle. What to cast remains the variable that keeps me interested vs many bored tournament anglers I fished with in the past that have given up fishing completely. Even ice fishing has been an eye-opener and challenge.

The nice thing about lures (artificial a meaningless word when applied to any bait other than live bait) are how many fish of different species strike them. Pike hit blade baits; panfish and catfish strike crankbaits as well as a huge number of soft plastic lures. Granted, it's fun catching bass on different lures, but in my opinion catching more species in different sizes makes fishing more interesting and challenging - especially on lures I make, modify or design.

Nothing wrong with tournament fishing as the basic reason to fish. In my case it could never be the only reason. But why do you fish for what you fish for?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,561 Posts
'What' do you fish for could be: reason(s) you fish, what fish species or both.
As for myself, my obsession used to be only for bass. I have boxes of bass lures in my basement as well as many rod/reel combos mostly for bass fishing. The tournament thing for over a decade with four different tournament clubs, climbing my way into the top six of each and fishing different lakes and one river, no doubt put me on a steep learning curve.

Was the cost of fishing tournaments worth it? No doubt - at least for me! But what changed? Could be no more getting up at 4:30 am to be on the water ready to launch. No more motel expense for two-day tournaments or the 14mpg gas used to get to places over a hundred miles round trip. Could be the infighting and cliques that ended clubs and relationships. But after a while you can only learn so much with most of the anglers you fish with in club events - the great majority not attuned to becoming more versatile when it came to different waters and equipment. So what next?

Versatility means knowing where to fish, what to use, and how to use it depending on the water fished, time of year and many other factors. The choices are immense and the search/discovery never-ending. But only for bass? Fine, large bass put up a good fight but so do other fish species - especially when caught on light tackle. What to cast remains the variable that keeps me interested vs many bored tournament anglers I fished with in the past that have given up fishing completely. Even ice fishing has been an eye-opener and challenge.

The nice thing about lures (artificial a meaningless word when applied to any bait other than live bait) are how many fish of different species strike them. Pike hit blade baits; panfish and catfish strike crankbaits as well as a huge number of soft plastic lures. Granted, it's fun catching bass on different lures, but in my opinion catching more species in different sizes makes fishing more interesting and challenging - especially on lures I make, modify or design.

Nothing wrong with tournament fishing as the basic reason to fish. In my case it could never be the only reason. But why do you fish for what you fish for?
Smallmouth bass is the favorite for me, they fight like crazy which is addicting. Fish them on artificials. Fish for largemouth also when conditions or location not condusive to smallies, also on artificial. Being a recreational guy if the day is slow no objections to get some panfish bites to get a tub in the line. I did tournaments with my local Bassmaster club for a year. Found no fun in it at all. I also found that fellow club anglers who would share info gave you misinformation. I guess they didn't want others to get a hand up on them. I fish for the fun of it and time on the water with friends. Fishing is and always will be a part of my life. I've been fishing Lillinonah lately because of the variety of species available, SMB, LMB, panfish, Pike, etc. Curious to see others responses.
 

·
lurecrafter
Joined
·
296 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Variety in my mind is the spice of fishing whether fish species or lures to catch them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,673 Posts
I mainly fish for bass, but will also fish for panfish like crappies, yellow perch, and bluegills. I fish for the thrill of the bite and the fight that you usually get. Lots of times I'll catch panfish on lures intended for bass. Also, when the bass aren't biting I will switch to smaller lures and fish for panfish. They're fun on light tackle and most of my tackle is light. I'm happy as long as I'm catching something. I fished a bunch of club tournaments years ago. It was fun, but the time commitment got crazy on tournament day. It was a long day. Plus, at lots of tournaments the day was a lot longer than it needed to be. Weighing in fish at the end of the tournament was not a very smooth process, Everyone would stand around Bullshitting and doing nothing for an hour before we would start weighing in the fish. I always thought the whole idea was to get the fish back into the lake as quickly as possible to minimize the negative effects on them. I also found the same thing Special K mentioned about people lying all the time. At club meetings it was stressed how the top tournament performers would talk about how they caught their fish. That was supposed to be for "educational" purposes. Total BS. But, fishing is a great obsession to have.
 

·
lurecrafter
Joined
·
296 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
"Lots of times I'll catch panfish on lures intended for bass."

When it comes to larger fish of any species you can never tell what they'll bite. The bigger the fish the bigger the lure they will attack. I increased the body size of this Joker and sunfish pounded it -some up to 8":

This foot-long y.perch bit the lure on the same outing:


But so did this bass:


What I've found interesting are the large number of fish I've caught whose stomachs are already full:


...as well as the large lures such as this 5" Kut Tail Worm panfish clobbered:

and this red Kut Tail attacked by this green sunfish:


Let's not forget big fish caught on small lures:


"Weighing in fish at the end of the tournament was not a very smooth process, Everyone would stand around Bullshitting and doing nothing for an hour before we would start weighing in the fish. I always thought the whole idea was to get the fish back into the lake as quickly as possible to minimize the negative effects on them."

Same thing for the club I still belong to but won't fish tournaments with. Guys waiting in a long line with plastic bags of bass in warm water - a delayed mortality % guaranteed.
One angler in another club went so far as weighing in a bass just under 12" along with his other fish and still argued its length was legal. (Years later he ended up selling his boat, owns a bar and never fished again. BTW, he opposed no boaters (meaning a bass boat) like me at the time from getting into the club. Good thing he was outvoted.)

Politics in clubs make them less desirable to belong to. It ends up destroying clubs as well as some fishing forums.
 

·
Crass Angler
Joined
·
9,930 Posts
Was the cost of fishing tournaments worth it? No doubt - at least for me! But what changed? Could be no more getting up at 4:30 am to be on the water ready to launch. No more motel expense for two-day tournaments or the 14mpg gas used to get to places over a hundred miles round trip. Could be the infighting and cliques that ended clubs and relationships. But after a while you can only learn so much with most of the anglers you fish with in club events - the great majority not attuned to becoming more versatile when it came to different waters and equipment. So what next?
Man, I can relate to every single word here. The stuff that you end up becoming embroiled in is so far off the initial attraction and benefit of club fishing.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
21,693 Posts
the only two "tournaments" I ever entered were the old FISH FOR THE CURE ones at Candlewood, hosted by our late Wild Bill......after the second one, when I saw how these fish were unceremoniously dropped into the muddy shoreline at Squantz, I vowed never again and have held up to that.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top