Category Archives: Fun Fishing

Blog entry over due!

Man, it’s been way too long to get this entry up.  I took this fishing trip the day before Thanksgiving, I usually pride myself on timeliness of my fishing entries.  Oh well…..

So Dave Cindrich and I walked the banks of Mississippi in search of cold weather bronzebacks.  We started slow, as we each missed several bites on different soft plastics (grubs, tubes, craws, etc)  I finally got the hook into a few on a LFT Fork Craw rigged on a 3/16oz Picasso Shakedown head.  I usually throw a green pumpkin tube about 99% of time this time of year, but wanted to try something different and hope to draw a few bigger bites.  After losing a couple shake down heads, and wanting to save a couple, I went back to my usual 1/8oz tube head with a 3″ Power Tube and caught many fish.  I believe Dave caught most of his fish on a 3/16oz head and a Strike King Coffee Tube.

Not many pics, this is one of the bigger fish caught, probably around 2.5lbs, caught a few this size

At the end I rigged a bigger 4″ Mizmo tube on a Shakedown head.  I rigged this one in a fashion referred to as a “Stupid Tube”.  Which reminds, me that I need to take pictures to show how this is done, as I often get asked via email.  I picked up a few fish on this as well.  All in all, the bite was steady buy not great.  I believe I caught 33 or 34 smallies and a big 10lb plus carp and my guess is that Dave probably landed 12-15 smallmouth, took him awhile to warm up and get in the groove.
Picasso Shakedown Shakey head

Hopefully the weather warms before the end of the year, as I have a couple more vacation days to burn, but fishing is so much easier when its above 25 degrees out and your guides don’t freeze!!!
Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

Bass Tackle Depot - Free Shipping $50 Orders - Great spot for hard to find Bass Fishing Gear!!

MN Fall River Smallies

This past Saturday looked to be one of our last truly semi-warm days here in Minnesota.  So my bass fishing pal, Josh Douglas, and I decided to chase some cool water bronzebacks.  Josh & I got on the river a little before 10am, it will still plenty cool, probably 45 degree air temps and water temps hovered around 48-49 degrees.

Our first quick stop around a bridge did not produce any bites.  We bounced down to our second area and I quickly caught a nice 2lb plus chunk of a smallie on 4″ Green Pumpkin Copper Flake Mizmo tube rigged on a 1/4oz Bite Me Rattle head.  I then got excited and launched it into the trees   I then had another fish on with a baby ring fry that came off.  Josh then caught a smallie on his 3″Yum Tube, he ended up catching a couple in a row.  Early on we were getting several bites, but not getting hooks into the fish, kind of a finicky bite.

We then decide to try the opposite bank where the sun was hitting it and hopefully warming things up and getting the fish going.  Josh quickly broke off over there and then I lean back into a very solid fish on a 3″ Green Pumpkin Power tube on a 1/8oz head
Click to Close
It took a minute or so to bring her in, she was a beautiful and stout 18″ smallies that tipped Josh’s hand scale at 3lbs 12oz.  As Josh retied I caught another 14″ fish and another nice 3lb smallie.

Not a good pic of my fish, it was bigger then Josh’s below

We then work our way down stream to a new area and we started getting several bites, but once again it took a few missed bites to finally connect.  We ended up catching a nice bunch of fish in this area. I caught most of these on the baby ring fry and Josh his favorite Yum tube.  At this time I think I had 7 smallmouth, Josh about the same, maybe a couple more.  We made a quick stop where I caught the biggest fish and Josh got a 3lb 11oz fish on a little Biovex craw.

We then decided to try the previously shady bank from the morning again.  Josh caught a couple on the tube and then I on my fry.  Josh then tried a Baby Paca Craw on a fairly heavy 1/4oz Tru-Tungsten Sinker to work down the break and immediately started really catching some nice smallies and I could not buy a bite on my tube or ring fry at this point.  After seeing that, I picked up my 3/8oz Sunfish Tru-Tungsten jig with a big green pumpkin chunk and ended up catching the next 9 smallmouth in a row.  The fish must have really been keyed on a crawfish bite, because they were chowing that jig, that was a ton of fish to catch smallies on my favorite jig like that!!!  Josh got one last nice fish on the paca craw and it was time to call it a day.

In the end, I had 17 total smallies, Josh about the same.  We caught them several ways and a lot of nice fish.  Not sure, but that may be my last trip out on the boat this year, but there is definitely some winter shore fishing smallie action to come as well.

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

Bass Tackle Depot - Free Shipping $50 Orders - Great spot for hard to find Bass Fishing Gear!!

Tonka practice update

I did get out to Lake Minnetonka on Saturday this past weekend with fellow Gopher Bassmaster Dave Cindrich.  We were greeted with mostly cool air, wind and drizzling rain all day.  Spent a little time fishing some old areas and looked for some new stuff.

We only got one decent bite fishing deep, that was a 3lb fish on baby creature bait.  I also got tagged really hard on a 5″ Original Optimum swimbait in Sunfish color, but missed the fish.  I feel confident it was a bass, because there were no teeth marks in my bait.  We caught a lot of fish, mostly less then 2lbs.  I got one big bite, that being a 4lb fish swimming a 1/2oz Green Pumpkin/Brown Tru-Tungsten Jig around some shallow grass.  It was a little too wet to get the camera, so no pictures.  Now that I think of it, I should have weighed or measured her for the BP Bass Derby…..
For the most part the bite was spotty.  We also caught our fair share of northerns on swim jigs.  Now that I think of it, I should have weighed or measured her for the BP Bass Derby…..

We caught fish on many baits, jigs, swim jigs, soft plastics, crankbaits, jig worm…..   It would have been a decent day, I would have had around 14lbs for my best 5 fish.  Not the greatest on Tonka, but it could have been much worse.

I am headed out to practice some more this Saturday and then I also have our last club tournament of the year on Sunday, its our Gopher Bassmasters Fall Classic.  We just found out our partners and the lake today, as its a semi-mystery tournament.  We will be fishing Waconia, should be a great tournament, and some big bags caught.  I look forward to fishing big baits such as a 1/2oz Tru-Tungsten jig, maybe some 10″ worms and might mix in some swimbaits as well!!!

Check back next week for catch results!!

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

July 4th Holiday Weekend Bass Fishing Recap

No better way to spend a long holiday weekend then doing a little bass fishing!!!  Friday July 4th, I had a guide trip out on Lake Minnetonka.  We launched out of Gray’s Bay and kind of stuck to the east end of the lake.  We started throwing some topwater and spinnerbaits over some weedlines that I had caught fish on in the past.  I caught a pike and a nice little bass pretty quick on a Vixen.  We then started working the deeper edge, quickly Daryl boated a bass on a black 10″ Power Worm.  I then caught several fish on soft plastics ranging from ring frys, robo worms and Big show paddle tails.  Daryl caught his fair share on a wacky rigged Yamamoto Senko.  We probably caught close to 10 bass on the first area.  The next area we each caught one keeper on soft plastics.  The 3rd area produced 3 small bass on spinnerbaits and another on a drop shot.  We tried a couple more deep areas, but the boat traffic started to be too much to fish main lake areas.  We then fished some shallow weeds, pads and docks.  We caught another 6-7 bass on jigs, frogs, sweet beavers & senkos.  On the way back in I spun the hub on my prop, so we ended up fishing our way back through Wayzata bay and I caught one more real nice bass on a green Brovarney Swim Jig.  We finished up in the pads across from the access and I caught one fish on a frog and 2 more on the swim jig.  All in all, a pretty good day for numbers, but nothing over 3lbs.

Saturday morning, I got out on Lake Marion just to try my spare prop, making sure it was just a spun hub on my good prop.  Thankfully that was the case, I fished for about 45 min, caught a few small keepers but nothing to write home about. 

On Sunday, my Pan-O-Prog partner spent a full day out practicing on Lake Marion.  In all, we found plenty of fish but had trouble getting the quality bites that you normally need to do well in this tournament.  Out best numbers bait was a green pumpkin Brovarney swim jig.  We covered a lot of water and that will be the plan during the tournament. 

If you are not too busy on Saturday afternoon, come check out the Pa-O-Prog weigh in at Casperson Park on Lake Marion.  The small lake usually kicks out some big bass, as it always seems to take 20-24lbs to win this tournament.

See ya on the water!
Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

Fishing Last Weekend

Well this past weekend I got out on one of my favorite south metro lakes to do some fun fishing.  I quickly found some of the larger bass keying in on bluegill beds.  This is an often overlooked pattern and at the same time one of my favorite ways to target post spawn largemouth bass.  You can hear more about Bluegills beds and post-spawn fishing very soon on a Podcast I did with John Haynes and Bass Fishing the Midwest.  I actually won a tournament on Chisago & Lindstrom Lakes last year on the bedding bluegill pattern.

I caught most of my nicer this past weekend in 1-4ft of water on frogs and a Deps BuzzJet in a Bluegill pattern.  You cannot complain catching 3-4lbs bass on topwater.  The frog fish were fun, but the strikes that the Buzzjet drew were some of the most ferocious I can remember.  I think it does such a great job of imitating a wounded bluegill, the big bass cannot resist hunting it down and destroying it, its pretty wild!!!

The buzzjet has a very unique and loud action on the surface, kind of a topwater slash wakebait.  Below is a picture of one of the many bass caught on the Deps Buzzjet this weekend.  This was one of the smaller ones.

Also, this weekend, I have sorted though some of my extra gear and have listed it here on eBay!  Check out my listings.  I have some Sonar & GPS units, Lowrance accessories, Sebile Magic Swimmer, Lucky Craft, more swimbaits & jigs.

Tight Lines & Good fishing!
Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

MN Bass Opener Big Bag Challenge!!!

Here is the deal, my buddy Josh Douglas decided to do some fun fishing on Memorial Day, not practicing for a tournament, just going out and trying to really whack’em!!!  But being the competitors that we are, we had to spice it up a little.  We decided we would make it a team tournament, US vs. the Bass!!!

We picked a South Metro lake, calculated a loft goal, set that as our mark.  Two guys, 6 hours, the goal….
Best 5 Bass = 20lbs.  I told you, we had lofty goals!!!  They sound familiar if you watched the episode of World’s Greatest Fishing Show where Zona and KVD set a 20lb goal on Lake St. Clair in the fall.  Nobody said we were original..  LOL!!!  Neither one of us would claim to be as talented as Kevin VanDam, but the antics that happen in our boats are not much different then you see on Mark Zona’s show.

We decided to fish out of Josh’s boat, we got to the landing and were fishing by about 8am.  We started the day shallow, working inside week lines and pad clumps with weightless soft plastics.  We quickly started getting bit, but the first few were the wrong size.  Keepers but not the kind of fish that add up to 20lbs.  A few more boat lengths down the bank, Josh gets a big fish on, but is snaps his fluorocarbon leader.  The fish stayed there and we could see it.  It was a real toad, we tried to get her to bite again, but nothing doing.  In the next little cut, I had a pretty good fish hooked up on a 4″ Green Pumpkin Ring Fry, but sure enough I dumped here too.  We continued to work the same patterns in similar areas and got a pretty quick limit, but it only weighed around 7lbs, time to start culling!!!

Pic of 4″ Green Pumpkin Ring Fry

Finally about an hour later I get the first nice fish in the boat, a definite 3lbs plus on the Ring Fry.  From that point on, things slowly got better, we started putting better fish in the boat.  Even though things were getting better, we both missed some more nice fish, that definitely could have helped our bag.  At about noon, I got our biggest fish yet, it was a 4lb 7oz beauty.  She took the Ring Fry as well, she was hanging on a stump in about 3ft of water.  A beautiful fish, big head & healthy, but clearly spawned out.  A week earlier and she was an easy 5 and she will be a 5lb fish later this summer when she starts putting the feed bag on.  That fish gave us about 18lbs.  We decided to head back to work that big fish from early this morning.  We made long casts to the area, no bites, we got just close enough to see she was still there, but she was not having anything to do with us, we also saw one just as big about 20yds down the bank and neither one would humor us.
We then moved out to the main lake to work some smaller pockets and some rocky humps and shoals.  I broke out my Tru-Tungsten Bluegill swimbait as I knew we needed a big bite to push us to our goal.  No takes, but I was really impressed with the action.  You will hear more about that bait this summer!!!!   Josh then tried my TT Swimbait, so I picked up my Ima Shaker in Matte Bluegill and started working the rocks & weed clumps.  I quickly boated a nice 2lb plus fish and then got a 3lb’r up to the boat on the Shaker, both nice fish, but not increasing our total.  But I was impressed with the Shaker’s action and its quick return on investment
Pics of bigger fish

We finished up working some docks, wood & milfoil with Jigs and other baits, couple more fish, but no bigguns
We ended the day with 5 fish 18lbs 4oz, overall we must have caught around 30 bass, and had several more bites and saw other big fish cruising.  Once again, it was frustrating too see so many big bass, but so many not in a catchable mood.  I think all or all but one of our big 5 came on the Ring Fry, one may have been on a weightless tube.  Had we not set the goal, we would have called the day a huge success, but we really wanted to get there, but still a great time.  We both could have fished cleaner and we both believe we had the bites to meet our goal.  I think you will see some more challenges like this in the future

I am sure you will see Josh post his summary of our trip on his Blog soon as well!  Also welcome email subscriber #71!!!

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

Quick Outing, Quick Blog Entry

Well I finally got my boat out on Sunday.  Probably on Crystal Lake for about 1.5hrs, spent most of my time running the outboard to make sure everything was running well.  I also, made sure, livewell pumps, pro-air, bilge and all electronics were a go.  Might have to do a little trouble shooting on the front flasher.   Water temperature gauge said the main lake temp was around 57 degrees.

Also put down the trolling motor for a bit, threw a little #8 Husky Jerk & Secret Weapon Lures Sidearm spinnerbait.  Caught 4 bass pretty quick, 3 little fellers and one about 2.5lbs, could not find the northerns I was looking for
I also, made about 5 casts with a Picasso Fantasy Football jig across some rocks with my new Shimano Cumara Rod and Core reel just to see how it felt, better then I imagined!!!
Ken Cook Fantasy Football - Dressed

Also, if you have time, check out the Record Setters video of Paul Elias on Falcon.  You pretty much see every fish he catches and he talks a lot and breaks down the tournament, very good if you have 20 minutes to watch it.

Also, check out a new MN Bass Fishing Blog by John Haynes!!

Welcome email subscriber #70!

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog
Bass Tackle Depot - Free Shipping $50 Orders - Great spot for hard to find Bass Fishing Gear!!

First Bass Fishing outing of 2008

Hey all,

Finally got back out after my late December trip was foiled by another motorist.  The weather was beautiful for Minnesota in January standards.  For the 6 hours we fished, the temperature hovered between 35 & 40 degrees.  Overall the fishing was solid as well, I did not catch as many fish as I did in my trip in late November, but the overall quality was better.  I am going to let the pictures do most of the talking
Good Start
Brushhog with a nice a smallie & I with a 10lb 15oz carp
Josh Douglaswith a 3lb 6oz & Ryan Brant with two goodns’
Another chunk, along with my biggest 3lbs 3oz, it looks cool with the snow & ice on its tail!

I caught several fish on a drop shot Gulp Alive 3 Minnow, but most of the fish came on either a 3″ Yum or Berkley Green Pumpkin tube, the biggest was on the Power Tube.

My totals: 49 Smallmouth, 3 Rock Bass, 3 Carp
Overall 4 guys: 207 smallmouth, 3 carp, 1 walleye, 1 northern, and handful of Rock Bass

I am sure most of you enjoyed sitting on the couch watching the NFL playoffs, but you missed out

P.S. Josh & I snuck out before the bass club meeting on Monday night as well……  check back for details.

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

If you enjoy this Blog, consider making a PayPal donation to help keep it going. No Donation too small, Thanks!

Not Giving Up Yet – Part Two

As I eluded to in one of my comments, Josh & I did very well in our little excursion to the Mississippi River.  We started fishing sometime after 11am.  As we worked our way to the spot, the bet was set. We decided to bet big fish, and the reward would be dinner.  We also would keep track of numbers for bragging rights, it is just in our competitive nature

It started fast & furious, I managed to land 6 smallmouth bass in my first 7 casts.  When we first started, I was using a Green Pumpkin Mizmo tube on a BiteMe Tube Jig head.  I think early on, I was up 10 fish to Josh’s 4 and thats when I lost a decent fish right at the bank and soon after that I broke of my tube jig.  So I played around with my mojo rig, and caught several bass on a Baby Ring Fry-Green Pumpkin.  Although during that time period, Josh got up like 17 to 12.  That is when I told him, “numbers are all fine & good, but today its the big fish that pays the bills.”  About that time, Josh hooked a good one and lost it to a big pile of wood.

By this time, I had rigged up a 3 Green Pumpkin Berkely Power Tube on a fine wire 1/8 tube jig head.  It was game on, I came storming back and got the first fish weighing at 2lbs 14oz.  Blame Josh for the poor photo quality.
We left the first hole around 2:15pm and it was Rich 29 – Josh 24.
My First Good Smallie                                               My Power Tube Setup, Along with some chewed up casualties
At the next hole, Josh made a surge, then I got on a school of fish where it seemed like I was catching them every cast for 20 minutes.  It was actually a little ridiculous.  About the time I hit 40 fish, Josh double up his rod on fish #30 for him, but that one weighed a staunch 3lbs 13oz.  I knew I had my work cut out for me.  I caught another 10 quick fish and was at 50.  Knowing I needed to try to catch a big one, I made my way down from Josh looking for a honey hole.  Caught several more fish, but nothing over 1.5lbs.  Now I am around 65 fish, so I switch back to the mojo rig with a larger bait, a Green Pumpkin Fork Craw.  I now started catching some better fish, the number slowed but I caught several fish in the 2lb class.  I then got sawed off on the rocks by a decent fish.
One of my 2lbs+ Fish                                                                                       Josh’s 3-13
I went back to the tube near Josh, I continued to poor on the numbers of fish, and sure enough Josh got one more nice fish – 3lbs-12oz.  I think I caught about 60 of my 76 fish on that little Power Tube setup. I think Josh caught most of his fish, including the big ones on a Green Coffe Tube.  It was 5pm and now too dark to really fish, overall, very good trip.  Final fish count, Rich 76 – Josh 65.  Josh, nice job on the big fish.  On a positive note, Josh had previously told me that, none of his other buddies had every caught more fish then him here.  I guess that little run is over

Josh’s 3-12
Guess it’s time to keep our eyes on the long range forecast and wait for another warm day to sneak out
Welcome, email subscriber #51!

Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

If you enjoy this Blog, consider making a PayPal donation to help keep it going. No Donation too small, Thanks!

Not giving up yet

I am refusing to let winter be here yet in Minnesota.  I am going Smallmouth Bass Fishing tomorrow.  My buddy Josh Douglas & I are going to fish the Mississippi River from an undisclosed bank location.

So today, I went through my tackle like I had a tournament tomorrow, funny stuff.  Anyways got a couple spinning rods setup with 8lb fluorocarbon and two baitcasters.  I also made up a little smallie box.  Got some 1/0 & 2/0 wide gap hooks, drop shot hooks, hair jigs, tube jigs, scroungers, etc.  Then I sorted through my plastics and grabbed a bunch of grubs, tubes, smallie beavers, & salty sinkers, etc.

I also spent some time updating my websites, as well as my MySpace page.  We even are starting to think about getting the Christmas tree setup tonight.
I have to get up early and make a bunch of turkey sandwiches from leftovers. Also, Josh & I plan to stop at Cabela’s on the way, get some last minutes supplies as well as stare at & hold the Shimano Core they have on display. It should be fun, look for a report early next week.  

I hope I do not freeze tomorrow, hopefully the smallies keep me warm
Rich’s Bassin’ Forum
Bass Fishing Tackle Blog

If you enjoy this Blog, consider making a PayPal donation to help keep it going. No Donation too small, Thanks!