Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Frog Fishing Gear Advise from Dean Rojas!

Who doesn't love to frog fish? Everyone has their own preferences when it come to gear. MFL PRO BASS angler and frog fishing expert Dean "The Machine" Rojas has some tips for you. He'll help you become an expert.

Monday, June 27, 2022

Dube Goes Wire-To-Wire At B.A.S.S. Nation Lead On St. Lawrence

Canadians Dan McGarry 2nd, Tracy Rich Wins Non-boater


WADDINGTON, N.Y. — After a rocky start, Timothy Dube of Nashua, N.H., regrouped, secured his limit and claimed a wire-to-wire win at the TNT Fireworks B.A.S.S. Nation Northeast Regional at the St. Lawrence River with a three-day total of 62 pounds, 10 ounces.


Setting the Day 1 mark with 23-3, Dube added a second-day limit of 21-4. After entering Championship Friday with a lead of 2-1 over Hamburg, N.Y.’s Billy Gilbert, Dube finished with 18-3 and edged Danny McGarry of Newcastle, Canada, by 1-14.


Dube won the top prize of $5,500 and qualified for the TNT Fireworks B.A.S.S. Nation Championship, which will be held Nov. 9-11 on Pickwick Lake. The top boater and nonboater from each state and the province of Ontario qualified for the championship.


“Eight years ago, I fished my first qualifier and I never thought I’d be here,” Dube said of his win. “I have no words for this.”


The first two days saw Dube enjoying remarkable efficiency by catching his four-bass limit on his first four stops. The final round tested him with an early frustration, but Dube was able to overcome the setback and rally for the win.


“Today was a struggle; it was the first day all week that I’ve lost fish,” Dube said. “I worked on a big fish that was about 5 pounds for about an hour early in the morning, finally got it to bite, and she came off and disappeared.


“I was definitely nervous. I didn’t even have a fish in the boat when I lost that big one and I thought ‘Here we go.’ But I put the train back on the tracks, found some other fish and caught my limit.”


Targeting bottom with a rock/sand/gravel mix, Dube caught his fish on a Ned rig with a 3/8-ounce Swagger Tungsten head and a goby colored Z-Man Finesse T.R.D. and a drop shot with a 1-ounce weight, a No. 1 Owner mosquito hook and a white Berkley MaxScent Flatworm. 


Day 1 brought mostly sunny skies, but Day 2 saw dimming cloud cover. Sunshine returned for the final round, but while Dube found the brighter day facilitated his sight fishing, the fish seemed to be in a finicky mood.


Wednesday, June 22, 2022

The Ned Rig Goes Micro


Ladson, SC (June 16, 2022) - It’s the natural next level of finesse fishing for a full spectrum of gamefish—bass, crappie, panfish, trout, perch, bream, (a.k.a. anything with fins & gills). Z-Man’s new Micro Finesse BaitZ and Micro Finesse ShroomZ jigs are poised to provide continuous fish-catching action, gifting anglers with assets never seen in panfish baits before. For the first time ever, crappie, panfish and ultra-finesse fans stand to benefit from the softness, buoyancy and accentuated action—and the unparalleled toughness— of ElaZtech® . . . via five new snack-sized softbait profiles. Stay tuned for the full reveal, coming soon . . .

Monday, June 20, 2022

LeBrun Locks up Back-To-Back Wins With 17-9 On the James River!

Nick LeBrun Wins 2022  Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me on the James River!
(Photo: MLF) 

By Tyler Brinks

Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit

RICHMOND, Va. – All week long, Nick LeBrun looked in control as he posted consistent bags the first three days to lead the field going into Championship Sunday at Toyota Stop 5 Presented by PowerStop Brakes on the James River. But the Louisiana pro saved his best for last with a limit weighing 17 pounds, 9 ounces to on Championship Sunday win his second straight event.

Just over a month removed from his triumph on Lake Guntersville, LeBrun added another big trophy and $101,000 more to his bank account. He’s just the third angler to complete the feat, joining Brett Hite (2008) and Mark Rose (2017) as the only back-to-back champions on the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me or FLW Tour.

“It was all God this week, he’s got everything set up for me, and I’m just trying not to mess it up,” said LeBrun alongside his wife Jolene on Father’s Day. “That I get to live my dream and have an amazing wife and kids and to win another tournament shows how good He is. My wife is the best mama in the entire universe.”

LeBrun looked comfortable on the James as he caught solid bags all week long, but his first trip to the Virginia fishery had him a little uneasy considering the long runs he chose to make and the tidal swings.

Saturday, June 18, 2022

2022 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me on the James River: Buck Continues to Lead!

By Tyler Brinks, Jody White 

Tacklewarehouse Pro Circuit

RICHMOND, Va. – Day 2 of Toyota Stop 5 Presented by PowerStop Brakes on the James River offered much tougher fishing than the catchfest that was Day 1. Limits still came easy, but much smaller totals replaced yesterday’s parade of bags in the mid to high teens. The sunny, hot day with a later tide window was the primary justification from the anglers with lower catches, and only Cole Hewett was able to catch more than 20 pounds.

Backing up his leading bag from the first day of fishing, Pennsylvania’s Grae Buck added 15 pounds, 2 ounces, to retain the lead. His 36-5 total has him 2 pounds ahead of Jacopo Gallelli. Behind the leaders, you have to look down the standings to 18th place to find someone with less than 30 pounds.

“I ran the same gameplan as yesterday, but with the tide difference, I had to wait longer for it to get right and for the fish to set up,” Buck said. “Once they did, I caught a 6-pounder on a Z-Man Bang StickZ in California craw, letting it flutter in the current and working it really slow.”

Buck is Neko rigging the bait with a Hayabusa FPP Straight Worm Hook with a Z-Man Neko ShroomZ Wacky Rig Nose Weight. Buck shared that he has also scored fish on a swim jig and a ChatterBait this week.

He described his primary area as a flat with two small drains running through it. It’s worked out very well so far, but losing the spot is on his mind.

“I’m tempted to start somewhere else because the right tide will be even later tomorrow,” Buck said. “I don’t want to sit there and waste two hours waiting for the tide to be right. It’s a gamble because someone else could pull in there. Each day moving forward will be a longer and longer wait.”

Buck said he’s also targeting fish around duck blinds and had some time today to explore more of the Chickahominy for new areas.

“After I had a decent limit, I ran to the top of the Chickahominy because I didn’t have time yesterday,” he said of his early check-in time on Day 1. “I wanted to see what was going on up there and found some decent wood to fish. I feel like what I did will help me expand my areas if I need to, if I can make it to the final day.”

Gallelli in Second

It appears the preeminent Italian in bass fishing has tidal fisheries figured out as he sits in second place on the James almost a year to the date after his triumph at last year’s Pro Circuit event on the Potomac River. He bagged 18-9 on Friday, giving him 34-5 after two days. Gallelli knows what it takes to win but is also looking at a potential berth on the Bass Pro Tour. Coming into this event, he was sixth in points and is in good shape to improve on that.

“I got a taste of what a win was like on the Potomac, but I’m fishing for points this year,” he said. “My main goal this season isn’t to win an event, it’s to qualify for the Bass Pro Tour.”

Gallelli is mixing in various techniques and staying flexible, which he believes explains his success on tidal fisheries.

“You need to be flexible and not strict with what baits to use,” he said. “Today, I caught them with four different techniques and yesterday it was five. I’m fishing a lot of different things, from moving baits to finesse. I’m starting to understand how the fish are positioning and feel like I can catch them during all tide phases.”

Gallelli’s keeper count was halved from 30 yesterday to 15 today, but Gallelli feels good about his prospects for advancing based on what he’s learned this week.

“I’m going to fish more intelligently tomorrow,” he said. “I don’t have a strict game plan and will go with the flow. After tomorrow, the weight starts at zero, so I have to think ahead.”

Ebare Scuffles on Day 2

After bagging 20-15 to start the event, Dakota Ebare added 12-8 to fall one spot to third. His bag on Friday was significantly helped by some key fish late in the day, including a fish over 5 pounds.

“That was a big relief to catch that one,” he said. “I caught her an hour before I had to leave and also culled a few times in that period. The fish didn’t bite well on an outgoing tide today for some reason. Incoming was great, even though it didn’t look like I had a lot to show for it. Tomorrow’s a later tide, so I won’t even be able to fish that tide in the afternoon.”

Friday, June 17, 2022

2022 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Presented by Fuel Me on the James River: Buck Breaks into Lead!


RICHMOND, Va. – The James River showed out on Thursday. After 154 of the top professional bass-fishing anglers in the world launched this morning at the Toyota Stop 5 on the James River Presented by PowerStop Brakes, 153 of those pros returned to the weigh-in scale this afternoon with a five-bass limit. And the lone pro that didn’t catch a limit still managed to bring four bass to the scale.

After the final fish had been tallied, Green Lane, Pennsylvania, pro Grae Buck, who has two Top-25 finishes already this season, jumped out to the early lead with a five-bass limit weighing 21 pounds, 3 ounces. He’ll bring a slim 4-ounce lead into Day 2 over Brookeland, Texas’, Dakota Ebare, who weighed a limit totaling 20-15. Chris Groh of Spring Grove, Illinois, sits just 8 ounces behind Ebare in third place with five bass for 20-7. Weights are stacked – just over 5 pounds separates first place from 20th – and with three days left in the competition it is still anyone’s event.

“I found two different areas (in practice) that had fish in it, but I never caught quality like this by any means,” Buck said. “Once I finally settled in today I got to see what was actually there and I caught them pretty consistently.”

Buck said that he caught around 15 keepers on Thursday, with a nice 6-pound, 6-ouncer coming right around noon.

“The tide definitely played a role in where I was starting and where I was fishing at,” Buck said. “I’m hoping I can go out there again and catch a bunch of fish. I got that big one in the afternoon. I had to go looking for it – it wasn’t in the same spot where I caught a limit. Hopefully I can get another big one like that tomorrow. Those big bites really go far.”

Buck mentioned that there were numerous other competitors fishing in the same areas. 

“There are a lot of people fishing there, but hopefully we can all work around the area together and catch them,” he said.

Although second-place pro Ebare is much more used to fishing in southern states like Texas and Louisiana, he said that he felt comfortable with how the James River was setting up for him.

“It felt a little like home in how it sets up,” Ebare said. “The tide swings are much bigger here than they are in Louisiana, but once I figured out where I needed to be and how the fish were setting up, I settled in and knew exactly what to look for. I was at the right place at the right time today and was able to start running the tide, which is the key to all tidal waters. It doesn’t matter what you are doing as much as where you’re doing it.


Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Best Post Spawn Largemouth Bass Technique

Post spawn largemouth can give you gray hair! Watching them cruise the shallows as you try to make them bite is a challenge. Check out this video as it explains that focusing on to hard targets like docks and wood is the way to go. Bass locked on a target are easier to catch.

Finesse is the way to go, so put down that big, punching rod and switch over to a spinning.

Monday, June 13, 2022

Saginaw Bay Set To Host Bassmaster College Series

BAY CITY, Mich. — Last year, the Strike King Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops made its inaugural journey to Saginaw Bay, and anglers reported catching 50 to 60 bass in a day along with multiple 20-pound bags of both smallmouth and largemouth.


This year, young anglers will make the trip North again for the Bassmaster College Series at Saginaw Bay June 9-10. Former Elite Series pro Garrett Paquette, who currently competes in the St. Croix Bassmaster Opens presented by Mossy Oak Fishing, believes the fishing could be even better.


“There’s a little part inside of me that is going to be selfishly disappointed when the world is exposed to how great the fishery is,” the Canton, Mich., native said. “If they have good weather for this tournament, it is going to open a lot of eyes around the country.”


Located on the southwestern side of Lake Huron, Saginaw Bay has flown under the radar as a premier smallmouth fishery — and the largemouth fishing has improved greatly over the past couple of years in both quality and quantity.


The Auburn University duo of Tucker Smith and Logan Parks won last year’s tournament with a two-day total of 40 pounds, 9 ounces, catching both smallmouth and largemouth.


“The cool thing about Saginaw Bay is, you don’t have to run to one certain area to catch bigger fish. There are fish along all the shorelines, all of the islands,” Paquette said. “Guys are going to find stretches of spawning fish and big prespawn females, but you don’t have to run to a certain area to win. I know tournaments get won on every little corner of that bay, which is really unique.”

Friday, June 10, 2022

Ryan Salzman Wins 2022 Bass Pro Tour on Watt Bar!

By Mason Prince 

SPRING CITY, Tenn. – For the fourth time in five events in the 2022 Bass Pro Tour season, there’s a first-time champion. Ryan Salzman is the General Tire Stage Five Presented by Covercraft champion on Watts Bar Lake after catching 13 bass for 24 pounds, 3 ounces and beating second-place Jacob Wheeler by just 11 ounces. The is Salzman’s first professional-level win since becoming a full-time pro in 2019.

Salzman Generates Bites from TVA Generating Power

The key for Salzman on Thursday, and really his final two days of competition, was camping out near the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Watts Bar Dam. The Alabama pro was there all day during the Championship Round and for the majority of the Knockout Round. Even though the dam was productive for him over his final two days, the spot had been on his radar since his first Qualifying Round.

“I found this spot on the first day and I noticed that there was enough fish to win here on my electronics,” Salzman said. “The first two days I fished here, the fish didn’t school up though. During the Knockout Round, the TVA decided to start generating 35,000-40,000 watts by running water through the dam and it really lit this spot up.”

Thursday, June 9, 2022

Davis Claims Knockout Round Win, Championship Field Set on Watts Bar

Mark Davis wins the Knockout Round of Stage Five on Watts Bar Lake and feels like he's back to fishing the way he knows he's capable of fishing. Photo by Garrick Dixon

By Mason Prince 
SPRING CITY, Tenn. – It was the second day in a row with a weather delay to start the morning — an hour and 15 minutes to be exact — but it didn’t seem to affect the bite during the Knockout Round of the
 General Tire Stage Five Presented by Covercraft on Watts Bar Lake. Mark Davis took the top spot on SCORETRACKER® after catching 10 bass for 25 pounds, 12 ounces during his consistent afternoon.

Jacob Wheeler is heading to his ninth straight Championship Round after finishing in fourth with 23-9, but more on him later. There were also dramatic third-period runs by both Ryan Salzman and Alton Jones to get themselves above the Toro Cut Line. Here are the eight anglers that will be joining David Walker and Kevin VanDam in the Championship Round:

  1. Mark Davis – 25-12 (10)
  2. Randall Tharp – 23-15 (11)
  3. Ryan Salzman – 23-9 (13)
  4. Jacob Wheeler – 23-9 (9)
  5. Dakota Ebare – 22-11 (9)
  6. Brent Ehrler – 21-11 (11)
  7. Fletcher Shryock – 19-1 (9)
  8. Alton Jones – 18-0 (8)

Full Results

Davis Drop-Shots to Victory

You’d be hard pressed to find a more relaxed angler on the Bass Pro Tour than Bass Fishing Hall-of-Famer Mark Davis. Maybe it’s his stoic demeanor or the easygoing perch on the butt seat on the front of his boat. Whatever it is, it work for Davis, and has worked for three decades now. He’s onto another Championship Round with a strategy that may hold up come Thursday.

“I was hoping that with the cloud cover and the rain we’ve had that I would be able to come into this creek and slow down a bit,” Davis said. “This is the prettiest creek on the lake in my eyes, and I know it’s probably been fished to death over these first five days. It took a drop-shot and being a little more finesse-minded to get these fish today.”

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Walker Weathers the Storm on Watts Bar, Advances Straight To Stage Five Championship

David Walker wins Group B on Watts Bar to automatically qualify for Thursday's Championship Round. Photo by Garrick Dixon

By Mason Prince Bass Pro Tour


SPRING CITY, Tenn. – He may live about 90 miles away from Watts Bar Lake, but David Walker made himself right at home on this impoundment of the Tennessee River, winning Group B’s Qualifying Round of the General Tire Stage Five Presented by Covercraft.

Much like Kevin VanDam who won Group A on Monday, Walker began his second day of competition in fifth place on SCORETRACKER® with 22 pounds, 1 ounce, needing to make up some ground. After a two-hour-and-15-minute lightning delay, the Sevierville, Tennessee, native caught 11 bass for 23-10 on Wednesday to jump into the top spot and automatically qualify for the Championship Round on Thursday.

Walker Storms into Lead After Weather Delay

It hasn’t been the best start to the season for Walker, and he’d be the first to tell you. He sits 72nd in the Bally Bet Angler of the Year race out of 80 pros. He hasn’t made a Knockout Round in 2022, and (technically) he still won’t fish in one as he is directly on to the Championship Round where he will join VanDam for a 1-in-10 shot at $100,000.

“This has been a tough season for me so far, but to have two days like today and Sunday put together is just awesome,” Walker said. “The highs are so high and the lows are so low in tournament fishing. It’s tough to be even keel. One good day can make up for a whole lot of bad ones.”

Walker started the day in a favorable position — fifth place to be exact. After a lengthy weather delay, the Tennessee pro began lighting up SCORETRACKER® in a hurry, adding three bass for 5-9 in the first 45 minutes. He had about two hours in which he didn’t register a scorable bass, but once the third period got underway, Walker caught five bass for 10 pounds to secure the top spot.

“It was just a day where I made the right choices,” Walker said. “I caught fish so many different ways today and I have so many rods on the deck of my boat.”

Monday, June 6, 2022

Brandon Lester Wins 2022 Bassmaster Elite Series Win At Pickwick Lake!

Canadians Gustafson 14th, Chris Johnston 19th & Cory Johnston 54th

Brandon Lester of Fayetteville, Tenn., has won the 2022 Whataburger Bassmaster Elite at Pickwick Lake with a four-day total of 86 pounds, 1 ounce ( Photo: BASS)

BASS Press Release

COUNCE, Tenn. — At long last, Brandon Lester has his trophy.

A veteran pro at only 34 years old, the Tennessee angler slammed the door Sunday in the Whataburger Bassmaster Elite at Pickwick Lake, winning his first Elite Series tournament in nine seasons on tour.

Entering Championship Sunday with a 3 1/2-pound lead, Lester didn’t let up, catching 22 pounds, 14 ounces, which was the VMC Monster Bag of the tournament. That gave him a four-day total of 20 bass for 86-1, almost 6 pounds more than any of the nine other pros who made the final-day cut.

Lester competed in more than 110 Bassmaster tournaments before he won his first one in February — the St. Croix Bassmaster Southern Open on Florida’s Kissimmee Chain of Lakes presented by Mossy Oak Fishing. But as sweet as that win was, it wasn’t a notch in his Elite Series belt like this week’s big victory on Pickwick, only two hours from his home in Fayetteville, Tenn.

“This is unreal,” he said. “That Open win, I was super proud of it. It’s a stacked field in the Opens. But an Elite Series win is next level. I guess it’s between an Opens win and a Classic win. That’s the only thing that can top it. These are the greatest bass fishermen in the world. I believe that. If they’re not, they won’t last long.”

The $100,000 first-place prize pushed Lester’s career Bassmaster earnings past $1 million — a sign of not only his longevity in the sport but his undeniable success.

He was head and shoulders above the 91-boat field this week, competing on a lake he’s fished regularly the past few years, but never in an Elite event on Pickwick when ledges were dominant. He said being on familiar water narrowed his focus and raised his confidence.

“I would never tell anybody ‘Hey, I’m on the fish to win,’” Lester said. “I’ve been in that position before and it didn’t work out. But I knew if I made the right decisions and did my job this week that I could win this tournament.”

Lester found a special spot during practice that replenished daily and provided the bulk of his catch.

Thursday, June 2, 2022

Advanced TVA Ledge Fishing with John Murray


Ledge fishing is one of the hottest yet most frustrating bite of the year. Get on an active school of bass it can be the best bass fishing trip of the whole year. Learn from MLF Pro John Murray as he explains advance ledge fishing techniques. John Murray is a legendary deep water angler with a lifetime of tournament knowledge. Listen as he explains how to up your ledge fishing game.