Welcome to my Tacklebox

Hot New Fishing Products - Check 'em Out!

Bassin' Basics - Go to This Link and See #3!

21 Bass Fishing Experts Reveal Their Best Tips For More Fish

Bass Fishing For Beginners

Posted by Leeds, Alabama on 


Fi               The great outdoors is as wholesome and pure as it gets in the world today. I personally was introduced to fishing at a young age when my dad took me down to our dock and waved a fish in front of my face. I have been hooked ever since, not just on fishing but also on anything related to the outdoors. I still thank my Dad as often as possible for helping to instill that passion in me. I am also grateful for the bond that it created between us and the many great memories neither one of us will ever forget. As a parent, an introduction to the outdoors is one of the greatest gifts you can ever give to your child.

It is very important to know where to start if you're thinking about getting yourself or your family into fishing. The best way is by taking a trip to your nearest Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World. At Bass Pro Shops you will find yourself surrounded by the cutting edge in fishing and outdoor gear as well as all the products that a beginner would need to get started. Associates that are experienced in their departments in which they work in will always point you in the right direction.

If you are an adult looking to get started bass fishing, the best rod and reel type you can get is a spinning combo such as the Pflueger Trion GX-7 Spinning Rod and Reel Combo. This is a great quality set up for a affordable price. For a beginning set up for a child, I would recommend a spin cast combo. Spin cast combos are easy to use and hard to mess up making them perfect for a child who is just getting started. A Zebco Bill Dance Select 33 Rod and Reel Spincast Combo would work out great with good quality and again the undeniable plus of affordability. These rod and reel combos are just what any angler needs to get started.

Bass Pro Shops is full of fishing lures which can make the task of selecting the proper fishing lure to use extremely overwhelming. There are so many great options but in my mind the very best choice is a soft plastic stick bait. The original model of the bait I am referring to is the Gary Yamamoto 5" Senko. Bass Pro shops also has their very own model of the bait which is called the Bass Pro Shops Tournament Series Stik-O-Worm Soft Plastic Jerkbait. These are both great options and work best when rigged with a size 4/0 Gamakatsu EWG Worm Hook. This lure is simple and works best when it is fished very slowly letting the lure fall down all the way to the bottom and then lifting the rod tip and repeating letting it fall back down. Now don't be fooled by it's simplicity the soft plastic stick bait also catches big bass, and has been used to win bass tournaments as well.

So take a trip to Bass Pro Shops and get all of your fishing needs taken care of. If you are having trouble finding any of the things mentioned in this article just simply find a fishing associate and ask them where you can find the products mentioned here. There is no better time to get started fishing then in the spring of the year, and coming soon to all Bass Pro Shops across the country is the annual Spring Fishing Classic from February 22 through March 10. There will be educational seminars given as advertised by some of todays top pros. This will be the perfect opportunity to ask questions and to hear some incredible insight on how to become a better fisherman.

I hope to see you there!!!

Joey Nania

Tip #8:  Oh man where has the time gone.  Sorry about falling behind on tips for you to catch more fish!  Here is one! Fish when the fishing is the toughest!

It gets tough out here fishing tournaments sometimes. Here is the challenge.  Take the worst day that you can think of to go fishing and then go fishing anyway.  Last week in Muskogee on Lake Fort Gibson the temperature peaked at 108 degrees.  Needless to say, no one in their right mind would go out fishing all day for ten hours in 108 degree scorching heat!  So what does that say about us tournament anglers? LOL!  But fish we must and if you want to improve your skills, pick some days that are not so ideal and go fish anyway.  Like they say, a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at the office!  By going out and fishing during some of the dog days and challenging yourself to find fish anyway you will be doing what the best of the best pro anglers are doing.  Somehow, even in the worst of conditions, whether it is snowing and 31 degrees with a howling wind or dead calm and 108 degrees, somehow the someone catches a good bag of fish and wins the tournament.  That is one of the keys to success on the water that you can only gain by actually doing it.  Sounds strange I know, but if you can find fish on those tough days imagine how well you can do when conditions are ideal!  

Tip #7:  We have hard water up here - how about you!?

When it is 14 degrees out it really makes it difficult to make a long cast.  I hate seeing my SPRO crankbait bounce along the frozen surface of Liberty Lake.  Not only that but catching fish that way is nearly impossible!  My hearty fishing buddies do some ice fishing but I am choosing to get cozy with BassTimes and Bassmaster Magazine and dream about the tournaments coming up in the New Year. Maybe someday a friend from Minnesota will take me out in one of those ice shantys.  Now that would be perfect for winter fishing fun! 


During this time I like to read about the lakes that I will be fishing in 2011.  That is the best way to get some ideas to apply during pre-fishing times.  So far I know for sure I will be fishing Lake Lewisville, Texas; Table Rock, Missouri and the Arkansas River.  Even if you aren't a touring professional it pays to spend some time on line to research the lakes that you plan to fish this year.  At least when you get there you will know where the boat ramp is and maybe even have a couple of spots located on your map and gps. 


You can treat yourself and order some fishing maps too.  Fishing Hotspots is one of my favorite sources for printed maps.  They do a good job of giving you some ideas about where to start looking for those big green and brown monsters! 


The other thing I like to do during this down time is spend time with my family and friends.  I try to fill my personal tank as best I can before hitting the road again.  These are important connections that strengthen me during tough tournament days!


Happy New Year!

Tip #6:  The fall feeding frenzy begins!  Hurray!

For those of you who like to fish in warm weather you can stop reading now, but for those of you who like to catch big ones and don't mind a little wind, rain and some colder on! 


Fall is one of my favorite times of year to fish, mostly because the big ones are active and looking for lots of food as the water starts to cool.  Also because this is the best time to use my favorite technique, throwing SPRO's Little John Deep Diving crankbaits.  Pick a color that matches the forage fish (those may be crawdads) that are present in your body of water and brace yourself for some fast paced action.  For this kind of cranking you will need a 7 foot plus All Star Rod with a soft tip and a stiff back bone.  Try pairing that with the Pflueger bait casting reel.  They are perfectly balanced together.  Use McCoy 100 % floro so that your crankbait can get to the bottom and find the rocky shelves and pockets that are particularly fun to find in Northwest impoundments such as Banks Lake, Potholes Reservoir, Moses Lake and Lake Roosevelt. 


Crank the bait hard and hold on with both hands!!!!!!!!

Tip #5:  Late summer is not always early fall!

Our club fishes the Snake River just about every year in mid September.  Sounds like the fall bite should be on when you say the word 'September' but that is not always the case.  At that time of year, depending on if the weather has remained warm, like it can do in the Northwest, the fish are still in their summer patterns.  Water has yet to cool and the days are still long enough to rewarm the water, even if it cools down a little at night.  I find that the transition times like this are some of the toughest times to catch big fish.  They just haven't gotten the message yet that it is time to start their fall feeding frenzy. 


Our Club catch on the Snake is a perfect example.  The winning weight for two days was 17.80 pounds on 10 fish. (My dad, Joel Nania won his first bass tournament with that weight!)  The snake is known to produce lots of 4 plus pound smallies - and we caught a few in the group of 35 anglers, however, even our most experienced anglers had a tough time getting anything more than 7 or 8 pounds per day. 


The key to catching fish at that time of year is to throw reaction baits like the SPRO Aruku Shad which is a lipless crank bait.  Throw it and keep throwing it.  Once you find the smaller 2 pounders, you might try moving a little deeper, but the big girls have lockjaw and it takes a very patient angler putting the bait right in front of their faces to get them to bite.  By throwing reaction baits you stand a good chance of catching lots of fish, having fun, and maybe, just maybe you get a big one to hit in the process!


Tip #4:  Bed Fishing in the Northwest

Returning home to the Northwest after my 3 month pro tour was great because we have had a slow warming spring.  I know, not much fun for you sunbathers but great for anglers who like to catch fish on beds.  Before you read any farther you have to promise me that you will "catch and release all bed fish".  They are in the process of creating future fish so we can continue to enjoy our sport.  OK?  Promise?  Great!


I have two preferred set ups for bed fishing.  First, on a spinning rod and reel, the drop shot with about a 6 inch tag line to the weight.  I rig the drop shot with a V&M straight worm (  My next choice is a Gamakatsu Skip Gap Shakeyhead hook rigged with a Stanley Sidewinder. ( and The Sidewinder has a floating tail so the head of the bait is on the bed and the tail floats up in their face!


Look for light patches in relatively shallow water. You may be able to see the fish hovering over the bed.  If you approach too closely you will spook the fish, but in many cases if you remain still and move back the fish will return to the bed in a minute or so.  Cast you set up about 6 feet past the bed and retrieve it slowly until you are directly above the bed.  Then let it drop down and sit on the bed. Keep it there.  You will notice that the fish don't always hit immediately.  But if you keep it in place eventually they will hit it not because they are hungry but because they are angry!


Set the hook, have fun fighting the fish and remember, you promised, let the fish go to complete their mission.  In every case where I have caught a bedding fish they return to the same bed within a couple of minutes from the release.  It is a great way to preserve our resource and have a blast at the same time! 

Tip #3:  The Winning Combination makes your fishing more fun and more successful

You don't have to spend a fortune to have a great fishing experience but it does pay to find a good solid rod and reel combination to help make your fishing more enjoyable.  Yes, I am talking about two of my sponsors but I promise you I used their tackle long before I ever approached them to become a sponsor.  The Pflueger reel ( combined with an All Star Rod ( are perfectly balanced and feel great.  Why is that important?


Three reasons


Control of your casts - accuracy is critical when fishing bass.  If you can increase your accuracy you increase your catch.  This combo will enable you to target a spot more effectively.


Fatique - unbalanced tackle causes fatique.  This is as important on a fun fishing day as it is in a tournament. 


Snafu-factor - Poor performing rod and reel cominations cause more loops, tangles and can really mess up a good fishing day.  A better balanced package enables you to fish more efficiently.


Ok, if you have some time here is the next thing you need to try - a baitcasting rod and reel set up.  That is intimidating to some but a bait casting set up gives you more control over your casting accuracy and more control over the fish once you hook that dream fish.  It will take some getting used to but once you do you will make it your primary set up keeping the spinning in reserve for finesse fishing! 

Tip #2: Texas - Lake Amistad - Catch 'em deep and shallow depending on the day!


As promised - the Lake Amistad largies are hitting and hitting big.  The largies there hit like giant Northwest Smallies.  The fish are really agressive and depending on what stage they are in, which seems to change daily with the weather you can either catch them shallow -seeing them before they bite your Stanley Sidewinder ( or fishing deep when you have a carolina rig set up with a soft plastic in deep water.  My day one in the Central Open was a blast.  My partner Arnold Grupe and I both caught great fish.  I had a 5 fish limit on the Sidewinder by 10 am that weighed over 20 lbs, weighing in 24 pounds total and Arnold ended up weighing in his 3 fish limit at 17 pounds! 

Day two I learned how quickly Amistad can turn on you.  The wind pounded us and made a muddy mess out of my best spot.  I eeked out a limit just under 13 pounds and managed to make the cut in 25th place. 

Day 3 - me and my partner Stephen Mitchell went deep.  The key to the day was fishing deep with a carolina rigged fluke.  Those largies are just like Northwest Smallies.  We both had good bags.  Mine ended up over 20 lbs. Not enough to win but enough for 9th place.  Stanley really came through for me.  I was using my usual Pflueger reel, All Star Rod rigged with McCoy Mean Green 15 pound mono and a Gamakatsu Skip Gap shaky head.  It all worked great and I was happy to be running my Z-8 in these tough conditions.  The Merc 225 Pro XS really did the job on some very extreme - I mean 4-6 footers coming back.  My day two partner Darrell Lamoure reports that he is healing just fine!  Sorry!  My Z-8 runs at 70 mph plus with a Merc 225 pro XS. These boats are amazing and the 2010 pricing is really something to consider!

Next tips!  The Texas Area and some surrounding special lakes before I head off to Martinez Lake to pre-fish for the BASS Federation Nation Western Divisional.


Tips #1: Early Season Tips in the Inland Northwest - March 20, 2010

This time of year in the Inland Northwest the water is pretty cold in the mid to lower 40's.  Try fishing the smaller area lakes like Newman and Liberty and fish the south facing shorelines for warmer water.  You will need to get the fish on a reaction bite so I recommend the SPRO McStick jerk bait that dives down about 6 feet and suspends.  After you jerk the bait, give them a good 2 or 3 seconds to hit.  Then jerk it again.  I use a Pflueger President heavy spinning coupled with an All-Star Rod.  These products by Pure Fishing were made for each other and are perfectly balanced which makes them fun to use.  Check them out at and


You can also try a lipless crank bait - once again SPRO lures is the best source.  I have had some luck lately on a Stanley Jig around docks.  Check out the Stanley stuff at I really like the black blue for this time of year. 


It is a little to early and too cold for much action on drop shots. If you are a plastic fanatic you can try throwing a Gamakatsu ( football head with a V&M tube. Tind those at  That has generated a couple bites and will get better as the water warms up. 


For all of this I am using 10 pound McCoy Mean Green.  It really is the best mono on the market - no tangles or loops, no foolin'.  Have fun out there!


Facebook Twitter Youtube