Category: Video

Buzzbait Bite Behavior – Part II

No Top 5 fish to report this week so I’ll run with a final piece from my May 27 outing. Today’s post features some footage of an effective follow up presentation after a missed strike on a buzzbait.

In the video below you can hear the buzzbait skip a beat at roughly the six second mark and see the resulting ripple in the water. Telltale signs of a missed strike and one of those things that you learn to recognize and differentiate from contact with surface debris such as floating vegetation which can also cause a hiccup in the retrieve. In the case of a weed or stick, however, there is no ringed ripple spreading out after a collision.

So what do you do upon finding that you have encountered an interested fish who didn’t quite get the job done?

One option is to fire the lure back out a ways beyond where the missed strike occurred and run it back through the strike zone. This can do the trick although I like this approach more so with a stickbait like a Zara Spook to elicit a second strike as a floating lure allows for a little more variance in retrieve.

With the buzzbait I like to go with a sinking lure pitched into the spot where the strike occurred. My go to lure in this case is usually a wacky rigged worm as I rarely am without one tied on from May through September, a similar timeframe for my buzzbait presentation as well.


The sinking lure follow-up worked like a charm with immediate results in this instance. Not a big fish by any means but always cool when a tactic works like you intend.

I managed a few hours on the water over The River this past weekend with disappointing results. But, as promised, you get the bad with the good when it comes to fishing reports so stay tuned later this week. I also hope to get a Top 5 stat recap posted to get us up to speed through May. Hope you’ll stop by and talk to you later. Troy

Buzzbait Bite Behavior – Part I

So here’s some cool buzzbait footage and a bit of a fishing lesson from my May 27 outing.

I’ve compiled this clip to first show the strike and follow-up cast in real time, followed by a zoom view of both casts and finally a zoom view in slow motion. On the initial cast, watch the wake come from the left as bass zeroes in on a meal. This is one of the coolest things to observe when topwater fishing and while it happens very quickly it is interesting what transpires in terms of an experienced angler’s brain and muscle memory. Standard operating procedure in topwater fishing states that one should resist the urge to set the hook until you actually feel the fish. Observing the wake prior to the impending strike sure doesn’t make it any easier to remain calm in that split second as you wait to see if the predator’s aim is true. Even after decades of fishing and likely thousands of topwater strikes it can still be a challenge to not set the hook too soon.

Take a look at the video and read on for some further thoughts.


What’s also interesting and kind of weird is the same bass surfacing as my follow-up cast approaches. I’ve seen this behavior many times after busting off a bass hooked on a topwater lure. Often the bass will surface with a head shake to dislodge a bait such as a Zara Spook or buzzbait. My speculation in those instances is that the bass knows something just isn’t right and continues to try and dislodge the bait just as it would during a leap when that lure is still tied to your line.

In the case of this missed bass, I theorize that its mouth/brain was still registering the feeling of a hook thus a similar reaction minus a lure being stuck in the lip. To know for sure, I would have to ask the bass and I would guess that we are not on speaking terms. And who could blame him? I’d be a little upset and perhaps embarrassed as well. Hopefully not too long of a memory though as one of these days I’ll likely be back to pester him and his buddies again.

While I cast the buzzbait back for a second chance in this case, there is actually another technique which can be employed to see if the bass can be tempted to bite again. And as luck would have it, I wound up using just such a trick later in the day. That video and discussion is up next as we continue to explore the entertaining pursuit of bass fishing. Talk to you later. Troy

One Hungry Bass

Every once in a while you land a bass that provides a clue as to what the fish are eating. It may be the telltale fish tail indicating a baitfish meal or perhaps the hairlike antennae in the throat that signify a crawdad dinner.

This catch was of the latter persuasion and there was no doubt what it had for breakfast as shown in the video below.


Pretty crazy stuff when considering that this bass was geared up for another meal before finishing the previous one. And this fish sure didn’t care where that next bite was coming from in light of bottom dwelling prey for breakfast and the immediate attack of a topwater bait on my catch. Kind of fun and a bit of insight into what these predators are really all about. As tough as they can be to fool sometimes, they are built to kill and are quite effective at doing just that throughout the water column.

Back again tomorrow with further proof of that aggression and an additional bit of odd behavior courtesy of another piece of interesting fishing footage. Talk to you later. Troy

More Than A Few Good Reasons

As you may know, if you’ve hung around here very much, this is not your run of the mill outdoor website.

After all, what kind of blogger professes to be a bass fisherman yet hasn’t caught a bass in over a month?

Well, there’s good reasons for that as bass fishing resides a ways down the old priority list.

The month of May has been a wild one in regards to those reasons. How about lots of bad weather, a First Communion, a birthday party, 2 field trips as chaperones, 3 stitches in the forehead, 3 plays/concerts, 4 awards ceremonies, 5 music lessons, 5 fundraisers and 16 sports related events.


And it’s only May 26, so there’s nine more items to add to those totals above before we bid May farewell.

From the stats and the video I hope you can understand why those green fish have gotten a break from this sometimes bass blogger.

Time will tell when I see them again but stay tuned as plenty of other stuff to pass along in the meantime. Talk to you later. Troy

Best of Both Worlds

Last weekend changed completely when my folks decided to take our two boys from Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon. With two girls at home, one a teenager and the other soon to be, well, things are a little less hectic and not as supervised. Thus, I spotted a bonus opportunity to get back on the water.

Of course, it’s still not all that easy. Prep work kept me up later than planned and I overslept the 5:05am alarm and woke up instead at 5:55am. Had all the fixings cooked up for my own breakfast burritos only to remember that we had no tortillas. And had a kid activity to attend after lunch about 40 minutes north of my fishing holes.

And here you go, a roughly 14 hour day in 2 minutes and 11 seconds.


When it was all said and done, I managed a decent haul of bass after a slow start including my new Top Bass of 2019. Racked up another five miles of hiking along the way, too.

The Glenview Middle School bands rocked the IGSMA Music Festival at Geneseo High School with all three (Jazz, Concert and Symphonic) receiving top marks. Carly nailed her oboe solo during the Symphonic competition with the band receiving a perfect score.

And the Cubs pulled out a much needed victory in a slugfest to end the day.

Rewarding and tiring all in one. More on the trip to come in the form of my standard fishing report. Talk to you later. Troy

2018 Video Blooper Reel

Back for a second year with a batch of silliness via a collection of clips compiled throughout 2018. Got a little help from my boys with a slip from Zac and more than a few contributions from Jayce. Don’t know that anything would qualify to win us some cash on the funny video show but good outdoor memories nonetheless. All the more rewarding too, considering were headed for a temperature of -27F to start the final day of January. Not really good for outdoor activities so I get my fix as some sort of internet rambler.


Coming your way to kick off February is not only a new “Lyric of the Month” (dedicated to Mother Nature) but also the intro to another year of the “Friday Flashback” series for 2019. Talk to you later. Troy

2018 Fishing Video Recap – The Recaps

Day 10 of the video recap series has arrived as promised. Since we started this project with a montage of intro clips, it seems fitting to end it with a batch of recap bits. A look at the part of the trip that comes on the heels of the preparation, the anticipation and the on the water execution. A time when the dust has settled, the gear has been packed up and an angler’s thoughts turn to evaluation (and a sandwich).

With an hour drive home from most of my favorite fishing holes it leaves ample time to rehash those best laid plans to ponder what worked and what didn’t. Most of the time there’s a little of both to consider, all to the welcome soundtrack found on the presets of the truck radio.

Weather, lures, water conditions, trip duration and number of bass caught are among the standard topics in a recap. In addition, there’s the general summary of the ups and downs that come during a day on the water while enjoying the entertaining and dynamic hobby called fishing.

All of the above are included below in the 2018 Fishing Video Recap of the recaps.


There you have it, the finale of a Top 10 sort of video recap from the year that was. I hope you found something worthwhile in the clips whether it was entertainment, education or simply an escape from what you should really be doing instead of hanging out on the internet.

As I mentioned at the outset of this series, video has indeed added an enjoyable new wrinkle to this fishing hobby. A hobby that I am serious about but that doesn’t mean that I take myself too seriously when going about it. On that note, one final piece of video headed your way next, the 2019 Video Blooper Reel. Talk to you later. Troy

2018 Fishing Video Recap – Top 5

Back in 2014 on a former blogging gig I kicked off an audience participation thing called “Top 5.” It all began with bass and basically you send in your catches as the year progresses working towards a year end Top 5 weight. I’ve covered all of the specifics here on the website a couple times, most recently in the January 7 Top 5 Update post so I’ll refer you there for the scoop.

For 2018, 116 more bass entered the database thanks to anglers both young and not as young, waters both public and private and lures galore. It’s always a treat to see a new message in the Inbox, catch one for myself or have a front row seat when a fishing partner gets a good one.

And the latter is where we are headed with today’s video. All of the 2019 bass had their merits so how in the world would a guy pick a Top 5 from the Top 5 to call his favorites.

Actually, it was pretty easy.

And they ain’t even mine.


Yep, it was quite a day. Chunking Senkos on Cinco de Mayo with my boy. Don’t get much better than that.

I’ll leave it at that too, as the video says plenty. You don’t need any more words from this guy, just go back and watch the video instead.

Talk to you later. Troy

2018 Fishing Video Recap – Details

So, this whole series comes courtesy of my recent foray into the world of video technology via GoPro or iPhone. Neither of which actually existed back when I started writing outdoor articles. The new wrinkle of being able to include some video with the words and pictures has been a pretty cool addition that I find quite entertaining.

And entertainment is a lot of what the last 17 years and 1363 postings has been all about. I must say that a fair amount of all of that stuff has primarily entertained one person more than the rest.

That would be the guy who composed it.

Today’s clip is a perfect example of how the video aspect has added to my entertainment while enhancing the fishing and writing experience. What we’ve got here is a 12” bass that tipped the scales at one pound even and was caught at Lost Grove Lake on July 27, 2018 using a buzzbait. It says so right there in my log book. Standard issue recording of a catch, similar to the four hundred or so other 12” bass in there, nothing particularly noteworthy, right?

Well, throw in a little video of the catch and it turns out that there is more that meets the eye. Take a look for yourself before I delve into the details.


Let’s start with a classic summer evening buzzbait scenario as you run the bait along the outside weed edge of an expansive shallow, weedy flat. Keeps you right on the edge of your seat.

Watch and listen again at the 0:12 mark as the bait briefly hangs in some weeds, skips a beat and accelerates forward as I give it a twitch to pull it loose. You know what happens in the next split second. Classic bite after a lure has banged into an object and darted free.

At 0:16 the thrashing bass hits the edge of the duckweed surface cover and carves a path through the mat on the way to the boat. By 0:31 the duckweed has regained complete surface coverage which is kind of cool to watch. It’s a neat example of something that I never really paid any attention to as my eyes and attention focus intently on the catch.

Of course, the video also comes with audio and it is fun to listen to whatever thoughts and details are presented as the catch proceeds. Yet again, aspects that would be lost to time without some cool pieces of technology that easily fit in your pocket (or tacklebox) or strap around your chest.

As I said, perhaps I primarily amuse myself but I’d like to think that there are some fellow anglers out there who can relate. After all, I suspect there’s more folks reeling in their share of run of the mill bass in between the occasional and often elusive lunker than there are certified big bass slayers. I would guess that a lot more fishing resembles this video than it does a magazine cover.

To finish up today’s submission I’ve included a bonus video that I figure a few can relate to as well. It was a bit too much to include on my already full blooper video for later this week. But since it features some more Lost Grove Lake footage it fits in here just fine.


Raise your hand if you’ve been there, done that on a summer fishing hole. Sure looks good right about now though. Talk to you later. Troy