Glenn: Well, got it. Keri: Hey look at that. That’s a nice fish. Glenn: That’s a really good fish. Keri: Yeah, it is. Of course right when I cast. Glenn: Really hanging on there. Keri: Gotta get the net. Glenn: I need a net, now. Keri: Nice fish. Glenn: That’ll do. Here we go. Keri: Awesome fish. Glenn: Hey folks, Glenn May here with BassResource. com,and today, let’s talk about crankbait fishingin the fall. Now, if there ever was a season for crankbaits,it’s the fall. And that’s because the bass are up activelychasing balls of baitfish. They’re going after shad, they’re going afterthe perch, they’re going after bluegill. They’re going after all that fish, chasingit all around the lake, actively feeding onbaitfish this time of year, and there’s noother bait that mimics the baitfish any betterthan a crankbait. So, let’s talk about the different ways youcan fish it to maximize this time of year. So, let’s start off with the equipment thatI’m using. You gotta have really good, well-matched equipment,because these crankbaits, if you notice, youknow, these are small treble hooks, that areon it. There’s not a big bite to them. And they’re thin wire. So, a couple things can go wrong, if you’reusing the wrong equipment. Primarily, you can either rip the hooks rightout of the fish’s mouth, or you can actuallybend the hooks. I’ve had hooks. . . I’ve lost fish. I had a six-pound smallie I caught in thefall once, and he jumped and threw the hook,and I went, “Ah, great, that was wonderful. “And I brought it back, well I had two treblehooks that were sticking straight out. It just bent them out and came off that way,because I tried to horse him in. I clamped down on the drag and I was tryingto horse that fish in, and I had the wrongrod, it was too stout, and everything wentwrong. So, you’ve gotta have matched equipment forthese treble hooks. Okay?So light wire hooks, small bite, means youcan’t have stout equipment, you’re gonna losea trophy fish if you do that. So, what I’ve got here is a medium power moderateaction rod, okay. It’s got a lot of give and flex to it, okay. That’s what you want, because first of all,it allows you to fire that crankbait way outthere, long distances, but it also has thatspring and that give. When you’re fighting the fish back to theboat, this rod’s gonna give a little bit andtake some of the pressure off those hooks. I’m also using a fluorocarbon line. I like using fluorocarbon, the Seagaur Tatsuline. This is 12 pound Tatsu line. Tatsu casts really well. It’s silky smooth, nice line. Fluorocarbon has that give to it, it’s gota little bit of stretch to it, so if the fishsurges, that fluorocarbon’s gonna help workin concert with the rod to give a little bitwhen that fish takes off. Plus it’s got supersensitivity. And you would think, you know, you don’t haveto have all that sensitivity because whena fish hits your crankbait you’re gonna knowit, right?Not so much. A lot of times, what happens is that the crankbait’smoving along the water, a fish will come upbehind it and he’ll grab it, and if he doesn’tlike what he feels, it doesn’t feel naturalto him, he’ll blow it out. And you won’t tell the difference, unlessyou’re using some real sensitive line. You can feel the vibration of that crankbait. It’ll go “tick tick tick tick tick tick,”and it’ll go to a “dut dut dut dut dut. “Or you’ll just kinda lose the feel with it. It won’t feel light, but it’ll just suddenlyfeel weird. That’s the best way I can explain it, it doesn’tfeel right. And that’s oftentimes when the fish does that. Pulls up behind it, he’s matching the speed,he closes his mouth around it, it changesthe action of that lure, and you’re not gonnafeel that if you’re using, say for examplejust mono or something like that. It’s hard to feel those bites. I don’t use braid because braid has two things,it’s buoyant, not that it floats per se, butit’s buoyant, So you’re gonna have a bow inthe water, you’re not gonna have a great connectionwith the bait, it’s not gonna let that crankbaitget down to the depth that it should, plusit doesn’t have any give at all, no stretchwhatsoever, and that’s absolutely contradictoryto what you need when you’re using these treblehooks. So I don’t use any braid. For that reason, I don’t use braided fluorocarbonor any kind of leaders. I don’t want braid at all when I’m using crankbait. So I don’t want that to be part of the equation. I know fluorocarbon’s pretty expensive soI’ll put braid backing on here, so I onlyhave to put say, 80 yards of fluorocarbonon there, that way my package of fluorocarbonwill last longer. That’s a good cost-effective way of doingit, but I don’t use, like, a leader, per se. And then, what I’m also doing here, one ofthe small things to note is, I am using asnap. Not a snap swivel, but a snap. I don’t like to use snap swivels, becausea swivel will collect weeds and gunk and stufflike that. I just use a snap, and the reason I’m doingit is because during the fall when you’rechasing these bass down, you’re gonna be atdifferent depths, you’re gonna find a differentcover, we’re gonna get into that a minute,there’s different ways of fishing it, andso it’s a lot easier to switch out baits whenyou’ve got a snap, instead of having to retieevery time you need to change baits. So, that’s the equipment I’m using, I’ll beusing. . . By the way, the reel, this is a Helios AirReel. Real nice, it’s fast. It’s got a fast gear ratio, it’s a seven fiveto one gear ratio, and that’s what you needto get it cranked down really quickly downto the level it needs to be at, and you’regonna cover water pretty quickly when youget that technique in just a second. But that’s what you need, and a nice smoothsmooth drag to go in concert with. Everything else you have here, when that fishsurges and takes off, everything gives includingthe drag. You don’t want that drag “dut dut dut dutdut,” like that, yanking on it, cause that’sjust gonna pull that hook free from that fish. Nice smooth drag is what you want. So, that’s the equipment I’m using, now let’sgo fishing. Keri: Oh nice. Oh, you got the camera. Alrighty then. Glenn: He hit it when it bounced off the rocks. Keri: Uh-oh. Glenn: Yeah. Oh, another bass. Keri: That’s a bass. Glenn: Come here, sweety. Keri: Oh, he swam the other way, he saw thenet and went under the boat. Glenn: That’s a good fish. Keri: That’s a nice fish. Glenn: So in the fall, what I like to do isI break it up into basically two pieces. There’s the first half where it’s late summerinto early fall, that’s when the water tempsget all the way down to the mid 50s or so,and then, the latter half of fall, which isfrom the mid 50 water temperature all theway down to the low 40s, the early winter. That’s kinda what I’m talking about, as faras the two seasons. Crankbaits. . . The approach in the what crankbaits I useand where I fish them change those two halves. So in the first half, fish are up and moving,they’re actively feeding, they’re chasingdown baitfish and so, you need to cover alot of water to find them. You’re not gonna be able to just go from spotto spot and get one working real slow likeyou can flipping a. . . pitching a jig, for example. You gotta go chase these fish down and find’em. So what I tend to do is I start, kinda methodicalapproach. I look for bays and coves that have freshwater coming into them. The baitfish are looking for oxygen rich water,and that fresh flowing water is what bringsin that oxygen-rich water. So if a bay or cove doesn’t have fresh watermoving into it, I skip it and I move to thenext one. And I start by working the outside parts ofthat cove with deeper diving crankbaits. I wanna fish the points, the humps, the ridges,the ledges, that kinda stuff. Rock piles that are sitting out there in deeperwater. And for that I use a deeper diving crankbait,one that’s got a nice wide wobble. So one that’s got a big bill like this. That’s what I’m fishing. It does this nice sashay, side to side sashay. It’s got a lot of action to it. It’s got some rattle noises to it. And I wanna fish a bait that it goes deeperthan the area I’m fishing. So if I’m fishing at 10 feet of water, I wantthat crankbait to dive down to 12, 15 feetof water. I want it banging of the rocks, I want itdigging up silt and all kinds of mud, andmaking a ruckus. Because crankbait is excellent for callingin baitfish from long distances, which isexactly what you need when you’re searching,trying to find them. So it makes an excellent search bait. So that’s how I fish the outside portion. Then I move in shallower, and I’m still usingthat crankbait up until it’s too shallow touse. But I’ll throw it at anything that I can,any kind of cover that I can find. Be it chunk rock, or docks, or laydowns, thatsort of stuff, I’ll be fishing that. And I also use a squarebill like this. The squarebill is great for doing that becauseyou can bounce it and deflect it off thatcover, it’s gonna go off at a odd angle andoftentimes that’s what triggers a bite. If it just deflects off cover and bang, afish will hit it with that change of action. Or sometimes when you bang into something,what you’ll want to do if you’re using a floatingcrankbait, let it hit and then pause, andlet it float up a little bit. It looks like a stunned baitfish that justran into something, is a little disoriented,and that’ll trigger a bite. So those are two different ways, but you wantit hitting that cover. Two different ways you wanna fish that coveris one, just to let it ricochet off, and theother one, to let it pause. And then I’ll fish over the tops of weed beds,those vast weed beds in those coves, thatI’ll use something like a Booyah One Knocker,a lipless crankbait. That’s one of these. One of these right here. This works really good fishing those big weedyareas or big flats with lots of stumps andchunk rock in them. And I’ll cover water quickly with it. I’m throwing a half ounce bait now, and I’mmaking a long cast and just burning it back,just under the surface. Getting that reaction strike, getting thatfish to come up out of the weeds and smackit. You really wanna get that reaction strike,so you fish it pretty hard and heavy thattime, and you’ll catch a lot of fish doingit that way. You can also use that on the outside weedlines. You can jig it along the weed lines with thatbait. Let it fall, and then let it sit along theweed line then bring it back up. A lot of times they’ll hit it when it falls,so it’s a great way to fish a lipless crankbaitthis time of year. If I’m not getting bit along those areas,then I’ll go out and I’ll fish the main channels,the creek channels in those bays. I wanna fish the inside creek bends that swingup closer to the shoreline, or intersect witha point, or a sandbar, or something like that. The inside bend, that’s the shallower partof that creek bend, usually, it has some kindof cover on it, chunk rock, stump field, weedbed, something like that. That’s where the baitfish can set up on, andthat’s a great way to take a crankbait andpull it right across the top of it. That One Knocker is really good, because youbring it across the weeds, if you get it inthe weeds a little bit, then give it a quickyank, and yank it up over the top, that changein direction, that sudden movement often triggersa bite. So, it’s a really good way of fishing thoselipless crankbaits this time of year, is justgiving a quick yank every once in a while,pause, and continue to fish it. If at any point I get a fish, this is whereit’s hard, because now you’ve been fishingfast, covering lots of water, and now youcatch a fish. And the first thing that goes in your mindis, “Oh, well that’s how I catch fish. So I’m gonna keep doing that. “Don’t. You actually gotta pull the ripcord. Let that parachute fly out, slow down, andnow methodically cover that area. Because you found that school of fish. They school up this time of year in packsof 3 to 25 or more bass will be chasing thosebaitfish. And if you catch one, there’s likely morein that immediate area. So you really gotta slow down and methodicallyfish that area. Crisscross it at different angles. I like to throw a buoy or marker out or somethingso I know where I’m at, and just cover everythingI can with all the different types of crankbaitsthat I’ve got. The shallow and deeper diver, lipless crankbaits. And I’ll pick up a lot more fish. Now, if I. . . When the bite dies off after doing that, you’vegot a choice. There’s two different things you can do. If, say, for example, I’m on a really goodpiece of cover, or piece of structure, whateverit may be, but if it looks real juicy andthat had a good large concentration of fish,a lot of times what I’ll do is I’ll sit onthat spot, and I’ll wait for the next schoolto come by. Because it’s likely they’re gonna set up shopon that as well. And I may only have to wait 15, 20 minutesfor the next school to happen by, and theaction picks up again, I catch more fish. I’ve actually won tournaments doing that technique. But, that can be a gamble because it may notbe as good of a spot as you think it is, andyou may be waiting for a long period of timeand nobody shows up. They don’t wanna come play. So, you may be wasting your time, but it’ssomething worth trying if you’re in a reallygood spot. But if the bite dies down, and you don’t wannasit on that spot, then pick up sticks andtake off down the shoreline again, back tofishing aggressively, back to fishing fast,until you connect with that next school offish. Then slow down, methodically work it again. Now, the second part of fall, we fish a littlebit different. This is when that water’s cooling down, andnow it’s getting closer to winter. Those fish are gonna pull away from thoseshallow areas. The weeds are dying off. When the weeds die, they’re gonna consumeoxygen, and like I said before, the baitfishare looking for oxygen-rich water, so they’regonna abandon those areas where weeds aredying, and they’re gonna move out to the deeperweeds, to the outside weed line in the deeperwater from 10 to 20 feet, 25 feet deep. That’s a good area to target with a crankbait. The one that dives real down deep. . . deep downthat area. But I’ll change it a little bit. I’ll go to a tighter wiggling crankbait, narrowerbill, something like that. This one dives down to, I think, 10 or 12feet deep. That’s excellent for fishing along those deeperweed lines. A tighter wiggle bait, it doesn’t have asmuch action. It’s not rattling around, making as much movement,and that’s kinda. . . You wanna mimic the activity level of thefish. They’re not as aggressive as it gets colder,so you wanna get a tighter wiggle, not asmuch movement. And that really attracts a lot of bites duringthe latter half of the fall. So I’m using that to plum the depths alongthose deeper weed lines, along the deeperstructures that move out away from those coves,then we’re moving to main lake points, we’removing to humps, ridges, rock piles, brushpiles. Those type of things you wanna use. You still wanna bang along the bottom. But sometimes what I’ll do is I’ll do moreof a pause action now. I’ll start banging stuff, and I’ll pause fora second. Look stunned, I’ll a wait a little bit whilesometimes I uses a suspending type crankbaitso it doesn’t float up as much, and that’sa really good way of getting those strikeswhen the fish are lethargic. As a matter of fact, sometimes what I’ll dois I’ll go out and I’ll position the boatshallower and I’ll throw out to deeper water,and I’ll slowly work it uphill. Slowly. Just let it bang and bounce and just kindawork its way slowly uphill. And for that, I’ll usually change colors,I’ll use like a crawdad pattern, a crawdadcolor crankbait, because I want it to lookmore like a crawdad making its way on up thecover. So that is an excellent way of catching, especiallyin the fall, late fall when they’re not aggressivelychasing baitfish. As far as colors, as I touched upon it, there’sreally only two colors you need. One is fire tiger, and that’s what this is. That’s just a fire tiger pattern right there. That works everywhere. That is an excellent color to be throwing. Don’t be fishing crankbaits in the fall withoutfire tiger. You just need that color, and then any kindof bait fish color. So, for example, this color here, you know,kind of a gray silver. You know, that’s a sexy shad kind of color. Just any kind of shad color. Those are the two colors you need, with theexception of a crawdad pattern when you’refishing it uphill, like I just mentioned. Keri: Another one?Glenn: Yeah, I caught it right off the rock. It hit the rock. Bang. Nice. It ricocheted off the rock. Here we go. Couple other things to note. If it’s windy out, which we get a lot of thatduring the fall, you get those fronts comingthrough. . . if it’s windy, make sure you notonly target those banks and coves in the shorelinethat’s getting hit by the wind, because thatchurns up the water, there’s a lot of oxygenthere, and it draws in the baitfish to feed. Of course, the bass are gonna follow. But also, when it’s windy, you wanna speedup your retrieve, because the fish are gonnabe really aggressive. There’s areas in lakes that I fish that arevoid of cover, void of fish, I never catchthem there, except when it’s windy. And if the wind’s blowing up in that area,man oh man, it’s like every cast. All right?It’s crazy. And you can’t fish it fast enough. There’s no way, you can’t fish the crankbaittoo fast. You just load the boat doing that, so watchfor that, the windy conditions getting moreaggressive. Conversely, if it’s really calm out, it’sglass smooth, now you’ll wanna go a much slowerretrieve, and be a little more methodicalin your approach to catch those fish. So, a couple ways to adjust your retrievebased on the weather conditions. But that’s basically how I fish crankbaitsduring the fall. I hope that helps. For more tips and tricks like this, visitBassResource. com.