A tackle box full of chocolates

In the movie Forest Gump, Tom Hanks’ character talks about how life is like a box of chocolates. Bass fishing is very much the same.

In every tackle box there are a plethora of baits to consider. How does an angler know what to choose?  

There are so many factors that go into selecting the right bait. One is the time of year, which has the most influence on what you should be throwing most of the time. But there are exceptions and sometimes the fish will bite anything you’re throwing. In fishing, timing is everything and what to throw and when to throw a particular bait is what makes fishing so difficult.

Just like the box of chocolates, soft plastic fishing worms come in a variety of colors. I’ve never been able to figure out how fishing worms got certain names, but the color wheel for soft plastic worms in the fishing industry is weird. Some examples: Redbug, Plum Apple, Gleason Candy (one of my favorites), Green Pumpkin, Watermelon, Watermelon Red, Hematoma, and Sprayed Grass, to name a few.  

I remember as a kid finding my dad’s old tackle box, which truly was a box of chocolates. He had baits that I had never seen before or even knew how to use. Even though it was a tangled mess inside his tackle box, I separated out the baits that I wanted to try. For some reason this got me excited, and I could not wait to take them to one of our stock ponds and give them a try. 

While I wish I could say that I caught a boat full of fish on these old lures, truth be known, most got hung up and never made it back to the tackle box they came from. Dad never really asked about any of these old lures, but I’m pretty sure he knew why they were missing. 

One thing I have learned over my many years of tournament angling is that there is usually more than one way to catch bass. For proof of this, all you need to do is look at what the top 10 anglers used to catch their fish for a particular event. Bassmaster magazine does a great job of summarizing each event and will give you the secrets of the top 10 anglers and how they caught their fish.

It always amazes me at how many different techniques and baits are used by the higher-placing anglers. It can be as many as 10  different baits by the top 10 guys. You would think that most of these anglers were probably doing pretty much the same thing, but very seldom is that the case.

While everybody has their favorite chocolate, anglers have their favorite baits, as well as a favorite color they like to throw.  Most will fish with the baits they have the most confidence in and over the years, there’s one particular bait that has put money in my pocket and has played a big role in my tournament success — a Black Emerald  Zoom Trickworm.

There is nothing exciting or special about a Trickworm, but this particular worm and color has long been a go-to lure for me. It’s basically a six-inch straight tail worm with very little built in action. But when paired with a 3/16 tungsten weight and a 2/0 hook, it WILL catch fish! 

The color Black Emerald is best described as a black worm with green metal flake with a few sprinkles of red metal flake mixed in. Another worm that I really like in this same color is the Zoom 10.5-inch Ol’ Monster.

I discovered the color Black Emerald while fishing as a co-angler on the FLW tour back in 2004. I found out that no matter where the tournament went, from Florida to the Carolinas and back to Toledo Bend, this color would catch fish. I think part of its success is the fact that not many anglers throw that color, and the fish don’t see it very much. 

So, there you have it. Fishing truly is like a box of chocolates; you never know what or how you’re going to catch fish. ‘Til next time, good luck and good fishing!

Please make sure to check out our Hook’N Up & Track’N Down Facebook page for all kinds of tips and tricks to help make you a better angler. Go to hutdshow.com to learn more!

Contact Steve at sgraf26@yahoo.com

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