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same scenario is played out every fall on
spending the hot summer slumbering in deep-water haunts, bass follow
baitfish in the fall to the shallows, where the cooler water
triggers a feeding frenzy. The recurring fall scenes of bass busting
schools of shad make this season one of the most exciting and
frustrating times to pursue bass.
The thrill of watching these fish churn the surface climaxes when your topwater lure disappears in a frothy explosion. That excitement can quickly turn into frustration, however, when you make countless casts to these marauders and the fish continue to ignore your offerings. The frustration also continues to mount when you continue to switch lures with the same results.
The surface commotion makes it easier to locate bass in this situation, but anglers still face the challenge of tricking these fish into biting their offering rather than the smorgasbord of natural bait in the vicinity.
selects a chrome-color Spook that he retrieves in an erratic
fashion. He walks the lure quickly in short jerky motions by
constantly popping the rod with his wrists. The action makes the
lure pop and spit while it walks across the surface. Sometimes
Surbaugh retrieves the lures quickly and then pauses it to trigger a
a fish misses his Spook, Surbaugh follows up by throwing a Zoom
Fluke or Yamamoto Senko to the blow-up. He opts for a 6-inch
shad-pattern Fluke or a light-colored 4-inch Senko and impales both
lures on a wide gap hook (3/0 to 4/0 for the Fluke and 3/0 for the
Senko). Letting the lure
flutter down is Surbaughs’s favorite follow-up presentation for
the Fluke; he prefers walking the Senko in the same fashion as a
a bass busts the surface, Surbaugh always casts past the explosion
and then retrieves his lures back through that spot. He makes a few
deliveries to the surface commotion before trying a new target. “I
don’t spend a lot of time on that, maybe two shots at it,” he
all that surface commotion, you figure a bass should hit about
anything you throw over there. But when strikes are few and the
frustration mounts, just keep trying because there is something the
fish will bite. For information
on lodging and other facilities at the
of John Neporadny's book, "THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing
Guide" are available by calling 573/365-4296 or visiting the
web site www.jnoutdoors.com.