provided by John Phillips
Mossy Oak Fishing Pro Brandon Lester, 31 years old from Fayetteville, Tennessee, has fished 87 Bassmaster events and won $603,374. In 2018, he was the points champion and Angler of the Year and has 19 top-10 finishes on Bassmaster. To learn more about Lester, visit https://brandonlesterfishing.com/.
I'm having more questions asked today about the value of fishing old lures for bass than ever before. One of my favorite old lures is a crankbait called the Storm Wiggle Wart. I've also got a few old, flat-sided crankbaits that I depend on from time to time that were handmade. I've got a friend who’s an antique lure collector, and I always have him on the hunt for some of those old lures that have caught bass in years past to buy them for me. Most bass fishermen don’t realize that an old bait is a new bait today. The year class of bass that’s in a lake today probably hasn’t seen a lure that was really popular 10, 20 or 50 years ago. So, that old lure that once caught bass is a new lure now that most anglers have forgotten. Many times that lure will catch bass today just like it did 10, 20 or 50 years ago.
At tournaments I’m often asked how I will fish when the weather changes drastically the next day. I have to get my head right. I've got to remember that every other bass angler in the tournament is fishing the next day under the same conditions I am. For instance, having sunshine will help, but I'm not really looking forward to fishing in a 20-30 mile per hour wind that may accompany the sunshine. I realize I’ll have to adjust my fishing to fit the weather. What I've learned over my years of tournament bass fishing is that I have to go every day I'm fishing with an open mind.
For instance, if on the second day of a tournament I start fishing and don’t even get a bite, then I realize immediately I need to do something different than what I’ve done the previous day. Maybe when I’ve located bass in practice the day has been cloudy, however, the next day the weather may be sunny. I’ll know then that the bass probably have moved out to somewhat deeper water, or they’ve moved to a hard structure like a laydown or a grass mat.
Sometimes you’ll hear fishermen say, “I really caught the bass on this type of structure and this part of the lake yesterday, but when I returned there today, the fish had left.” I've learned that generally speaking bass don’t leave an area when they’ve been there the day before. They just may have changed somewhat where they are. If you can determine how that weather or water condition has caused the bass to reposition themselves, and you're willing to make those changes and fish places you may not have fished before, then you still can catch bass on what appears to be a bad day.