• Bass Fishing

    When the sun gets bright in July at Bogue Homa, Paul Elias suggests flipping a Stone Jig on the shady sides of the cypress trees.

    July bass at Bogue Homa

    I choose the lakes I pick each month, since I know where the bass have to be, and what baits they’ve historically taken. That’s why for July I’m selecting Bogue Homa.

    July 13, 2017 at 9:00am
    For the fourth straight year, fishermen helped in the restocking of Florida bass in Ross Barnett Reservoir.

    Florida bass added at Ross Barnett

    For the fourth straight year, Barnett Reservoir officials, the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks and reservoir bass anglers joined to stock Florida bass fingerlings in the popular lake near Jackson.

    July 03, 2017 at 6:00am
    Bassmaster Elite Series pro Greg Hackney commits enough time to hit several docks because piecing together the details of when and where bites occur typically yields a consistent formula.

    Make boat docks yield more bass

    Docks, piers and boathouses may have been created as launching points for boating activities, and the activity that benefits the most from them during the warmer months is fishing.

    July 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Ken Covington, known by many as the “Minnow Man,” raises minnows and wholesales them to bait shops all over Mississippi and Alabama. He also enjoys using his products to catch big bass. 

    Can’t catch bait? Then buy it

    While some diehard anglers catch their own shad, wild shiners, or goldfish, but most people must rely on the local bait shop. That’s where Ken Covington comes in. 

    June 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Learn to flip and pitch with the bait in the hand you use to reel so you don’t have to transfer the rod between hands. It’s during that transfer that you can miss a subtle bite.

    Stay on the right side

    It’s some of the best advice Darold Gleason ever got, and the Toledo Bend guide credits the outcome for much of his personal angling success. 

    June 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Bassmaster pro Jordan Lee doctors his frogs before he feels they’re ready for use.

    Slow up for the blow up

    Frog fishing, like all topwater tactics, rewards diligent casting with that pulse-pounding surface assault. Whether it’s a walking frog or a popper, we watch that steady motion like a birddog on point, hoping with clinched jaw and held breath that the next movement of that plastic nose will detonate the explosive charge.

    June 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Paul Elias likes to pitch a jig into the thickest hydrilla he can find, let the lure sink to the bottom, hop it off the bottom two or three times, reel the bait in and make another pitch.

    Lake Okhissa for June bass

    I’ll choose 1,075 acre Lake Okhissa near Bude, Mississippi, for June bass fishing. A Bill Dance Signature Lake in the Homochitto National Forest, Okhissa is deep and clear with plenty of hydrilla and dollar pads. The bass will be on their summer pattern, so I’ll be fishing a frog pattern and a flipping and pitching pattern.

    June 08, 2017 at 9:00am
    On highly pressured waters, bass get large by surviving capture and release.

    Summertime bass care

    It’s June and the waters where our sportfish live have warmed into the 80s. Although temperatures a little above 80 degrees approximate the preferred temperatures for bass, anglers intending to keep fish alive in livewells need to understand that these fish not only have to be given good conditions to survive livewell confinement, but they also have to recover from the stress of capture, primarily the oxygen debt that results from playing the fish until it can be landed. 

    June 05, 2017 at 9:00am
    Writer Mike Giles was using live bait at sunrise in June when he caught this healthy largemouth.

    Live bait = Big Bass

    Jack Giles’ cast settled next to a submerged brush pile, and the strike was immediate.


    A giant bass smashed his bait almost as soon as it hit the water, sending Giles rearing back to drive the hook deep into the bass’ jaw.

    June 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Bob Ponds is the dean of striper fishing on Ross Barnett. He trolls to locate a school then casts to them.

    Earning Stripes

    There is a rock weir behind Fordice Island, almost directly across the Mississippi River from Vicksburg. The river was around 9.9 on the Vicksburg gauge and Richard Baker said we could get all the skipjack shad we’d need for bait for our catfish outing in just a few minutes there. 

    June 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Mike Iaconelli believes minding the details can greatly improve your flipping game.

    Pro-grade flipping tips

    Mike Iaconelli squinted with intense concentration, peering down the shank of a VMC hook in his left hand. Cracking a confident grin, he nodded in approval as the point pressed against his right thumb.

    June 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Pausing a frog over an obvious “blow-up hole” is a good way to tempt another strike from an active area.

    Pro-Grade Frog Tips

    You’d almost think this thing was a CIA operative, what with all the different identities, abilities and serious armament. At the risk of stretching a not-so-subtle Jason Bourne reference too far, let’s just say that the topwater frog is one deadly asset for just about anytime but the depths of winter and whenever fish hug deep structure. So proficient is the frog’s fish-tempting allure that this floating amphibian impostor is a go-to bait for tournament pros and guides who depend on it for a wide range of applications. 

    June 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Making parallel casts keeps your bait in the strike zone longer.

    Staying up on current events

    Using Ross Barnett Reservoir as an example, FLW Tour pro Pete Ponds of Gluckstadt points to spillways as some of the best riprap spots you’ll find. Draining backwaters through sub-highway pipes, these flushing points reach open water through culverts buttressed by riprap. 

    May 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Aaron Abbot shows off a pair of bass, including the 10-pound 4-ounce giant that allowed the 15-year-old to claim the top high school title for Mississippi.

    High school and college fishing growing

    Bass fishing is one of the fastest growing youth movements across the nation, where every level from junior high to college bass fishing has become a friendly but competitive activity.

    May 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Early in the morning, when the water has come up, Elias likes to fish a spinnerbait in the shallow water closest to bushes, trees, grass, blowdowns and any other structure.

    Fish Pickwick Lake for 30 May bass per day

    Pickwick bass fishing can’t get any better than in May. From only two or three schools of bass, you may catch 30 or more bass per day. If rising water happens, the bass will be in this newly inundated water in the grass, bushes and trees. About the middle of May, the bass will be pulling out of the creeks and staging at their mouths or in the cuts and ditches in the flats leading to the river channel. At the end of May, I’ll look for bass out on the main river channel. 

    May 09, 2017 at 9:00am
    Crankbaits allow you to cover water and maintain contact with the riprap.

    Tips to finding bass on riprap

    The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines riprap as “a foundation or sustaining wall of stones or chunks of concrete thrown together without order.”


    It’s a bunch of rocks; how difficult can it be? 

    May 01, 2017 at 7:00am