3 min to read
Staying Versatile and Fishing the Conditions with Destin DeMarion
Category : BACK DECK
As a Co-Angler, your skills will be tested in a variety of conditions that will sometimes take you out of your so-called “comfort zone”. Whether it’s fishing for a different species of bass, going from deep to shallow, or switching from power fishing to finesse tactics, you need to be ready for anything. If you stay positive, accept your challenges, and have a drive to succeed, you can learn a lot of valuable lessons from every situation.
Once you are assigned your boater for the day, you have to make a game plan and prepare for what could happen on the water. I generally ask some basic questions that I deem essential to help me decide the right tactis, equipment, colors, etc. These questions are usually: “What’s the water clarity like?” “Are you fishing deep or shallow?” and “What type of cover will we be fishing?” Based on the answers, you can draw a lot of conclusions. For instance, if they are fishing dirty water, you should plan on bringing some dark colored plastics or lures in either dark or gaudy colors, like chartreuse. Remember, do not be close minded. Definitely bring a few natural colors in case conditions change, which they almost always do. In multi-day tournaments this becomes even more difficult because every fisherman has their own way of fishing and you must adapt to whatever they are doing.
After you’ve hit the water and started to fish, the mental game begins. To be successful, you want to fish your own tournament independent from your boater. At the same time, it is beneficial to pay attention to what your boater is doing and how they are getting bites. You are not fishing against your boater, but fishing against other Co-Anglers. If you are fishing docks and your boater is skipping a jig, you don’t want to do the same. Skipping a Stick Worm or a shakyhead with a finesse worm are great follow up baits. To begin with, I like to throw a Whip Em Baits Sinking Worm or Finesse worm on a Picasso Shakedown in these conditions. However, it can pay big to throw a moving bait. Topwater lures, spinnerbaits, and swimbaits are great to fish along the sides of docks that can call out some monsters from underneath. It’s all about fishing the conditions. However, I believe fishing grass and open areas are the best times for a Co-Angler to have success power fishing; each of these areas provides a Co-Angler the opportunity to reach fish that your boater is passing. It is harder to pick up fish behind a boater fishing hard targets in front of you, but it can be done. Those times can be tough, but stay positive and put it in your mind that on the next cast you will catch one.
As a Co-Angler, you need to keep an open mind every minute you are out there. Just because you are catching fish on one thing, does not mean you can’t catch more and better quality fish on something else. Never be afraid to experiment with different baits and keep your line wet as much as possible. Be aware of the seasonal patterns and forage species present on the body of water you are fishing and take them into account. Do your homework about the body of water, and find articles on past tournaments to get a better feel for it. Look at every challenge on the water as an opportunity, and trust your instincts, they will lead you in the right direction. Whether you are fishing for big bronzebacks in the Great Lakes region, magnum spotted bass in Alabama, or behemoth largemouth in Texas, be ready for anything and remember to make every cast count!
Circuits Fished: Bassmaster Northern and Southern Opens, Everstarts, BFL Northeast, and Bassmaster Weekend Series
Years Co: 2.5
Favorite Technique: Power fishing with a Frog, Chatterbait, or Swimbait
Hobbies aside from Fishing: Running and Hunting