John's Journal...

Specific Buzzing Tactics for Successful Bass Fishing with Bassmaster Classic Champion Rick Clunn

Day 3: Buzzing Boat Docks for Bass with Bassmaster Classic Champion with Rick Clunn

Editor’s Note: According to Rick Clunn of Ava, Missouri, four-time Bassmaster Classic Champion, “The big 1/4-ounce buzzbait will attract better quality bass than many other lures. I believe the bigger the bait and the more the racket it makes, the larger a bass must be to eat it. Big bass require larger bait fish for a meal than smaller fish do. And, when that buzzbait comes walking across the water, running into structure and acting dazed, a big bass is more likely to inhale it than a small bass will. However, I really don’t care why a lunker largemouth seems to prefer a buzzbait more than small bass do. I just know from experience that it does.”

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewThere are two types of boat docks. My favorite is the stationary boat dock that is anchored to the bottom. Also there is the floating boat dock. I have found that the age of the dock is a factor in how many bass you will find in that area. Too, the floating boat docks usually will produce suspended bass not associated to the structure that are more unpredictable than the bass that stay around boat docks with pilings under the water.

Although a boat dock represents a pattern, a fisherman has to learn how to break that pattern down and look for the patterns within the pattern. The patterns to look for are the stalls, the ladders, the pilings, the corners and the braces of the boathouse. One of the keys to remember in fishing a boat dock is that most of the time the strike will occur as the buzzbait leaves the dock – usually within the first 2 feet of water past the boathouse. For instance if you are throwing into a boat stall, you’ll work your racket bait down the side of the stall, allowing it to hit pilings as it comes out of the slip. When the bait clears the end of the stall, hold on, because that’s where the bass often will hit. If you’re working the lure down the side of the boathouse, and you have determined that the pattern within the boathouse pattern is the corners of the boathouse, be ready to catch a bass just as the bait clears the corner and moves for open water, because that is when the bass will hit generally.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewTwo of the best pieces of structure on a boathouse pattern are ladders and braces underwater. Bass seem to prefer to hold next to structure parallel to the bottom, rather than vertical. Although a ladder has vertical structure, the rungs of the ladder seem to be where the bass prefer to associate. Many boathouses will have braces under the water that are parallel to the bottom. This too, is a good pattern to look for within your boat dock pattern. Maybe a bass feels more comfortable with parallel structure than vertical structure, because it has a lateral line on its side.

Remember to let that buzzbait hit the structure, in and around the boathouse. A big bass is like Oscar on Sesame Street, the grouch that lives in the garbage can. When somebody comes by and rattles his can, he’ll come out and do something about it. That’s the way an old bass is when a buzzbait hits the structure where the fish is. That old bass is also a grouch, and that fish is going to destroy anything that rattles his “can.”

To learn more about bass fishing, get John E. Phillips’ Kindle eBooks, “How to Bass Fish Like a Pro,” “How to Win a Bass Tournament” and “Catch the Most and Biggest Bass in Any Lake: 18 Pro Fishermen’s Best Tactics, “Hot Weather Bass Tactics” and “How to Become A Tournament Bass Fisherman” or go to, type in the names of the books, and download them to your Kindle and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.

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About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Buzzbaits Make a Racket in the Grass and on the Rocks That Calls Bass with Rick Clunn

Check back each day this week for more about Specific Buzzing Tactics for Successful Bass Fishing with Bassmaster Classic Champion Rick Clunn"

Day 1: Bassmaster Classic Champion Rick Clunn on Buzzing for Bass Early in the Year
Day 2: Fishing the Torque of Buzzbaits and Buzzing Fallen Trees for Bass with Rick Clunn
Day 3: Buzzing Boat Docks for Bass with Bassmaster Classic Champion with Rick Clunn
Day 4: Buzzbaits Make a Racket in the Grass and on the Rocks That Calls Bass with Rick Clunn
Day 5: Catching Lunker Bass in the Timber with Buzzbaits with Bassmaster Classic Champion Rick Clunn

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Entry 771, Day 3