You know that moment when you set the hook and instantly know you're not in control of the situation? This was one of those times! As soon as the hook was set it was very clear, Matt was in this fight for the long haul.
Its no secret, Matt will pick up a swimbait rod spooled with heavy line over just about anything else in his arsenal. Day in and day out the giant baits on heavy gear produce big bass. Even so, there is a time and a place for everything and on this particular day the bite was tough. A nasty cold front had blown in, bringing with it freezing rain and the threat of snow.
Just hoping for any bite and not really expecting a big bite, Matt had abandoned the heavy gear and was throwing a small crank on a light Crankbait rod, spooled with 20 lb braid and 10 lb leader. When the big fish hit she immediately surged away from the boat, the drag screaming as 20+ feet of line flew off the reel on the first run. Matt struggled to loosen the drag in time. Once the drag was backed off, cooler heads prevailed and it was a matter of waiting out the big fish as she burrowed under the boat in the open water.
While this big largemouth bass was unexpected, having the right gear and the patience to play the fish out made all the difference. With light line and little size 4 EWG hooks the fight could easily have ended in disaster. The whole experience just goes to show, its important to be a well rounded angler, willing to adapt to changing conditions. There are so many ways to catch a big bass. Its okay to fish your favorite techniques but when its not working, face the reality, change your presentation, and you might just catch a giant bass on a new technique!
Has this happened to you? Tell us about your most unexpected big bass catch. We'd love to hear about it!