Whitesburg KY

Gabby’s Fishing Fever

As I pulled my boat up to the ramp at Lake Cumberland on a cold and windy day earlier this winter, the thoughts running through my mind ranged from where I should start fishing to how long I could brave the cold weather.

One thing I was sure of was the bait I was going to use that day to catch largemouth and smallmouth bass — the hair jig.

The hair jig is a very versatile bait that can be fished in deep or shallow water or in and around the heaviest cover you can find. It is a bait that will catch any fish that swims anytime of the year when modified to match the situation you are faced with.

As I pulled my boat off the trailer and backed into the chilly water, I could think only of the chance of hooking up with a good bass quickly. I dropped the trolling motor and started working my way toward a part of the bank that had a big flat that dropped off into a channel that runs close to the bank.

I found this area with my fish finder and thought it would be worth fishing. I was right, because on the second cast with a red and brown hair jig I caught a nice smallmouth bass in the twopound range.

After two more casts to this area I hooked into a good largemouth bass pushing the three-pound range. This made the stop very rewarding and just proves that the hair jig fished slowly in cold winter water can be a very good choice of a bait to use. When cast close to productive cover and fished slowly, a hair jig can produce good quality bass at this time of year.

In the winter you want to fish the darker, more natural colors such as black, blue, red, brown, orange and green or any combination of these colors. Fish the jig on light line in the 6- to 10-pound range. Use a clear fluorocarbon line for best results.

After making your cast, wait for your jig to fall all the way to the bottom. Watch your line as the jig falls, as this is when most of the strikes occur. If you see your line stop or jerk sideways, set the hook. If your bait makes it to the bottom, then slowly start working the bait with a slow reeling and crawling action. Most of the bites will only be a small peck or pull on the line, so be aware of your bait is doing.

As the day went on and I fished several different areas with different colored jigs I managed to catch five keeper-size bass and a couple smaller ones, all on the hair jig fished slowly. Give this style of fishing a try and you will catch fishing fever.

On the web: myspace.com/ gabbysfishingfever, or e-mail at gabbysfishingfever@yahoo.com.

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