Lee Bailey Fishing Factors™

Lee Bailey Fishing Factors™ is an excellent collection of tactics, tips and tricks for bass by Lee Bailey Jr.

 

 

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Summer Bass Fishing Tips

December 6, 2023 by lbailey

Summer Bass Fishing Tips will show you that you need to get out early. Fish the shallows hard based on water temperatures and bait. Once it gets hot focus on deeper water where the water temperatures are lower and the bass have structure to ambush bait.

Bass behave in predictable ways based on temperature, food and available structure

I have mentioned this many times bass are a very predictable fish. In general, they will behave a certain way based on three main variables:

  • Water temperature
  • Available food supplies
  • Structure availability

Yes there are tons of other Fishing Factors™ that affect the way a bass or any fish will behave. These include barometric pressure, wind, rain,moon phases, water flow, etc. Almost year round, there’s a short window at the beginning and end of every day when the fish just bite better. The first hour is best quite often, because there are far fewer pleasure boaters on the water early compared to late in the evening,

Summer Bass Fishing Tips choices of preferred lures.

During these low-light hours both early and late, top-waters can be super productive. Choosing something like a buzzbait or a Whopper Plopper will allow you to cover as much water as possible,Maximize the number of bites you can get during these short windows of time.

But slower top-waters like walking lures, poppers and hollow body frogs also work well if you’re fishing targets. So you could choose to run around for that last hour and target laydowns with a Spook for instance. Or try to draw the fish up out of those laydowns that have been hunkered down all day.

BUT if you can figure out the three most important factors. Water temperature, available prey items and available structure, then you are 80% of the way to catching more bass.

Summer Dog Days Pitching for Bass

December 6, 2023 by lbailey

During the Summer Dog Days Pitching for Bass is my preferred technique in the heat of the day. Depending on the type of water you are fishing. Bass are going to either go deep or relate to structure and shade in shallow areas. When I first started cutting my teeth on fishing bass tournaments. Pitching quickly became one of my favorite ways to catch largemouth bass.

Summer Dog Days Pitching for Bass is my preferred technique in the heat of the day. Depending on the type of water you are fishing.

When looking for the best places to find summertime bass on lakes in the heat. There are three key factors to consider are shade, deep water and flowing water. Here is a look at the three best places to find summertime bass based on those factors.

Summer Dog Days Pitching

Boat Docks

The approach to pitching a boat dock is crucial. I approach a dock and dissect it prior to my very first pitch.

  • First: be sure your shadow doesn’t cast to where you think the bass might be holding.
  • Second: analyze where your targets are going to be and pitch to the closet ones to you first
  • Third: after you have pitched around the outer edge of the dock. It is now time to hit the hardest and most shaded targets around you..

“In a Bassmaster Elite Series Tournament I fished on Table Rock Lake. The Summer Dog Days Pitching had me loaded with a reliable shakey head finesse worm. Then I headed for a couple of docks I knew held fish. While pitching into the shady wells of a dock, I immediately caught a 3-pound Largemouth Bass. This pattern of targeting shady areas of docks on sweltering summer afternoons has produced bass for me throughout my years of competing as a pro anger on the Bassmasters and FLW Tours”

Rivers

“Everyone knows I am a river fanatic. I grew up bass fishing on the CT river and built my tournament career winning tournaments and guiding. The rivers and streams feeding into a lake offer plenty of water flow and oxygenated water. This keep bass active even in the midsummer heat. Run up these creeks or rivers as far as you can to find the strongest flowing water. The most productive spots to try in the tributaries are the pockets near the river bends. This is where wind and current push baitfish towards the bank. I started fishing major tournaments in 1983, and turned full time in 1996. What a ride that was. It was some of the best years of my life. Since I am retired now in Florida I no longer compete. However I fish 3 to 4 days a week. What a great life this is!”

Tips for pitching summertime bass

  • Use heavy hooks, smaller hooks can bend out and cause you to lose fish when muscling them out of heavy cover.
  • Pick your targets out and try to establish a pattern. Are you catching fish on one side or the other (Shady side or sunny side, up current side or down side) At the bottom, in the middle, or near the surface as you are pulling out?
  • When you pitch to your target be ready for a bite at any moment, let your bait fall to the bottom, twitch a few times, pull the bait out and repeat. Depending on the how the fish are reacting you may need to try soaking a bait a little longer with more twitches, try dead sticking for a bit, or shake and bump the bait against cover at the surface.
  • Look for shallow structure/vegetation areas that are close to deep water, big fish like to sit in shallow haunts near deep water for an easy retreat.
  • Practice controlling the entry of the bait to make as little water disturbance as possible upon entry.
  • Ease the bait out of the cover so your weed guard or weedless Texas rigged bait doesn’t expose the hook and snag up on the structure.
  • Lock your drag down so that the fish can’t take any line. Then you will get good hook penetration and be able to clear the fish from cover as quickly as possible.
  • Only lighten the drag in areas where clearing the fish fast off the cover is not as crucial like soft grass or vertical poles. Loosen the drag some, while using your thumb to lock down the spool for the initial hook set.
  • using a high speed reel, this allows you to take up any slack line faster to set the hook, catch up to a fish running at you quicker, and also get your bait back to the boat faster for the next pitch.

“Last but not least, A lot of guys just don’t practice their pitching enough to be able to get it into that target zone. If they’ll practice their pitching and then really concentrate on where should that fish be, the darkest, baddest, hardest to get to area, then they’ll start catching a lot more fish.”

Blade Baits in Summertime

December 6, 2023 by lbailey

Blade baits in Summertime work well for largemouth bass. They may not be a super popular bait for targeting largemouth bass. However you can definitely catch some nice bass on these baits. Some anglers will wind these baits in with a steady retrieve. However, one of the best ways to fish the Binsky blade bait is to vertical jig it. This works great in the summer and fall when big largemouth bass are suspended over schools of bait fish.

Lees Seasonal Approach Guide is a system I’ve adapted to help find bass on unfamiliar waters.

The best ways to fish the Binsky blade bait is to vertical jig it. This works great in the summer when big largemouth bass are suspended over schools of bait fish.

Fish blade baits in summertime Vertical

If you’re like most bass fishermen, you probably have a couple of blade baits you bought years ago. Probably fished once or twice with little or no success, and tossed them in a forgotten corner of the basement. Now is the time to dust them off!

When largemouth bass move into deeper water, a blade bait can be very effective for vertical jigging. It’s not a super common way to target largemouth bass. However, it works great when largemouth bass are feeding on bait fish in deeper water.

The trick to catching on blade baits in summertime is not to overwork them. An angler who is new to fishing The Binsky blades tends to fish them with big sweeps of the rod. This causes the bait to jump 4 to 6 feet off the bottom. The most successful blade fishermen lift their rods just enough to feel the blade kick a couple of times. Making this adjustment will improve your Binsky blade bait success ten-fold.

In lakes with alewives, use silver blades. In lakes without alewives, gold or perch-colored blades will be your best bet.

Keeping regular contact with the bottom is crucial. So when targeting deep bass, you’ll need Binsky blade baits from ½ to 1 ounce. By far the best on the market is the Binsky blade bait. In lakes with alewives, use silver blades. In lakes without alewives, gold or perch-colored blades will be your best bet.

Getting good sponsors

December 5, 2023 by lbailey

Getting good sponsors is one of the most asked questions I receive when doing presentations and seminars. There is no precise answer to the question How do I get sponsors? However, there are some unwritten rules. Items you should consider if sponsorships are something that you are looking to obtain.

When thinking about how to get bass fishing sponsors. Many anglers hope that they will have enough money provided by sponsors. Hoping to be able to fish full time. The truth is, only a small group of professional anglers can do that.

Lee Bailey Jr Getting good sponsors

…”bottom line is a sponsor needs to have someone who will successfully promote and sell their product or service”

The first and utmost concern and attitude you should have when approaching sponsors is pretty basic. It seems to be over looked by many new-comers to the bass fishing world. That is to ask yourself, not what the perspective sponsor can do for you. What you will do for them.

…”bottom line is a sponsor needs to have someone who will successfully promote and sell their product or service”. I know this sounds corny. The bottom line is a sponsor needs to have someone who will successfully promote and sell their product or service.

To start you need to consider where in the fishing industry you want to go

Most often a sponsor does not need someone who will just fish tournaments. A sponsor is looking for someone who will WIN tournaments. Develop a good image and following while promoting their products and or services. Remember there are thousands of tournament fishermen. But there are only a few who can promote well.

Getting good sponsors, in the past few years is getting tougher. I have seen these changes accelerate. Platforms like Instagram and YouTube have given anglers the ability to reach larger audiences. Inside and outside of a tournament finish, television appearance, print or other traditional media outlet. It is still a requisite to win or finish high in several tournaments to gain sponsorship with a brand. In some cases, you don’t need to be a fishing expert to influence and impact sales in today’s world. Long time touring pros are seeing their contracts being cut. As in some cases those funds are being re-directed to influences from social media.

To start you need to consider where in the fishing industry you want to go. Consider where your strong points are. That is, do you want to fish tournaments professionally? Do you want to be a major player in the marketing end of the industry? Do you want to do this nationally or regionally. This will help the sponsor know if there is a program or area already in place internally for you.

Lees Seasonal Approach

December 5, 2023 by lbailey

Lees Seasonal Approach Guide is a system I’ve adapted to help find bass on unfamiliar waters. As a retired touring pro, I fished all kinds of lakes and rivers in many regions throughout the year. Obviously, I didn’t have time to become intimately familiar with each of these venues prior to tournament competition. You only have three practice days to unlock the secrets of a large river system. You will need some guidance to help you quickly get on a viable fish catching pattern. Lees Seasonal Approach provides that information, regardless of where or when I’m fishing. It helps me make educated guesses about where bass are most likely to be. Along with knowing where bass are at any given time of the year. It’s a system that quickly eliminates unproductive water and helps me home in on areas holding the most bass.

“I actually begin fishing a fall pattern when the water has cooled 10 degrees. Once below its hottest point of the summer it really begins”.

Fishing Factors Lees Seasonal Approach

Lees Seasonal Approach for Fall: 75 to 55 degrees

The concept operates on the theory that at any given time bass in a given river current system will be on certain key types of structure. Of course, not all bass will adhere to this “rule.” I could probably catch some bass off flats or in shallow bays in winter. If I spent long enough trying. Yet in a tournament, I’m better off spending my limited fishing time in high percentage areas. The Seasonal Approach gives me the general direction I need to form a fish catching pattern quickly. How well I fine-tune this generalized pattern during competition determines how high I’ll finish in the standings.

I learned early in my fishing career that bass relate to the different seasons very predictably. Once you understand that the seasons are part of the foundation to a bass’s life. You too will be able to catch them more consistently.

A very important part to consistently catching bass. Understand what role the different seasons play in the lives of the elusive bass. Having a strategy to the seasonal developments will allow you to have an understanding of seasonal movements.

Lees Seasonal Approach Guide is a system

I actually begin fishing a fall pattern when the water has cooled 10 degrees. This can vary greatly from river to river. A rapid temperature drop is best. This can really put bass on the move from deep main river structure to shallow water. Bass react to cooling water by moving shallower to big flats, long points with a gradual taper, and tributary arms.

A rapid temperature drop is best. This can really put bass on the move from deep main river structure to shallow water.

As surely as the seasons change, the behavior and location of bass change. As summer passes into fall and fall into winter. Unfortunately, the exact changes the bass makes often seems as unpredictable as the fall weather.

From a fishing standpoint, “fall” starts when summer fishing patterns start to dissolve and ends when stable, winter patterns begin. It’s a period of constant adjustment, basically because it’s a period of nearly constant change.

I actually begin fishing a fall pattern when the water has cooled 10 degrees


Simply, river systems offer the most predictable option. The key to staying in contact with bass. Knowing they move through the fall cycles is having some idea where the bass are coming from. As Well as knowing where they are headed.

Bass are more baitfish – oriented now than in any other season. Look for large schools of shad, alewives, etc., on your graph. In most river reservoirs, cooling water causes vast numbers of shad to migrate. Their first stop is to move into tributary arms, and bass are close behind. Follow this migration by fishing the first third of creek arms in early fall. Then gradually pressing farther back into the tributary as the surface temperature drops. I’ll often idle my boat up a creek arm. Closely watch your graph for suspended shad schools or looking for bait flipping on the surface. Isolated wood cover or boat docks in the backs of creek arms are dependable fall bass patterns. In lakes that don’t have shad, bass feed heavily on bluegill and shiners, both grass-oriented species, so target weedy areas.


Fishing a Fall Pattern

December 5, 2023 by lbailey

I actually begin fishing a fall pattern when the water has cooled 10 degrees below its hottest point of the summer. This can vary greatly from body of water to body of water. A rapid temperature drop is best, for this can really put bass on the move from deep main river structure to shallow water. Bass react to cooling water by moving shallower to big flats, long points with a gradual taper and tributary arms.

Fishing A Fall Pattern Lure Choices

As surely as the seasons change, the behavior and location of bass change as summer passes into fall and fall into winter. Unfortunately, the exact changes the bass makes often seems as unpredictable as the fall weather.

Fishing a fall pattern starts when you see first signs of the fall cooling trend

Bass are more baitfish oriented now than in any other season. Look for large schools of shad, alewives, etc., on your graph. In most reservoirs, fishing a fall pattern as cooling water causes vast numbers of shad to migrate into tributary arms, and bass are close behind. Follow this migration by fishing the first third of creek arms in early fall, then gradually pressing farther back into the tributary as the surface temperature drops. I’ll often idle my boat up a creek arm, watching my graph for suspended shad schools or looking for bait flipping on the surface. Isolated wood cover or boat docks in the backs of creek arms are dependable fall bass patterns. In lakes that don’t have shad, bass feed heavily on bluegill and shiners, both grass-oriented species, so target weedy areas that still have living green weeds.

A large number of the fish relate to backwaters as well as main lake areas during the summer. From the first signs of the fall cooling trend, main river fast water fish begin a gradual move toward areas with limited current.

Identifying these reduced current areas is usually pretty simple. Look for the bass to move to big cuts on the main river, cuts and coves in the bigger creeks, and slack water ponds off the main current area.

For the rest of the story and much more….. BUY NOW! Lee’s Strategies For Bass.


How to fish Laydowns

December 5, 2023 by lbailey

How to fish Laydowns (cover) Taken from “Strategies For Bass” by retired Elite Series Pro Lee Bailey Jr.

How to fish laydowns

From the bank a tree fallen into the aquatic world is known as a laydown to bass anglers. Sometimes different depending on how long it has been in the water. The large trunk and heavy branches of a laydown offer ample shade and cover for bass. Here bass set up an ambush zone. As a result the algae buildup on the decaying tree attracts baitfish into the bass’ lair.

How to fish Laydowns (cover) Taken from “Strategies For Bass

How to fish Laydowns in bass fisheries across the country. They come in all shapes and sizes. Under the water is a bass haven full of thick branches Still have having tall tops attached that might only have a limb or two showing above the surface. Others might be slick logs with only a few stubby boughs left.

Lonely is a good thing

Would you rather fish a stretch of bank laden with great-looking laydowns or an area with just a single, solitary laydown? If you’d make a hard line to the isolated one, you’re ahead of the game. These isolated pieces of cover are very likely to hold quality fish.

“Don’t get me wrong, you can catch ’em on banks with a bunch of laydowns, but if you can find one by itself, your chances increase dramatically,” “If an area is void of cover, the bass will congregate on a single fallen tree. They don’t have many options for ambush points or shade, making them outstanding targets throughout the entire year.”

Whether you call it a laydown, a windfall or a fallen tree, this type of bass cover is found on just about any lake or river in the country. However, since a laydown on the bank is glaringly obvious it tends to receive heavy fishing pressure. Professional anglers avoid laydowns, believing them to be fished out, you may think. The reality is that many of the country’s most accomplished pros snatch countless bass from this prevalent cover.

Its fish-holding qualities make a laydown a prime target for Bassmaster Elite Series pros. No matter where they fish throughout the country…

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