Freedom, hotdogs and bass

About the author

Chris Lane

Chris Lane

Chris Lane is a four-time winner on the Bassmaster Tournament Trail and the 2012 Bassmaster Classic champion.

It’s July. It’s time to celebrate Independence Day to its fullest. For all of our problems and the various disputes we may have among ourselves, we enjoy a life in America that’s the envy of most of the world, and it’s not all about how good we live in a material sense.

As important as it is to live the good life, it’s more important to live a free life. We have the right to do almost anything we want and to express our opinions about things without a lot of interference from the government. Most of the world does not.  

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I appreciate what I have and I hope you do as well. I’d just as soon live in a country where I have the freedom to do mostly what I want as opposed to living in one where the government tells me what to do.

Let’s not have tomorrow go by without saying thanks.

And, let’s not let Thursday go by without grilling a few hotdogs, maybe a hamburger or two and generally having a good time with our families and our loved ones. We never know what tomorrow holds. We should all take advantage of today. Don’t get carried away, though. Make sure that whatever you do is done in a safe manner and in a way that’s respectful of others.

Keep in mind, too, that when the family celebrations are over it’ll be time to go bass fishing. Here are three of my basic ideas about how to do that when it gets hot, and then gets hotter:

Fish deep

I’m talking about going down into the 18- to 25-foot range and staying there. But don’t expect to find fish everywhere because that’s not going to happen. You’ll fish for hours on some days without a bite. When you do get one, however, it’s most likely a signal that you’ve found a school.

Look for weeds, grass, channels, drops or anything else that’s different. That’s usually where you’ll find them.

Fish grass

Early in the morning, fish over the top of sparse, scattered grass. The bass move into those places before daylight and are usually feeding. I like to throw buzzbaits, poppers and other traditional topwater baits at this time.

As the sun gets higher the bass will move into the thicker and deeper vegetation. At that point I typically reach for a heavy jig to punch through the thick stuff or for a frog to work on top of it.

Fish slow

Fish get lethargic when the water heats up. That means that if you have a crankbait bite going early you should think about switching to something like a jig or a big, Texas rigged worm. Fish it slow, and then fish it slower.

Obviously, the things I’ve mentioned are general. You’ll need to adapt them to your lake because every lake or river is different. They all have different cover and structure in them. Nevertheless, if you think about the three things we’ve discussed you’ll catch more bass at the end of the day.

Enjoy your Fourth of July.

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