Bass Basics Jocumsen’s shore fishing basics Posted on December 25, 2020 Photo: Craig Lamb - Carl Jocumsen likes to go back to the basics when not competing on the Bassmaster Elite Series. âGrowing up in Australia I liked to pack my backpack with a few simple lures, just one rod and reel, and head out to fish the streams and lakes around home.â Come along with Carl, his wife Kayla and their dog Roo for a bank fishing adventure. All captions: Craig Lamb Photo: Craig Lamb - âYou donât need much and thatâs the beauty of bank fishing.â Keeping it simple allows anyone of any skill level to enjoy fishing with family and friends. Everything Carl and Kayla need for an outing, fits into a backpack. Photo: Craig Lamb - Carl packs the basic lure categories for bank fishing: Spinnerbaits, crankbaits, jerkbaits, topwaters, jigs and soft plastic baits. âDownsize those choices and pack your day box with an assortment of colors. You can also get more smaller lures into the box, so you never run out.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âI call my rod and reel choice an âall-rounderâ because itâs ideal for just about any bank fishing scenario.â Carlâs setup is a 7-foot, 2-inch Millerods SwitchFreak with a Shimano Curado baitcaster. âGo with a shorter rod for casting in tight spaces where trees can obstruct your casting range.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âEverything fits into the backpack, leaving your hands free except for carrying the rod.â Carlâs Mustang Survival backpack is waterproof, not so much for rainy days, but for keeping the contents dry around the wet shoreline environment. Photo: Craig Lamb - Carlâs Bass Mafia utility box is slender, lightweight and compact to use less space in the pack. âYou can customize the slotted sections with the tabs to match the size and length of your lures.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âAlways take a pair of pliers for unhooking fish, and especially fish with small mouths like bluegill.â Carl uses BUBBA Pistol Grip Pliers with a 90-degree angle that feature a spring-loaded handle with strong leverage for removing hooks. Photo: Craig Lamb - âI use fluorocarbon line and itâs a must to pack a pair of fluorocarbon and braid scissors for trimming line.â Carl adds that scissors are much more effective for those types of lines than traditional nail clippers or pliers. Photo: Craig Lamb - âEven in cloudy conditions you need a pair of polarized sunglasses to cut the glare on the water.â Carl and Kayla favor Amphibia Sunglasses for their floating frames, 100% polarization and full protection from solar radiation. Photo: Craig Lamb - âWe like to relive our experiences and capturing those memories is a great idea when family and friends are along for a bank fishing trip.â Carl wears a GoPro Chest Mount Harness to keep both hands free when he is fishing. Photo: Craig Lamb - âThere are public lakes and access to streams that most people overlook. Many places are closer to home than larger, overcrowded impoundments.â Carl adds unpressured small waters offer variety for fishing, and plenty of space to spread out and enjoy the outdoors.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âItâs our happy place,â said Kayla. âI just donât get into going to a mall, I mean why would you do that? All this is free and ready to enjoy.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âWith bank fishing, you canât get out into the lake, so you have to find your pattern on the shore.â Carl suggests that means moving around, not standing in one place. âExplore, look around for little things like rocks, underwater cover and shoreline habitat that holds fish.â When you find the fish, replicate what you caught it from elsewhere along the bank. Photo: Craig Lamb - âSunglasses take the place of your electronic fishfinder.â Carl says polarized sunglasses cut the glare from the surface of the water, enabling you to see whatâs beneath. âThat could be a rock, a bluegill or bass bed, or a log where the fish will be hiding.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âLet water color tell you what color lure to use.â For stained water, Carl suggests using darker colors so the fish can see the lure. For clearer water, he advises using translucent or clear patterns. Photo: Craig Lamb - âDonât hesitate to change lures more frequently on small waters than you do on large bodies of water.â Carl says the fish will react to the change up in lures, making it worth a try more often when nothing else works. Photo: Craig Lamb - âWith spinning gear, you can get greater distance, and reach different fish than when you use a baitcaster.â Kayla favors the spinning reel for distance and lure control, especially when the wind blows toward her. Carl prefers a baitcaster for its accuracy when casting beneath trees and docks. Photo: Craig Lamb - âAnytime you find fresh, running water, it creates current where itâs otherwise unavailable on a small lake.â Carl says the running water adds oxygen and attracts the fish. âFish of any species will set up where there is current.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âA short rod allows you to make short roll casts when cover is above. In this spot there are branches in front of me, and the shorter rod enables me to get the lure beneath and around them and into the strike zone.â Photo: Craig Lamb - âFish like to set up and hide around the shady corners of docks, so they can ambush bait.â Carl likes to skip a lure beneath dock corners, using a baitcaster and bladed jig. Photo: Craig Lamb - âA dock within casting distance of shoreline cover is ideal, because you can cast to it at two different angles.â Those are from the dock and the shoreline. Photo: Craig Lamb - âThis is our neighborhood lake, but there are so many other places where you can go bank fishing.â Carl suggests doing an online search in your stateâs fisheries management agency website to find out where to go. As a bonus, many lakes are stocked with gamefish to increase the changes of everyone getting in on the fun.