The learning curve

When we talked about my learning to fish a frog, what we were really talking about was a learning curve. That’s basically the time it takes to get a handle on something. In my case, the frog went pretty fast. But I had a fair amount of knowledge before I started fishing with one on Oneida Lake.

With a lot of you guys — recreational anglers — you can’t spend five and a half days learning something. It’s not your full-time job. You simply don’t have that much time. So, sometimes it’s better to try and get information from other anglers.

Almost every pro will tell you that the best way to learn to fish is to fish with and hang out with anglers who are better than you are. I suppose that’s probably true about learning anything but it’s especially true when it comes to fishing.

That’s because fishing is an individual sport. At its core, it’s just you against the fish. I know that, and I know and understand the frustration that it involves. It’s no fun to struggle at something and make little or no progress.

That’s the motivation behind The Bass University, and it’s the motivation behind the changes we’ve made from year to year. We want you to learn to catch more, and bigger, bass.  

This year (2012) we’re making another change, one that should excite everyone and help anglers get the fishing knowledge they need. Not all anglers travel around the country fishing a different lake or river every week. Most guys fish one or two places near their home and make an occasional trip to someplace else.

That’s good and bad. On the one hand, it helps because you get to know the water and learn what the bass are going to do under certain conditions. At the same time, though, it’s easy to fall into a rut. You think you know it all and forget about learning more.

Recognizing that, we’ve revamped our schedule. During the 2012 seminars, our speakers and instructors are going to break after lunch and meet one on one with the attendees. We’re going to set them up at sponsor stations and answer individual questions that pertain to the individual circumstances of each attendee.

Of course, we’ll still be doing lots of talking to the group as a whole. I’ve said for a longtime now that knowledge is the key to catching bass. Buck Perry had it right. I mean, he might not have had all the details down but he understood that fish could be tracked and caught if an angler would spend time learning.

That’s what The Bass University is all about. Come join us for a seminar next year. You can register at If you can’t join us read Bassmaster Magazine and check out the how-to articles here on the web. Do whatever you can to learn more about bass fishing. It’s the only way you’ll get better.

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