Menendez lightens up

Lipless baits and prespawn bass go together like peanut butter and jelly, so it’ll surprise no one to see Mark Menendez throwing a Strike King Redeye Shad. What may surprise some is that the hefty 3/4-ounce bait he’ll be throwing this week has been on a diet.

Drilling a hole in the bait’s belly, Menendez removes some of the BBs, seals the hole with epoxy and thereby reduced the weight to about 1/2 ounce. The result: A lighter bait with a larger profile.

“On Guntersville, you don’t want to catch 15-inchers,” Menendez said. “A smaller bait may catch you some bigger fish, but a larger bait is going to shy some of those smaller fish away and give a bigger fish a chance to get it.

“It’s a technique I’ve used on many grass lakes. Sam Rayburn and Lake Seminole and I’ve had great success with it. I’m going to try to ride that success here.”

As Menendez explains, removing some of the rattling BBs doesn’t significantly alter the lipless bait’s noisy appeal. It does, however, allow him to better manipulate the bait through grass.

“I do upsize my line to 17-pound fluorocarbon instead of 12-15; and I may throw it on Seaguar braid so I can snap it out of that grass and get more productive casts out of it,” Menendez said. “I put some Gamakatsu No. 2 trebles on it and you’ll catch everything that bites.”