The Atchafalaya Basin, part 2

Before we get too far into this thing I want to say that I haven’t fished all that much of the Basin. I doubt very many anglers have. It’s so big that you could fish from daylight to dark for well over a month and never cover half of it. Nevertheless, there are some things that hold true about this great natural wonder.

Editor's note: Read part 1.

It’s a power fisherman’s dream. Crankbaits, spinnerbaits, vibrating jigs, ordinary jigs and anything else with a little meat on its bones will catch them. As best I know, it’s not made for drop shots or any other common type of finesse bass fishing. (I almost didn’t say that. Somebody always does something different that works. Bass will make a liar out of you every time.)

But, it’s a one fish, one target kind of a place. When I’ve been there the bass haven’t schooled although most of the spots do replenish quickly.

My best guess is that a milk run is the way to go on this massive body of water. Basically, we’ll all be fishing whatever looks good. We’ll take a fish here, take another one there. That’s nice because it makes target selection easy, until you realize that there are miles and miles of places that look good. Things can get complicated quickly.

There’s no secret to what I’ll be doing. The plan is to wander around looking things over. If I see something that looks good, I’ll give it a shot. I’m only planning two or three days of practice. What I find is what I find. I’ll make my decision as to where I’m going to fish the evening before the tournament starts, or maybe the morning it does start. I’m not sure, and I’m not worried about it. This is going to be a fun tournament for me.

I’ve already qualified for the Classic so I have nothing to lose. The game plan is to go for broke. I know you hear that a lot but in this case it’s true. I love the place. I want to take full advantage of what it has to offer. I don’t want to crash and burn, but if I do I’ll live with it.

There is one warning about the Atchafalaya Basin that I want to give you. Despite its beauty it can be dangerous if you have problems. You can run forever, but it’s full of mudbars, sandbars and waterlogged logs. In less than a second you can be in a world of trouble.

If you are inexperienced on it, make sure you know where you’re at — it all looks the same once you get away from the ramp — and make sure someone knows where you’re going to be fishing. That’s good advice on any body of water, but especially on this one.

In response to Charlie Hartley’s request that I “narrow down some winning areas” after part 1: Hey Charlie — I would if I could. Honestly, I have no idea. I’ll see you at the Classic.

Hey B.A.S.S. — You did us right with the Central Opens schedule this year. How about doing us right with an Elite Series tournament on this bad boy? You won’t regret it, and neither will we.

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