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Jerkbait fishing with live sonar

South Carolina pro Patrick Walters is now the poster child for using jerkbaits with forward- facing sonar. Photo by Dalton Tumblin

Before the advent of forward-facing sonar like Garmin LiveScope, Santee Cooper native Patrick Walters used a jerkbait as a situational tool, picking it up in high-percentage areas before putting it back down in favor of something like a spinnerbait.

But over the last two years, with the help of LiveScope technology, the jerkbait has been a regular part of Walters’ bait rotation, and he has displayed how effective the technique can be during all times of the year, including two Top 5 finishes in the AOY standings and his first blue trophy in November 2020 at Lake Fork, catching 104 pounds, 12 ounces in an otherwise difficult tournament for the rest of the field.

The offshore game is something Walters has been working on during his time on the Elite Series, growing more and more comfortable thanks to the forward-facing sonar. Shallow-water fishing had been Walters’ comfort zone since he began bass fishing because he could see the cover he was throwing at and knew what the bait was supposed to be doing around that cover. The new technology has given Walters the same bait awareness offshore that he enjoyed closer to the bank.