Highly likeable and often hilarious Darold Gleason traded a steady career as a schoolteacher and basketball coach for that of a full-time fishing guide on Toledo Bend Reservoir.
He’s caught eight bass over 10-pounds from the famous reservoir, does very well as a Bassmaster Open competitor, and hauled a 20-pound limit from the depths of Kentucky Lake on Day One of BASSfest to sit in 19th place among the best pros in the world.
Soon after weighing in, Gleason graciously taught a fast lesson in three essential things all anglers should consider to locate and catch largemouth in the post-spawn phase of early summer.
1. Make use of modern electronics that feature side imaging, down imaging and GPS mapping
“I use Down Imaging to locate the bass – which generally appear in groups of 5, 10, up to roughly 25 or 30 white dots near the bottom on a contour break or depth change,” says Gleason. “The Side Imaging portion of my sonar allows me to take a closer look at the sides of those depth changes to better understand how the bass are relating in detail to that spot,” he explains.
2. Boat position is critical
“You have to figure out exactly where to sit your boat in order to make a cast that will allow your lure to intersect the fish you’re seeing on sonar,” illustrated the grey-headed Gleason, whose friends jokingly call the Silver Fox. “The angle and distance of every cast you make needs to intersect that school of bass, or you’re obviously wasting your time.”
3. Pack these 3 lures on every trip
“A 6th Sense 500 DD crankbait that will run 20-feet deep on 10-pound fluorocarbon. A ¾ ounce V & M Pacemaker Flatline football jig in a green craw hue, trimmed with a V & M Wild Thang Craw to match the skirt, and if things get tough, and that school of bass is sticking their lip out at you – you’d better have a ¼-ounce drop shot rigged up with a watermelon candy V & M Trickster worm,” concludes Gleason.