Good Night Camping Equipment

Fishing Tips

Change Your Clocks... 
by Chuck Bauer

"Chuck, there is obviously a message here. What you say also applies to us in the business world. What a great article!!" - Mason & Betty Emanuel

Daylight Savings Time came and went..., again. It was here for a season, the longer days gave way for more time on the water and then, before we knew it, it was gone. Walking outside my back porch, I am once again reminded about fall. The leaves are turning, and wind is starting to come from the north and east, and the bass are changing with the season. Watching the fish in my private pond, I see that the bass are now cruising together in groups, they are herding (Texas slang for "gathering") up bluegill and minnows, fully expecting to put on some weight. The water is ultra clear right now and in some places I can see through eight-feet of water - what an experience it is to watch a big bass cut a swath right through a school of bluegill!

Yet, as I reset my clocks, I fall back on a moment that left me feeling a little blue, a little depressed. Many years I have felt this same feeling during the fall, yet the moment leaves quickly as this next year is going to be different than most.

For this fall and winter, unlike others that have gone before, I am going to do things differently. I have vowed to continue on the climb of catching bigger bass. I have to learn more. Practice harder. Study. Be on the water. Be very focused. This fall and winter is going to be different. I'm changing my tactics...

I believe that there is a definite reason why 10-pound bass make it to 10 pounds and bigger. One reason is, through the use of their lateral line, they sense danger and avoid it. Take engine noise. When was the last time you went swimming under the surface of the water? Remember hearing the spinning of the propeller of a boat over a mile away? What about the constant barrage of bass fishermen who do a "grid" search in hopes of finding that favorite drop-off, point, or depth? With their big engine on no less!!! Well, this fall and winter I am going to use new tactics in regards to stealth. I am going to size down the boat I use, I'm going to drift with the wind, I am going to use a 20-foot extension pole to move the boat, I am going to anchor off three places and use pulleys to secure the boat from any movement. I'm changing my tactics...

I am going to use satellite photos (that's right, satellite photos!) and topo maps to help establish holding areas for big bass. Like a 25-foot island with drop-offs to 40-60 feet on all sides, loaded up with bait fish; that sounds like a place that big bass would congregate at. I'm changing my tactics...

You can guarantee that there will be almost no boats on the lake in fall and winter. Less traffic, less noise, less people, less usage of the lateral line, big bass defensive systems will be at their lowest point for the year. I'm changing my tactics...

I'm a HUGE wimp when is comes to being cold. Home for me is 85-degrees, sandals, shorts, a tank top, a baseball hat on backwards. So, I have invested in a Bass Pro Shops, 100-Mile-An-Hour Cold Weather Suit. For the first time I am REALLY prepared to take on the winter cold. I'm changing my tactics...

Paradigms for humans and patterns for big bass. The bank-beaters I know say that bass don't bite in the late fall or in the dead of winter. I say they don't bite because no one is out there fishin' for them. They have to eat, right? Beyond that, 10 of the top 50 largemouth bass in Texas were caught in midwinter. A 14.75 pound bass was entered into the Texas Share-A-Lunker program last year. That fish was caught on January 10th by John Deckard. The Texas State Record of 18.18 pounds was caught on January 24, 1992. I'm changing my tactics...

Speaking of human paradigms, they say Lake Fork is dead because of a fish die-off. I say the fish die-off has helped the lake. It will bring back trophy bass more frequently than ever. A fish die-off means there is less competition in the grocery store - yippee! I'm changing my tactics...

I will choose my fishin' partners carefully. It takes methodical planning, persistence, and a true vision of hunting for a trophy that will bring ultimate success. Hand me a HAWG versus 30 days of runnin' and gunnin'. Instead of running out 24-gallons of gas in a day, let's try two point four gallons instead. 500 milligrams of patience and sitting silently for hours is a pathway to accomplishing my goals. I'm changing my tactics...

Resources such as books, videos, and web-sites about hunting down big bass are going to be part of my preparations. Books like "The Quest for the World Record Bass" by Bart Crabb, "In Pursuit of Giant Bass" by Bill Murphy. Videos like "Bodacious Bass" by Bob Crupi and Danny Kadota. Top notch web-sites like,,,, and I'm changing my tactics...


Last but not least, Big Bass Freaks are as rare as a 10-pound bass. I am going to continue to search out and find more freaks. Like Mike Long in Poway, California; Chris "Fish" Wolfgram in Vacaville, California; or John Deckard here in Dallas, Texas. I am going to develop friendships with them and ask them to teach me more about out-of-the-box bass thinkin'. I'm changing my tactics...

So, I fall back and change the clock with a smile. I face fall and winter with anticipation. This year will be different because... I'm changing my tactics.

About the Author

Chuck Bauer is a noted Big Bass Specialist. Since 1997 he has caught, certified and released 139 Bass over 22 inches in length. He has been recognized many times by various organizations, including Bassin' Magazine, Texas Fish & Game, North American Fisherman Magazine, Outdoor Life, Texas Hunting and Fishing News, Big Bass Record Club, Bass Pro Shops and The Dallas Morning News.

Chuck is a Professional Member of the National Speakers Association, he gives monthly "Big Fish" seminars at Bass Pro Shops and he is on Pro Staff for Kick-n-Bass. He is a featured outdoor writer for Bass Fishing Home Pages,,,, All,,, and

Chuck does FREE fishin' seminars in and around the Dallas/Ft.Worth Metroplex. You may find out more information about Chuck at or

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