Iaconelli Looking for 40 Fish Today on Upper Mississippi - Major League Fishing

Iaconelli Looking for 40 Fish Today on Upper Mississippi

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Mike Iaconelli is prepared to throw a little bit of everything as Day 1 of REDCREST continues. Photo by Alan McGuckin
August 21, 2019 • Alan McGuckin • Bass Pro Tour

LA CROSSE, Wis. – Action is underway at MLF’s inaugural REDCREST on the habitat-rich Upper Mississippi, and Team Toyota’s Mike Iaconelli says the bass are biting big time. So much so, he feels he’ll have to boat 40 bass today to score well in MLF’s format.

“This is a place I’ve been to many, many times in my career,” Iaconelli says. “The water is really low compared to years past, but it’s the same old Upper Mississippi, in terms of tons of habitat and piles of bass under 3 pounds. The fish are flat out biting – but catching a 4-pounder here is worth the excitement of catching a 6-pounder on a lot of other fisheries.”

Iaconelli’s first goal for the day: find a good number of fish early.

“This is a numbers game, so I’m going to start on a spot that I know has tons of bass in it,” Iaconelli says. “It’s an area that I probably wouldn’t even list as my second or third best spot in a traditional five-bass tournament format. This week it’s about being able to catch as many scoreable bass as you can. And there’s tons of them here. So my goal is to boat around 40 bass today.”

To reach that lofty number, Iaconelli plans to lean heavily on a handful of topwaters.

“Everybody talks about frog fishing here, but I’ll throw it all,” he says. “From buzzbaits to small poppers and a Molix Sneaky Frog too.”

Fact is, it’s been less than 30 days since Iaconelli last claimed victory on a river system. He won the Bass Pro Shops Open on the James River the last week of July, and you can bet he’s carrying that current-driven moment with him this week in La Crosse.

“Current is current, whether you’re talking about tidal current like the James River, or here on the Upper Mississippi,” Iaconelli says. “You’re still looking for an eddy or a current break where bass will set up to ambush prey. So yeah, in that sense, there are definitely some similarities between here and the James River.”

Iaconelli says his first stop on Wednesday will be main river focused, versus a backwater. But wherever he lands today, he just hopes it tallies nearly four-dozen scoreable bass – and if so, you can bet he’ll fool some of them by buzzin’, poppin’ or froggin’.