Bites were easy to come by at Lake Martin. It was getting the quality bites that separated the field.
Yet, how a pro got those quality bites varied, as there was no predominant pattern. Some guys targeted largemouth. Others, just spotted bass. Some a mix.
As you’ll see from the lures that helped the top 10 anglers, there were no shortage of ways to catch fish this week.
1. Once he got dialed in Jason Abram utilized a two-pronged pattern. In the morning he’d fish for spotted bass with a Reaction Innovations Skinny Dipper (white trash or lime ice) on a prototype 3/16-ounce Reaction Innovations jighead. Then he’d chase prespawn largemouths under docks by skipping a Reaction Innovations Flirt Worm (merthiolate) on a 3/0 Gamakatsu hook and walking it out. He used G. Loomis rods for both.
2. Whether he was sight-fishing or just casting around, Ron Nelson did the majority of his damage with a Keitech Swing Impact FAT (various shad colors), using both weedless and regular 1/4-ounce heads.
3. While most pros fished shallow, Spencer Shuffield targeted suspended spotted bass he saw on his electronics. As soon as he saw one, he’d pitch out a drop-shot with a Zoom Super Fluke Jr. (disco green).
4. Matt Becker was all in on sight-fishing, but with the water dropping so much, it had the fish finicky. Hence, he cycled through shaky heads, drop-shots, tubes and more to get bites. Though, he did the bulk of his damage on a wacky-rigged Yamamoto Senko. He threw it on a Favorite Hex spinning rod.
5. Coming off his victory at the Harris Chain, Laramy Strickland made back-to-back top 10s thanks to a shallow largemouth pattern, cycling between a Reaction Innovations Skinny Dipper (sexy shad) and Reaction Innovations Pocket Rocket (green pumpkin).
6. Lake Martin reminded Greg Bohannan a lot of Beaver Lake, so he fished it as such, targeting offshore spotted bass with a Carolina-rigged Strike King Rage Bug (blue craw red flake).
7. No surprise here. Tom Monsoor did what he always does; tossing around his homemade swim jig (white and chartreuse) with a Yamamoto Swim Senko trailer (blue pearl sv flake).
8. Maybe the only pro to solely weigh in spotted bass all week, Jordan Osborne did so fishing offshore shoals with a unique version of the Ned rig, which entailed cutting off two inches of a Gambler Fat Ace (green pumpkin) and putting it on a 1/4-ounce Picasso Shakedown head, which he said came through the chunk rock and stumps better.
9. Kerry Milner kept things simple this week, focusing on spawning, offshore spotted bass that couldn’t resist a Carolina-rigged Zoom Ultra Vibe Speed Craw (green pumpkin).
10. Derrick Snavely went with a dual-species pattern and had more than a dozen rods rigged up. Mostly, he tempted bedding largemouth with a V&M J-Bug (green pumpkin) before going after offshore spotted bass. Out deep, he threw a V&M prototype swimbait and a Carolina-rigged V&M Swamp Hog.