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jaime

Foul Hooked?!!

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Howdy all!

I was fishing the little smokey lure the other day and foul hooked two good sized bass right on the gills. Can someone please explain what is happening here. are the bass just trying to knock the lure?

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I have had that happen in the fall, on schooling bass quite a bit. I wouldnt think it was a design flaw...just overly excited bass.

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Some would say you need to change colors of that bait. Through many years of reading articles and watching fishing shows, some of the pros would change colors until they find the right color, where foul hooking or barely hooking is not happening anymore. When everything is perfect about the crank you are using, the fish inhale the bait. When something is not just quite right, they are barely hooked. Just a thought, use it for what its worth.

Tally

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Been my experience that this occurs often when bass are in a negative mood, which is the majority to the time, i have caught thousands of bass on crankbaits and very few times have I had a bass swallow my bait, most of the times you're lucky to have 1 set of hooks firmly in the bass. Fritts says that if bass are hitting the back hook, then change colors will make a better hookup, NOT ARGUING with the master, but , I think that most of our crankbait bites is a reaction bite and we are lucky to get a hook in anywhere, I have seen underwater video of a bass taking a crankbait into their mouths and spitting it out without us having any knowledge that this ocurred.

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Not trying to give the impression of being a great cramk fisherman, but I have learned a few things over the years that have made my hook up and in the boat ratio much better, and I am sure that I still have fish hit my crank and I am not aware of, but nothing like before I became a better cranker.

First you have to have sensitive enough equipment that will let you detect every move that lure makes under water. Yes you can cast and crank with any rod and catch fish, but a sensitive rod will enable you to catch more fish.

Second, there is more to crank bait fishing than casting and reeling.

Third, you have to know what the bait is doing. if you crank enough you can tell the difference between a strike and a tree branch even though we all have caught some pretty nice limbs. :) You need to know how the wobble feels when reeling, because if that wobble changes ever so slightly, more than likely a fish has hit the bait. Everyone has caught fish when a bass hits the crank and you set the hook. Those are the fish that are hooked good sometimes and sometimes there not. The fish that literally stops the bait and you set the hook are the ones who have inhaled the bait. There is one more kind of hit I will touch on and this is probably the one that videos show a bass hitting the lure without the fisherman knowing what happened. It is the hit where the fish sucks the lure in as he is swimming the same direction the bait is. This bite is probably the number one un-detected hit. If you are watching your line, have sentive enough rod and know what your bait is doing, you will catch these fish and they will be hooked very good. Like I said: when everything is perfect, both sets of trebble hooks will be hooked.

Tally

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Tally gave you alot of good information. I will see if I can add to it some. Alot of the fish that I hook have the belly hook in their mouth and the rear hook in their cheek. The crankbaits that I make have some size to them. I put a large kill dot on the side of the lure above the hook. The fish are honing in on the kill dot and hitting the lure from the side. When I set the hook the back end of the lure is swinging around and slapping them in the cheek. This has been happening to me for years. However this summer I am catching larger fish than usual. Most of my fish over 4 lbs. are being caught with one hook on one side of the mouth and the other hook on the other side. Looks like they are playing a harmonica when I bring them in. :? But I will tell you that color can play a difference on how deep a fish will take a lure.

Tally has good points on using a sensitive rod. I use to laugh when some crankbait fishermen say that they can feel a fish getting ready to hit their crankbait. But after years of cranking I have learned to know the sensation also. As we know, a bass takes in its food by inhaling. If the fish is real close to the back of a lure and is sucking in water through its gills, then it will take the wiggle out of a crankbait. The feeling that the lure has lost its wiggle and is just running straight like a board is a possible indication that a fish is on your crankbaits ass and ya better get ready. You can't always feel it. But when you sense it and set the hook and that fish is there........ well you feel like a pro. :) The hardest thing for 80% of the fishermen out there to do is to pay attention. An hour or two without a hit is hard to put up with. We all have a tendancy to become complacent. It is hard to concentrate when things are dull. But it is something that we all must work at.

Now to answer your question. :P To begin with I would try a different color or two. Next, I would slow the retrieve. Your fish might be hitting out of a reaction strike and is just taking a hard swipe at the bait. Last but not least, I might try downsizing the lure. Also, make sure that your hooks are needle sharp. Take your hook and run the point over your finger nail. Many say that if the point scratches the nail then it is sharp enough. Mine don't scratch. They stick. Immediately !! There is no slide. You would be amazed at the number of fish that touch the hook point in one spot of their mouth and get hooked somewhere else. This is because the hook point will slide before it digs. How many of us has caught a fish and seen a slit cut in the mouth of the fish before the hook finally took hold and penetrated? With needle sharp hooks you will not see this. :wink:

Skeeter

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This might sound a little farfetched but the late Jim Bashline had a theroy.

Fish don't have hands. When we are curious about something we pick it up feel it look at it etc. Fish can't do this all they have is their mouth. Did

you ever see a bluegill suck in a bit of worm then spit it out then take it again? What is the fish doing I'm guessing it is checking it out. Maybe the bass are brushing the lure to see what it is, maybe trying to pick up a scent or just curious about what it is. Just a thought. Skeeter's explaination is probably closer to what is happening.

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Another opinion to add to the discussion......

I have seen schooling fish that will compete for a bait with each other. They attack the bait so rapidly that they will "miss" but still become foul hooked.

I have a body of water near me with bass and hybrid bluegills. You can see 4 to 5 large bluegills racing to a small crankbait trying to get there ahead of each other. The first time I fished this pond well over 50% of the fish I caught were foul hooked. Thought it was me or the baits. Later trips have produced "normal" hooked fish. The frenzy must be over.

Just a thought.

Spinner

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Skeeter, surely you have seen this on Kentucky Lake.....the schooling thingy.....When they get in a "hunt mode" they are like sharks....not sure if they come back to eat the cripples after the fury....but when fish are really schooling... and move in on a pod of SHAD, I dont know what they are thinking. I always seem to get foul hooks after a day of action like this. You can literally catch fish every cast when they have the shad in the jumps. They are working together as a team....I tend to think they are trying to cripple

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some very informative replys. thanks!!

I can say that on the two occassions that this happened, I would cast past (shoreline fishing) the grass and crank it to the edge of it and then rip it thru the grass and in the middle of it is where the bass got hooked. it could very well be that the bass was there and i hooked into it.

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I agree on the schooling bass when they attack the shad that the possibility of foul hooking is greater, but this is not what I thought we were talking about.

When you find these fish schooled up on shad and are catching them on a crank, how deep are the shad and the fish. Or are we talking about the shad that are on top and the bass busting the water. Either way, how big are these fish?

thanks

Tally

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