There is no doubt that targeting larger than average sized bass requires a different approach than fishing for numbers of fish.
One of the best examples of a technique that is geared towards catching bruiser bass is Swimbait fishing.
Swimbaiting has probably provoked a bigger underground following of big bass specialists than any other technique, and with the increasing numbers of these loyal big bait fans, there are an endless amount of bait designs that are geared toward one goal- the one big bite.
Now, since I am first and foremost a tournament angler, I unfortunately don't have the time or the patience to focus on fishing days upon days for one life changing bite. Instead, my goal is to find the biggest concentration of quality bites that I can in a day's time. With my goals of catching quality and quantity in mind, I have found the perfect swimbait to accomplish both.
Let me tell you why the Zman SwimmerZ is my favorite Swimbait for filling my livewell with better than average fish.
The Three Bass
Traditionally, the challenge with Swimbait fishing is that when you throw the biggest of the baits, you limit the number of bites you get, and conversely, if you throw the smaller baits, you limit the average size of the fish you are catching.
To combat this delicate balance, I have found that the 6" SwimmerZ is a perfect compromise between offering a bigger bait, while also being accessible to average sized fish.
Clear Water Powerhouse
One of the biggest challenges for clear water is finding a reaction bait that fish will actually like.
Usually as a rule, the clearer the water, the less effective baits like spinnerbaits, crankbaits and Chatterbaits become because they have too much movement, flash and vibration for the picky clear water bass.
With the SwimmerZ, I can cover clear water and pull fish from a long distance and still get them to commit because it is such a realistic presentation.
As a rule, one of the most difficult fish to catch is a suspended one.
Fish that relate to the middle portion of the water column are notorious for being difficult to catch, primarily for the simple reason that most techniques don't excel at targeting that part of the water column.
The SwimmerZ is a big exception to that rule because you can manipulate the depth at which it runs by changing the jig head, the line size or the speed of the retrieve, to match the depth that the fish are relating to.
Another great thing about the SwimmerZ is that I don't need really specialized gear to fish them.
Generally, I am going to use a very similar setup than I would when I fish a worm or a jig. I like a 7' medium-heavy power, fast-action baitcasting rod, a 6.3:1 baitcasting reel and 12-20lb Vicious Pro-Elite Fluorocarbon.
As far as the bait itself, I keep it very simple and almost always throw a Bad Shad colored 6" SwimmerZ and pair it with a 1/2oz HeadLockZ jig head, which is a great size for a wide variety of depth zones. To top this package off, I add a dab of super glue to the shank of the jig head to keep the SwimmerZ from sliding down the shank, and you are good to go for dozens- if not hundreds- of fish on one bait because of the durability of ElaZtech.
If you are wanting to step up your big fish game but don't want to sacrifice a good majority of your numbers, the SwimmerZ is a perfect compromise and is an excellent way to get started with Swimmbait fishing.
It has quickly become one of my favorite power fishing techniques, and I know it will become one of your's too!