John's Journal...

Some Winning Techniques of Bass Fishing

Day 1: Cranking with Rick Clunn

Editor’s Note: Rick Clunn of Ava, Missouri, has won every major bass tournament in the nation in his more than three decades of competitive bass fishing. He's the only angler to win four Bassmaster Classics, with two of those Classics back-to-back. Many have called Rick Clunn a fishing machine. Knowledge powers the Rick Clunn fishing machine. Clunn is the consummate student of bass fishing. He reads, studies and researches to determine not only the best way to catch any bass but also the most-productive way to take big bass. Clunn believes three techniques will catch more big bass consistently than any-other tactic you can use: crankbaiting, spinner baiting and flipping and pitching.

Click for Larger View"I'm committed more to the crankbait than many-other anglers are," Clunn explains. "Most fishermen won't cast the crankbait long enough to establish a pattern to catch fish on it. I believe you have to give the crankbait a fair chance to catch big bass whenever you go on the water." In one tournament Clunn won, he fished a crankbait for 3 days before his perseverance paid-off. He'd found big bass holding in a particular section of the lake in pre-practice. Then each day he fished, he went to that spot and fished a crankbait. The first 2 days the bass didn't show-up. But on the third day when Clunn arrived at the same spot where he hadn't caught any bass with his crankbait before, not only did he find bass, he located bass big enough to win the tournament.

Click for Larger View"The crankbait is a very-versatile lure that you can change the depth of to fish either shallow or deep," Clunn emphasizes. "If you want to maximize the length of your cast to cover more water with your crankbait, then you can use 2-pound test line, cast it a long way and cover a lot of water. If you want to get your crankbait down deeper, then fish a crankbait with a deep-diving bill, which will enable you to get that bait down to almost any depth." If you've ever thrown a big, deep-diving crankbait all day, then you know that at the end of the day you'll feel much like a man who has mined coal all day from sun-up to sundown with a pick, a shovel and a wheel barrow. This type of fishing will exhaust you physically, and you may not catch many bass using this tactic.

Click for Larger View"When I'm fishing, I'm not trying to see how-many bass I can catch but rather, I'm attempting to take the biggest bass I can," Clunn reported. "Fishing big, deep-diving crankbaits is one of the most-winning techniques and produces the most quality bass of any system of fishing on the professional-fishing circuit. Sure, I can catch more bass using easier methods and smaller baits, but catching more bass isn't what I'm hoping to accomplish. I'm trying to take the biggest bass I possibly can catch in every tournament I fish. One of the best ways I know to accomplish that goal is to fish big crankbaits."

Fishing Big Crankbaits Shallow:

Ckick for Larger ViewMany anglers think you only can fish deep-diving crankbaits successfully in deep water. However, Clunn remembers two tournaments he's won fishing big, deep-diving crankbaits in shallow water. "I won a tournament on Lake Truman once using a big crankbait in water only 2-to 4-feet deep," Clunn recalls. "I bounced that crankbait on logs, drug it through brush and swam it around shallow-water cover where most anglers never would consider fishing a crankbait. I also won a tournament on Lake Livingston fishing a big Bill Norman crankbait in extremely-shallow water. Bass will take a large, deep-diving crankbait, because the lure is so big and not because of the depth of the water in which you're fishing it. I've learned that big bass like big baits and particularly large crankbaits. If you'll put that big crankbait in an area where big bass are holding, you'll have a really-good chance of catching those big bass, regardless of whether they're in very-deep or very-shallow water.

How to Bass Fish Like a ProCatch the Most and Biggest Bass In Any LakeTo learn more about how to fish for bass, go to “How to Bass Fish Like a Pro” and “Catch the Most and Biggest Bass in Any Lake” , or go to, and type in the names of the books to buy them. Too, you can download a Kindle app for free and buy the book from Amazon to read it on your iPad, Smartphone or computer.

Tomorrow: Spinner Baiting with Rick Clunn

Check back each day this week for more about "Some Winning Techniques of Bass Fishing"

Day 1: Cranking with Rick Clunn
Day 2: Spinner Baiting with Rick Clunn
Day 3: Flipping and Pitching with Rick Clunn
Day 4: Catching Hot-Weather Bass at Lake Guntersville
Day 5: Getting Jiggy on Bass at Lake Guntersville with Mike Gerry

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Entry 674, Day 1