Sunday, July 24, 2022

Hot Rod Baits Bass Series Stop #2- 12-Mile Lake


The second and final stop of the 2022 Hot Rod Baits Bass Series took place at 12-Mile Lake near Afton, Iowa.  This 600+ acres lake is a bass fishery, producing many 15+ pound limit bags week after week with some getting over 20 pounds.  The weather was stable for the anglers and the bass were biting!

Water temps for the weekend were hovering around 81-85 degrees throughout the lake, some anglers reported a slight thermocline in areas of the lake.  Water clarity was great and the water level was typical for the middle of summer.  It set up to be a great event to cap off the 2022 series.

The seventeen teams took to the water at 5:30am for the eight hour event.  Temps were great to start the day with clouds moving in and out all day, ending with sunshine for the weigh-in.  Teams scattered all over the lake, from the dam to the silt dam and from shallow points and flats to deeper drop-offs.  Fish were as scattered as the anglers throughout the day and the lake held the seventeen team field just fine.  The weigh-in ended with eight teams over the 15-pound mark, and one over 20 pounds.  Collecting the last money spot at 5th place was Steffen and Williams, they had 16.81 pounds.  In 4th place was Kulow and Arnold, they caught enough for 17.33 pounds.  Third place went to the Pool 9 winners Rudy and Berquist.  They weighed in 17.71 pounds.  IN the Runner-Up spot was Heim and Paulsen, they had 18.54 pounds.  Bates and Sellers brought home the 12-Mile Lake Championship with a limit weighing in at 22.40 pounds.  This was anchored by the big bass of the event that weighed 6.68 pounds, a true brute!

12-Mile CHAMPIONS:  Sellers/Bates 

This year was an odd year for the series, the first event located at Spirit Lake was canceled in May due to impending weather.  After the points were added up for Pool 9 and 12-Mile Lake we had a familiar Team of the Year.  Justin Heim and Andrew Paulsen claimed the $500 bonus and plaques for the 2nd time since fishing the series they also won it in 2017.  They placed 2nd in each of the two events this year.  They had the same amount of points as Rudy/Berquist but had a little more total weight for both events, making Rudy and Berquist the Runner-Up in the Team of the Year points race.  They collected an extra $200 for their efforts.  Coming in 3rd place for the Team of the Year was Donnelly/Christensen, taking home a bonus $100. 

Another great year of tournament fishing on the Hot Rod Baits Bass Series, we will be back in 2023 with a new schedule, announced around the month of December.  For complete results and more information about this series that pays out OVER 90% of entries please visit the WEBSITE HERE.

Andrew Paulsen/Justin Heim

Thursday, July 7, 2022

Make sure and Pack the Frogs

The dead of summer always calls for a few things when searching for bass. Current in river systems is one of them, the other is a hollow-bodied frog.  This is the time of year that I rarely hit the water without an Optimum Baits Furbit Frog tied on.  There are many good frogs on the market to purchase, however I have fallen in love with the Furbit Frog.  The hook-up ratio with this frog is the best I have ever seen.  Some of those great results is no doubt the rod/reel/line setup I throw the frog on.  I choose a 7 foot Med/Hvy Quantum Rod, paired with a 7.2:1 gear ratio Quantum Smoke Reel with 60# braided line.  

All of these components make the combo and the frog work perfectly together to get the bass out of the heaviest of cover.  Whether it be low-laying tree limbs or through a thick mat of grass, this combo gets it done.  

Frogs come in all different colors, however I feel that the cadence of the frog is more important than the color on most days.  Change up your twitches and pauses until the bass tell you exactly what they want on that particular day.  
A close-up of the Optimum Baits Furbit Frog in a mat of duckwork  The heavy weight, located under the hook shank provides incredible hookup ratios and keeps those hooks down in the water column.