By Leo Watson
I have been wondering for the last couple of weeks or so
what subject to do my next article on. Well as I am sure you are
aware of there is a lot that can written about bass fishing. I always
try to do something a little different. I want each of my articles
to mean something to each individual angler and inform them about
things that can make a difference in their success rate.
I was at one of my sponsors office the other day when some of our
other Pro Staff members were there and we were talking about the
upcoming season and the destinations we were fishing. Talking about
how last years events went and what to look forward to for this
upcoimng season. My new partner for this years Foxwood's Bass Challenge
Tour is new to our Pro Staff and he as well as I just kind of sat
back and listened to all the talk going on between the Pro Staffers
and the sponsor. I did listen intently to every thing they had to
say. My partner John Erickson said nothing being new to this team
and just looked at me. When the meeting was over and just my partner,
myself, and the owner were left two words came to mind " DOCK
I can remember just starting out and coming up through the ranks
when I used to try to pick up all the dock talk I could. I know
looking back now I can honestly say I have never gained from dock
talk. I can in reality say it has cost me thousands of dollars in
prize money. I can still vividly remember back in the 80's going
to fish a club tournament against another club and one of our members
asking me what I was planning to use. To this day, even after 10
years or more I can still remember him telling me no that won't
work. What ever you do don't through that. It just wont work here.
That day he threw my bait selection and won that tournament going
I learned a very important lesson that day and it still sticks with
me every time I'm on the water. Have confidence in your own ability,
stick by your own judgments, and unless you personally know the
person don't get hung up with dock talk! I would like to have a
dollar for every person I have seen taken completely out of a tournament
by listening to dock talk. You will find that unless you know the
person or you know exactly the right questions to ask that you have
very little to gain from dock talk. I have heard people sit there
and tell people that they were catching fish on a $15 lure. By the
next day the local tackle shop would be sold out but, the people
giving out that information also took all of those people who purchased
the $15 lures right out of the tournament because they sold them
on bad and inaccurate information. This may sell product for a local
tackle shop on time but, the educated angler will realize what happened
and move on.
What do I personally think of dock talk? I don't believe in it.
As far as I am concerned unless you personally know the individual
make your own judgments as to the worth of the information being
offered. Look back at the instance that I've told you about and
learn from my earlier mistakes. When I come off then ramp now I
just pull out and go.
If you are going to ask questions at the dock ask a well trusted
Pro. Just as important if not more so, learn to ask the right questions.
Learn to dig for more detail about a specific lure or technique
that you are inquiring about. To give you an example when throwing
a Gitzit the most frequent question I get asked is what color I'm
throwing. I personally will always answer all questions honestly.The
color may or may not have a thing to do with catching bass on that
given day. It could be line size, weight, scent, technique, etc.
If you don't learn to ask the proper questions your learning will
be limited. Take the time to think before you ask and don't be satisfied
with out getting the whole answer. Learn to ask the right questions
and most Pro's will be happy to answer them for you. I can assure
you that at least one Pro will take the time to answer all your
questions. Learn to ask the right ones and you will greatly improve
your fishing success.
In closing, stay away from dock talk in general. Have enough faith
in your own ability and education. Stick with your game plan once
you have established your pattern. When in doubt contact your area
Pro. He or she most likely will set you in the right direction.
If in doubt contact me. You will always get a straight answer and
you might not even have to ask all the right questions to get a
full set of answers.
Pro Staff - Contact me with your questions or comments at