Alabama is the birthplace of modern bass fishing, and has become engrained in the culture of everyday life in Alabama. What if you were somehow left out of learning about this great pastime, how do you even get started? We’ll break the process down into some simple steps you can follow, and you’ll be on your way to catching fish in no time. Photo: Tom/Flickr
Your Home Waters
The first thing you should think about is your home waters. What type of water body is it, a river, a reservoir, or a pond? Can you fish from shore to begin with, or would you be better off with a boat?
We think fishing from shore is just fine for most bodies of water in Alabama. Bookmark this article as your guide to finding public docks, piers, and boat launches to get started.
If bank fishing isn’t what you want, then ask friends and acquaintances if they would take you along in their boat. Nothing beats time on the water with more experienced anglers.
Basic Bass Fishing Gear
You’ll need some basic gear to get started. You’ll need a quality baitcasting reel on a 6’-6” to 7’ medium heavy rod, as well as one spinning reel with a 6’-6” medium action rod. With these two setups you can learn to fish nearly every technique there is for bass fishing.
Next, you’ll want to buy some line, lures, and a tackle box to put them in. Pick up a spool of 15lb monofiliament for your baitcasting setup, and 10lb mono for your spinning gear. For the tackle box, we like to keep it simple, using a simple Plano Utility Box to store your line and lures.
Next, buy a package of 10” Power Worms, in Plum or Green Pumpkin colors, a pack of 1/4oz bullet weights, and a pack of 4/0 Owner or Gamakatsu offset worm hooks. In addition to that buy a 3/8oz white and chartruese spinnerbait, and a few 1/2oz green pumpkin and black/blue football jigs.
The Texas Rig worm is your first thing to learn. Rad this first, then go fish it on your home waters as much as you can. The football jig is good for learning to fish hard bottom, and how structure feels. The spinnerbait can be cast at shallow targets, and slow rolled along the bottom.
Practice Makes Perfect
Tie on your jig or worm and head out to your backyard. You can practice casting with both the baitcasting reel and spinning reel. Each has its own technique, and you will quickly get the hang of it.
Once you can cast with a decent level of accuracy, it’s time to head to the lake. Plan to spend an hour or two each time you go out, and learn to fish each lure and technique before moving onto another.
Remember, there is no substitute to time on the water. The more time to practice you can devote, the faster you will learn to work your baits, feel bites, and catch fish. Tight lines!