Improvise, Adapt and Overcome
We fight, ending up fishing so fast that not even a sailfish that jumps at 68mph will catch your lure. Or we flee; we start running around on the lake looking for “better” spots. The hard part is to find out what type of angler you are. Do you fight, or flee? Take control of that - reflect on past events and find out whether you fought or fled. Take that part of your personality and evolve it, but never be overconfident.
Before you fight or flee, use what is available. Don’t go looking for something you don’t know or don’t really know where it is. Cast and relax; let your lure settle; don’t focus on your bait; look around you. Use what is available because you went to this spot for a reason. If the fish aren’t there then they could be close. I’ve identified several good fishing spots before, arrived and then boom - no one is home. Moving 100 meter away and then find them on a tree or a rock pile I didn’t fish during the pre-fish.
So you’ve found fish on a slightly different pattern to what you originally prepared for. Now adjust to the new conditions and don’t waste time. This rarely means fishing a different lure colour but often the difference between a weightless, or a Mojo rig. If you’re targeting fish on rocks with plastics then sometimes it works to change tactics and crank the spot. Go back on to the plastics and you might be very surprised with what happens.
All you have to do now is succeed. Go to the places you know and fish similar structure.
So you did all the above and you didn’t win! That sucks! But let’s get real for a minute; if you show up for nationals, you’ve already won the numbers game in your region. But can you deal with that kind of level of pressure. Yes, no, maybe? Let’s be real the human race doesn’t do well under pressure; never have and never will. Yes, you get those oaks that believe they do super well under pressure, but at some point they crash.
So instead of adding pressure to your life enjoy the moment and enjoy the fishing. Identify your weaknesses and fix them. Accept that you will not always win; and you can’t always loose. By the time this article hits the shelves I will be in Texas for the B.A.S.S. Nation Championships and I am super excited.
See you on the water soon.