Improve Trolling Success Using the 15 Minute Rule

“Holy cow I think I have a tuna!” I yelled to my father, who was out cold, asleep in the cabin. Line was screaming off my light spinning setup as my Dad struggled to raise his newly retired, and half asleep self to his feet. I was doing my best to avoid the other lines I had set off the stern, which by now, were also doubled over, with braid hissing off the reels. A quick glance at the sonar revealed what was going on beneath our boat-after a long slow night we had officially hit the mother load.

Over the next 45 minutes my father and I fell into an awesome routine. As quickly as we could get a bass unhooked, and an eel or tube n’ worm back in the water, we were hooked up again. It was one of those moments during the season that create the nostalgic memories that help get a fisherman through the winter. By the end of the pandemonium we had landed 15 bass between 20-40 pounds. Less than an hour ago my father had been sound asleep, but now he was sweating profusely. What a wonderful scene!

Finding and sticking with the striped bass biomass in areas with little structure is easier when a sound strategy is employed.

If you told me this story ten years ago I never would have believed you. We used to troll around aimlessly for hours, hoping and praying for one or two nice bass. Finding any consistent number of fish in Cape Cod Bay, or any large expanse of water for that matter, seemed overwhelming and intimidating. I used to often times hope there would be a fleet of boats out there somewhere to help us at least get an idea of where there may be some fish. That was until we developed a consistent strategy for finding bass, determining their behavior one we found them, and then matching their behavior with a technique that will put bass in the boat.

So why not spread the wealth? To be completely honest, any fish my father and I catch these days is really just a culmination of the generous information shared with us from anglers we’ve met in the past. Their generosity, coupled with reading many articles of “On The Water,” and a lot of trial and error, is really what’s led to us hooking up with just about any fish we’re fortunate enough to tie in to. I think it is pretty much impossible to completely figure out striped bass-especially if you spend your time fishing in areas where there is no dramatic current or structure to hold fish. A proven strategy that you can employ each time you leave the dock is in my opinion, the best way to consistently create successful trips.

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