NBS Outdoor Fall Issue 2020

Bassin’ with JVD JVD (Jonathan VanDam) competes on the MLF Bass Pro Tour and is a two-time Bassmaster winner. He’s loved bass fishing since he was a child, and learned from one of the best: his uncle KVD (Kevin VanDam), who is often considered the greatest bass angler of all time. When Jon is not competing, he works at his father’s tackle and As summer breaks into fall, cooler water builds in the shallows and bass go on the feed bag. You can catch them on crankbaits, spinnerbaits, swimbaits, and an array of plastics, but if you want to have fun and add excitement to your fall fishing, tie on a topwater. That is, if your heart can handle it. Fall topwater strikes are the most violent and exciting in all of fishing. It all starts on impoundments in October when bass follow the shad into the backs of creeks and into pockets off the main lake. In the north, it begins a month sooner when bass school up on weedy or rocky flats or around river mouths, chasing whatever baitfish the lake has to offer. When you start seeing baitfish flicking the surface or a lot of bass chasing bait in the shallows, it’s time to get out your surface boat dealership, D&R Sports Center in Kalamazoo, Mich. Topwaters are Tops for Fall

VanDam prefers topwaters when fishing over submerged cover and casting to specific targets.

lures.

I prefer the popper variety because it can be worked slower and stays in the strike zone longer. My favorite is the Strike King KVD Splash Jr., but I’ll go to the larger size when I need a bait to make a little more commotion. Also, poppers are best in calm water, or water with a light chop.

Of course, there are various types of topwaters and each one can provide different action or fit a specific need based upon the conditions and areas you’re fishing. Here’s a snapshot of the ones I use and when I will choose them. Poppers. If I’m fishing over cover or casting to specific targets,

• NBS OUTDOOR • 39

Fall 2020

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