Punch the “Hay” for Hidden Lunkers

It is all about available cover.

Large Texas reservoirs have many coves, fingers and shorelines and in any given area the best cover will be the area that draws in the bass, particular during the late summer and early fall period according to Texas bass pro Russell Cecil.

Besides being a touring FLW pro, Cecil and his partner Todd Castledine are the current Anglers of the Year in the Texas Team Trail and Bass-N-Bucks Anglers of the Year for both the Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn Summer Series events. In other words, Cecil knows a thing or two about Texas bass fishing.

“I love punching the ‘hay’ or the thick grass that will grow up in mats sometimes in the middle of the lake on little islands or humps and on shorelines,” Cecil said.

Russell Cecil holds a nice bass he caught by “punching” the hay.

“When that kind of cover is prevalent in an area you can bet there will be bass there. One of the keys is to have a good pair of polarized shades with superior lenses like the new Sunrise from Costa to look down in the pockets for fish and movement.”

Then it’s time to “punch”.

That means rigging up a soft plastic, usually some sort of creature bait, on a heavy weight.

Cecil’s favorite rig utilizes a snell knot with an Owner Jungle Flipping Hook rigged on 80-pound Ande braid. This rig is flipped into pockets in the grass or any area that is penetrable. Most bites are a few seconds after the rig has hit the bottom showing the fish are hearing or feeling the lure and then responding.

“You want to pay attention to anything that feels different whether it is a pulling sensation or any type of sudden stop,” Cecil said.

A hard hookset and is required to penetrate through the “hay” and quite often the rewards are bigger than average bass. These fish are typically not as targeted as those on the edge of the grass, in the hydrilla or even in buckbrush.

If your favorite lake is full of grass and you want big bass between now and early fall, consider punching the “hay”.

Big bass are there for the taking.



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