You want to catch more fish?
Try to zig when everyone else zags.
We’ve talked about this many times before – but how do you figure out what everyone else is doing so that you can do the opposite? Here are a few quick tips:
1. Ask Around
I know… these days it seems so “old fashioned” to interact with actual people. Especially – *gasp* – ones we don’t already know! The Horror!
One of my favorite things to do it speak with people on the bank, at the boat launch, in the parking lot, the bait shop or the fishing aisle of the local BigBox.
Here’s the secret phrase that will open up a world of information… you ready?
Just say these two words to the next 5 people you pass on the bank with a smile on your face and I guarantee you one of these people will share something you didn’t already know.
Just make it clear that you’re not trying to figure out SPOTS. Don’t waste time looking for SPOTS – try to figure out presentations and techniques.
Never, ever ask a fisherman for his favorite spot. He will not share it with you, and if he does – he’s lying.
Ask what he believes to be the best bait. Ask him for his expertise in lure selection. Play to his ego. Don’t blow smoke up his rear, but let him know you are ready to listen and learn – be humble, and there is a darn good chance he’ll share some general information with you that will help you put the puzzle together.
2. Check The Shelves…
Want to double-check the information you’re getting? Try this.
Head to the local BigBox store and take a look at what is on the shelves.
Look at what should be stocked that isn’t there – if there are multiple spots for Senkos that are sold out – chances are these are being used heavily in the local area. You can either try some of your own as a starting point, or opt for something a little bit different – for example, a heavy salt Zoom Zlinky.
If you have a Bass Pro nearby, you can look there as well… but you will get better information at Walmart, Farm & Fleet or Rural King.
Because these stores are ONLY going to stock what sells fast locally – products that they know they can move quickly. They are dealing with a healthy mix of hardcore anglers that are looking at the fishing section while getting groceries with the wife, but also hobbyists and dreamers that have a limited knowledge base (no offense of course) and limited time.
Bass Pro needs to keep all of their shelves stocked so they are seen as the authority. They are equipped to meet your every fishing need (and want). Therefore, stocked shelves are just as important to them in terms of how they are perceived by their customers, and their bottom line.
Fortunately this is a win-win, because they also know that they can move less trendy items.
So go ahead – take a peek. Ask around to get a grasp on what people might be using, but then double check what they tell you by stopping by the fishing section at some of the smaller chain-type stores.
You might be surprised at what is – and what isn’t – on the shelves.
Oh… and remember – never trust that a serious fisherman gave you his “best spot”.
That would just be silly.