Chris Gomes, Feelfree Competitive Fishing Team Member, shares with us his top three producing lures for spring and early summer tournaments. So sit back, and take some notes, because if you follow Chris, you know he consistently scores big!
While traveling to National events, there are 3 setups which I found very effective on multiple bodies of water. This time of year, these seem to consistently land the most fish for me. At least one of these setups seem to always produce a bite for me and help get my confidence up on tournament day. This spring I have competed in some tough events. But each of these three presentations has had me off to a quick start early in the tournament and has given me confidence as the hours have stretched on.
#3 The Ned Rig
This rig has been great for me and always seems to produce in highly pressured waters with fidgety bass. There are many ways to fish the Ned rig which makes it very versatile. The rod and reel set up I currently use and love for this is a Shimano 7’ med action Zodias paired with a Shimano Stratic CI4 3000 spinning reel with 6-10lb Fluorocarbon. There are so many different heads on the market, and soft plastics that you can use as a trailer. One head I personally like and recommend are Hijacked Jigs weedless Ned head paired up with either a Berkley Maxscent Lil General or Zmann fineness TRD. As for colors I usually stay basic with green pumpkin, brown, and black and blue. Flat out, the Ned just produces fish.
#2 The Jig
This is by far my favorite way to catch a bass. Something about that Jig bite just really gets that adrenalin pumping. This is another bait that is versatile. They make many different types of jigs for different techniques like swim jigs, flipping jigs, football heads, and many more. The rod and reel set up I mainly use for jigs is a 6’8” med heavy Gloomis NRX paired with a 7.1:1 Shimano Chronorach MGL 151 HG baitcaster with 12-20lb fluorocarbon and sometimes a straight heavy braid if needed. A couple of brands of jigs I like and use regularly are Hijacked custom Jigs, Kitech tungsten jigs and Beast Coast. For trailers I usually use Hijacked Jigs 4” Craws, Berkley Maxscent chunks, and 4” Strike King Rage Craws and chunks. For colors as usual I stay pretty basic with green pumpkin, brown, and black and blue. Jigs will often make over pressured, finicky fish commit.
#1 The Texas Rig
My number 1 set up I always make sure I have with me would be the Texas rig. This setup has got me out of some horrible early starts on the water. The Texas rig is another versatile setup I use in many ways. This is for sure a confidence bait for myself and one of the ways I first started fishing for bass. The set up I typically use for this is a 7’ medium heavy Mojo Bass rod paired with a Shimano 7.1:1 Chronarch MGL 151 HG baitcaster with 12-14 lb. fluorocarbon and some applications a heavy braid if needed. Some baits I usually have with me and ready to use for this are Berkley 5” Generals, Zoom Speed Worms, Berkley Power Worms, Berkley Chigger Craws, and different types of Creature baits. As always, I stay simple with the colors with green pumpkin, brown and black and blue. The Texas rig is just a fish catching presentation like no other.
Those are my 3 must-have setups when traveling and fishing national trail events. If you have a chance follow me on Instagram for pictures and videos of my journey fishing KBF, KFL and local events here in Ma and RI on my Feelfree Dorado and Lure 11.5.
“Live wild, feel free, and fish with a purpose.”
Written by Chris Gomes, Feelfree Competitive Fishing Team Member
Edited by Bobby Ulrich, Feelfree US Pro Staff Team Member