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Fishermans Handbook 2020

Expert Bass angler, Wade Middleton brings us another series of Fisherman's Handbook, a FREE to view series packed full of top tips to help you improve your catch rates when Bass fishing. Wade showcases some of the latest equipment on the market such as his new Ranger boat and the Garmin Livescope which gives unparalleled access to underwater visuals. Top Bass pros join the series and offer their advice on a range of topics. If you want to become a better Bass angler then Fisherman's handbook is a great place to start.
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In this episode Wade looks at how fish behaviour changes throughout the seasons each year and how the angler must be aware of these changes and adapt accordingly. In Summer, fish will start pushing out to the ledges and dropoffs and into deeper water and often their feeding windows will be far reduced. Mike McClelland discusses thermoclines that appear in summer months and Jeff Reynolds enjoys some good sport fishing behind a thermocline. Many anglers are also hunters, so in Fall, lakes can be far less crowded opening up some great sport for anglers. Fish will move to shallow water eventually but its important not to rush there immediately and to find the areas they are holding at on their way in. In Winter as the water cools down, the fishing hots up and a wide array of baits comes into play and Wade discusses some you might want to focus on now. Fish will slow down in winter so fishing slowly on the bottom will also pay dividends now. Its important for anglers to recognise how seasonal changes will affect their local lakes to ensure success throughout the year.
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Electronics have revolutionised boat angling in the past few years and modern day anglers have become experts at using them to their advantage. Wade takes a look at some of the new Garmin technology such as the Panoptix Livescope which provides a real time view of his bait and the fish reacting to it. Bass pro's, Mike McClelland, Jason Christie and Scott Martin discuss how game-changing Livescope has been for them and how it enhances their sessions. Wade unboxes a new Garmin unit and shows us how to install it on the boat and correctly configure it with Livescope. We then take a look at the multiple award winning Garmin Force Trolling Motor, which offers unrivalled power and automatically syncs with your other Garmin boat technology seamlessly.
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In this episode, Wade looks at flooded lakes and the challenges they bring when fishing for Bass. How the fish react to flooded conditions varies greatly but one place where Wade likes to try first is the old bank line, an area the fish will already know and feel comfortable with. His tactic proves correct, quickly locking into a nice Bass on an Aruku Shad lure. With more water in the lake, there's a lot more cover and although its tempting to stay in one spot after a fish, Wade likes to cover as much water as possible in these conditions. Sticking to the old bank line pays dividends for Wade as is seems the fish have stayed out and not moved in to the flooded areas. As the water warms, fish think about the spawn, they start to move in to the shallow flooded banks and the bushes and Wade shows exactly the kinds of places to target. Looking for irregularities in the cover helps Wade find the fish.
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Low water conditions affect all lakes from time to time, and in this episode, host Wade Middleton examines the tactics and techniques you'll need to employ to target Bass when this happens. Wade explains that low water often results in a loss of marginal cover and the angler needs to adapt just as the fish will have done and find the new areas that they will now hold in. In low conditions, fish can often be more tightly concentrated so if once you find some then, it can really pay dividends. Crankbaits can be deadly in low water and Wade shows us exactly how its done, catching some chunky Largemouth. Moving offshore, Wade then shows how he locates the right structure on the fish finder and the lures to use here.
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In this episode, Wade and several top Bass pros reveal some of their top secrets that give them an edge in competition. First up, they discuss fishing line and when to use certain line types and braid in different situations. Wade favours FC Sniper from Sunline when it comes to fluorocarbon and discusses the properties it displays in various breaking strengths. We then take a look at hard baits and the pros extol the virtues of the Aruku Shad which comes in a range of colours and can be irresistible to Bass. The Wameku Shad is another must have hard bait as it boasts a very loud rattle and is brilliant in grassy areas in Spring. Finally we take a look at soft plastics and when and where to fish them and the different styles you should use.
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Wade fishes a new lake and uses his instincts to start a drift downwind and throw a Jerk Bait. He gets some instant success with a nice Largemouth before the bites dry up. Wade switches to a slow sinking hard bait which he's never fished before but likes the look of it. It seems to be working well as he quickly gets into some fish proving that trying new things can sometimes pay off. This Spy Bait from Spro, seems to wiggle as it falls through the water column and it appears to be the action the fish are attracted to. Wade ends the show by  talking through some top tips to employ on the Garmin Livescope to help locate targets.
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Wade is fishing in Springtime on a lake with flooded timber and vegetation and the Bass are in various stages of the spawn, and spread out amongst the cover. Wade favours a swim jig in this scenario and is having some good success as the lure zips past the holding fish imitating a small Bluegill darting for cover. Wade shows exactly how to effectively cover snags and trees with his swim jig and lands some great Bass in the process. Wade discusses several different Swim Jigs and the types of rods and reels he likes for this kind of work. Wade then shows a great lure for getting lots of bites, the Weightless Worm which can be fished in a few ways and can be excellent during the spawn.
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As fish move into shallower water, prespawn, Wade and Clark show what's needed to find them. This is the time of year when if you can get things right, you can expect a lot of bites. As the fish stage up and are tightly crowded, bait choice isn't so important according to Wade and they can be caught on numerous types of bait. Wade explains that bigger fish can often be found on the outside edge of the grass line and proves his point catching a stunning Bass which gives him a strong fight in the cold water.
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Wade and friend Clark are on Choke Canyon Reservoir in early Spring and start by discussing how weather conditions affect the fishing, both recalling a bonanza day here 10 years ago when they caught some huge bass including a 8lber and a fish of 12lbs! With a lot of experience fishing here, they are confident that conditions are once again on their side as they head out. Fishing just inside the grass line, Wade makes a great start landing a chunky Largemouth before Wade quickly follows suit. Wade explains where the fish will be holding at this time of year as they push into the grass to spawn, and sit in the holes and gulleys. This is turning to an epic session as the pair unlock the formula for success today.
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There are times when its key to get into narrow channels in backwaters to find fish and a big Bass boat just doesn't work. Many anglers use small aluminum boats to reach these areas but Wade looks at the Ranger RT178 which has many of the features of a bigger boat and is perfect for backcountry fishing. Wade talks through the accessories he's added to this boat to achieve maximum performance and fishing comfort. Wade then takes it out to some backwaters and gets into some Bass. Finally we head out on a small  local lake using the Ranger RT178, with Secret Lures Pro-Staffer, Terry Williams who shows us how to fish some brilliant new lures in tight conditions.
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Wade has a new boat, a Ranger Z521L, and he kicks off this episode by talking  through some of the key features which he believes make it the best Bass fishing boat on the market. Wade shows us how he's set his boat up with his his preferred equipment and how he's installed it on the Ranger. After an in depth look at the boat, Wade take it out on the water and sees how all the theory works in practice, catching some nice Bass in good conditions.

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