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One of my favorite professional bass fishermen is Jay Yelas. He was the first professional bass fisherman I ever interviewed. I was impressed by his ability to communicate and his professionalism. Not only is he a quality fisherman, he is a quality person. I think he really feels that the latter is more important than the former.

His BASSMaster Career Statistics speak for themselves:

Career Winnings: $ 845,782 Season Winnings: $ 144,500 Events Fished: 155 Money Finishes: 102 1st Place Finishes: 4 2nd Place Finishes: 3 3rd Place Finishes: 7 Top 10 Finishes: 45 B.A.S.S. All-Time $ list: 10.

Potomac river bass love tube baits. Jay has a few tips for you:

Tube fishing began in the early 1980s out West, when Bobby Garland of Utah invented the original Fat Gitzit. I started fishing the Fat Gitzit back in the mid-'80s. The lure type was referred to as a Gitzit for many years, but now is genericly referred to as a tube.

Tubes have always been great lures. Once designated by the masses as a spring time finnesse bait for clear water and spawning bass, tubes ramped in popularity as a lure for all seasons when Denny Brauer won the Bassmasters Classic in August of 1998 by flipping a tube in dingy water. (ON the Potomac!!!!)

I use tubes three ways. I fish tubes on a jighead in open water with light line and a spinning rod, I use tubes to catch spawning bass, and I flip tubes into heavy cover with 20-25 pound line and a flipping stick.

I've done great with 4" tubes on a jighead in open water at places like Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair, Lake Ontario, and Lake Powell. I like thin bodied tubes like the Berkley Power Tube for this type of fishing. Translucent colors are best. Pumpkinseed and Watermelon are my favorites.

I use the same thin walled 4" tubes for sightfishing, only I Texas-rig them with a 1/16 or 1/8 oz. bullet weight, pegged. I Texas-rig to kill the spiral that a jighead offers when I want a bait to go straight down on a bed. Sometimes your brighter colors are better for sightfishing because you can see them better.

I use Daiwas' 6'3" spinning rod with an Emblem-Z spinning reel loaded with 6-10 pound Vanish flourocarbon for both these tube applications, but sometimes will go to heavier line when sightfishing around heavy cover.

For Flipping a tube in heavy cover I use the Berkley Fathead Tube, which has much thicker plastic to displace more water. I Texas-rig it and use a 5/0 offset Owner worm hook. Its an oversize hook, but I just stick the point up in the hollow bottom of the tube. Your darker colors like green pumpkin, and black work well for flipping. Pearl or white can be a good choice when shad are present. I rig for flipping with 20-25 pound clear Trilene XT.

For more information on Jay Yelas, visit his website:

www.fishingworld.com/Pro-JayYelas/

 


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