First bass on a Zara Spook

First bass on a Zara Spook
24-inch largemouth caught on Zara Spook.


Travis DeNeal

Harrisburg IL

I had never caught a fish on a Zara Spook. My dad bought me and my brother each one back when we were kids, but I never got the hang of "walking the dog." I was in a sporting goods store in Marion, IL, on Friday, Aug. 24, and saw them hanging on the wall. I thought I ought to buy another one and try to master the lure.

That evening, I went to a neighboring farm pond to try it out. I caught a one-pounder on a Rebel crawfish crankbait right off the bat before switching to the Spook, which has the Black Shiner color pattern. I cast toward the only snag in the pond, where my 10-year-old daughter caught and released a huge bass back on March 1.


I walked the lure back somewhat more easily than I had when I fished it years before, but had no strikes. I cast it closer to the corner of the pond, again with no action. Then, I cast back toward the snag and was a little frustrated that I left it about 10 feet short of my intended target. I started walking it back, got about 10-15 feet from where it landed in the water, and suddenly, something exploded on it.

I set the hook, started reeling, and felt the drag start to slip slightly. I had the drag set fairly tight, so I knew it was a big fish. I bumped it up a hair with my thumb and started reeling as fast as I could, trying to keep the fish from surfacing. When it got close to the shore, it really started to fight and it took a couple more minutes to land it.

As soon as it was landed I knew it was the biggest bass I'd ever caught. I measured it while my wife took photos. It had a length of 24 inches, maybe slightly more, and a girth of 16. My wife snapped a few more photos before I got it back in the water. My only regret was not smiling for the camera, but I was really concerned about getting the big fish back in the water promptly.I have more photos available.

Species: Largemouth Bass

Date Caught: 08/24/2012

Kept / Released: Released

Region of Catch: Region 1

Length: 24 inches

Weight:

Lure / Bait used: Lure | Black Shiner 3/4 oz Zara Spook

Recommended for You

Recipes

Pecan-Crusted Catfish Fillets Recipe

By: Emilie Bailey

This is not your run-of-the-mill fish recipe! Buttery, savory pecans are seasoned up to make...

Bass

Rigging Soft Bass Baits Correctly

Matt Straw - May 15, 2018

Balance is the goal when tipping jigs with trailers.

Recipes

Steelhead Trout Niçoise Salad Recipe

This recipe for Steelhead Trout Niçoise Salad is heart healthy, paleo- and gluten-free...

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Largemouth Bass: Tricks of Our Trade

The In-Fisherman staff reveals insider swimming jig tips and tricks for big bass.

Selective Harvest Yellow Bass

In order to sustain good fishing, it's important to understand which to release and fish you should for a fine meal.

Secrets to Busting Big Fish

The In-Fisherman staff tackles super-tough customers, trolling up 50-inch muskies!

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Catfish

All About Catfish

Rob Neumann

Catfish are among the most popular groups of fish with over 7 million catfish anglers...

Walleye

Understanding Spring Walleye Migrations

Gord Pyzer - June 02, 2018

'Walleyes spawn in spring and understanding spring walleye migrations, whether you live north...

Pike & Muskie

How To Catch Pike In Spring

Dan Johnson - April 26, 2016

Spring is prime time for pike. The Prespawn and Postspawn periods offer excellent odds at...

See More Stories

More Master Angler

Master Angler

Great Day Bassin'

September 05, 2013

Dusty Schelbitzki Hallam Nebraska Buddy and i went out for a bit of fishing one evening...

Master Angler

51" Muskie

August 26, 2013

Quinn Leonard Reading MI On a fishing trip to Lake St. Clair with my dad and grandpa, we...

Master Angler

Walleye Tournament Smallmouth

September 04, 2013

Troy Smutka Chaska MN My brother and I were fishing in the two-day Minnesota Tournament...

See More Master Angler

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×