October 06, 2011
By Ned Kehde
We posted a blog on October 5 about Vic Oertle's power tactics for catching sunmertime smallmouth bass at Milford Lake, Kansas. And some anglers are curious about the way Oertle retrieves the Hoodaddy Jr. on his 3/8-ounce swinging jig.
Here's how he does it:
He rarely uses it in water deeper than eight feet. He normally casts it to the shoreline, drops his to the four o'clock position and turns the reel handle at a slow pace, allowing the Hoodaddy and jig to crawler around and over the rocky terrain. When the bait hits some resistance, such as big boulder or in a crevice between two big rocks, and he can't continue to execute his crawling presentation, Oertle lifts his rod to the two o'clock position, creates some slack in his line and then shakes and pops the rod until the bait is free. Once it's free, he lets it fall back to the bottom, and then he commences his crawling retrieve. Occasionally a smallmouth bass will strike the bait when it is stuck in one the crevices, and he is shaking it, or as soon as Oertle liberates the bait from the crevice a smallmouth bass will engulf it.
When he employs the YUM Dinger and Z-Man ZinkerZ, it is a shallow-water presentatiom. He casts Dinger or ZinkerZ to the shoreline. Most strikes occur on the initial drop in depths of three feet or less. If he doesn't garner a strike on the initial drop, he uses his rod to hop the jig, and if he doesn't catch a smallmouth after three hops, he reels it in and executes another cast to another spot.