Fishing Line and Tying Knots for Fishing


With the advancements in today’s technology and amount of research that goes into developing new products, there are now a wide range of fishing lines on the market today. Each one serves its own particular purpose. One is best suited for crankbaits. Another line may work best with topwaters, and some other line could be best for fishing thick vegetation. On this episode, we go into detail about particular fishing lines and introduce you to a few knots to use with those lines.

Monofilament, fluorocarbon and braid, those are the three types of Sunline fishing line an angler can choose from. Monofilament floats. This makes it great for throwing topwater baits. Fluorocarbon sinks. Fluorocarbon is the ideal line for fishing just about every presentation minus topwater. Lastly, there’s braid. Braid is designed for those situations when you’re fishing around thick cover. Host Wade Middleton will go into great detail about each line, explaining when, where, and how to apply it to your fishing needs.

The second main item of discussion are knots. Sunline offers a wide library of knots on their website that includes instructional photos and videos to help you tie some of the most popular knots out there. Tune in as we incorporate some of those educational items in the show to demonstrate how to tie particular knots.

Rigging Soft Plastics


Soft plastics are some of the most versatile fishing baits/lures on the market. For instance, one particular finesse worm could be used in a variety of ways from a Texas Rig to a Neko Rig, fished weightless, or even used on the back of a Carolina Rig. On this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook, we take a closer look at how to rig particular baits and show you just exactly how these baits look under water.

Through the first half of the episode, Wade highlights the Big Bite Baits Finesse Worm. This is a slim profile finesse worm that pairs well with a shaky head, and can also be fished weightless as a wacky rig. During the first segment, we look back at a trip with Wade and Jeff Kriet on Lake LBJ where they are using the finesse worm on a Neko Rig around boat docks. Following that, we go to Pickwick Lake in Alabama where Wade then uses the same soft plastic bait paired on a shaky head. One worm, two different presentations, both successful fishing trips.

At the end of this episode, we look at the Stupid Tube from Secret Lures. The Stupid Tube is a bait/rigging method that was developed in Indiana and is now taking the country by storm. Find out more about Secret Lures, this great bait, and how to rig it as we wrap up this episode focused on rigging soft plastics.

Changing Patterns on Choke Canyon Reservoir

We’ve said it a thousand times it seems, but fish patterns can change at a moment’s notice based upon a variety of factors. On this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook, we are going to focus on fish patterns during the early spring time. Wade, along with two separate guests, takes to Choke Canyon Reservoir in consecutive weeks to show exactly how quickly and drastically the fish can change up during this time of the year.

To start off the episode, Wade is joined by good friend Mike Hawkes on a cloudy, windy morning as a front blows through. Early on, the duo begins by getting bites on spinnerbaits worked along windy shorelines. However, as the day progresses the front blows through and gives way to clear skies and calm winds. This change in conditions causes them to slow down and work weightless worms around the same creek channel swings and cover that were working earlier in the day.

In the final half of this show, Wade returns back to Choke Canyon Reservoir, this time with Clark Wendlandt. A warming pattern has set in throughout the area, and fish are flooding the shallow to scout out the ideal spawning area. Wade and Clark pick apart holes in the grass by running swimbaits through these high percentage areas. The fish bite like crazy with the warming trend, and it quickly becomes obvious that the two have dialed in on the productive pattern for that day.

Alabama Fishing Adventures


Over the years, we’ve traveled all across the country in search of that next great fishing adventure. From Texas, to Oklahoma, Kentucky, and down to Alabama, host Wade Middleton and crew have caught an array of fish in a wide variety of locations. On this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook, we take a look at some of our favorite fishing trips from the state of Alabama.

First up, we take a look at an outing with Wade & Clark on Wilson Lake outside of Florence, AL. It’s the early summertime, and fish are making their way out deep to find cooler water. The duo begins by throwing topwaters up shallow, then moves to the Wheeler Dam tailrace. At the tailrace, you never know what might bite! This Alabama fishing adventure is insightful, fun, and features tons of fish catching.

In the next segment, Clark Wendlandt is joined by Curt Hill from Power-Pole back out on Wilson Lake. This time the fish are up shallow in flooded vegetation. Conditions such as this provide a great opportunity to highlight the Power-Pole Total Boat Control System. Watch as Clark & Curt pick apart shallow cover while using the poles to control their boat positioning.

Lastly, we lighten the mood a little bit and introduce a friendly competition between good friends on Pickwick Lake. Be sure to tune in and check out this episode highlighting the best moments we’ve experienced fishing some of Alabama’s most storied fisheries.

Uncovering New Bass Fishing Techniques

Sometimes it can be very intimidating for an angler to try new techniques. For years, we have fished the same handful of baits that we have confidence in, making it nearly impossible for us to open our eyes to new lures. However, sometimes we have to throw that past knowledge out the window and become more open-minded and force ourselves to try different baits.

On this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook, Wade decides to spend a day of fishing trying out the Spin John 80 from SPRO. One of SPRO’s newest creations, the Spin John 80 is a spy bait. This is a technique that Wade is not familiar with as the day begins. Tune in as he spends the day breaking down this new lure, experiences a few growing pains along the way, but ultimately has great success with the Spin John 80 from SPRO.

During the second half of the episode, Wade goes in-depth on the many settings of Garmin’s Panoptix LiveScope. This award-winning piece of electronics has taken the fishing world by storm, and completely revolutionized the way we see fish and structure underwater. Whether it’s setting the gain, adjusting bottom fill, or fine-tuning distance settings for long casts, we will take a look at the ins and outs of Panoptix LiveScope.

Covering Water

Springtime bass fishing is one of the most dynamic times of the year for an angler. Some fish are in the pre-spawn stage, others are spawning, and another portion of the fish population is already post-spawn. When fish are in all three phases of the spawn, it can scatter them all across the lake. One of the most difficult things to do is locate exactly where the biting fish are located.

One lure that works as a good search bait in these scenarios is a swim jig. In this episode, Wade opts to throw the MVP Swim Jig by Secret Lures. The MVP Swim Jig comes in three different sizes, as well as numerous color options. Today Wade is fishing the bluegill pattern. Tune in to learn all about this bait, and the various tips and tricks on how to effectively fish this lure.

During the second half of this episode, host Wade Middleton changes things up a little bit by switching to a weightless worm. With a good majority of the fish spawning, throwing a weightless worm around bedding bass is a great way to get bites. A weightless worm can be fished in a variety of ways. Be sure to watch this episode to find out more as we go in-depth about this particular soft plastic.

Simply Catching Bass

Fishing during the early springtime period can provide the opportunity to catch the fish of a lifetime, or just get a lot of bites. All of the bass in the lake are moving shallow to prepare for the spawn, and they are feeding up on baitfish at the same time. The first fish to push up into the shallows are the buck bass. They are the ones that will make the beds. Females tend to hang out deeper a little longer as they wait to move up. How do you target fish in this scenario? Wade Middleton and Clark Wendlandt will demonstrate just exactly how to get a lot of bites during the pre-spawn.

Equipment and gear also play a large role in an angler’s success. On this episode, Wade & Clark will highlight Garmin Panoptix LiveScope and the Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Carbonlite 2.0 lineup of rods and reels. Panoptix LiveScope comes in key as they work to locate pre-spawn bass hiding out in the deeper vegetation. Then Wade Middleton breaks down the Carbonlite 2.0 and discusses just how this setup is benefiting him on this specific trip.

Be sure to stay tuned until the end as Wade & Clark break down the keys to finally getting a big bite amongst all of the buck bass. The big fish are swimming around the same areas, you just have to put a bait in front of them. Be sure to tune in to this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook!

Fishing for Bass in the Grass

Early spring time is one of the most exciting times of the year to be out on the water. Bass typically start to migrate from their winter haunts, and flood the shallows looking to feed up on baitfish prior to bedding down to spawn. This means that a large majority of the fish population is up shallow, and they are hungry! On this episode of the Bass Pro Shops Fisherman’s Handbook, Wade Middleton and Clark Wendlandt take to Choke Canyon reservoir in search of pre-spawn fish hanging out in and around the grass.

Choke Canyon Reservoir used to be considered one of the best bass fishing lakes in the country. Back during the mid-2000’s, it was not uncommon to catch a double-digit bass or even multiple fish over six or eight pounds. However, the lake experiences drastic changes in water level due to extreme drought and demand on the water supply by surrounding areas. This causes the lake to drop, vegetation to die off, and water quality to become poor. All of these variables do not lend themselves to a healthy fishery. But over the past three to four years, the lake has seen a great upswing. The grass is back, and fish populations are healthy. Choke Canyon is once again becoming a destination for anglers to visit and fish!

During their time out on the water during this episode, Wade and Clark quickly dial in a pattern for these Choke Canyon bass. The fish are relating to the abundant hydrilla/vegetation, and are keyed in on a swimbait. Learn what type of swimbait they’re throwing, the exact rod, reel & line setup, as well as better understand how the bass are relating to the grass in this great episode of the Bass Pro Shops Fisherman’s Handbook!

Catching Bass Off The Beaten Path

Bass boats come in a wide range of sizes, styles, and can be made of different types of material. One of the more common, cost-efficient options for watercraft is the aluminum boat. These boats are often rated for lower horsepower engines which help to keep the overall cost down. Aluminum boats also have a variety of advantages compared to fiberglass boats, including accessibility to shallow water, and durability amongst heavy cover.

On this episode of the Bass Pro Shops Fisherman’s Handbook, host Wade Middleton walks us through the ins and outs of his Ranger Boats RT178. The RT178 is a 17 ft. 8 in. long aluminum boat that is rated for up to a 75 HP engine. Featuring many of the same comforts as the popular fiberglass models from Ranger, the RT178 is a great all-around boat for anglers of all skill levels and interests. Wade will also provide an in-depth look at numerous accessories he incorporated into this boat from the likes of T-H Marine, Yamaha, Garmin, and others.

Following the walkthrough of the RT178, we take a look at several different fishing adventures we’ve experienced in this boat. One of those trips that we highlight is from a small lake in Kentucky. We meet up with members of the Secret Lures Pro Staff to take an in-depth look at the Stupid Tube. This is a great soft plastic setup that has won thousands of dollars for anglers out on various major tournament trails. Tune in to find out about all of these great products and more!

Getting the Most Out of Your Gear

Year in and year out, Ranger Boats continues to raise the bar with its extensive line of premium watercraft. That extensive line includes aluminum, center console, pontoon, and fiberglass boats. On this episode of the Fisherman’s Handbook, host Wade Middleton introduces you to his newest rig. Tune in to learn all about the Ranger Boats Z521L.

On top of selecting a premium bass boat, it is also important to outfit that boat with the best gear for you. Whether it’s a Power-Pole Blade, the Garmin Force Trolling Motor, or a Yamaha VMAX SHO outboard, each piece of equipment is crucial to your success out on the water. Wade will walk through the boat step by step and explain why he chose to outfit this Ranger Boats Z521L the way he did.

Following the walkthrough, Wade will take the new boat out for an afternoon full of fish catching. Don’t miss this latest episode of the Bass Pro Shops Fisherman’s Handbook as Wade Middleton gives us a look at his new Ranger Boats Z521L.