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Video – Jerkbaits in Detail with Mike McClelland

When it comes to fishing jerkbaits, those anglers from the Midwestern part of the country have long been known as some of the premier “jerkbaiters” out there.  Sure, the West has its share of stellar examples, as do the Northeast.  However, the jerkbait has become synonymous with lakes like Table Rock, Lake of the Ozarks, Bull Shoals, Grand Lake and some of the other clear water impoundments throughout the Ozarks and the Midwest.

One of those anglers that has been at the peak of his craft with the jerkbait for many years is Bella Vista, Ark. Elite Series pro Mike McClelland.  McClelland has developed a line of baits with his sponsor SPRO that fills all of the needs of a jerkbait angler.  From the McRip 85, to the original McStick 110, the 95, and now the 115, each of those lures has its own specific place for it to be used.  Until now, anglers were forced to try and use a trial and error approach to figuring out which bait to use when.

While we were at the recent SPRO, SUNLINE, Big Bite Baits and Gamakatsu Media Days event at Lake Sydney Lanier outside Atlanta, Ga., we sat down with McClelland and figured out how to put together a comprehensive start to finish guide with his signature SPRO baits.  In this video, McClelland helps us understand which bait to choose for the conditions and when we are fishing, where to apply them and how to use them.

So, enter the Advanced How-to classroom with professor Mike McClelland and get all of the details on jerkbait fishing. Watch Video

5th: Bad Day Haunts McClelland

McClelland caught nearly 18 pounds on the first and final days, but just more than half of that on day 2. The middle day doomed his chances in an event in which he was considered one of the favorites due to his history on Grand (which includes and Elite Series victory) and his proximity to it.

"I'd like to do yesterday over again," he said. "It's all about decision-making, and rather than really zeroing in on a one creek or pocket or area, I had too much stuff look at. Then when they didn't bite, I tried to hunker down and make them bite in specific spots.

"I said beforehand that the guy who ran a pattern over the course of the Classic and fished new water every day would be the winner, and I didn't do that."

A 4-11 was the biggest fish in the bag he caught today.

"I caught them pretty quick and I thought I had a good opportunity to take it over 20 pounds. I kept doubling back to where I caught the three best ones, but I think they'd just quit biting."

He threw a Spro McStick jerkbait and a Bass-X jig

9th: McClelland Recovered from Slow Start

Day 1: 5, 17-15 - McClelland said his day began sluggishly, but picked up once he slowed down.

"I think I fished too fast at the start and didn't allow myself to get settled in," he said. "Once I did, things started happing pretty quick. The fish had repositioned a little bit, but the key is fishing effectively and believing that with every presentation, you've got a fish that's trying to get (the bait).

"Tomorrow I'm going to start out making some real precise casts to brush and (dock) corners and things like that, and hopefully things will come together quicker."

He fished the southern end of the lake and his bag was topped by a 5-07. He made his final cull on his second-to-last cast when he replaced a 2-pounder with a 3 1/2.

"There's not doubt the fish bite better in the afternoon this time of year, and in practice you stay out there until dark and you get so many bites in those last 3 hours. It's really tough knowing you're going to be leaving right when they're really starting to bite."

14th: Suspended Fish Thwarted McClelland

> Day 2: 5, 9-08 (10, 27-07) - Mike McClelland's bigger fish repositioned today and he was unable to exploit them.

"They were right on the breaks yesterday, anywhere from 6 to 10 feet deep," he said. "Today I got very few bites. They were a lot farther out in the middle of the pockets and they were suspended, and I haven't figured out how to catch them when they do that."

He primarily threw a jerkbait and got 10 bass bites (he also caught quite a few drum). His biggest was a 2 1/2-pounder that came on his final cast.

"I mixed it up a little bit. I didn't spend a lot of time with other baits, but I did play with some other things a time or two.

"I don't want to say I'm going to go for broke tomorrow, but I'm not going to try to force-feed them in the areas where I thought I'd catch them. If those fish don't cooperate, I'll move around and try some other things."

McClelland at home on Grand

TULSA, Okla. — With snow starting to fly, Mike McClelland looked at peace on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees.

Winter Storm Q, which produced snowstorms that wreaked havoc on Wednesday’s final day of Classic practice, gave the Bella Vista, Ark., angler warm fuzzies.

The first flakes flying could in part be why he hooked two fish within minutes, but it also helped put McClelland more at ease where he’s already right at home. Read More

Mike McClelland Has Secret Weapons For The Bassmaster Classic

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Mike McClelland says he is “flying under the radar” going into his ninth Bassmaster Classic. He could not be happier about that.

It’s not that McClelland has escaped the notice of the nerds of professional bass fishing. These pundits and prognosticators have picked him as an odds-on favorite to win the Feb. 22-24 world championship on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees, the 2013 Bassmaster Classic presented by Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa. Read More