Zoneloc On Tour: In the weeds with Alton Jones Jr.
Dave Landahl Published June 8, 2017
Aquatic vegetation is everywhere in many lakes, rivers and reservoirs around the country. Bass, especially largemouth bass, love them, whether cruising under a canopy of lily pads, slipping through a submerged jungle of milfoil, or sliding through cabbage weed bass dig vegetation.
Zoneloc pro Alton Jones Jr. digs the weeds as well. Not because he desires to live the bass life, but because he knows his quarry loves the veggies.
Alton Jones Jr. (Joel Shangle/BassFIRST)
"To a lot of people, fishing vegetation can be pretty tricky," said Jones Jr. "It's pretty rare to have small clumps of grass here and there in the summer. It's usually miles and miles of the stuff. Many anglers get intimidated by that, but the bass love it and thrive in it."
Check the inside and outside to narrow down fish location.
"The first thing you need to do is break down the massive weedlines," said Jones Jr. "I'll fish the inside edge of the weedline and the outside edge.
"Summer is typically an outside edge or deeper fishing situation, but don't be afraid to check out the inside areas.
"Look for points, pockets, and irregular features within the grass or whatever weed you're fishing. Just like you are fishing a visible shoreline."
Three punch approach.
"I use a three punch approach when I start fishing for bass in the weeds," said Jones Jr. "Early in the day, usually the first hour I will use a topwater lure. I'm weak for a topwater bite. If I can get it, I go for it.
"The second part of my approach usually involves a crankbait. Now, conditions have to be right to fish them, but that outside deeper edge can be an ideal spot to work a crankbait and catch a lot of bass.
"The third part of how I fish the weeds in the summer is with soft plastics. I'll tie on a 5/0 Zoneloc Flippin' Hook, and 1 ½-to 2-ounce weight and put a larger soft plastic on, like a Christie Critter. I know many people use smaller lures to punch through thick vegetation, but I feel the bigger bait works better in the summer and is something a big bass can locate easier, especially in the dense vegetation."