Kurt Dove’s Pro-Bass Camp set for June

Kurt Dove’s Pro-Bass Camp set for June

 

DEL RIO, Texas — The fourth annual Kurt Dove’s Pro-Bass Camp for anglers ages 13 to 18 will take place June 23-27, 2015, on Texas’ Lake Amistad.

The camp is hosted by Dove, who is a Bassmaster Elite Series pro and a guide on Amistad. Campers learn about the sport and the business from some of the nation’s top anglers, and they even get to compete for college scholarships.

In summer 2014, 20 teens from Texas, New Mexico, Missouri, Alabama and Virginia attended the camp.

“I’m not sure we’ll ever exceed 20,”said Dove. “It’s four days of intense bass fishing activity from daylight to dark. We rely on that personal attention. We’re working to provide an avenue to lead kids from the youth level to the college level and beyond. We want to allow them to live their dreams in fishing no matter what those may be.”

As in the previous two years, the 2014 instructors were a mix of local sticks, national pros, Elite Series winners and even a Hall of Famer or two. Denny Brauer, Harold Allen, Cliff Crochet, Keith Combs, TR Andreas, Dave Mansue, Tim Reneau, Olin Jensen, Tyler Wilson and Mike Cones joined Dove as instructors last summer.

Dove has also partnered with Chase Kemp and the Donald R. Kemp Youth Hunting Club, a 501(c)(3) organization based in Las Cruces, N.M., that seeks to introduce children to the outdoors and provide them with opportunities to explore their interests in fishing and hunting.

The camp is focused on kids who are consumed by every aspect of the sport of bass fishing. In addition to ensuring that each camper spends at least seven hours a day on the water with a pro, the off-the-water hours are filled with nonstop activities — all aimed at rounding out the kids’ understanding of the sport and the business.

“There are flipping and pitching contests, lure making and seminars,” Dove said. “We also give them lots of advice on the industry and about equipment.”

The week concludes with a tournament which awards the winner a $1,500 scholarship, a new rod and a trophy. The second- and third-place finishers earn $1,000 scholarships. All of the scholarships can be used at the college or university of the young angler’s choice. Julian Sosa-Carver, Charlie Baker and Parker Smith finished first through third, respectively, in 2014.

“This past year the dominant bite was shallow to mid-depth, with a square bill, a Texas rig and some topwater action,” Dove said. Those who applied what was taught by the pros throughout the week figured it out and did well in the tournament, but that’s not the only way achievement was measured.

“We try to recognize as many of the youth as possible,” Dove said, so awards for the biggest bass of the week as well as the most improved angler are offered with great fanfare. Mason McGill caught the big fish of the week (3 pounds, 12 ounces) on a square bill, Alex Rigg was named the camp’s Most Improved Angler, and Bowdi Armstrong took top honors in the flipping and pitching contest.

Regardless of his or her finish, each youth angler was awarded a tackle pack, filled with products from Ima, Optimum, Ten Bears Bait, Strike King, El Grande Lures, Rod Glove and C&E Outdoors of Las Cruces, N.M., among others.

While the campers uniformly left the shores of Lake Amistad invigorated and enlivened by their new knowledge, the instructors also found their love of the sport renewed by the young anglers’ enthusiasm, said Dove.

“This year’s camp will be held June 23-27, and we are going to include 20 participants again,” Dove added. “My desire is to continue elevating the camp by continuing to offer more for the youth anglers involved. After all, that is what this camp is all about.”

To learn more, watch the video below or visit www.probasscamp.com.

Team Rainshadow adds B.A.S.S Master Elite Keith Combs To Pro Staff

Team Rainshadow adds B.A.S.S Master Elite Keith Combs To Pro Staff

Team RainShadow, a Batson Enterprises brand, is excited to announce the signing of Bassmaster Elites angler Keith Combs, adding to their already extraordinary Pro-Staff.

“It’s been an amazing year at Batson Enterprises,” says Bill Batson, Head/Team RainShadow and CEO, “adding another, professional elite angler and quality person, such as Keith Combs to our Team RainSahdow takes this year over the top for 2014.”

Keith Combs, home base of Texas, has been fishing on the B.A.S.S. Master Elite Tournament Series since 2011. A major highlight in 2014, Keith won the Toyota Texas Bass Classic with a record breaking 110 total pounds, making this his 3rd Toyota Bass Master Classic championship in the past 4 years.

keithcombs2-300x227“I am extremely excited to be working with Batson Enterprises team. Utilizing RainShadow rod blanks, ALPS and ForeCast components will elevate my fishing. Their team brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table. It is always a pleasure partnering with people who share the same passion for fishing and the outdoors as I do.” says Keith Combs.

Keith will begin fishing his exclusive RainShadow series branded rod blanks with ALPS/ForeCast components in 2015. Partnering with Power Tackle, these signature series Keith Combs rods will be available through various online and retail locations in the near future.

“Fishing the Bass Master Elites, I am always looking for a competitive edge, and choosing the right products for your fishing rod is definitely an edge. During the last few months of testing RainShadow Rod Blanks and ALPS/ForeCast components, I have learned there is always room for improvement when it comes to my rods. These will give me the edge to win” Says Keith Combs, “I look forward to outfitting my complete line with RainShadow rod blanks and ALPS/ForeCast components during the 2015 B.A.S.S Elites tour and the 2015 Bass Masters Classic. I believe there designs will elevate my performance and offer an unbelievable product for the consumer.”

Power Tackle Fishing Rods along with RainShadow, ALPS and ForeCast look to release a line of Keith Combs Signature series rods to the consumer. This will allow the consumer to fish with the same rods that Keith Combs fishes with.

www.teamrainshadow.com

Deep Cranking with Keith Combs

Deep Cranking with Keith Combs

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Deep cranking is a proven way to catch big bass as they roam their offshore feeding grounds. Bassmaster Elite Series pro Keith Combs has the utmost confidence in a deep diving crankbait and credits his two biggest wins to the technique. As the winner of the 2011 Toyota Texas Bass Classic world championship and the 2013 Bassmaster Elite Series event on Falcon Lake, Combs used a deep diving crankbait exclusively during those events. His success and confidence in the technique have given him a specific approach to deep cranking throughout the year.

Post-Spawn and Early Summer

The time period after the spawn and into the first part of summer is Keith Combs’ favorite timeframe for the deep diving crankbait. “Right after the spawn is the best time because the fish are moving out deeper and the thermocline of the lake hasn’t really developed yet. This makes them a lot easier to catch because they are near the bottom and not suspended or spread out too much,” says the Texas pro. Combs believes that having current in the lake will speed up the transition process and push the fish very deep right after the spawn.

Summer Cranking

As the water temperature rises and the thermocline begins to form, Combs will look for current as a good place to start cranking. He advises to try for offshore fish early in the day instead of waiting for the sun to come up. “I usually do well first thing in the morning when the other guys are looking for an early topwater or shallow water bite, and not as many people are offshore first thing in the day. As it gets hotter the fish are harder to catch and tend to suspend a lot more, so that first hour is critical,” says Combs.

Deep Cranking with Keith Combs

The first hour of the day can be the most important one.

Fall and Early Winter

Typically, the heavy current from the summertime will begin to slow down as the air temperatures cool and less electric power generation is needed and summer rains dissipate. With this in mind, Combs will change his focus from the current to the creeks. “I’ll look for the biggest main lake creeks, major tributary arms and channel bends. This is the time of year where you can find good schools of bass and the spots will replenish day after day,” mentions the Elite Series pro.

Rod, Reel and Line

Keith Combs’ preferred rod and reel setup is a Power Tackle PGC170, 7ft fiberglass rod paired with a Shimano Chronarch in the 7.3:1 gear ratio. Combs goes against the grain in choosing a faster reel and believes it offers him some advantages. “I really like the bigger handles on the reel and the fact that if I need to reel it fast to keep tension on big fish, it has the speed to keep a tight line. If I need to decrease my retrieve speed, I will just slow down how fast I reel,” explains Combs.

Keith Combs seldom uses less than 15lb fluorocarbon for his crankbaits as he wants to have as much strength as possible when deep cranking. “If you are fishing the crankbait around cover and trees underwater, your line is going to get nicked at some point. I just feel a lot better with 15lb line,” adds Combs. His line of choice is Seaguar Tatsu fluorocarbon. “The Tastsu is also very thin compared to other brands, so it is like you are cranking with 12lb line but with the strength of the 15lb test,” says Combs.

Deep Cranking with Keith Combs

Combs deep cranked to become TTBC world champion in November 2011.

Bait Selection

The Strike King 6XD is one of the most popular deep diving crankbaits on the market today and Keith Combs is a firm believer in its abilities. “I always start with a 6XD in either the Sexy Shad or Chartreuse and Blue color. It will get down to 18 feet deep on 15lb line,” adds Combs. The recently introduced 10XD from Strike King is a massive bait that will reach depths of 25 feet with 15lb test. “I will use the 10XD as a ‘mop up’ bait. After I have thrown the 6XD in an area for a while, I’ll switch to the 10XD to give them a different look and it will usually get me an extra fish or two,” shares Combs.

Retrieve

Fishing a crankbait with a steady retrieve will catch fish, but the top pros have learned that doing something different is key to catching more and bigger bass. “I really crank fast when I’m using a deep diving crankbait, I am trying to hit something on the bottom and cause that bait to deflect off of things. I’ll also snap my rod every ten cranks or so in case there is a fish following that won’t commit,” says Combs. He will also vary his approach based on the season and water temperature. “When the water is colder, I will slow way down and will actually pull the crankbait with my rod and reel up the slack instead of just cranking it back in,” adds Combs.

Electronics

Deep Cranking with Keith Combs ~ by TYLER BRINKS

Deep cranking is a winning way to catch big bass on their offshore feeding grounds.

The use of his electronics helps Combs both before and after he catches a bass. Prior to fishing an area, he observes the bottom and looks for brush or anything else that might hold a bass. “Brush is always good, either natural or manmade brushpiles. Any type of brush could be a pattern and with my Humminbird units I can actually tell what is green brush and what’s old brush and also if they are sunken brushpiles or old trees,” mentions the Texan.

After catching a few fish and before he moves on to the next area, Combs will always idle over the spot he was fishing to get a better look at what the fish were relating to. “It’s really critical to know the spot and if you figure that out, you can start to run a pattern on other parts of the lake,” admits Combs.

Fishing a deep diving crankbait is one of the best ways to catch big bass offshore. By focusing on having the right retrieve, timing and structure you will increase your odds of running into the right school at the right time.