Spring Bassin' Techniques From Pro Angler Ish Monroe

Ish Monroe by Ish Monroe

With a name like Ish, ya just gotsta fish. In fact, Bass Pro Shops staffer Ish Monroe certainly does that. As a Bassmaster Elite Series pro and multiple title holder there and on the FLW Tour, Monroe knows a thing or two about bass fishing.

Ish took a few moments after an Elite Series event on his way to film a piece for Bass Pro Shops to share his three favorite techniques for catching bass in the spring.

Flipping & Punching

"I absolutely love flipping and punching for bass in the spring or anytime for that matter," said Monroe. "I use two baits primarily for this. The Missile Baits D-Bomb and Baby D-Bomb for punching through heavy matted vegetation.

"For flipping, I will use the Missile Bait Destroyer and Baby Destroyer. That bait has a little more action.

"I stick with 65-pound Maxima braid on my Daiwa gear for punching and 25-pound Maxima fluorocarbon when I flip."

Ish uses a River2Sea flipping hook and a ¼-ounce weight when flipping. For punching, he uses a 1-to 1 1/2-ounce weight.


"There is nothing like frog fishing," said Monroe. "Whether you're fishing in heavy cover or throwing that frog under a dock or overhanging trees, the bass destroy it when they hit it.

"I use a 7' 4" Daiwa Steez rod with a Daiwa Zillion and 50-pound maxima braid. It is the ideal set up for frog fishing. Short enough for accurate casting and long enough to leverage the big fish out of heavy cover.

"I have either of my Snagproof frogs on. The Ish's Phat Frog or the Poppin' Phattie. Love frog fishing."

Square-bill crankbaits

"Having a square-bill crankbait tied on during the spring is important for a bass angler," said Monroe. "They allow you to fish shallow cover quickly and really trigger a lot of hits. My square-bill crankbait of choice is the River2Sea Biggie Poppa. It is a great crankbait for the spring. Actually, they're great anytime the bass are shallow and you can fish a crankbait."

Ish switches to a Daiwa Tatula 7'2" medium-heavy composite rod for cranking. He matches it with a Daiwa Tatula reel and 12-pound Maxima fluorocarbon line.