Your trolling motor is essential for easing in and out of spawning areas, but when matching wits with skittish bed fish, even low power can ice the game. And if you’re working water with lower visibility and you make a hard move on the troller, you might blow out a spot before you see another bed fish.
For this fine detail work, a push pole provides an option for making minor advancements without the noise and surge of a trolling motor. Here are a few points to consider:
Easy in, easy out — Even though the push pole enters the water behind your position, it can still spook fish if it splashes on the entry or exit. Smooth, measured movements are what you want.
Bottom impacts — Considering that fish spawn over hard bottom, you have to consider how sound echoes below the surface. Think swimming pools: Duck your head below the surface and every foot step sounds like thunder. So, how do you think Mama Bed Fish is going to handle the thump of an awkwardly-placed push pole? Not well; not well, at all.
Design options — For space management, bass pros typically use multi-part or telescoping push poles that stow out of the way behind the seats. Budget-conscious anglers might make one out of a wooden dowel or heavy gauge PVC. If you go with wood, durable tape (athletic, electrical, duct) makes a nice slip-resistant, splinter-free hand grip.
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