Welcome to spring, spawning time for bass on the Cane River Lake in Natchitoches. Cane River bass fishing means fishing the shallow reed banks of the North end of the lake, and my one of my favorite fishing technique, flipping. Unlike most guys who cruise the shallow water banks flipping a jig and pig combo, searching for bass, I prefer to flip a V&M 5″ Super Tube in a green pumpkin or a black neon. Another great bass catching choice is the Cyclone 6″ Hard Head tube in a smoke blue color.
Flipping this bait around the shallow reeds is one of my favorite methods to fish the Super Tube. The Super Tube is one of the few baits that allow you to skip it across the water’s surface to slide back into the small openings in the reeds. These openings are natural areas for shallow Cane River bass to be hiding. Use a light sinker pegged to the head of the tube; the smooth, streamline design of the buoyant Super Tube allows it to skip across the surface of the water. Flipping this bait in and around this type of reed opening can catch you a lot of bass. As the water warms further south on the Cane, the reeds get fewer and fewer, and you will find more timber and grass patches.
Using a heavy weight just let the tube punch through heavy cover, like grass, brush tops, timber and other structure, and let it fall. The tube falls straight down and doesn’t hang up easily on cover. As the bait is working down through the timber give it a shake or two, to draw attention from bass. The irregular motion of the tube as it falls creates not only worm type bites but a lot of reaction bites from the bass as the tube bounces off of the limbs of the lay downs and brush. Sometimes there might be an area clear of vegetation between timber or lay down that is a couple of inches wide. Flip the tube into that clear area, and let it fall, down beside the tree. You will quickly find out that this is a very effective method to catch fish.
In cooler or dingy water, I sometimes like to add a rattle to the tube, with the hollow body style of the tube it is easy to insert a tube rattle. Also, the use of an attractant will help the tube fall through grass. The greasy formula of most fish attractants allows the tubes already sleek body to slide through the grass without hanging up. I prefer the anise spray attractant sold by V&M; it is the same attractant that the tube is supplied with and also compliments the Cyclone Hard Head.
Flipping means heavy dense cover, so your tackle also needs to be heavy duty. I use a 7’6″ Quantum Tour Edition PT Rod with an extra fast tip, for quick snap hook sets in the shallow water. I team this with a Jeane Tackle flipping reel, which is specifically designed for flipping and pitching. I spool this with a 80lb Power Pro line. Using a Daiichi Bleeding Bait 5/0 hook will not only give you the wide bite that you need on a tube, but will add a little extra attraction to the tube.