Captain Steve brings 25 years of bass fishing experience on the Potomac River to columns featured in the BoatUS Trailering Magazine, Sportsman's Magazine, Woods & Waters, and The Old Town Crier. He has also written for the Free Lance Star newspaper, The Mount Vernon Gazette, The Mount Vernon Voice, The American Sportfishing Association and many others. Steve also hosted the National Bass Fishing Radio Show. Capt. Steve is also the BoatUS.com online fishing expert. A U.S. Coast Guard Captain, licensed by the Potomac River Fisheries Commission and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Steve has the opportunity to fish with anglers of all skill levels, including some of the biggest names in pro bass fishing. He is one of the top bass fishing guides in the country. Steve's been featured in local and national newspapers, magazines and on TV and radio: BASSMASTERS, BASS TIMES, BASSIN' Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Los Angeles Times, ESPN and others. He's been: emcee of the St. Jude Children's Hospital Tournament the past 11 years, a member of Boat US Speakers Bureau, the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association and a member of the American Sportfishing Association. Steve has been awarded an Excellence in Craft award from SEOPA and was the recipient of the Mount Vernon Lee Chamber of Commerce 2002 and 2003 Home-Based Business of the Year Award. Prior to fishing, Steve's careers included teaching high school algebra and sales of cars, computers and surgical products. He also hosted the longest running all-financial morning radio show in the country and is considered to be "The Father of Business Radio".
Fishing - Pitching a Bait Casting Reel
Captain Steve Chaconas with National Bass Guide Service demonstrates pitching a bait casting reel.
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Hi, I'm Captain Steve Chaconas with National Bass Guide Service. We are showing you how to cast a baitcasting reel, or casting reel. First thing you really have to decide is, which hand you are going to use; because these reels can only be cast one way; you either retrieve it with your right hand, or you have to buy an entirely different reel for you to be able to crank with your left hand. In either case, these are very good reels to use for a variety of fishing conditions; they hold heavier line, they can cast long distance, they can be on heavier rods, cast heavier lures, fish heavier cover. This is the heavy duty work horse of the bass fishing world. Now how do you cast them? Because if you don't do it right, you get a backlash. We have shown you how to cast; now we are going to show you how to do the close in stuff, the pitching - and the pitching is just like playing golf. We are going to make a short stroke. The first thing I want you to realize again, educate your thumb, push the button, let the line come through your thumb until you get used to that. Push the button, feel the line with your thumb. Now to start this casting position, we want to have the bait about even with the reel handle; we depress the button that releases the spool, and the exercise is pretty simple; we are going to drop the bait, let it swing away from us. Notice that I'm not moving the rod; I'm just holding the rod out and letting the bait swing away. We have the line right above the bait, hold it, let it just swing away from you. Now, once you master that and take the bait, lower your rod, drop the bait and raise the rod tip; you will feel a lot more momentum that way. Lower the rod, raise the rod, let the bait swing away from you. Lower the rod, drop the bait, raise the rod, let it swing away from you. Now, you are ready to make that first pitch; drop the bait, raise your rod, and just let it gently spool off your thumb. Don't go for distance, let it go as far as it wants to go; then gradually, to go further, what you are going to do is, add a little speed to the tip of that rod, and now, you could pitch it a lot further. So practice, practice, practice. One little tip for you; we want to keep the bait close to the water when we are making our cast; that way we can make a real quiet entry - and its not a splash down like this where you throw it up and it drops straight down and makes a big splash. What we are going to do is keep this bait close to the water, and just kind of skim it there; and then we could stop it and let it sink. Okay? So practice; the way you do this at home, instead of pitching into a cup, lay the cup on its side, and try to enter it horizontally instead of vertically. This is baitcasting; this part of it is called Pitching. This is for close in, and this is how you catch really big fish in heavy cover. We have shown you how to cast a baitcaster; I just showed you how to pitch one. Now we are going to show you where to cast and where to pitch, coming up next.