I had a chance to catch up with Connecticut’s Zachary Nute. We talk about his smallmouth bass and largemouth bass fishing in the “Constitution State”.
How long have you been fishing?
I have been fishing since I could walk. My earliest memories of fishing is when I used to wake up at 5AM on opening day as a kid and going trout fishing with my dad. Those memories are what started my addiction.
What are your favorite local waters to chase largemouth bass?
My favorite largemouth fishery in Eastern Connecticut would have to be Amos Lake.
What are your favorite local waters to chase smallmouth bass?
I have two fisheries I really enjoy for smallmouth. If we’re going out to catch numbers and not much size, than I’m going to Aspinook Pond. If we’re going for a big bag, I’m going to Candlewood Lake.
I know you love to throw a jerkbait. What are your favorite jerkbaits to throw?
I really enjoy the IMA Flit series of jerkbaits.
What do you consider the keys to catching bass on jerkbaits?
I honestly believe to get on a very good jerkbait bite, you really have to have some sort of wind and clear-ish water clarity. I also believe water temperature plays a huge factor in pause time. And of course, match the hatch.
Tell us about the Vault Micro Vibration bait that you like on Candlewood Lake. When do you fish this bait on Candlewood Lake?
I just starting using the Damiki Vaults last year. I absolutely love them. I use this bait during the fall transition and into the winter. When the shad are starting to die off, it’s a perfect imitator. I have 2 colors that I really enjoy, Real Shad and Black Holo. Mainly because they match the look of a Alewive, which is the main forage for the smallmouth. When I use this bait, I only give the bait small 5″ hops off the bottom.
You state how much you love tubes. Why do you love using tubes so much for bass?
A tube has been in my arsenal for a couple years now. I have caught so many big smallmouth and largemouth on this bait. I love these baits so much because of their versatility and action. You can drop-shot them, flip them, jig them… I really like to use them for smallies because I believe they imitate a craw and smallmouth love craws. Largemouth love them for the exact reason that smallmouth do. I really like to pop my tube. It makes the fish really react to it. I only use one company for my tubes. Check out GetBitBaits.
You describe the Palputin spoon as smallmouth candy. Not sure how many people are familiar with this spoon. What are the keys to catching fish with the bait? How do you retrieve and present it?
The Palpuntin spoon is strictly a vertical fishing presentation. In the colder months, I almost always have one tied onto a spinning rod. When I’m smallmouth fishing, if I mark one on the fish finder I’ll drop on it and stop it about 5 inches above the fish and lift the rod up a couple inches and let it fall. Those fish will usually come up and eat it. The keys to catching these fish are finding them, honestly. Scan around and look for structure and the smallies are usually there.
Do you have any new baits you will be trying in 2018?
I am looking forward to fishing Megabass products. I want to give their hard baits a try. I’ve heard very good things about the action on their baits.
Zachary is on Instagram @basssfishing.