“This technique of locating bass is known as ‘fishing to your strengths’, and I certainly am not the first to use it, but it really does help solve the problem every fisherman has in locating bass. You always fish better and more confidently with your favorite lure or technique.”

That’s how Monroe fished the this year’s Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on the Sabine River, TX. He’d never seen the water previously, so he spent 3 pre-tournament days looking at it: He never made a single cast. He found the spinnerbait water he was searching for – 70 miles from the launch. He fished it all 4 days and finished 4th.

“I really can’t stress enough how important confidence is in bass fishing,” he says. “So I always tell fishermen to start every day fishing with their favorite lure. If they don’t have that confidence, they aren’t going to catch anything.

“What I’ve done is add three other lures I have just as much confidence in that let me expand my water selection. The spinnerbait is the most versatile, but the squarebill crankbait gives me another option for shallow brush. The frog works over thick vegetation, and with the creature bait I can penetrate any thick cover.

“I’m essentially a shallow-water fisherman, and with these lures I know I can fish any type of shallow water.”

He also noted that all four of his ‘confidence lures’ are fun to fish. And even though he knows a lot more techniques, he doesn’t enjoy fishing them as much.