Darter heads and hand poured worms from in western bass fishing

Frenzy baits nail gives a new perspective to shakey head and darter head fishing for bass

Winter 2018


Talking Darter

& Shaky Heads

Story & Photos by Mark Fong




or the past few years I have been having an

ongoing dialogue with top Western professional

angler and former Bassmaster Elite Series pro, Greg Gutierrez, regarding trophy spotted bass.

Invariably the focus of the discussion turned to fishing

darter heads.

“I don’t really fish darter heads much anymore, only under certain situations,” said Gutierrez. As darter heads have been a staple for Western anglers for decades, his initial response caught me off guard.

Western Roots

Like many anglers from Northern California, Gutierrez cut his teeth fishing a darter head paired with a hand poured, straight tail finesse worm.

“The dart head for me was a technique that I could really float a bait down to the fish, whether it be an 1/8- or a 3/16-ounce,” he said. “I mainly stayed with a 3/16 and occasionally, a 1/16-ounce, depending on how slow I wanted that bait to ease through the water column.