Fred Roumbanis Shares His Bull Shoals Secrets

Fred Roumbanis Shares His Bull Shoals Secrets

Fred Roumbanis Shares His Bull Shoals Secrets

by April 25, 2013


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Today, caught up with Bassmaster Elite, Fred Roumbanis, after his second place finish on Bull Shoals, AK. We wanted to know how he fished this clear water lake and what we could learn from his experience.

Bull Shoals is an impound of the White River and offers bass a ton of cover options. It has a multitude of creek channels as well as plenty of  flooded trees for bass to live in. In the 2012 Bassmaster Elite Series only 4 of the 99 anglers failed to catch a limit of 5 fish; and most anglers were averaging 40-50 fish per day. You can imagine the excitement when it was time to go back in 2013…FredRoumbanis-BassBoat-Header

Lesson 1: Pay Attention to What Is Happening in Nearby Lakes

Sometimes patterns can be imported from other lakes that are similar and in close proximity. An attentive angler can take previously discovered information from one lake and apply it when it counts.

Fred Roumbanis’ success on Bull Shoals Lake is a great lesson for anglers to remember when looking for bass in their home waters.

Fred told us,

“I’m fishing the FLW as well. I just came from Beaver Lake which is a real similar fishery up in Arkansas. I had that confidence so I found areas that reminded me of what I had just fished.”

At the start of the tournament Fred took what he had seen on a nearby lake and utilized his previous experience in the prior days to get a head start on patterning the bass.

When the tournament started, Fred told us,

Instantly, I just started catching fish; I mean within minutes. It was the finesse bite; What it told me was that since the water was really clear the fish were spawning deep and that was also the deal at Beaver Lake.”

Targeting specific areas based on observations you’ve made is key:

“The water being as clear as it is, they can spawn in up to 25-ft of water. That’s what I was really targeting”.

 ‘Swim Bait Fred’ told us that he was using an Optimum BLT swimbait.


FredRoumbanis-OptimumBLT- feature-520


Lesson 2: Once you’re sure of the pattern, fish it and stay focused

Temptation will be your greatest enemy here. Stay on the areas and patterns you’ve discovered and avoid being drawn into “bassy” looking spots.

Fred explained it best,

“A lot of times I’d run to a spot and never even put my trolling motor down. I’d cast 3 or 4 times and then go to another spot; Throughout the day I probably ran to 100 different spots and a lot of them were brand new that I’d never even fished before.”

Being able to pattern the fish is just a piece of the puzzle in tournament fishing. Another important part is being able to stay focused and keep hitting those areas that you want to fish. This is important to remember, especially during tournament fishing.  Time is of the essence and the more time you focus on methods and areas that will produce, the more likely you are to be successful.

Lesson 3: Utilize Subtle Weather conditions to your advantage

Much like identifying a pattern within a pattern when deciphering cover, you want to key in on subtle features within a weather pattern. Fred explained that he used a specific wind direction and gusts to give him just the advantage he needed. He used light wind gusts to his advantage by capitalizing on the ripples it produced in the clear water. This wind broke up his silhouette and allowed him to sneak up on the bass.

It was really just keeping in a particular wind; It couldn’t be too much. There had to be a ripple on the surface so the fish couldn’t see my boat. The water is so clear that the fish can see you, even in 20-ft of water.”


Anglers that can put together key pieces of information such as weather, patterns and fish behavior are the most successful. Fred Roumbanis really capitalized on his observations when fishing Bull Shoals Lake and it showed with a commanding 2nd place finish.

Tight Lines!

For more information on Fred Roumbanis, check out his website and Facebook page.

For more information on Optimum Baits, here is their website, Facebook and Twitter page.

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