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Last updated 11/5/2019 at Noon

“I don’t mind cutting limbs and I enjoy putting them together when I have nothing else to do, but I hate hauling them out on the lake,” said Warren Myers while selecting just the right branch. Warren was building yet another brush pile during our discussion and all I wanted to do was hurry up and bass fish.

“The bass aren’t going anywhere so just settle down and hand me that longest branch,” he directed in a matter of fact manner. Rather than take advantage of his years of experience, I urged him to finish his brush pile another day and I was the loser when he agreed to do just that.

Not surprisingly, my impatience resulted in an apology and some out right begging the following year.Myers was building crappie hotels well before it got popular and years of experimenting have paid off now that he prefers to crappie fish rather than hustle bass.

“The key is that you have to put them where the crappie are and that requires both counting on your electronics and confirming your findings with a jig or shiner,” explained the retired pipe fitter.“Initially I only worried about getting some Christmas trees in that spot and marking the location with certain trees on the shoreline.”

All of that was way before the GPS and spot lock troll motors which are all but a must for the serious brush pile fishermen.“When I started attracting more attention,” added Warren, “I knew I was going to have to spend less time parking on each pile and that my piles were going to have to last longer so that I wouldn’t have to brush them as often.”

“It didn’t take long for me to figure out that willow branches were far superior to Christmas trees, but I could only cut down so many trees up here and not all of them are just right.Doraine wasn’t all that happy about dead Christmas trees piled up against the shed either!”

Warren will gladly show anyone how he builds them so long as you don’t fish his.“I’ve built a few for my neighbors, but they fish them until they quit attracting fish and never re-brush them.”

“You can tell folks how I build them, but it takes a little extra time and most of them will never give it a try.” While directions can often be more confusing than enlightening, this is basically what Warren does and, more importantly, why.

“The single biggest change I have made in the past couple of years is that I have been anchoring them with a single sand bag attached to the base of the main branch rather than a cinder block.Unfortunately, I found myself with a lot of those bags following the hurricanes. The pile is floated upright with an empty milk jug tied to the top”

“I then drill holes every eighteen inches in the main branch and attach the smaller limbs with a string loop.They will float and are much easier to transport when I take them out on the water.Because they are floating more freely on the loops you get more volume with fewer limbs. They also all but eliminate hang-ups.”

The size of the brush pile is dependent on how long you cut the smaller limbs.The diameter of the ones I saw lying on the ground was ten to twelve feet.“If I really think I’ve stumbled up on a great location I’ll sometimes sink two trees on the same spot, added Warren.

“I truly believe that several of the commercial brush piles now available are even better than mine,” he added, “but they are too darned expensive for me.”

I have no doubt that you can pick on other trees, even Christmas tree limbs for that matter, but rigging them in that manner is much less of a hassle when hauling them out on the lake.I also like the fact that a sand bag is not nearly as hard on fiberglass as the edge of a cinder block.

Few fish make any better table fare and it is especially nice leaving the house knowing where the fish should be before you ever leave home.Warren prefers willows, but Christmas trees will be easier to come by very shortly!


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