What is a Heap Hunter?

“It’s like an artist who truly enjoys his work; once the painting is done, he can stand back and look at what a beautiful thing he accomplished. That’s how big bass fishing is.  You work hard and you fail a lot.  And when you fail, you pick yourself up and try again until you get it right.  The enjoyment you get is the end product, recalling every moment you battled a giant bass and that special feeling when it was finally in your hands. Nothing in the world is like that moment, and it is well worth all the pain and suffering to achieve.”

– Bill Murphy In Pursuit of Giant Bass

A Heap Hunter is as rare and special as the fish said angler attempts to catch: monstrous largemouth bass.  Every decision this fisherman makes during an angling outing goes towards the ultimate goal of catching the very biggest of the micropterus salmoides available.  The standard fishing tactics that have been popularized and therefore codified as angling truths are often ignored by a Heap Hunter, as he remains steadfast in purpose.

No one does the work of a Heap Hunter

If the waterfront is fishable by men, men shall fish the waterfront.  He creates fish habitat in the dead of winter. He builds anchors out of the clay of the land.  He endures D.C. and NYC traffic weekly to reach his lake office.  He fishes one hump an entire summer for one reason only.  He uses lures so big most fish in the lake are afraid of them.  He fishes any condition; torrential rain, whitecap wind, 95 degree doldrums. He may be at a point near you, at any point in time, working.  He feels no excitement from catching 2 lbers, and has become increasingly adept at not catching them. He must endure many fishless, biteless days and remain focused on his prize. He hunts, he stalks, he works: to catch the biggest largemouth bass in a given fishery, to catch as many heaps as possible every mission, and to ultimately break a state record.

He is a Heap Hunter.

(Yeah i said he)