Catching fish with your hands isn't a new concept. Plenty of fisherman go noodling—yanking out prize catfish on their arms. But we're used to seeing big bass brought in on a line. However, one man proves that a rod and reel aren't always necessary to lure in a good catch.
Robert Earl Woodward used the simplest method to bring a 16-pound bass up to the surface—a bait fish and his hands. Thankfully for us, the impressive feat was captured on video and shared with the world via TikTok.
The Alabama man runs a small fish across the top of the water, attempting to draw the bass up from the pond. While it doesn't specify what fish he is using, it looks like it might be a minnow. It takes a couple of drags before the big bass rushes up to the surface, but when it does, the man wrangles the scaly fish until he finally gets her out of the water. His buddy hops in to weigh the catch of the day: This fish tips the scales at 16.3 pounds, a true trophy catch, especially by hand.
This isn't the first time Woodward has caught a fish by hand, and it certainly won't be the last. According to a 2019 Men's Journal article, he left his rod and reel behind years ago and fishes his stocked private lake by hand every day.
He began sharing videos on his Facebook page around five years ago to promote his book, The Way It Was Back Then, a collection of short stories. People were so impressed with his bass fishing methods that his videos began going viral.
While his fish are used to being fed bait fish daily, it's still impressive to see a man dragging a fish out of the water by hand.
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