For a dude whose BassFan profile lists sideburns and chest hair as his biggest weaknesses, Seth Feider brings an awfully strong salad game. Beyond his rising street cred on the Bassmaster Elite Series, Feider’s trademark mustache and spicy blonde mullet have made the Bloomington, Minnesota based bass ace one of the most recognizable anglers in the country.
“Z-Man respects high-end facial hair,” quips Joey Prochazka, pro-staff and promotions manager for Z-Man Fishing Products. “Seriously, we’re super happy to welcome Seth to team Z. He’s the real deal—a genuine dude who shoots it to you straight. Of course, he’s already logged a really successful tournament career on the Bassmaster Elite Series, and sits at the top of his game right now.
“No doubt, he’ll fit right in with our motley bunch of Z-Man pros—all exceptional anglers as well as good gals and guys; friendly, approachable people who know how to catch fish anywhere there’s water.”
Feider, who owns an uncanny knack for filtering out the fluff and getting down to brass tacks, summarizes the formalized friendship. “I’ve been stealing ElaZtech® baits and ChatterBaits® out of Gussy’s stash for years,” admits Feider. “Heck, I’ve won a lot of money on Z-Man stuff under the radar. Figured it was time to get on board with these guys and work with a company whose baits really work—stuff I prefer to have at the end of my line as opposed to just doing the whole sales pitch thing. I mean, Z’s one of the topnotch fishing companies out there right now—I think a lot of the anglers are figuring that out.”
When asked to explain his appeal, Feider goes all modest. “Guess you could say I’m pretty easy going. Honest. Maybe too much so, at times. But yeah, I’m certainly capable of getting excited, too—especially when thigs go well and the tournament is over. On the water, though, for the most part, I stay pretty chill.”
Feider, who travels the tournament road with fellow Z-Man pro Jeff “Gussy” Gustafson, also shares his buddy’s fondness for north-country smallmouth bass. “Gussy’s the one who put me on the ElaZtech Hula StickZ™ on a Ned rig. I saw right away, the durability, flotation and action of that little thing gets me way more bites from quality smallmouths. I mean, the Ned rig buoyancy deal routinely cranks out like ten bites to one against other baits that don’t stand up. Looks to me like the perfect mimic of a crawdad’s defensive posture. Regardless, it seems like I’ve already caught like a million smallmouths on that little bait.”
A dropshot aficionado from way back, Feider entered his Z-Man alliance already familiar with another elite ElaZtech bait. “I fish that StreakZ™ on a dropshot all the time. Sometimes, the 3.75-inch one is the deal. But at last year’s St. Clair tourney, I threw the bigger 5-inch StreakZ a bunch and it got me way more quality bites. The buoyancy of that bait is key—keeps it floating up above the grass and where bass can see it from a long ways away.”
A current project has Feider prospecting with some of the full-sized Z-Man baits in search of high-grade largemouth bites. “Suppose it’s no surprise I’ve been a huge fan of the (ChatterBait) JackHammer,” he notes. “I mean, who isn’t, right? Threw that bait at the 2020 Classic and again at Lake Fork for real strong finishes at both events.
“This year, it’ll be fun to start dialing in to some of the other Z-Man ChatterBait patterns, like the StealthBlade™, Freedom CFL™ on deep structure and WillowVibe™. That bait should be a player for big smalljaws and suspended spots.”
On his usual tourney game, Feider likes flipping brush or swim-jigging milfoil mats; he pitches a Neko rig everywhere else. “That 7-inch Mag FattyZ™ is really becoming a big deal for largemouths. I’ll be throwing that on a Neko rig a ton this year. And the Turbo CrawZ™ is already becoming my favorite trailer on the back of a swim jig. Guess you could say I’m feeling a little like a kid in a candy store right now.”
During the off-season, Feider approaches life more or less low key. “Fall and winter in Minnesota, I do a lot of duck hunting. I also like to sneak out in my duck boat for a little river fishing, or put in on a bunch of secret little lakes; do things sort of incognito.”
For the affable, fan-favorite angler, that’s becoming more and more of a challenge—particularly among the younger crowd who’ve been known to follow Feider like puppies before and after tournaments. He’s cool with that, too. Chalk the likeability factor up to his chill attitude, unmistakable style and the ‘do and ‘stache Feider refers to as ‘a Minnesota thing.’
“Yeah, we’ve got the Minnesota All Hockey Hair Team deal (Google it.) But for me the hair has always been a superstition thing. Kind of like keeping a Han Solo action figure in my boat as a good luck charm. Years ago, I’d cut my hair short at the start of the season and let it grow out all year. Seemed like I always did better toward the end of the season, so eventually, I just let it ride. Guess you could say, it’s kind of worked out.”