The first thing a good mat fisherman does is kill the trolling motor. To a bass living in the mat, a trolling motor that’s plowing around chopping up grass sounds like a Blackhawk Helicoptor landing in the living room. They instantly turn off. That’s why when you need to position yourself within a mat, opt for the gas motor. Yes, I said gas. Trolling motors don’t propel the boat fast enough to let you glide far into the center of a mat. Propulsion from the rear does a much better job. I start about 30 yards away from the mat and point the bow like a spear right where I want to end up within the grass. Give it enough throttle to glide straight with the trim down. Avoiding making a big wake is the key, and that usually lands somewhere between 6-8 MPH. About 10-15 feet from the edge of the mat, quickly cut the motor and trim it all the way up. After the boat slips into the mat with little restriction, wait about 5 minutes for the mat to settle before you start fishing. Believe it or not, this gliding entry with gas spooks the fish a lot less than grinding your way in with the trolling motor. Once the mat has settled, I move around slowly and stealthily using a paddle or push pole. Sound like work? It is. But this approach lets me really work a mat over, and ultimately catch more and bigger fish than I would running and gunning mat edges all day.