Friday, April 17, 2015

Spring Time Seminar

Each year the Iowa State Bass Fishing Club invites me over to speak about various topics.  This group is quite an assembly of college kids, many of them fishing tournaments all over the Midwest on the FLW College Fishing Series.  It's a great group of young men and women and they are always eager to try and pick up a pointer or two from the experiences I have had in my fishing adventures.

This past week I was on campus to talk a little about tournament fishing and about the spawn in Iowa.  I gave a few facts, some reasons why fishing is difficult during the spawning season and what adjustments to make when the spawn causes tough fishing.  It's a privilege to speak to the next generation of bass tournament anglers and I sure hope they all picked up a few pointers to help them catch some more fish and understand the great products I stand behind.

VEXILAR  www.vexilar.com
HOT ROD BAITS  www.hotrodbaits.com
OPTIMUM BAITS  www.optimumbaits.com
QUANTUM RODS and REELS  www.quantumfishing.com
MINN KOTA/TALON  www.minnkotamotors.com

Sunday, April 12, 2015

First Tournament of the Year

Saturday started the bass tournament season for me.  Hot Rod Baits hosts a "Frosty Rods" tournament each year in early April.  Once again the event was scheduled at Rock Creek Lake.  This lake brings anglers from all over the state in search of the big bass that live there.  Each and every spring anglers bring in some the biggest bass of the year at this lake.  This years tournament wasn't much different than years in the past.  The big fish showed up again.

This year I partnered up with long-time friend Dave Jordan.  As we loaded the frost covered boat in the morning we knew that the early bite probably wouldn't be that great, so we didn't get too concerned after the first three hours of fishing without a bite.  That was the first half of the tournament, we still had half left.  The water warmed up to about 53 degrees and around the noon mark we started to catch some bass.  We caught all our fish in depths under 6 feet of water, and each fish was caught on a Hot Rod Baits Big Daddy in the Bruizer color.  We worked well as a team and tried many different techniques including; crankbaits, jerkbaits, spinnerbaits, jigs, tubes and craws.  It didn't' seem to matter what we threw at them, for some reason they were only biting on the Big Daddy.  After catching a few smaller bass, we were relieved when I swung a 15 1/8 inch keeper in the boat around noon.  It wasn't much but it gave us the confidence to keep pressing on and keep throwing the big daddy.

We kept pressing on and soon after the first keeper I was able to catch our biggest which weighed exactly 4 pounds.  The wind was steady all day and often had gusts up towards 25mph, we put the Minn Kota Talons anchoring system to work often to fish key shallow water areas.  We kept at it, and with about 30 minutes to go we had our third keeper in the boat and we were feeling pretty good.  Once again, the Big Daddy pitched in shallow water on a Quantum Accurist 7 foot 6 inch combo got the job done.  We ended up in 2nd place with 8.57 pounds, which is a great way to begin the year of competitive bass fishing.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Biggest of the year...so far

The last day of March proved to be a great beginning to some big fish in 2015!  This one topped out at 5 pounds 10 ounces.  It was released back into Rock Creek Lake to catch another day. With any luck I will catch a few more like this in April.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

New addition for the open water season

I am proud to announce that I have teamed up with Minn Kota and Talon for the season.  They join Quantum Rods and Reels, Hot Rod Baits, Vexilar, and Optimum Baits as my team of sponsors and affiliates (just click on their logo at the top of my website to view their great products).  All these companies have two things in common, great products that help people catch more fish, and great customer service if you need it.  I am proud to add Minn Kota and Talon for this year.  With that addition, I had two Talons installed on my boat this past week.
I have had Bottom End Boat Service near Garwin and Tama here in Central Iowa help me out with boat maintenance before.  He has recently expanded his services into all Minn Kota products.  Chris is great to deal with and always has time to talk with you to get your boat just the way you want it.  This kind of service is not common anymore, which will bring me back to the Bottom End Boat Service center in the future.  His attention to detail is second to none with any boat problem or outboard need.  Add that fact with the a complete Minn Kota service center and sales of any Minn Kota product and you have a boaters dream world!  If you have any boating/trailer/motor problems he is the one to get a hold of.

Now that the Talons have been installed I can't wait to put them to the test this year.  The shallow water anchoring system will lock your boat down in water as deep as 12 foot with just a push of a button on a wireless remote.  This is a tool that will no doubt help anglers catch more fish and use their time on the water more effectively.  Of course, many more reports on these as the years go on.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

First day of open water

Today I had the chance to join Zach Maxfield in his boat at Rock Creek Lake.  We decided to give it a try to see if we could get a bite in this early part of the bass season.  Rock Creek is known as a big bass lake and it proves it year after year...which was the main reason we chose the lake.

We didn't expect much but the weather was just too nice not to try and the water temperature was around 45 degrees.  After about an hour of throwing jigs, soft plastics, and jerkbait, Zach finally connected.  He was throwing a jerkbait and when I saw the bend in his rod I knew he had a good one.  It wasn't good, it was amazing.  A huge bass made its way into the net and weighed in at 6.2 pounds, a monster bass anywhere!  An hour or so later I connected on a texas-rigged Hot Rod Baits Big Craw.  A plump 16+ incher became my first fish of the year.  A few minutes later fish number two for me, a 14-incher on the same bait.  We left shortly after that, with Zach's boat working well, our Quantum rods and reels working flawlessly, Zach with his biggest bass of his life and a good start for me and the 2015 open water season.



Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The last ice for the winter???

Tuesday evening, March 10th might have been the last time on the ice for me.  The ice was still plenty thick at Otter Creek but the top was pretty soft.  There were a dozen or so men on the ice trying to land that one last fish before giving up on the ice.  The temperature was absolutely wonderful, only a sweatshirt was needed to enjoy the time on the ice.  Enjoy I did!  Numerous crappies, a few gills and many yellow bass came topside of the ice on this quick trip.  Finding suspended and active fish with the Vexilar was key.  Jigs and spoons were both used, but this particular night the jig out-fished the spoon.  Most likely the last time, and a great time it was!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Weekend FUN

This past weekend I was able to enjoy the beautiful weather with my son and daughter at a local farm pond.  After a bit of looking around we finally found some eager crappies and the occasional bluegill to fill our morning.  It really amazes me how kids can catch on to reading and using the Vexilar.  They would get so excited when the "red" line was back on the screen, as they knew a bite might occur any moment after that.  Pure joy is the only way to explain the short morning trip.