Sunday, August 30, 2020

Californian pro Rusty Salewske Wins 2020 FLW Tackle Warehouse Title on Sturgeon Bay with 48-11lbs!

Salewske battled the high seas and won!
(Photo: FLW)


After five days of mostly wide-open smallmouth-catching activity, a new competition format and anglers sparring with each other on the live scoreboard, the final day of the 2020 Tackle Warehouse TITLE presented by Toyota came down to the most basic difference-maker in bass fishing: an angler making a move based on his gut.

For Southern California pro Rusty Salewske, that move was worth $200,000 and the first-ever TITLE championship belt.

Shortly after peeling away from the shoal he had been fishing most of the day on the lee side of Snake Island outside of Riley’s Bay – the bay just north of Little Sturgeon Bay – Salewske caught two smallmouths in the final 42 minutes of the event. That included a 4-pound, 14-ouncer with 12 minutes remaining that catapulted Salewske past Bradford Beavers and into first place.

That’s where he stayed: Salewske finished the day with 13 fish for 48-11 to Beavers’ 48-3.

John Cox finished third with 36-14, Kurt Mitchell was fourth with 22-8 and Kyle Hall rounded out the top five with 22-0. Spencer Shuffield (21-7), Grae Buck (20-11), Joey Cifuentes (18-9), Casey Scanlon and Evan Barnes (0-0) finished out the Championship Round field.

Salewske, a San Diego-area pro who finished fifth in the 2009 Forrest Wood Cup and then took nearly 10 years off from tour-level tournament fishing before the 2020 Pro Circuit season, stacked 28-15 on SCORETRACKER® in the first period and hovered in the top three until early in the second period. But Salewske couldn’t relocate a consistent bite for the next 4 hours, slowly falling behind Beavers through the second and third periods before chipping away at the lead with a 4-pounder and a 2-15 before connecting with the winning fish.

Friday, August 28, 2020

2020 FLW Tackle Warehouse Championship Sturgeon Bay Group Top 20 Qualifiers!


Top 20 ready for smallmouth and some nasty weather.
(Photo: FLW) 


The official name of the competition round that played out Thursday on the fourth day of the Tackle Warehouse TITLE presented by Toyota is “Qualifying Round,” but in reality, the name “Back Against the Wall Round” is probably more fitting.  

As was the case during Wednesday’s Group A final Qualifying Round – in which the round winner caught only 8 pounds on the day and the 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Angler of the Year squeaked into the top 10 by the skin of his teeth – the pressure of the multi-round, pressure-cooker Major League Fishing competition format instigated multiple storylines up and down the 25-man Group B lineup.

It started with the conditions, which resulted in roughly 20 percent more scorable fish making it onto SCORETRACKER® then the previous day. That extra productivity influenced the day’s competition by more than 150 pounds overall, opening the door for bigger moves in and out of the top 10.

“Today was a big-time-perfect smallmouth day until it slicked off calm in the afternoon,” says FLW Live analyst Marty Stone. “There was some residual chop from Wednesday night – a nice smallmouth chop. Plus, anytime you get that wind like we had on Wednesday, it kicks the algae bloom away and cleans up the water. We had a good morning feed, the sun came out earlier, and it turned into that perfect smallmouth day. Guys were seeing those big schools, but instead of getting one or two bites, they could get multiple.”

In the end, 10 anglers survived the round to continue on to Friday’s Knockout Round, where they’ll join the top 10 finishers in Group A for a 50/50 shot at the TITLE’s Championship Round on Saturday.

Holding serve: Cifuentes, Shuffield, Cox, Hays, Becker, Strelic, Brasher

Multiple anglers inside the top 10 made slight moves up and down SCORETRACKER® throughout the 7 ½-hour competition day, but when all was said and done, eight of the 10 anglers who entered the day inside the 10 cut finished the day there.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

2020 FLW Tackle Warehouse Championship Sturgeon Bay Group A: Top 10 Qualifiers Determined!

Michelle ride huge lead to secure top position.
(Photo: FLW) 

One thing that the 50 anglers fishing for a $200,000 payday at the Tackle Warehouse TITLE presented by Toyota have become intimately familiar with this week in Sturgeon Bay is change.

As if a 2-pound minimum weight, a catch-everything-you-can scoring system, penalties and alternating competition days aren’t enough to juggle, Wednesday brought with it the kind of change that anglers have had to adjust to their whole lives: weather and water conditions.

With an intermittent, shifting 10- to 15-mph wind pushing water around Green Bay and Lake Michigan – and drastically changing the bite in areas that the 25 anglers in Group A made hay on two days earlier – the second Qualifying Round of Group A competition played out like a rock-and-roll festival: something to look at here, a side attraction to look at there and a little bit of everything to capture your attention for a minute or two.

The leaders keep leading: Mitchell, Barnes, Scanlon, Buck, Stefan, Bohannan

After stacking 119 pounds, 10 ounces on SCORETRACKER® on the opening day of the TITLE, Kurt Mitchell knew going into the day that he didn’t have to catch a single bass to move on to Friday’s Knockout Round. The five anglers below him as lines went in on Wednesday – Evan Barnes, Casey Scanlon, Grae Buck, Matt Stefan and Greg Bohannan – also knew that they were pretty safe from falling out of the top 10.

All six of them held serve, and will fish the Knockout Round on Friday.

Mitchell spent his day thoroughly exploring his primary fishing area, putting just 8-5 on the board but finishing with a 37-plus-pound cushion over Barnes in second place. Barnes added 28-6, Scanlon added 32-5, and Buck, Stefan and Bohannan (18-11, 21-4 and 32-11 respectively) cruised on to the next round.

“I’ve done all I can here,” Mitchell says as he calls it a day 30 minutes before lines out. “This area is just four bridges and a couple little isolated areas, there’s not much else to look at. If they’re not biting, I want to stay here and figure them out. I don’t want to leave here, I know the fish live here. I’m going to stay here, and figure them out during the tournament.”

The big movers: Rusty Salewske and Jon Canada

Jon Canada headed out on Wednesday morning in the No. 10 spot, needing roughly 32 pounds of smallmouth to stay inside the Knockout Round cut. After making a move from Green Bay into Sturgeon Bay in the second period, the Alabama pro added 26 pounds in the third period alone, ending the day with 36-7 and finishing the two-day qualifying rounds in eighth place with 63-3.


Wednesday, August 26, 2020

2020 FLW Tackle Warehouse Championship Sturgeon Bay Group B: John Cox Continues to Crush!

New format? New fishery? No practice? No problem.


Fresh off the Elites, Cox continues smallmouth smash.
(Photo: FLW)

After a full-out runaway on Monday by Kurt Mitchell in the first Qualifying Round of the Tackle Warehouse TITLE presented by Toyota, Florida pro John Cox rolled into Sturgeon Bay around 10:30 p.m. Monday night following a 9-hour drive from a tournament on Lake St. Clair in Michigan. The Florida pro showed up at takeoff at 6:10 a.m. on Tuesday, picked up his STAT unit and official, and backed his boat into the water at Sawyer Park for his first-ever look at Sturgeon Bay.

“I guess we’ll just go practice and see how this goes,” Cox joked as he headed toward the ramp.

The plan went pretty darn well (after a few hiccups). The Berkley pro connected with 18 smallmouths for 66 pounds, 5 ounces to hold off Spencer Shuffield (61-2) and Joey Cifuentes (60-6) for the lead in Group B.

After plinking around docks and seawalls for nearly two hours without a scorable fish (and losing a couple of fish that he identified as 5-pounders), Cox connected with a 4-9 to get on the positive side of SCORETRACKER® late in the first period. The Berkley pro chipped away for the rest of the day with a drop-shot armed with Berkley PowerBait MaxScent Flat Worm and a MaxScent Flatnose Minnow, connecting with several quality smallmouth: he caught two 4-10s to work his way into the top five, and took the lead briefly two times in the second period with a pair of 4-11s.

Cox claimed the lead for good an hour into the final period with back-to-back 5-pounders – a 5-2 and a 5-1 that bit in a 4-minute span just as Cox was contemplating a move to another spot.

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Bill Weidler Wins 2020 Bassmaster Elite Lake St. Clair with 86-07 Lbs!

Canadians Cory Johnston 2nd & Chris Johnston 6th


Last day heroics give Weidler his first Elite win!
(Photo: BASS) 

A random moment during practice led Bill Weidler to a most unexpected victory, as the Helena, Ala., angler amassed a four-day total of 86 pounds, 7 ounces to win the YETI Bassmaster Elite at Lake St. Clair.

Weidler earned $100,500 and nearly doubled his career earnings with B.A.S.S. to $204,350. 

“I just stumbled across a great area in Anchor Bay, and that was my primary spot,” Weidler said. “I went through it one day in practice; it was cold and I’m an old man so I decided to pull over instead of freezing running down the lake.

“I drifted through an area and caught a limit of 26 pounds in about two hours. I had two 6-pounders, and I was like, ‘I might have found something here.’ That’s where I camped out all week.” 

Focusing on a 1,000-yard area of Anchor Bay, Weidler found his bass on the hard edges of grasslines in 14 to 15 feet. Watching his Humminbird 360 for clusters of baitfish helped focus his search.

After two hours of fruitless effort, Day 4 saw Weidler catch three of his best fish between 9 and 10 a.m. He caught fish throughout the day, but two big afternoon bites — a 4-4 and his second of two 5-plus-pounders — pushed him across the finish line.

“This is incredible,” the third-year Elite Series pro said of his first career victory. “I fought and fought; I had a (bad) start to the season, and I knew I had to get some work done. I was on my knees this morning praying that I could catch them.” 

Saturday, August 22, 2020

2020 Bassmaster Elite Lake St. Clair: Cox Continues to Lead by 1 Ounce!

Canadians Cory Johnston 3rd, Chris Johnston 7th 

By David A. Brown


River continues to keep Cox in lead but pack is super close.
(Photo: BASS)
Despite a slow start, John Cox of DeBary, Fla., stuck with his game plan and caught a Day 3 limit of 20 pounds, 12 ounces to maintain his lead in the YETI Bassmaster Elite at Lake St. Clair with a three-day total of 66-2.

Cox took the Day 1 lead with 24-12 — the event’s heaviest sack — and remained on top by adding 20-10 on Friday. He is now in position to claim his first victory on the Bassmaster Elite Series in wire-to-wire fashion.

Day 1 saw Cox start by catching a solid limit on the main lake and then upgrading in the St. Clair River. Stating that the latter felt more comfortable to him, he committed all of Friday and Saturday to the river where he fished seawalls, docks and current breaks.

“It was a struggle today; I kept getting hung up and breaking off,” Cox said. “There were a few times I wanted to melt down today.

“All my early spots were getting beaten up (by local boats), but I just bounced around and had to run a lot of new stuff. Some places where I caught small ones yesterday, for some reason, I caught big ones today. It was incredible.”

Cox said the turning point came around 11:30 a.m. when he pressed the reset button. With a little under 14 pounds in his livewell, he made a key move and found the quality he needed.

“I sat down and retied everything and took a break and kind of got rolling again,” he said. “Everything was going wrong, but I kept it together and kept telling myself, ‘Just be glad that you’re here.’

“I made a few culls and caught my last big one, a 5-10, about 1:45. I was like, ‘OK, we can do this. I have a 3-pounder in the well that I need to get rid of.’ I just couldn’t get rid of it, but I was through.”

Cox caught all of his fish on a drop-shot rig with the Berkley PowerBait MaxScent Flat Worm. He had been nose-hooking his bait, but several missed bites prompted him to thread the Flat Worm onto his hook.

“That put the hook farther back in the bait, and it seemed to help,” he said.

Days 1 and 2 found Cox faring better by casting close to the seawalls. He surmised that the crawfish that had ventured ashore during the higher water earlier in the week were sliding back to their normal habitats.

“They were coughing up craws everywhere (on Days 1 and 2), but today, I didn’t have any in my livewell,” he said. “I just think they were on shad or (other baitfish).”

This would explain why some of his better fish bit farther off the walls in about 25 to 30 feet of water.

Friday, August 21, 2020

2020 Bassmaster Elite Lake St. Clair Day 2: John Cox Retains Lead with 45-06lbs!

Canadians Cory Johnston 6th, Chris Johnston 7th & Gustafson 76th

By David A. Brown


River smallmouth key to Cox's lead as field is ounces away.
(Photo: BASS)

After splitting Day 1 between the main lake and the St. Clair River, John Cox of DeBary, Fla., devoted his entire day to the latter and retained his lead in the YETI Bassmaster Elite at Lake St. Clair with a two-day total of 45-6. 

“I thought about going into the lake, but I felt so comfortable in the river,” Cox said. “I feel like anytime I pitch my bait out there, I might catch a big one. I didn’t feel any need to leave, so I just hung out.” 

Contrasting Day 1, Friday yielded more quantity than quality, as Cox added 20-10 to his opening round weight of 24-12 — the event’s heaviest bag so far.

“I wasn’t catching giants, but I caught way more fish today,” he said. “The key is if you run into them when they’re in one of (the key spots), you can get right quick.” 

Cox started his day in the St. Clair River delta where he fished the south and middle channels. He focused his efforts on seawalls, docks and other hard structure. Current eddies from the nearby channel were essential to fish positioning.

Mirroring Day 1, Cox caught all of his fish on a drop-shot rig. His top lure for the rig was the Berkley MaxScent Flat Worm, but he also used the Berkley MaxScent Flatnose Jerk Shad.

“I stuck with the drop shot because they were eating it,” Cox said. “I think fish were just moving in and off those banks with eddies.”

Cox made a midday run farther north and fished main-river spots close to Lake Huron but found that the water was not running as swiftly as he’d expected. Abandoning that area, he returned to the delta, where he made two key culls.

“At the end of the day, there was a spot I was trying to recall where it was, but I didn’t enter into my Lowrance,” Cox said. “I had a couple of waypoints I had marked in practice so I said, ‘I wonder if it’s those waypoints?’

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Ron Nelson 2020 FLW Angler of the Year!

by Jody White  


Winning the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Angler of the Year title is no mean feat, but Ron Nelson made it look easy this year. Finishing 11th or better in the first three events at Sam Rayburn, the Harris Chain and Lake Martin, the Michigan pro kept it rolling in the second phase of the season when the Super Tournaments started. At Chickamauga he made the cut and finished 41st, then finished 12th at the Mississippi River and locked up the title by making the top 50 (currently in 18th place) at Lake Erie. For his win, Nelson will get his 2021 Pro Circuit entry fees paid, as well as a nice piece of hardware for his mantle.

Nelson has an unimpeachable record, having won the Polaris Rookie of the Year title in his first year as a pro and owning three Toyota FLW Series wins. Now, with the AOY win under his belt, he’s cemented himself as one of the hottest and best anglers in the country, but he’s not going to be taking a break anytime soon.

“I feel like it hasn’t sunk in yet,” says Nelson. “When I caught that 6-pounder today, I felt like the burden was off my chest, but the best feeling of the day was when I checked my boat number in. I probably won’t be able to think about it or embrace the moment until this tournament is over, I’m already thinking about tomorrow. I’m still in game mode, I’m wore out, but I’m thinking about tying things on and getting ready for tomorrow.”

For Nelson, a couple moments stand out as marking posts along his career path. One happened just days ago when he broke down on day three at the Mississippi River, effectively costing himself a chance to win his first Pro Circuit event. Another happened the first day of his pro career in 2019, when Nelson weighed zero bass on day one at Sam Rayburn.

“Last year I had two goals in mind: I wanted to be in contention for Angler of the Year and I wanted to be in contention for Rookie of the Year,” says Nelson, thinking back to Sam Rayburn. “I’m usually really levelheaded out there, but after some mechanical issues the first day, I hit the panic button. I had the easiest fish to catch, and I just messed up. I went back out next day and caught ‘em, but I knew Angler of the Year was gone.

“I was determined to work hard, regardless of that first day of the tournament, and at the end of the year, I had missed opportunities, but it worked out. I always say the good Lord provides what you need, not what you want, and it worked out.”

This year, things worked out more often than not, and Nelson went into the last event at Erie with a big lead. Running all the way to the mouth of the Detroit River each day, Nelson managed mixed bags to make his way into the top 50 and close down the AOY title.

“It’s absolutely my biggest title to date,” says Nelson. “But, there’s something special about winning Rookie of the Year. You truly only have one chance to win that title, and it got the momentum going under me a little bit. This will light a fire under my tail even more, so I’m gonna want another one. All you can ask is to be in contention for anything, this year was a year of challenges, with all the changes and scheduling. This year, I felt like I did my job, and the good Lord blessed me to stay consistent.”


Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Eurotackle Lands in Canada

Eurotackle Bass baits in stock. Check out the Swagger a great drop shot bait, the Profiler 2.6 swim bait and the Metacraw 2.4 a great jig trailer. They are also stocked up with the z-vibers and the micro finesse baits. Baits are injected with their unique scent, the S-Pheromone Technology.

Monday, August 17, 2020

Justin Lucas Wins 2020 FLW Super Tournament on Lake Erie by 1 Ounce, Wheeler 2nd!

Drop Shot and Maxscent key to 2nd big win for Lucas

By Sean Ostruszka


Dropshot and a bit of luck helps Lucas claim another big win in 2020!
(Photo: FLW) 

From practice on, Justin Lucas felt this was his tournament to win, and he felt it’d take 20 pounds a day to do it.

He came real close to meeting his goal-weight estimate; just a little short with 79-2 for the tournament, which made it real close come weigh-in. But in the end, his feeling held true.

Battling it out in big waves all day, the Guntersville, Ala., pro brought in the biggest bag of the final day (19-10) to take down Jacob Wheeler by just 1 ounce to win the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Erie. Because of the FLW PHOENIX Bonus, he took home an additional $35,000 in contingency money for a total paycheck of $160,000

“Where’s the hospital at?” says Lucas on stage after beating Wheeler by just the single ounce. “I knew Wheeler, he said he had 17 pounds, and I know he’s a little sandbagger. So, I knew it was going to be really close. I thought it was a tie, and I thought he won. I was sitting there deflated, because I thought he won.

“I’m at a loss for words. This one feels good. I’ve never won that much money in my life.”

It’s hard to believe a pro originally from California and now Alabama could be on top of the smallmouth world, but Lucas certainly is right now. Just a couple weeks ago, he won the Major League Fishing Bass Pro Tour event on Sturgeon Bay crushing smallmouth, and then he kept that momentum rolling with brown fish here. And both wins came using the exact same tackle and pattern.

Friday, August 14, 2020

2020 FLW Super Tournament on Lake Erie Day 3: Bertrand Reclaims Lead with 62-12lbs

St. Clair vs Lake Erie battle raging

By Sean Ostruszka


Bertrand capitalized on bumpy day.
(Photo: FLW) 

It’s a numbers game for Josh Bertrand, and the numbers keep lining up so far.

We’ll start with the biggest number – one – as in, he’s back again in first place at the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Erie after slipping from the top spot to fourth yesterday.

He did that with the biggest weight number of the day – 22 pounds, 14 ounces – to give him 62-12 for the tournament, which is a little more than 2 pounds ahead of Jacob Wheeler, who is on a historic tear (more on that later).

And he was able to put up that big number thanks to some dwindling numbers around his main area.

“Every guy that falls off opens more water up,” says Bertrand about sharing water, especially on day two, around the Gull Island Shoal area. “It’s so hard to bounce around and fish a lot of stuff when you’ve got other guys fishing all the same stuff. Yesterday, I was sharing a spot with seven or eight guys. Today, it was three. Tomorrow, it’ll be one or two.”

Now, those were the good numbers. There are some bad ones, though.

For instance, Bertrand continues to struggle to generate many bites in his area. He admits there are less fish in his area than to start, as “a lot of fish have been pulled out.” He’s barely getting enough bites to fill his limit, and he’s only able to do that because he’s maximizing his time on the water.

“I need every minute,” says Bertrand. “When you’re only getting 5-6-7 bites a day, on a good day, it’s such a fragile thing. If I didn’t have six hours to fish, I’d have no chance. I’d come in with two fish for 9 pounds. It would be too tough, if you were fishing for single fish like I am without that time. It’s the only way it works, for sure.”

The other number to watch is the wind speed, especially for tomorrow.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

2020 FLW Super Tournament on Lake Erie Day 2: Justin Lucas Grabs Lead with 41-05lbs

Canadian Erik Luzak 115th.

By Sean Ostruszka


Another Berkley Flat Worm wonder. Justin Lucas proving he
might be the best smallmouth pro on tour.
(Photo: FLW) 
He thought he had the lead yesterday. Turns out, Justin Lucas just needed to wait a day. Either way, the Alabama pro is dialed in when it comes to smallmouth.

“I think probably about three years ago I really started understanding them (smallmouth),” says Lucas. “I have a lot of confidence when we come up here in the summer.”

After winning the Major League Fishing Bass Pro Tour event on Sturgeon Bay just a couple weeks ago, Lucas has further showcased that smallmouth confidence here at the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Erie. His 19-pound, 14-ounce bag today pushed him into the top spot with 41-5 for the event, a mere 3 ounces over Jeremy Lawyer.

Yet, things are liable to get very interesting the final two days.

For starters, Lucas, Lawyer, day-one leader Josh Bertrand (fourth), Todd Faircloth (seventh) and a handful of other pros that made the cut are all fishing the same general area around Gull Island Shoal. In fact, five of yesterday’s top 10 started within 75 yards of one another this morning. Considering none of them are getting many bites – Lucas says he only had seven bites and landed just the five he weighed in – many are worried that area could get too much pressure and fizzle out.

Meanwhile, calmer conditions allowed the guys making the run to Lake St. Clair to do so in a little over an hour today as opposed to two hours on Tuesday. The result was some of the bigger bags of the event, with Alton Jones, Jr. (third) and Spencer Shuffield (fifth) both cracking over 20 pounds today to push into the top five, and they’re doing it by catching dozens of fish. To really showcase how well St. Clair fished today, you just had to look at Jon Canada. He didn’t make the run yesterday and caught 8 pounds. Today, he cracked the biggest bag of the event at 24-8 to make the cut.

That could set up a showdown between the Erie and St. Clair pros … assuming the St. Clair guys can make it there tomorrow. With forecasted blustery conditions out of the northeast tomorrow afternoon, it could once again make the long run treacherous (assuming the entire field is allowed to leave Sandusky Bay). And even for pros like Lucas in Erie, the added wind and waves is going to hurt.

Top 10 Below

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

2020 FLW Super Tournament on Lake Erie Day 1: Bertrand Scores Lead with 22-06lbs

Canadian Erik Luzak 131st.

By Sean Ostruszka


Berkley Max Scent flat worm on a drop shot
is a killer again for Josh.
(Photo: FLW) 

Lake St. Clair may have been the main attraction, but it was the undercard that stole the show, at least for today.

Technically, it’s hard to call Lake Erie the undercard considering it was the launch site of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament. Yet, with how strong St. Clair has been fishing lately – a recent Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine event there had 29 limits over 20 pounds – Erie almost seemed like an afterthought as guys considered making the 100-plus-mile run up past Detroit.

Well, plenty of guys made the run today (and were beaten up for it), but of the seven bags topping 20 pounds today, only one came outside of Erie. And none were bigger than Josh Bertrand’s 22-pound, 6-ounce leading weight. Yet, don’t expect him or anyone else to be singing Erie’s praises just yet.

“I mean, it was not an easy day of fishing to be honest,” says the San Tan Valley, Ariz., pro. “I think I only had seven keeper bites. It was tough, but it worked out perfectly. That’s really the bottom line.”

Really, nothing came easy today regardless of an angler’s decision to stay in Erie or run to St. Clair.

For those that ran, they suffered through a near two-hour boat ride just to make it to the smaller lake, and it sure wasn’t a smooth ride at that. Reports of broken trolling motors and various other boat components were the common theme for those that braved the run thanks to some decent-sized waves. Worse, their reward for their efforts was little fishing time and less-than-stellar fishing. Only Gerald Sphorer (seventh with 20-0) and Tommy Dickerson (eighth with 19-13) can say the run was really worth it. 

As for those that stayed in Erie, largemouth were barely a factor come weigh-in, and the top pros all reported very few bites.


Monday, August 10, 2020

The Jika Rig: The Original Tokyo Rig


The Jika rig or heavy punch shot is the forefather of the popular Tokyo rig. 
Making your own Jika rig is a snap. Here's a quick video on how to get started. 

Friday, August 7, 2020

Covid 19: A Hidden Boom for Fishing


Nothing new for anyone who has been waiting in line to launch a boat during Covid. Fishing stores are busy and supplies are running low. Here's a timely article from Jeff Helsdon on the matter.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Bass Hacks that Work!

Don't get frustrated with the lack of tackle in stores due to Covid. 
Put these bass hacks into use to make your fishing better. 

Monday, August 3, 2020

Brandon Palaniuk Wins 2020 BASS Elite on Lake Champlain with 80-01lbs; Johnston 9th.

Palaniuk make big splash in BASS return
By David A. Brown

Turning in his best performance of the week, Brandon Palaniuk leveraged a blistering afternoon bite to sack up 21 pounds, 6 ounces and win the Bassmaster Elite at Lake Champlain with a four-day total of 80-1.

This is the fourth B.A.S.S. win for the 2017 Angler of the Year from Rathdrum, Idaho. He earned a first-place prize of $100,000.

After a strong start yielded a pair of 4-pound-class fish by 8:30 a.m., Palaniuk continued catching quality smallmouth throughout the day. A key move and a heads-up response led him to the gold mine that produced a 4-4, a 4-6 and a 4-8 between 12:10 and 1:56 p.m.

“I had one boulder and I shut down before I got to it and as I came off pad, I see a dot on my (Humminbird) Down Imaging and I’m like, ‘Holy cow, that looks like a giant smallmouth,’” Palaniuk said. “I grabbed my rod, threw my bait back before I even dropped my trolling motor.

“The boat’s drifting away, I drop my trolling motor, I pick up and my line’s swimming off. I set the hook and a 4 1/2-pounder goes airborne — way back there. After I caught that fish, I rolled up to the boulder and they were stacked on top of it. Then, every single boulder on that flat in 28 to 32 feet of water had a 4-plus-pounder on it.”

Tom Monsoor Wins 2020 FLW Pro Circuit Super Tournament on the Mississippi River with 42lbs!

At 71 years young, Monsoor tops them all


A life time of knowledge and skill with a jig provides big win for Monsoor
(Photo: FLW)

Tom Monsoor’s legacy is complete.

Yet, at 71 years old, Monsoor figured he still had one last thing to do to cement his name in the lore of the famous river – win a major tournament on it.

Today, that finally happened, and he took down the best angler in the world to do it. His 12-pound, 10-ounce bag gave him 54-10 for the tournament, stopping Jacob Wheeler’s bid to win back-to-back Super Tournaments. For the win, Monsoor pocketed $125,000. 

“I can’t believe it,” says Monsoor. “Nothing is as cool as winning at home. I’ll remember this forever. This is my legacy right here.”

Along with resetting his own record for the oldest to win a Pro Circuit event – he previously held the record at 68 years old for his win on the Potomac River in 2017 – it was also some redemption from the last Pro Circuit event on his home waters when he finished 105th. Yet, that setback taught him the lesson he needed for this week.

[In 2017], I was on biggest and best fish I’d ever been on,” says Monsoor. “Then the water came up and they were gone. And I didn’t just go fishing. This time I said, ‘I didn’t care what happens. I’m just going to go fishing.’”

That game plan came into play earlier than he thought it would. He originally started the tournament in Pool 7, where he’d marked multiple schools of largemouth in Lake Onalaska. Except, once again, the water on the river had begun to rise and the fish were gone.

Instead of being stubborn, Monsoor simply locked back down to Pool 8, hunkered down in the Black River and “just went fishing.”

Sunday, August 2, 2020