Wednesday, July 25, 2012

2012 ICAST & More

The fishing world's mecca of a trade show ICAST, has come and gone leaving an addicted tackle junkie like myself scowering through endless internet pages in search for what's in store come 2013. All I'm saying is the world better not end in December because I can't wait to get my hands on some of these products and better yet, bass can't wait to wrap their mouth around some of them either.

Being a die hard bass fisherman one may think I only pay attention to bass related items but that's not entirely true. A lot of our proven tackle today comes from other forms of sport fishing such as Alabama Rigs, Spoons, Fluorocarbon and swimbaits. Everyone will see and hear of the new bass gear but to find something that would work well for bass but is meant for another species is a desire to every competitive tournament bass angler. I did indeed see a couple things that toot my fancy that may be designed for saltwater use but I think will pay dividends in upcoming bass tournaments. I'd be a fool to give those ideas away so instead I'll just focus on my main area of interest and if your reading my blog I'd reckon you have the same interests as I and that's putting big ole fat bass in the livewell.

G Loomis GLX

I got all sorts of geeked out when I saw G Loomis announced their new line of GLX rods that will soon be hitting the market. If you know me at all or read my blogs and articles often, you'll know I'm a die hard G Loomis guru and have been since I was a little kid. I've been able to use these rods my entire fishing career and though I could fish with any of the G Loomis line of rods, I almost always choose GLX. The exception of course is the G Loomis NRX line of spinning rods which are most definitely the cat's booty. G Loomis used this opportunity to fix probably the only flaw in their entire line of rods which was the need for a meat stick of a crankin' rod. They've always had excellent crankbait rods that are ideal for baits like the Biovex Mid Runner or Rapala DT-6 style crankbaits, but their lack of a big, gaudy 7'11" Heavy action parabolic pig sticker was definitely a negative and also left the door open for inferior rod companies to get their name mentioned in the same sentence. Step down peons, the king has once again claimed the throne and now you can get all of that and a bag of chips as G Loomis not only combines it's GLX sensitivity but also the size and action desired by America's most well known ledge crankers!

I was even more taken aback by the new GLX Flipping Series. I wondered how they could actually improve on perfection itself, well they found a way and though I'll never trade in my tried and true 894 GLX's,  now I need to do some reel shopping because my boat definitely has room for a couple more flipping sticks. Newly designed with split grip handles and improved Fuji Titanium SIC Guides these rods are 23-35% stronger and lighter then their predecessor and better yet, is available in all sorts of different sizes and actions all stamped with the unprecedented GLX logo.

Shimano Calcutta D

Just as I'm a G Loomis die hard, I'm equally as obsessed with Shimano Reels. I have to admit, I waited anxiously to hear what was in store for Shimano. What I found was not much in the way of high end reels except of course for one of the best reels ever made, the Shimano Calcutta. In the bass world, this reel has had the reputation as the best swimbait reel on the market. These days it also has double duty as the best Alabama Rig reel as well. Let me introduce you all to the Shimano Calcutta D. I'm sure there's many a California anglers lined up outside the well known swimbait shops all waiting for their turn to play with the new design but since the umbrella rig craze, boys on the East coast are lining up as well.

Lazer Trokar Wacky Worm Hook

With today's fishing pressure, anglers are learning that they need to either beef up and throw a chandelier that holds numerous swimbaits or size down and get all sorts of finesse-like on weary bass to fill a limit. Nothing is more finesse and productive as a wacky rigged straight tail worm. I first started leaning on this technique when bass were in their post spawn funk. Casting a wacky rigged 4 inch senko around the inside weedline can produce some very good results. Now that the fish are deep I still employ the wacky rig only now I double dip 'em with finesse by wacky riggin' a straight tail worm on a dropshot. They love it! Trokar already is known as the premier hook company which puts out lazer sharp and efficient hooks that competitors can only attempt to knock off. Now they've upped the ante by releasing the perfect lazer sharp wacky hook dubbed the Lazer Trokar Wacky Worm Hook. No pun attended but enough said.

Eco Pro Tungsten Jigs

I'm a 100% tungsten guy. I believe in everything it stands for from being environmentally more safe to the fishing benefits that relate back to it's denseness. I know tungsten isn't cheap, but for most the bass fishing world loosing them on the regular isn't that often as it is for a dude from Minnesota who happens to flip his way into a school of pike or muskie by accident and snip, snip, snip, I just donated several one ounce flippin' weights to the cause. Sucks! Still though, they are a necessary part of my everyday arsenal and I wouldn't think of using lead in it's place ever again. I was very excited to see Eco Pro, who already is one of the premier tungsten companies, announced they're releasing a line up of tungsten jigs. This is a no brainer and something I've been screaming for for at least five years! It makes total sense to offer football jigs and shakey head jigs in 97% tungsten. These are bottom orientated baits that excel over rocks and bottom changing areas and to have the ability to feel every nook and cranny along the way is essential. We pay ridiculous amounts of cash for our rods and fishing line so that we have the "feel", why would that stop with the bait?

On a personal note, I'm even more excited about the Eco Pro Tungsten Flipping Jig. I used to be obsessed with the old Tru Tungsten Jig and have to admit my supply is dwindling. Anytime I can get away with a smaller profile head on my jigs, I'm all in!

Zappu Abare Dama

Zappu, one of Japan's leading terminal tackle manufacturer's released what I think will be one of the serious game changers in coming years, the Abare Dama, which translates into "the Wicked Ball". Basically they developed a spring that holds a small tungsten ball that you can attach directly to the back treble of your favorite crankbait. This offers a lot as it will give your bait that little something extra in the way of a searching style action. It also may allow your deep running crankbait to suspend which I guarantee will elicit more strikes from weary bass.

Biovex USA

Not yet ready for the 2102 ICAST, but one of Japan's premier tackle manufacturer's Biovex,  is set to soon release their brand here in the United States under the new name Biovex USA. Though they are still finishing final steps in the transformation and not yet able to present at ICAST the buzz is already noteworthy. Biovex is known for their awesome hard baits and soft baits alike.

Some of my personal favorites hard baits are the Biovex Deep Runner and Amp Wake Bait, both intended for total opposites in the water column but both get similar results, bone jarring strikes! On the soft plastic side of things, they'll take the U.S. by storm with the introduction to the Biovex Kolt Stick and Biovex  Kolt Fish Tail, both excellent on a drop shot. The Fish Tail is a smallmouth slayer, seriously they can't stand it and I'd put money on it that my Biovex Fish Tail will out fish any other bait hands down. The Kolt Stick is a very interesting bait that I now lean on all the time especially for largemouth. For years anglers have used a small 3" senko style worm with great results when drop shotting. The Biovex Kolt Stick provides that same profile but in a ribbed body, providing more motion underwater and better yet has bubble making action via the small holes that are incorporated inside the bait that when quivered releases the smallest and most realistic air bubbles. I'm telling you, GAME OVER! Bass can't stand it!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Bass are Snapping! Book a Guide Trip Today!

The bass fishing is off the hook up here right now! I've been fortunate to be on the water everyday for the past couple weeks and am happy to admit this bass catching stuff never gets old to a true bassin' junkie like myself.

I'm starting to book but do still have some available days so if you're interested in a great day on beautiful Lake Minnetonka, please contact me soon.

My email is

Looking forward to seeing you on the water!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Denny's Super 30

Lake Minnetonka, Mound, MN

Man I was looking forward to today, the lake has been on absolute fire! Being that life has been so stressful lately as we are preparing for our move south, I decided the best medicine would be to just hit my favorite lake during my favorite time of year and put in a full week of practice leading up to the Denny's.

As I said the lake has been hot and the weather has been even hotter, this isn't usually a bad thing either as I feel it puts the fish in more predictable deep water areas. The vegetation actually starts to burn off much like that of corn and other plants that get a unhealthy dose of higher than usual air temps, making finding healthy weeds a must for success. When I found these key areas, the bass were fat and plentiful as they weren't the only fish that found this habitat desirable. The bluegills, perch and crayfish also were plentiful making easy meals for the bass.

During practice I made it a point to search out new water. Once I had developed a successful pattern I saw no need to check spots that I knew I was going to fish come tournament day. My team tournament partner Paul Coffey did the same and by the end of the week we had more water than we ever knew what to do with and knew there was no way we could ever fish it all.

For the tournament we drew boat 22, not great but really I could have cared less to be honest. Like I said, we had lots of water and not a single spot I felt was more desirable than the next. The wind was tough and that made Paul and I rethink our attack strategy, in fact we reversed it all together in an attempt to be able to better approach our water.

The morning started off great as we put together a limit real quick, though the size just wasn't there. That never really changed all day as we kept catching them but just never got a big bite and also both managed to break off on a couple nice ones. In the end, we stubbed our toes something fierce and ended up with the worst showing at a Denny's tournament of my entire life, 8 for roughly 22 pounds. The end result was mind boggling as we truly were on the right fish and if the tournament was tomorrow I don't know that I'd a changed a thing and would have whacked 'em. Sometimes you just should have zigged instead of zagged but in hindsight it's always easy to wish you would have hit certain areas at certain times instead. The only thing I guess I would have changed if given the opportunity would have been to fish our original track instead of switching it up to account for the wind. We probably would have picked up a couple of better bites earlier and set a much better tone right away. Things to consider...

Up next I have a handful of guide trips and then get to head up north to fish Gull Lake in the third NABC event. I'm always more than excited to head to northern Minnesota and throw down in God's country!

Speaking of guide trips, NOW'S THE TIME! Lake Minnetonka is prime right now and the big girls are biting and biting a lot! Contact me today to book your trip.

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