Smallmouth Magazine – Volume 1 Issue 6

Smallmouth Vol I Issue VII Page 1 231x300 Smallmouth Magazine – Volume 1 Issue 6

Smallmouth Magazine Newsletter, Volume 1 Issue 7, July 1985 cover page.

Today we continue looking at the first year of Smallmouth, this time volume 1 issue 6. It’s a cool issue in that on the front cover, long-time bass fishing writer Darl Black has a feature on Lake Erie smallmouth fishing. Black gives a complete synopsis on the fishery and it’s really interesting to compare to the Lake Erie fishery we have today. For example, gone are the hordes of pelagic smallmouth that used to feed on the schooling herring in 40, 50 and even 60 feet of water. If you’re a Lake Erie enthusiast, it’s a great article to read. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Ranger Boats Answer and WInner (December 15,2014)

Ranger Monday Trivia   Ranger Boats Answer and WInner (December 15,2014)

Guess who has a new owner?

Congrats to Rob Melendez for winning this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits! For the answers to this week’s contest, please read below.

Seems like all the talk in the bass fishing world for the past several days has been about the new owner of Ranger Boats. Keeping this week’s trivia question timely, and perhaps a bit easier than the past couple, you’ll need to answer these 4 questions related to Ranger Boats in order to claim this week’s trivia prize, sponsored by Gary Yamamto Custom Baits. Good luck.

  1. The new owners now become the 5th entity to have owned Ranger boats since their start. Name all 5 company owners to date.
  2. May 1971 was a significant date in Ranger history. Why?
  3. Shortly after orders in the new Ranger Boat Co. took off, expanded operations were moved into a former dance hall in town. What was the  name of that old hall?
  4. Now a long time member of Triton Boats Pro Staff, what Elite Series pro traveled with Basil Bacon while he was on Ranger’s pro-staff back in the 80s?

The answers follow: [Read more…]

Fish Tales – Florence, Alabama Part One

Fish Tale 1 still 1 300x168 Fish Tales – Florence, Alabama Part One

Tom Smith (left) and Ray Gresham (right) telling fish tales at the Florence/Lauderdale Visitors’ Center. Photo Brenda Serrano.

Back in mid-November we had the opportunity to be a part of a really cool get-together sponsored by the Florence, Alabama Chamber of Commerce. The event, held at the new Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Center brought together three long-time Alabama anglers who’ve been involved with the bass fishing industry since its early days. Dubbed, Fish Tales, the two-hour affair featured Tennessee River legends Tom Smith, Ray Gresham and Bill Huntley, who told stories of how they got started bass fishing along with some pretty funny experiences along the way. [Read more…]

Bass Fishing Coverage in Non-Traditional Venues: The Daily Show

Daily Show Ike 300x225 Bass Fishing Coverage in Non Traditional Venues: The Daily Show

Michael Iaconelli on the Daily Show in 2005.

In today’s age of constant political sniping and a 24 hour media circus, The Daily Show on Comedy Central is widely known as a “fake news” program popular among younger viewers and generally tending to skew toward a liberal perspective. In August of 2005, however, it was less well known and therefore it was easier for them to lampoon unsuspecting guests. The show had gained notoriety through its coverage of the prior two presidential elections, but host Jon Stewart still was not quite a household name in many sectors of society.

The world of bass fishing has not been spared from The Daily Show’s sometimes harsh gaze. In August of 2005 it showed this satirical segment featuring both Mike Iaconelli and “fellow competitor and casual fishing wear model” Walt Reynolds: [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Ranger Boats

Ranger Monday Trivia   Ranger Boats

Guess who has a new owner?

Seems like all the talk in the bass fishing world for the past several days has been about the new owner of Ranger Boats. Keeping this week’s trivia question timely, and perhaps a bit easier than the past couple, you’ll need to answer these 4 questions related to Ranger Boats in order to claim this week’s trivia prize, sponsored by Gary Yamamto Custom Baits. Good luck.

  1. The new owners now become the 5th entity to have owned Ranger boats since their start. Name all 5 company owners to date.
  2. May 1971 was a significant date in Ranger history. Why?
  3. Shortly after orders in the new Ranger Boat Co. took off, expanded operations were moved into a former dance hall in town. What was the  name of that old hall?
  4. Now a long time member of Triton Boats Pro Staff, what Elite Series pro traveled with Basil Bacon while he was on Ranger’s pro-staff back in the 80s?

Answers and winner will be announced Thursday.

Black Bass Fishing: Robert Page Lincoln – Part 1

Black Bass Fishing Cover 198x300 Black Bass Fishing: Robert Page Lincoln – Part 1

Black Bass Fishing – Theory and Practice by Robert Page Lincoln. First printing April 1952 Stackpole Company.

A big part of the history of bass fishing is looking back at the old literature to see what the state of the sport was back in time. To date we’ve done a number of old book reviews and today, we continue on that path.

I received my copy of Black Bass Fishing – Theory and Practice from Bass Fishing Archives supporter and friend, Mr. William (Bill) Sonnett. Bill is not just a student of the sport’s history, he’s an authority when it comes to old bass tackle and literature and for years has written a column named Deconstructing Old Ads on Dr. Todd Larson’s website, Fishing for History. It’s nice to have Bill around when we have a question here with respect what happened in the old days. [Read more…]

Getting Right to the Point

Hook Honer 300x297 Getting Right to the Point

A better mousetrap?

It’s one of the most common tips given to bass anglers – always sharpen your hooks – or at least it used to be. Now days, we have things like needle point, chemically sharpened, specially tempered, cutting edge, etc., etc., type hooks. Maybe it’s not so critical now, but chances are, most every bass boat you enter has a small file sitting around somewhere to put that razor sharp edge back on your bait. But in the name of technology, there is always a better way to do things; or at least the manufacturers want you to think so. Let’s look at one such “better mousetrap” from the angling accessories file today. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Lillegard Wins Again Answer and Winner (Dec 8, 2014)

Lillegard pic from bassmasterdotcom Monday Trivia – Lillegard Wins Again Answer and Winner (Dec 8, 2014)

Rick Lillegard. Photo Bassmaster.com.

Well, again we have no winner for this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits! Are we making it too difficult? Well, maybe next week we’ll make it a little easier. For the answers to this week’s contest, please read below.

The 1997 New York Eastern Invitational on the St. Lawrence River was the second of Rick Lillegard’s two Bassmaster wins. A little less than two years earlier, he’d won the Maryland Eastern Invitational on the Potomac by a massive 11 pound 7 ounce margin over second-place finisher Pete Gluszek. In New York, the gap wasn’t quite that large, but he still managed to beat runner up Clark Wendlandt by more than four pounds.

The tournament was only 17 years ago, but while many of the anglers in the field still fish at the highest levels, the only member of the top 10 who fished in Elite Series competition is South Carolina’s Ray Sedgwick, who last fished the Elites in 2008. [Read more…]

Smallmouth Magazine – Volume 1 Issue 6

Smallmouth Vol I Issue VI Cover 231x300 Smallmouth Magazine – Volume 1 Issue 6

Smallmouth Newsletter Volume I Issue VI, June, 1985 Cover page.

Carrying on with Smallmouth Magazine, courtesy of Mark Blahut, today we bring you Volume 1 Issue 6 published in June, 1985. Again, as with the May issue, this one has a bonus insert – obviously subscriptions and advertisers were starting to grow.

The newsletter starts off with Billy Westmorland giving more tips on tackle, this time rods and reels and a little bit on line. Brook Elliott gives a short piece about Michigan float trips offered by guide Grant Schliewe. The price of the 8-hour float trips, $125, really hammers home that this was from 1985. [Read more…]

Bagley’s Bait Company – 1977

1977 Bagleys Ad from American Angler Magazine 2 217x300 Bagley’s Bait Company – 1977

1977 Bagley’s Ad taken from American Angler Magazine.

We’ve written a couple pieces on the Jim Bagley Bait Company over the course of the last couple years (you can see two of them here and here), but I personally never get tired of looking at their ads from days past. Recently I was scouring all my 1977 magazines for another piece and noticed after a while, how many ads Bagley had placed in the various magazines of the time and decided to scan them all.

The year 1977 was a banner year for the company due to the fact that Rick Clunn had just won back-to-back Bassmaster Classic and caught some of his fish in each event on Bagley’s baits. This seems to have done a couple of things – namely provide a bunch of sales for the company which, in turn, allowed them to step up their ad campaign in order to sell more. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Lillegard Wins Again (Dec 8, 2014)

Lillegard pic from bassmasterdotcom Monday Trivia – Lillegard Wins Again (Dec 8, 2014)

Rick Lillegard. Photo Bassmaster.com.

The 1997 New York Eastern Invitational on the St. Lawrence River was the second of Rick Lillegard’s two Bassmaster wins. A little less than two years earlier, he’d won the Maryland Eastern Invitational on the Potomac by a massive 11-pound 7-ounce margin over second-place finisher Pete Gluszek. In New York, the gap wasn’t quite that large, but he still managed to beat runner up Clark Wendlandt by more than four pounds.

The tournament was only 17 years ago, but while many of the anglers in the field still fish at the highest levels, the only member of the top 10 who fished in Elite Series competition is South Carolina’s Ray Sedgwick, who last fished the Elites in 2008.

One member of the top 10 continues to attend every Elite Series event, though. It’s fourth place finisher Mark Zona, fishing the fifth of nine B.A.S.S. events in which he competed. His inaugural Bassmaster tournament was on the same waterway in 1995, and he finished a dismal 101st, so the 1997 event marked a substantial improvement in his performance. It wasn’t his best Bassmaster effort, though. In his final event (as far as we know) in 2005, he finished 3rd in a Northern Open on Lake Champlain. If you look down the standings sheet you’ll see that he did not yet call Michigan home – his address was listed as “Homewood, Illinois.” [Read more…]

Smallmouth Magazine – Volume I Number 5

Smallmouth Vol I Issue V 300x115 Smallmouth Magazine – Volume I Number 5It’s been a couple of weeks since we’ve posted a piece on the early issues of Smallmouth so let’s get back to it. In this installment, we’re going to look at issue number five of the inaugural year, which came out in May. 1985.

This issue was the standard four-page newsletter as with previous issues but also came with a bonus page titled Smallmouth Fishing Forecast. Written by Bob Gooch, the article was more of a “State of the Smallmouth” address regarding fisheries throughout North America for 1985. It’s an interesting look back at what were the best smallmouth fisheries at the time. [Read more…]