In August 1985, Tom Rodger’s Smallmouth Newsletter continued as a four-page monthly with Billy Westmorland opening up the issue with some night-time tips on catching smallies in the hottest month of the year. The article itself is short but full of the best information from the time – but some of his suggestions now seem a bit dated. For example, his comments about spinnerbaits not being a good choice for daytime smallmouth fishing seems a bit crazy. Westmorland, who was a proponent of small lures for smallies, didn’t seem too confident in bigger baits – and who was to argue with Mr. Smallmouth? I just wonder if he’d lived longer whether or not he’d have changed his mind.
Page two of the newsletter opened with a memorial to long-time bass fishing writer Dave Bowring, who had passed. If you read any magazines from the period, you know that Bowring was in the middle of the bass fishing craze from an early time. He participated in the first Bassmaster Classics as part of the media and was a contributor in many issues of Bassmaster Magazine. In 1985, when he passed, he was 43 years old. It’s no doubt he would have contributed much more to the sport had he lived a normal lifespan.
Alongside Bowring’s memorial, long-time bass writer Dave Roberts writes an article about his early experiences with fly fishing for smallmouths and his conversations with Dr. James Henshall. Not many anglers in 1985 could lay claim to have talked with Henshall, the grandfather of bass fishing, himself.
The remaining two pages of the newsletter talk of conservation, world records and the shade-fish relationship.
The full newsletter is shown below. Click on the images for readable images.