Old Bass Boats – 1977 Part 1

1977 Terry Bass Boat Ad.

1977 Terry Bass Boat Ad.

In this installment of Old Bass Boats, we again have to split the piece into multiple parts due to the volume of bass boat manufacturers now placing ads in bass magazines. As stated in the last installment, Old Bass Boats – 1976 Part 1, the 1975 ad campaign saw 16 manufacturers advertising their goods. In 1976 that number jumped up to 26 and this year that number jumped to a staggering 38 companies placing ads in bass magazines. What is truly amazing about that number is that was not all the companies out there who were making bass boats. [Read more…]

Ray Scott – The Start of the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society

The Bass Boss and the man behind the advent of competitive bass fishing, Ray Scott, Nov 15, 2014. Photo Brenda Serrano.

The Bass Boss and the man behind the advent of competitive bass fishing, Ray Scott, Nov 15, 2014. Photo Brenda Serrano.

This past weekend I was invited to an event in Florence, AL by former Elite Series angler Jimmy Mason. The event was to be held Friday night and would feature Alabama fishing greats, Bill Huntley, Ray Gresham and Tom Smith. The trio, sitting at the head of a conference room in the Florence, AL Visitor’s Center, told stories of the old days of fishing in Alabama and on the Tennessee River impoundments. It was an awesome meeting and soon we’ll be posting some of those stories here in the Bass Fishing Archives – after we get done with the editing. [Read more…]

Let’s Look Back – Part 30

I kept wondering if a 5-inch Uncle Josh pork rind strip might work better as a trailer for this Bomber Waterdog than the tiny spinner that was attached to its hind end when I took it out of the box. Photo Stan Fagerstrom.

I kept wondering if a 5-inch Uncle Josh pork rind strip might work better as a trailer for this Bomber Waterdog than the tiny spinner that was attached to its hind end when I took it out of the box. Photo Stan Fagerstrom.

Are the larger lures you’ve got in your tackle box your best bet for taking big bass?

My own fishing for a generous chunk of the past century tells me they are. As I mentioned in my previous column, this certainly isn’t “always” going to happen. But neither is almost anything else associated with putting bass in the boat.

If you read that previous column you’re also aware that I mentioned the old Bomber Waterdog being one of my big baits that produced some big bass. It didn’t happen, however, just the way that bait came out of the box. [Read more…]

Stephen Browning – 1996 Red Man All-American Win

Stephen Browning 1996 Red Man All-American winner.

Stephen Browning 1996 Red Man All-American winner.

In this video post, Elite Series angler Stephen Browning talks about his 1996 Red Man All-American win on the Arkansas River. He looks back on the event, one that was held essentially in his backyard.

Local knowledge has a history of killing locals in big events like the Bassmaster Classic or FLW Cup. But Browning used his history with the river and knowledge of a pattern that still works at that time of year today as well as it did back then and before. [Read more…]

Mark Menendez – How He Started

Mark Menendez topped a field of 137 anglers in the LBL division on Lake Barkley in 1988. Photo September/October 1988 issue of Bass Fishing magazine.

Mark Menendez topped a field of 137 anglers in the LBL division on Lake Barkley in 1988. Photo September/October 1988 issue of Bass Fishing magazine.

In today’s video feature Mark Menendez talks about how he got his start in competitive bass fishing on the Operation Bass circuit. He remembers the two gentlemen that got him started, how his entry fees the first year were partially paid, practicing out of a 16-foot aluminum boat then jumping into another angler’s glass boat – an angler usually a lot older than him – and having to convince them he was on fish. [Read more…]

Stephen Browning – Wild Rules

Stephen Browning may be an exceptional angler but he's also a survivor.

Stephen Browning may be an exceptional angler but he’s also a survivor.

I know this is a fishing site but this is a story I’ve wanted to do for a long time – one that actually involves fishing in a couple ways. I’m not sure if you remember back to the year 2003 when ESPN ran the “Survivor-type” wilderness show Wild Rules. The show only lasted one season – when for former owner of BASS was testing the waters with outdoors-style shows. [Read more…]

Doodle Socking 1961

Doodle Socking for Bass by Don Fuelsch. Don Fuelsch's 1961 Southern Angler's Guide.

Doodle Socking for Bass by Don Fuelsch. Don Fuelsch’s 1961 Southern Angler’s Guide page 2.

The controversy and allegations that flipping were just forms of doodle socking have been around since Dee Thomas won the 1975 Arkansas Invitational on Bull Shoals Lake. The short-line may have looked like doodle socking to the untrained eye but it was more of a system than doodle socking ever dreamed of being.

The interesting fact of the matter is that Thomas, who invented his technique, was a died-in-the-wool doodle-socker until his tournament competition made him move from his 12-foot Lew’s Hawg Hauler rods to something shorter. It was this, maybe, unwanted rule change that led him to develop one of the most widely used techniques in bass fishing history. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Kirk Cashes In Answer and Winner (Oct 13, 2014)

Danny Kirk April 1999 Bassmaster Magazine/Gerald Crawford.

Danny Kirk April 1999 Bassmaster Magazine/Gerald Crawford.

We only had one person attempt this week’s Monday Trivia Contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. Although he got the first three questions right, he missed the last one. We tried to determine if the answer given was in any way attached to the correct answer but couldn’t find any evidence of such. Come back again next Monday for the next round of Monday Trivia. For the answers, please read below.

Forty-two year old Danny Kirk could only manage 8 pounds 5 ounces of Kissimmee Chain bass during the January 1999 Florida Bassmaster Top 150 event, but it was enough to outlast Florida stalwarts Shaw Grigsby and Terry Segraves for the win. He beat them both by a margin of 7 ounces, which translated into a difference of over $60,000 in cash and merchandise. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Kirk Cashes In (Oct 13, 2014)

Danny Kirk April 1999 Bassmaster Magazine/Gerald Crawford.

Danny Kirk April 1999 Bassmaster Magazine/Gerald Crawford.

Forty-two year old Danny Kirk could only manage 8 pounds 5 ounces of Kissimmee Chain bass during the January 1999 Florida Bassmaster Top 150 event, but it was enough to outlast Florida stalwarts Shaw Grigsby and Terry Segraves for the win. He beat them both by a margin of 7 ounces, which translated into a difference of over $60,000 in cash and merchandise.

He put together four limits that totaled 41-pounds even, a winning catch far below what most fans would’ve expected. It was the directly result of temperatures in the 20s that plagued Florida in early January, along with fronts that continued into the tournament. [Read more…]

Mark Menendez – B.A.S.S. Record

in 1997 Mark Menendez broke the 24-year-old Bassmaster record big fish record with this 13-9 largemouth from Richland Chambers. The record stood for a little over two years. Photo June 1997 Bassmaster Magazine/Crawford.

in 1997 Mark Menendez broke the 24-year-old Bassmaster record big fish record with this 13-9 largemouth from Richland Chambers. The record stood for a little over two years. Photo June 1997 Bassmaster Magazine/Crawford.

In 1973, the Bassmaster record for big fish was set by Bob Tyndall with a 12-13 largemouth taken from the Rodman Pool in the Florida Invitational held on the St John’s River. That record stood for just over 24 years and was a record many probably thought would never be broken.

Well, as with most records, it was finally broken in 1997 at Lake Richland-Chambers in Texas during the 1997 Megabucks event. The angler to finally break the record was Bassmaster Tour pro, Mark Menendez. [Read more…]

An LCD that’s a Flasher

The Bottom Line TBL 210F liquid crystal flasher/graph by Bottom Line. circa 1988.

The Bottom Line TBL 210F liquid crystal flasher/graph by Bottom Line. circa 1988.

By 1988 liquid crystal displays were taking over the world, and a lot of anglers weren’t too happy about it. The units had bad resolution and the computing power needed in order to run them just wasn’t state-of-the-art. But that didn’t stop companies from completely bailing on the old tried and true technologies such as flashers and paper graphs.

Paper graphs and flashers had a stout following for one simple reason – they worked. One of the reasons they worked so well was they were analog, relying only on a signal from the transducer to either light a bulb or heat a stylus. Transmission of information was nearly instantaneous. In the water you dealt with the speed of sound from and to the transducer and once the signal got back to the unit, you were dealing with the speed of electrons (aka the speed of light) to send that signal to the business end of the unit. I’m taking fast. [Read more…]

Nixon and Yelas Talk On-the-Water Etiquette

Larry Nixon and Jay Yelas talk on-the-water etquette. Photo Brenda Serrano.

Larry Nixon and Jay Yelas talk on-the-water etquette. Photo Brenda Serrano.

Here’s a scenario. You’ve spent 3 days practicing for an event and have located a number of good spots that are holding fish. The first day of the event starts and you head to your best spot, an offshore ledge that only yesterday was holding what you think are the winning fish. As you approach the spot, you see another angler sitting smack dab on your area. Within 15 minutes another four boats come in and drop their trolling motors. What you thought was an area you’d have all to yourself has just turned into a “new” community hole. [Read more…]