Monday Trivia – Nixon up North Answer and Winner (June 8, 2015)

Nixon 1999 from fishingwithnixondotcom

Well, unfortunately no one won this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. For the answers, please read below. Come back next week for another shot.

From the start of his Bassmaster career in 1977 through his victory in the 1992 Bassmaster 25th Anniversary tournament on Beaver Lake, Larry Nixon won 13 tournaments, an average of nearly one a year. Included among that group of victories was his 1983 Classic win on the Ohio River and of course four Megabucks trophies. After that, however, he hit a dry spell.

Given Nixon’s incredibly high level of consistency over his career, there were of course some near misses:

  • He finished 2nd to Tommy Biffle at the 1993 Megabucks event on Lake Murray;
  • He finished 2nd to Davy Hite by 13 ounces at the 1996 Top 100 on Neely Henry; and
  • He finished 3rd at the 1999 Classic on the Louisiana Delta, trailing only Hite and the prior year’s champion, Denny Brauer.

[Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Nixon up North (June 8, 2015)

Nixon 1999 from fishingwithnixondotcomFrom the start of his Bassmaster career in 1977 through his victory in the 1992 Bassmaster 25th Anniversary tournament on Beaver Lake, Larry Nixon won 13 tournaments, an average of nearly one a year. Included among that group of victories was his 1983 Classic win on the Ohio River and of course four Megabucks trophies. After that, however, he hit a dry spell.

Given Nixon’s incredibly high level of consistency over his career, there were of course some near misses:

  • He finished 2nd to Tommy Biffle at the 1993 Megabucks event on Lake Murray;
  • He finished 2nd to Davy Hite by 13 ounces at the 1996 Top 100 on Neely Henry; and
  • He finished 3rd at the 1999 Classic on the Louisiana Delta, trailing only Hite and the prior year’s champion, Denny Brauer.

[Read more…]

Monday Trivia – BASSfest Answers and Winner (June 1, 2015)

Jacob Wheeler, the inaugural winner of BASSfest.

Jacob Wheeler, the inaugural winner of BASSfest.

We had a pair of very good guesses, but unfortunately, no winner for this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits. For detailed answers to this week’s question, read below.

This week marks the return of BASSfest. The inaugural event featuring both Elite Series as well as Open anglers was held on Lake Chickamauga in 2014. The winner of that event was Jacob Wheeler, one of the anglers from the Open side of entrants. He edged out Kevin Vandam in a final day shootout that featured both anglers topping the 20 pound mark. This year, the event moves to Kentucky Lake, with just a few minor changes. While there were again invites sent to Open anglers, that offer went out to just the top 10 in each division, and only 11 anglers accepted. Additionally, the Elite Series anglers will be accumulating AOY points based upon their finish in this year’s event. Unfortunately, there was no invitation extended to last year’s winner, meaning their won’t be any chance of a repeat winner, nor of a possible “rivalry” storyline to develop. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Laissez les bon temps roulez Answer and Winner (May 18, 2015)

Kenyon Hill. Photo Bassmaster.com.

Kenyon Hill. Photo Bassmaster.com.

Congratulations to Al H. for winning this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits!  For the answer, read below.

As the son of renowned bass biologist and product inventor Loren Hill, Kenyon Hill may have been destined to pursue a career in tournament fishing. He fished his first B.A.S.S. event in December of 1986 at the age of 22, and since then has qualified for four Bassmaster Classics and has won three events. He continues to fish the Elite Series in 2015. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Laissez les bon temps roulez (May 18, 2015)

Kenyon Hill. Photo Bassmaster.com.

Kenyon Hill. Photo Bassmaster.com.

As the son of renowned bass biologist and product inventor Loren Hill, Kenyon Hill may have been destined to pursue a career in tournament fishing. He fished his first B.A.S.S. event in December of 1986 at the age of 22, and since then has qualified for four Bassmaster Classics and has won three events. He continues to fish the Elite Series in 2015. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Lake Eufaula (Answers & Winner; May 11, 2015)

Lake Eufaula, Alabama

Lake Eufaula, Alabama

Congrats to Steven Strasser for edging out the win this week in our Trivia contest. For details about the winning answers, read below.

Following the professional tournament trails around the country, we currently find the FLW Tour pros practicing up on Lake Eufaula in Alabama this week, also known as Walter F. George Reservoir. Word is the bass are post-spawn and starting to move out toward the deep ledges. We might see some big bags weighed in beginning with Day 1 on Thursday. But that’s the present. If you look back at the history on this lake, you’ll find a treasure trove of interesting bassin’ trivia. Therefore, in order to win this week’s Monday Trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits, you’ll need to sharpen up on your Eufaula history and be the first to answer the following 4 questions correctly. [Read more…]

Not so Bitter Anymore: The 1990 Golden Blend Championship

The cover of the January/February edition of Bass Fishing magazine, the publication of Operation Bass, had Jim Bitter front and center for his Golden Blend Championship win.

The cover of the January/February edition of Bass Fishing magazine, the publication of Operation Bass, had Jim Bitter front and center for his Golden Blend Championship win.

Back in November, we solicited information from readers about the history of the Operation Bass Golden Blend tournament series. We’d put together a basic outline of the circuit’s history, but we had little meat to put on those bones. Thanks to one of our great readers and supporters, Andy Williamson, we have a bit more to add.

In that original article, we mentioned Jim Bitter’s 1990 win on Lake Chickamauga. Specificially, we explained that “[t]he win marked a strong period in Bitter’s career, as he’d won MegaBucks IV on the Harris Chain two years earlier.” Left unsaid was the fact that it came on the heels of what is for many – fairly or unfairly – the defining moment of Bitter’s long career, his failure to win the 1989 Bassmaster Classic. As you may recall, Bitter had the winning fish in his hand, but when he went to re-measure it under the gaze of Tim Tucker’s camera, it slipped from his hand and back into the James River. Hank Parker ended up beating him by two ounces. Gone were not only the lasting glory of a Classic win, but also the $50,000 top prize. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: 1978 Bassmaster Trail – Part Four

Alabama not only broke the combined weight record for a Federation Championship, they won an unprecedented back-to-back victory. Photo February 1979 issue of Bassmaster magazine.

Alabama not only broke the combined weight record for a Federation Championship, they won an unprecedented back-to-back victory. Photo February 1979 issue of Bassmaster magazine.

[Editor’s note: This is Part Four of a six-part series on the 1978 Bassmaster Trail. Click the following links to read Part One, Part Two and Part Three.]

So far we’ve covered the six Bassmaster Classic qualifying events for the 1978 Bassmaster Tournament Trail along with the mid-season Bass Champs event. Today we’re looking at the 1978 Bassmaster Federation Championship, which was held on Lake Eufaula, AL, in August, 1978.

Up to this time no state team had won back-to-back championships, although the Tennessee team had won twice, the inaugural event in 1973 and again in 1976. Other winners had been Missouri (1974), Louisiana (1975) and Alabama (1977). [Read more…]

Happy Birthday to a Twenty Year Old Dieting Deep Diver

Twenty years ago one of the best crankbaits that has ever been developed was born - the Bomber Fat Free Shad.

Twenty years ago one of the best crankbaits that has ever been developed was born – the Bomber Fat Free Shad.

Looking through the old “New Tackle for…” issues of Bassmaster, it quickly becomes clear that few new lures survive the open market for even a couple of years, let alone two decades. Of those that do live to fish another day or another year, many take a long time to gather a meaningful following. In that respect, the Bomber Fat Free Shad is something of an anomaly, a lure that was popular almost from the start, due in no small part to good design, a solid pro-staff and more than a bit of on-the-water advertising. While many of us can still remember its introduction, this year it celebrates its 20th birthday.

In 1994, PRADCO introduced the Pro Autograph Series of hard lures – proven baits that each bore a particular pro’s name and his suggested modifications or special paint schemes. They included the following lures: [Read more…]

The Bassmaster Classic – 1991 through 2000

Ken Cook hoists the 1991 Classic trophy for winning at the Chesapeake Bay, MD. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Ken Cook hoists the 1991 Classic trophy for winning at the Chesapeake Bay, MD. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

By 1991 the Bassmaster Classic had become the event anglers aspired to win – weekend warriors through tour-level pros. The event had grown from a small gathering of anglers and media huddled together at the ramp in 1971 at Lake Mead, NV to sold-out stadiums in 1990. Although the event was centered around the anglers who qualified and the eventual winner, it grew into what we now know as Classic week filled with fan days, media events and one of if not the biggest public tackle shows in the world. [Read more…]

The Bassmaster Classic – 1981 through 1990

In 1981 Stanley Mitchell became the youngest angler to win a Bassmaster Classic. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

In 1981 Stanley Mitchell became the youngest angler to win a Bassmaster Classic. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Yesterday we posted the first piece of this look back in Bassmaster Classic history – starting with the very first Classic held on Lake Mead, NV and ending with Classic X on the St. Lawrence River, NY. Today we continue with Classic XI and will move through Classic XX held in 1990.

1981: Bassmaster Classic XI – Lake Montgomery, AL

The second decade of the Bassmaster Classic started off in the hometown of B.A.S.S., Montgomery, AL. Forty-two anglers, including five from the Federation, would vie for the championship, including 21-year-old Stanley Mitchell of Fitzgerald, GA. Mitchell, the youngest angler to compete in Classic XI would not only claim that fact, he’d also become the youngest angler to ever win a Bassmaster Classic. [Read more…]

Pork: The Forgotten Bait – Part Two

Al Foss was a major pork rind manufacturer amongst other lures of the day. In this ad from 1923, they're showcasing their lures made specifically for pork rind, not to mention their pork itself.

Al Foss was a major pork rind manufacturer amongst other lures of the day. In this ad from 1923, they’re showcasing their lures made specifically for pork rind, not to mention their pork itself.

In Part One of this series on pork rind, we talked a bit about the back-and-forth history of the bait and its importance in the annals of bass fishing. Today we’re going to take a look at more of its history and dive even deeper into some of the old articles, catalogs, books and even some more contemporary pieces on the bait.

The first piece of early literature I’d like to share is from a 1923 Al Foss ad. It’s hard to miss the kid holding the giant bass caught from Florida’s Kissimmee River. According to the ad, the fish weighed in at 15 1/2 pounds and was caught on an Al Foss Shimmy Wiggler tipped with a piece of Al Foss pork rind. The claim from the customer goes on to say they also had a 12 3/4-pound bass amongst others.

To the right of the text Al Foss has a display of Wigglers available at the time along with a bottle of pork rind (cost 45¢). Archaic by today’s standards in baits, the Wigglers emulate a contemporary in-line surface buzzer that would use pork as the body. I wonder how many years it’s been since a bass, any bass, has seen the likes of a bait such as these? [Read more…]