Spreading a Little Christmas Cheer – V

76 BPS Xmass 8We’re going to end the year with one last look at the 1976 Bass Pro Shops Christmas catalog. This time we’re looking at a Bass Pro deal on a box of worms I’d gladly pay quadruple for right now. Not for historical reasons but because they worked.

In the gift package they offer 60 6-inch worms, 24 3-inch grubs, a yellow Bass Pro worm box and a gift card – not sure what the gift card was but it didn’t cost anything. All this for the cost of $12.99.

Like I said, if offered today I’d pay $50 for the gift pack, throw away that gaudy, heat warping yellow box, sell the 3-inch grubs on eBay and place the worms in a newer 3700-style box for my use. [Read more…]

Jumpin’ Stumps

1975 Stump Jumper ad.

1975 Stump Jumper ad.

For you younger bass anglers out there, have you ever wondered how the equipment you use today got the way it is? For example, why, by God, does every trolling motor have those big-arsed springs on the mount? Well, if you’re halfway as smart as a turnip, you know they’re to protect your motor shaft from breaking if you inadvertently hit something under the water.

But was that spring assembly always there?  NOPE. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: 1976 Bassmaster Trail Part Three

Rick Clunn wins his first of four Bassmaster Classic at the 1976 Bassmaster Classic at Lake Guntersville. Photo Cover February 1977 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Rick Clunn wins his first of four Bassmaster Classic at the 1976 Bassmaster Classic at Lake Guntersville. Photo Cover February 1977 issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s Note: This is part 3 of a three-part series on the 1976 Bassmaster Trail season. To read Part 1 click here, to read Part 2 click here. To read about the 1976 Federation Chapter Championship, click here and to read about the Classic contenders, click here.]

Classic VI, as with all the prior five Bassmaster Classics, was a mystery lake and the venue wouldn’t be divulged until all participants were on the chartered DC-8 bound for the event. It was even stated in the Bassmaster Classic report that “even the pilot of the chartered jet didn’t know the final destination.” Once it was announced that Alabama’s Lake Guntersville would be the host of the ’76 event, the anglers began strategizing with maps provided by B.A.S.S. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance – The 1976 Bassmaster Classic Contenders

in 1976 Jimmy Houston wold win the Bassmaster AOY award in only his second full-time year on the Trail.  Photo 1976 Sept/Oct issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

in 1976 Jimmy Houston wold win the Bassmaster AOY award in only his second full-time year on the Trail. Photo 1976 Sept/Oct issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

[Editor’s Note: This is the fourth story on the 1975 Bassmaster Trail season. To read part one of the 1976 Season at a Glance click here, to read part two click here and to read about the Federation National event click here.]

The 1976 Bassmaster Classic and its contenders have a lot of interesting history packed into it. For one, there were four 5-time Classic contenders, one 4-time contenders, five 3-time contenders and seven 2-time contenders. To say the field was stacked would be an understatement. That’s 17 out of 25 anglers, or 68% of the 1976 Classic contenders had Classic experience.

As amazing it was for so many past-Classic anglers to qualify, it was just as amazing who didn’t qualify. For example, Roland Martin, who’d made every (5) Classic since its inception, missed qualification by 6 points and finished in the 26th spot. The other 5-time qualifier who didn’t make it was Tom Mann who finished in 38th place. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: 1974 BASS Master Trail – Part Three

Anglers and fans gather at one of the Classic IV weigh-ins located at Joe Wheeler State Park. Photo February 1975 Issue of Bassmaster Magazine.

Editor’s Note: This is the third part in a three-part series on the 1974 BASS Master Trail. Part one covered the first three tournaments of the season, while part two covered the three events. This part will cover the 1974 Classic. To read part one, click here and to read part two, click here.

 

The 1974 Bass Master season would end with 29 of the country’s best anglers vying for the coveted BASS Master Classic title. The Classic IV location would be another mystery-lake event, where anglers wouldn’t know the destination until they stepped on the plane. This time, the lake would be Wheeler Lake in Alabama, a short distance away from B.A.S.S. Headquarters in Montgomery. [Read more…]

1974 Bass Master Classic Preview – The Anglers

Before we go through the highlights of the ’74 Classic, I thought it would be good to introduce the anglers who made the Classic. In the February ’75 issue of Bassmaster Magazine, as was done in the January/February issue of ’74, B.A.S.S. not only gave the Classic report, the magazine also dedicated a substantial number of pages to the Classic qualifiers with respect to their bios. We’re going to go through these bios and touch on the anglers’ accomplishments up to this point in time. No byline was given but I assume it was Bob Cobb who penned the piece.

In this series of biographies, the anglers were asked two primary questions. The first question was, “how they tackle a new body of water,” and the second was, “what they thought of the new oxygen meters that were being sold.” We’ll go through the answers they provided to these questions along with giving a little more of their histories at this time. All photos from the February 1975 issue of Bassmaster Magazine. [Read more…]

Season at a Glance: 1973 Bass Master Trail – Part Three

Rayo Breckenridge holds the 1973 Bass Master Classic trophy. I wonder if he went to the same tailor as Ricky Green? Photo: Cover photo Jan/Feb issue of Bass Master Magazine.

This is Part Three of the three-part series on the 1973 Bass Master Tournament Series. To read Part One click here, to read Part Two click here and to read the ’73 Classic Anglers’ Profiles click here.

 

The third Bass Master Classic was again another “mystery lake” in the annals of Bass Master Classics. In the previous two events, Ray Scott had waited for the chartered jet to reach 10,000 feet before announcing the destination to the Classic contenders. This flight, though, would be different.

Scott not only waited to tell the contestants, he waited until the flight was almost over and they were flying a circle above Clark’s Hill Reservoir before he made the announcement. Here’s out it went according to Bob Cobb in the January/February issue of Bass Master Magazine.

“We’re going to circle the lake in a minute, anyone see anything familiar? That’s Clark Hill Reservoir…..Junior Collis, we’ve brought you home.”

It was Collis’ first Classic and he’d recently won one of the toughest events in B.A.S.S. history in May at Lake Keowee. Now Scott was taking him to his home lake. He was an obvious favorite right from the start. [Read more…]

1973 Bass Master Classic Preview – The Anglers

The January/February 1974 Issue of Bass Master Magazine not only had the tournament report for the ’73 Classic, it had a very in-depth look at the Classic contenders – the first time BASS Master had done this. Prior to Part Three of the 1973 Season at a Glance, I felt it best to publish this piece in order to give you more insight as to who fished and what they’d accomplished in the few short years B.A.S.S. had been around. Here are the anglers as they placed in AOY standings. All photos from the January/February 1974 Issue of BASS Master Magazine.

 

(1) Roland Martin (Tulsa, OK)

Roland for the third year in a row had taken the Bass Master AOY award. The only other angler at this time to have won an AOY was Bill Dance, who won it the first year it was inaugurated. Over the 72 and 73 seasons, Martin had been such a dominant player in the game that he’d beaten his opponents by more than a tournament’s worth of points by the end of the year. By this point he had also won seven titles and became only the third angler to win back-to-back events in a season.

His winnings had elevated him to the number-one spot in B.A.S.S. earnings ($36,235.20) and had placed in the money in 23 straight regular season events. All six of his finishes for the year were top-5 finishes. [Read more…]