Early “Slow Rolling” – Earlier Than You Thought?

A 1-oz. Go-Devil spinnerbait

A 1-oz. Go-Devil spinnerbait

Spinnerbaits have been one of the most popular lures among bass anglers ever since they first came out. Many noted anglers could claim to have made their professional reputations by using the lures, guys such as Jimmy Houston, Ricky Green, and Hank Parker. Many others have thrown them to win events throughout the history of tournament angling.

Beyond your typical average spinnerbait, one of the first big “revolutions” occurred in the 1980s with the sudden rise in popularity of the willow leaf blade. Previous to that, most spinnerbaits sold were equipped either with Colorado blades, or less commonly Indiana blades. Willow blades were touted for their effectiveness around grass, and it wasn’t too long before some companies figured out you could make a very heavy spinnerbait combined with the decreased lift of the willow-style blade, and the technique of “slow rolling” was soon winning tournaments across the country. However, all this happened more than 20 years after another small company had created and sold a line of spinnerbaits specifically for covering the depths. [Read more…]

The Earliest B.A.S.S. Ads

BASS early membership print ad. Fishing Facts, Sept. & Oct., 1969.

BASS early membership print ad. Fishing Facts, Sept. & Oct., 1969.

This post falls in line with the recent early B.A.S.S. stories and interviews that have been posted to the site. As you know, the idea for B.A.S.S. was hatched in 1967, and the organization was officially formed and incorporated in 1968. But like every other group starting out, B.A.S.S. had to initially advertise to try and generate interest and membership, frequently in the more popular sporting magazines already out on the market. The ad pictured in this post is likely one of the earliest in print, dating back to September and October of 1969. It appeared in the pages of Fishing Facts magazine, which at the time had been around for nearly 5 years and was seeing rapid growth in the Midwest markets.

There are several things of note with this early ad for the organization. [Read more…]

Lake St. Clair Fished Out!!!

Click for full size

Click for full size

As I’m sure you recall, B.A.S.S. held their most recent Elite Series event on Lake St. Clair, where winner Chris Lane brought in over 80 pounds of bass during the 4 day event. One of the many complaints in that event was the poor showing and condition of the fish from the Lake proper. Even Kevin VanDam, in an interview with BassFan this week stated, “What really blows me away was the fish were not in that condition right before the off-limits. I couldn’t imagine that things could change that much in a month, but they did.” Of course, the lake isn’t even close to being fished out, so why the headline? What does this have to do with bass fishing history? [Read more…]

The Story of Fishing Facts Magazine

Bill Binkelman, founder of Fishing Facts magazine

Bill Binkelman, founder of Fishing Facts magazine

Once upon a time in the world of fishing, there were pretty much just 3 magazines of note that everybody got their fishing information from; Sports Afield, Field & Stream, and Outdoor Life. As we’ve mentioned on these pages before, guys like Homer Circle and Jason Lucas pretty much ruled the fishing magazine world. That would all begin to change in the mid 60s, thanks to a guy by the name of Bill Binkelman. [Read more…]