Monday Trivia – The Last Class from the West Answer and Winner (February 9, 2015)

The July-August 2002 cover of Bass West magazine showing the four anglers who made the Bassmaster Classic from the Western Opens. Back row from left to right are Mike O'Shea and Aaron Martens. Kneeling in front are Luke Clausen and Jack Gadlage.

The July-August 2002 cover of Bass West magazine showing the four anglers who made the Bassmaster Classic from the Western Opens. Back row from left to right are Mike O’Shea and Aaron Martens. Kneeling in front are Luke Clausen and Jack Gadlage.

Congrats to Andy Williamson for winning this week’s trivia contest sponsored by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits! JKarbow also had the right answers but came in a little late on time. For the answers, please read below. 

As we prepare for the 2015 Bassmaster Classic this month, it’s easy to overlook how the landscape for professional anglers from the western United States has changed over the past few decades. The full-time pros in this year’s Classic field include Brett Hite (Arizona), Jared Lintner (California), Justin Lucas (Alabama, but originally from California), Aaron Martens (same as Lucas), James Niggemeyer (Texas, but originally from California), Brandon Palaniuk (Idaho), Clifford Pirch (Arizona), Dean Rojas (California) and Skeet Reese (California). While Brian Snowden is typically associated with the Ozarks region, he too cut his bass-fishing teeth in California. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – The Last Class from the West (February 9, 2015)

Bass West cover from the July-August 2002 issue.

Bass West cover from the July-August 2002 issue.

As we prepare for the 2015 Bassmaster Classic this month, it’s easy to overlook how the landscape for professional anglers from the western United States has changed over the past few decades. The full-time pros in this year’s Classic field include Brett Hite (Arizona), Jared Lintner (California), Justin Lucas (Alabama, but originally from California), Aaron Martens (same as Lucas), James Niggemeyer (Texas, but originally from California), Brandon Palaniuk (Idaho), Clifford Pirch (Arizona), Dean Rojas (California) and Skeet Reese (California). While Brian Snowden is typically associated with the Ozarks region, he too cut his bass-fishing teeth in California.

In the past, most western pros who wanted to make a run at the mostly-southeastern Bassmaster Tour moved to the east, like Gary Klein and Jay Yelas. There were a few holdouts, like Rich Tauber, Dave Gliebe, and Mike Folkestad, but they never approached the numbers that compete on the tours today. [Read more…]

James Niggemeyer – The Move to Fork

James Niggemeyer talks about his move to Texas and a successful, yet, financially taxing 2005 season. Photo Brenda Serrano.

James Niggemeyer talks about his move to Texas and a successful, yet, financially taxing 2005 season. Photo Brenda Serrano.

A couple weeks ago we posted a video about James Niggemeyer and the first pivotal tournament of his career, the one that actually kept him in competitive fishing. Today we have another video on James’ career – how he packed up and left southern California to move to Lake Fork Texas and started a new path towards being a professional angler. [Read more…]

James Niggemeyer – Almost His Last Leg

James Niggemeyer. ICAST 2014. Photo Brenda Serrano.

James Niggemeyer. ICAST 2014. Photo Brenda Serrano.

In 1997 professional bass fishing hopeful James Niggemeyer was on what seemed to be his last leg for a while. Tapped out with credit card debt, he knew the final regular season Anglers Choice Lake Shasta pro-am would be his last for a long time. Still he hoped to finish high enough to make the year-end championship. [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Padgett Prevails Answer and Winner (Nov 4, 2013)

Bobby Padgett. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Bobby Padgett. Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Congratulations to John Karbowski for winning this week’s Bass Fishing Archives Trivia Contest!  For the answers, please read below.

Bobby Padgett of Columbus, Georgia won the second B.A.S.S. tournament he fished, the 1996 Alabama Invitational on Lake Eufaula. In fact, he ran away with the victory, beating second place finisher Kevin VanDam by 11 ½ pounds.

While it was one of only three top ten B.A.S.S. finishes for Padgett in 21 attempts, he has long been well-known as a top stick in the area, with many lower-level wins to his credit. After the tournament, Colin Moore wrote that Padgett had “finished first or second in every summer tournament at Eufaula he entered during the past four years, including three consecutive wins on the Red Man trail.” [Read more…]

Monday Trivia – Padgett Prevails (November 4, 2013)

Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Photo Bassmaster Magazine.

Bobby Padgett of Columbus, Georgia won the second B.A.S.S. tournament he fished, the 1996 Alabama Invitational on Lake Eufaula. In fact, he ran away with the victory, beating second place finisher Kevin VanDam by 11 ½ pounds.

While it was one of only three top ten B.A.S.S. finishes for Padgett in 21 attempts, he has long been well-known as a top stick in the area, with many lower-level wins to his credit. After the tournament, Colin Moore wrote that Padgett had “finished first or second in every summer tournament at Eufaula he entered during the past four years, including three consecutive wins on the Red Man trail.” [Read more…]

Scorecard Snapshot – Lure of the Rising Sun

A bevy of BASS winners past and future fished the 1998 Bassmaster New Mexico Western Invitational on Elephant Butte Reservoir. Included among their ranks were Ish Monroe (4th), Skeet Reese (11th), Mike Reynolds (21st), Aaron Martens (25th), Mike Folkestad (T31st ), John Murray (42nd), Byron Velvick (53rd), James Niggemeyer (90th) and Robert Lee (T135th). The field was also full of western studs like Larry Hopper, Gary Yamamoto, Bill Siementel, Greg Hines, Rich Tauber and Don Iovino.

Despite the fact that it was a stacked field, this was one of the rare Bassmaster tournaments where a local won. On a stingy lake that produced only five cumulative catches over 20 pounds in the course of three days, Elephant Butte, NM resident Dennis Hoy claimed the crown, beating runner-up Rich Iannolo by over four pounds.

It was Hoy’s only Top 20 finish with BASS, but it was significant to the history of tournament fishing for another reason. Do you know what it was? [Read more…]