FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE
With Wesley Strader
In Episode 38, host Jody White and guest host Kyle Wood talk with Walmart pro Wesley Strader about the Forrest Wood Cup, his start in fishing and a variety of other topics. Then Jody and Kyle discuss ICAST and the new Tour schedule as well as break down some recent tournament news from the Rayovac FLW Series event on Champlain, College Fishing and the weekend’s slate of BFL events.
A lot of people use the Gambler Big Easy 5-inch swimbait for Texas-rigging and fishing in grass, and it’s great for that, but more often than not I use it on ledges. It has a big profile and is my choice when bass are keying on gizzard shad. In fact, my favorite color used to be ghost shad, but there’s a new color called Tennessee retriever that has more of that bluish-gray cast to it like big gizzard shad have.
In part one of this two-part recap of trends from the 2014 ICAST show, we shared our observations of the electronics, terminal tackle, accessories, line and clothing categories. In this installment, we’re moving on to reels, rods, tackle storage and soft plastics.
Kyle Wood, David A. Brown and Jeff Samsel
ICAST 2014 is in the rearview mirror. Like usual, it was a whirlwind of handshakes, shutter snaps and Q&A with the tackle industry’s best product designers and marketers. If you missed any of the action, don’t worry. You can still check out all of FLW’s coverage from the show at FLWOutdoors.com/ICAST. We sent a team of 14 writers, photographers and videographers to Orlando to report on all the great new gear and gadgets that made it to the Orange County Convention Center.
Colin Moore, Jeff Samsel, Ross Robertson and Keith Jackson
ORLANDO – It’s official; during a press conference held at ICAST, the fishing industry’s largest annual trade show, FLW announced the locations of its 2015 Walmart FLW Tour stops in front of anglers, fans and industry media. Beginning with a swing through Florida in early March and winding up near the nation’s capital in June, the Tour will visit six of the best bass fisheries in the United States.
It says a lot about the growth of fishing and the fishing tackle industry that the first national fishing tackle show was held in the ballroom of Chicago’s Sherman House Hotel in 1958. And it wasn’t a very big ballroom. In fact, a few of the exhibitors simply rented nearby suites and showed their wares there. About 20 of the 30-some-odd companies that exhibited in that first show – then called the American Fishing Tackle Manufacturers Association Fishing Tackle Trade Show – still exist, and their names resonate in the fishing world: Zebco, Bagley, Frabill, Plano, Berkley, PRADCO, South Bend, Wright & McGill and Yakima Bait Company among them.
With Jason Lambert
In Episode 36, hosts Joe Opager and Jody White talk with 2014 Walmart FLW Tour Rookie of the Year Jason Lambert about his first season on tour, his pre-practice for the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Murray, giant spoons and a variety of other topics. Then they react to some recent fishing news and preview the FLW College Fishing event on the Chesapeake Bay and then look ahead to the Rayovac FLW Series event on Champlain.
First, if the school you’ve marked in a certain place – say, a long underwater bar or stretch of vertical ledge – isn’t there next time, the fish are likely to be somewhere in the range of maybe 50 yards in any direction from where you waypointed them in the first place. You idle around using your StructureScan until you relocate them, then make a few casts and try to get them fired up.
With a name like DieZel, I expected the MinnowZ from Z-Man to be one rough customer. What I didn’t expect was something tough enough to catch several dozen bass and still not need replacing. Then I remembered the nifty 4-inch swimbait is manufactured using ElaZtech, a super-soft, yet incredibly strong material that has made a name for itself as one of the most pliable and durable soft plastics used in the fresh- and saltwater fishing industries.
The International Game Fish Association has declared the 10.48-pound spotted bass caught in late February by Keith Bryan of Powell Rods a new all-tackle world record for that species.
A Walmart FLW Tour season is a long and eventful thing. For 24 days, more than 300 pros and co-anglers – the best anglers in the world – duel it out in bass-fishing competition across the country. Stories develop every day. News is made. Techniques are perfected. There are daily highlights. We could never list them all, so we didn’t. But we did come up with a list of 12 highlights that we think best tell the story of the 2014 Walmart FLW Tour season. Click on the links to read more about each.
By now you’ve either heard about the Ben Parker Signature Series Magnum Spoon and are frantically trying to find one, or you’ve spent too much time watching World Cup soccer and completely missed out on a major bass-fishing storyline. Let me recap: Giant, 8-inch hubcaps flying through the air, fluttering through the water, being eaten by Kentucky Lake’s biggest, hulking bass. That’s what you missed last week if you weren’t tuned in to FLWOutdoors.com’s coverage of the Walmart FLW Tour event on Kentucky Lake. About half of the top 10 was throwing a the new jumbo casting spoon, perfected by bass pro Ben Parker, and the news quickly spread throughout the anglers in the field and the fishing community.
Evinrude is giving test drives of their new E-TEC G2 outboard on Kentucky Lake at the Walmart FLW Tour event.
Sam Rayburn Reservoir in Lufkin, Texas was the site for the third stop of the 2014 Walmart FLW Tour. Rayburn was one of the most anticipated stops of the Tour as it is a fishery not often visited in the past at the Tour level. Watch how Chad Grigsby and JT Kenney conquer these unfamiliar waters.
With Greg Hackney
In Episode 33, hosts Joe Opager and Jody White talk with FLW Tour pro Greg Hackney about his dominating win on Pickwick Lake, a new crankbait from Strike King and his outlook for Kentucky Lake. Then they go over recent fishing news ranging from the weekend’s BFL events to FLW Fantasy Fishing and look ahead to the Rayovac FLW Series event on the Potomac River and the FLW College Fishing Southern Conference tournament on Grand Lake.
The first annual Don Lee Memorial Tournament is set for Saturday, Sept. 13 out of Russo’s Marina on the California Delta, and features a team format.
Here we go again. For the second year in a row, Dayton, Tenn., pro Andy Morgan carries the Walmart FLW Tour Kellogg’s Angler of the Year lead into the final event of the season. And once again, the final event is being held on the Tennessee River, this time on Kentucky Lake. Morgan seems relaxed as ever, with his nonchalant, down-home attitude overpowering any pressure he might be feeling. He’s also an expert at dodging inquiries about the AOY race when questioned about it in public. We were able to catch up with him finally, however, and we fired questions at him about the AOY, his place in bass-fishing history and, much to his delight, turkey hunting. Here is our version of 20 questions (OK, it’s actually 24 questions) with Andy Morgan.
More than 175 anglers began the 2014 Walmart FLW Tour season with hopes and dreams of making it to the Forrest Wood Cup. Only 35 of them will, and with just one tournament to go, on Kentucky Lake, a handful of pros within striking distance of 35th place will have to kick it into high gear if they want to be part of the show at Lake Murray August 14-17. They’re trying to replace those pros who are already above the cut line, but with too small a cushion to rest easily. This latter group is composed of the “bubble boys” – the anglers teetering dangerously close to the line separating in and out. And of course, the prospects of the 2014 standouts at the top of the list are unofficially sealed. Barring major catastrophe, they’ll finish with enough points. The goal of a handful of these fortunate few at Kentucky Lake is to try to run down and overtake current AOY leader Andy Morgan. All this considered, we decided to take a look at some of the pros currently sitting within 10 spots of 35th place in the AOY standings, and weigh their odds of making it to the Cup.
With BFL All-American Champ Marcus Sykora