Hey, I’m kind of a chips and cookies guy when it comes to vending machines. Watching the spring turn with my snack bag inching forward, or hearing the seismic, double thump of that soda bottle hitting the catch bin. But in Australia, (more…)


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fluke biter

HOOK POINT should poke through the center ridge on the back of the fluke.

Back about June 2, I was talking about fluke fishing, based on the advice of local expert, Jimmy Emmett of Wildomar. Things have come up to interrupt that story (including some tournament in the desert) but now there’s time to discuss rigging and working that little bait.

What I’ve come to find out is his use of the fluke was not for subsurface action (as I have seen some of the pros utilize) but rather it is much more a topwater bait–with requisite variations, depending on how the fish react.

To fish it that way does include some other tackle elements (more…)


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Maybe I just woke up cranky (my back still aching from a wild Lake Mead race already two weeks ago), but sometimes I’m not ready to accept every angler testimonial of what I should buy.

What set me off today was a Facebook promo for a spinbait featuring former California pro Kevin Hawk. It’s a dynamic shot, and as a former Forrest Wood Cup winner, Hawk is a credible guy. But for me, (more…)


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Top shelf

QUIET on the rooftop during practice period.

While bruises and muscle strains have yet to heal, the U.S. Open is now in the rear view mirror. A third, three-time winner, Clifford Pirch, has been crowned (joining Hall of Famer Mike Folkestad and angling savant Aaron Martens in that achievement) yet everyone who was there, all 330-plus anglers, will take something home.

Gratefully, I’m bringing my boat home, intact, after a harrowing ride in the final 12 minutes of the opening day. A broken locker latch, trolling motor prop and tie-down and my cell phone were the primary victims.

Someone said they saw us desperately trying (more…)


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LOCALS show in Temple Bay...

LOCALS show in Temple Bay…

After spending a couple of days at the end of August and a couple of days this past week in advance of the U.S. Open that starts Monday, I can say without equivocation, the weather forecasters have blown up our practice.

Unlike the common monsoonal flows over in Arizona and Nevada–and this weather must be related–we also have the dying hurricane Norbert petering out of the eastern Pacific and moving up and across the Southwest.

Bottom line, we had sunshine and modest winds for most of practice after flash flooding about a month ago. (more…)


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safety net

SAFETY NET in place allows limited opening to avoid flying smallmouth.

Maybe it will help and maybe it won’t. But when I leave tomorrow for the U.S. Open, I will have scrambled with one more, last-minute concern.

Yesterday it was rub rail removal and screw tightening (with Loctite) plus a 50 cent knob to keep my net from slipping off my console while fishing. Then last night (with the help of my bride of 43 years) I added a mesh netting over the livewell openings.

Truth be told, I’ve never lost a fish that sky-rocketed out of the box when it saw the light of day. But then, I don’t fish many tournaments and, more importantly, I don’t see many smallmouth during the year. (more…)


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