Category Archives: Multimedia

Pan-O-Prog Bass Fishing Tournament 2014

Starting to lose track how many years I have fished the Pan-O-Prog bass fishing tournament, but I started fishing it every year when I moved to Lakeville, so it must be 9 or 10 years now.  In the early years, I spent quite a bit of time practicing out on Lake Marion, but in recent years, I am lucky if I have 4-5 hours on the lake from one year to the next between tournaments.  After how badly the Bass Pursuit tourney went out there for us, I was hoping to get a little more time.

But this year was no different, I spent a little time scouting the Sunday before the event, bouncing around looking deep for weed growth and potential schools of fish, I found a little of both, but nothing great.  My partner Paul, got out fishing for a few hours as well, and found a few deep fish as well.  We drew boat 31 out of 35 on tournament morning, so with little to go on, we started on a place that had been good to me in the past.

The first stop produced a few small keepers but not what we needed so we tried a few docks and then out to a deep coontail clump.  It didn’t take long for Paul and I to fill our limit on drop shots and start the culling process.  The drop shot fish came on 4″ wacky ReSticks and 4″ Biovex Kolt Shad Tails.  You can check out the embedded YouTube video to see our fish catches from the 6 fish that we weighed.

After that spot stopped producing we bounced around the lake finding a few upgrades here and there but mostly fish that wouldn’t help.  Right at the end, we returned to our starting area and I got us one final upgrade flipping a Pumpkin Oil Kompak Craw into the milfoil.

Bagging them up in the Rain
Bagging them up in the Rain

Our final weight was a respectable 18.3lbs, but weights were up this year and it was only good enough for 6th place and small check.  Sometimes the bigger bites just don’t fall your way and that is the way it goes.

On to the BFL in La Crosse!

Bass Pursuit – Crystal Lake – May 25, 2014

For the most part, this year was to be about fishing less but bigger tournaments.  With limited time off of work, it’s either stretch myself thin and get minimal prefishing in for several tournaments or hopefully get adequate time for a handful.

That being said, it was quite clear, I had large gaps between tournaments and I decided I would fish some smaller local events to keep my self sharp and stay sane.  These smaller events would require little to no practice time and reduce amount of time away from home and the family.

So the first of these events would be the season opener for Bass Pursuit on Crystal Lake near my house.  My buddy Bill was my partner.  It was a small 10 boat field and just a 5 1/2 hour tourney day with a 4 fish limit.  Being that we were on the lake the day before, we had a pretty good idea the fish were getting ready to move up and spawn and had a good idea what areas had the most potential.

Things started a little slow, but picked up a few fish on a weightless ring fry around docks.  We then worked our way into areas with more bedding fish, gradually we upgraded our catch throughout the day.  Once we started seeing the fish as the sun got up, the best baits were a White Damiki Hydra on a tungsten Jika Rig, Wacky Rigged BassTEK ReSticks and Biovek Kolt Fish Tails in Ayu on a dropshot.

Wacky ReStick Bass
Wacky ReStick Bass

If we could see the fish at a distance, the wacky rig was best, if the fish were fairly aggressive the Hydra converted them quickly, but on the toughest fish, the Kolt Fish converted them better then anything.  Overall we caught more the 20 fish and culled about 8 times.

For more details on the fish catches, check out my GoPro footage from the first 3 hours.

Our final tally was over 13lbs and we won by about a pound, but missed big fish by about a half pound, but both Bill and I had fish that would have been big bass, we just didn’t execute.

Winning Bag
Winning Bag

Since the tournament ended at 11:30am and we didn’t have to be home right away, we went back out released our fish and then did some more fishing.

I even caught my first frog fish of the year on an Evolve Nervous walker, it was a pretty nice fish and caught several more after that.

First Evolve Nervous Walker Frog Fish of 2014
First Evolve Nervous Walker Frog Fish of 2014

All in all a good opening weekend!

Tight Lines,
Rich
Evolve facebook

MN Bass Opener 2014

Well the Minnesota Bass Opener is almost 10 days ago now, so I should probably throw a quick blog up, now or never.   Went out in the morning on Crystal Lake with my buddy Bill on Crystal Lake to do a little catching and scouting for a small Bass Pursuit tourney that was on Sunday.

photo 2 (1)

We started out on some deeper drops, but quickly ruled that out with just a few bites and one small fish on a 1/2oz BassTEK Tungsten Football jig.  Next step was to hit some points leading into shallower bays as staging areas.  On the 2nd point, I quickly caught 4 fish on 4 casts with a ring fry on a mojo rig.

From there, we went into some shallower bays and that is where the fish were and coming in as we fished.  It was quite obvious that love was going to be in the air real soon!

photo 4

We went on to catch a whole bunch of fish on weightless ring frys and BassTEK resticks rigged weightless and wacky style, including a couple fish over 5lbs.

Also, check out my video montage of the first 3 hours of fishing….

DOBYNSNEWLOGO

BFL Mississippi River La Crosse – May 17, 2014

After doing well in this first BFL spring event last year, I
was really looking forward to fishing it again, but with a busy hectic spring, I found myself scrambling the Wednesday night before getting my boat and tackle ready for this event.  Thursday May 15th,
was actually the first day I got my boat out all year, which has to be some kind of record for me.  Not a good record to break at all.  Also, some home obligations didn’t allow me to get down to La Crosse and on the water until 11am.  The Mississippi River near La Crosse is a vast sprawling body of to begin with, but to complicate matters more the water was over flood stage and rising for my practice and through the tournament.  I had actually never been on this pool with the water this high.

As I continually have short practices for most of my tournaments, I have kind of learned to try to find an area or section of water that I feel good about and try to find some fish and then continually expand that area.  Running all over the river can kill you in practice and in the tournament. To start my practice I launched at the Stoddard ramp.  My practice started fishing some drops off
well known grass flats with a lipless crankbait that results in a few bites and a handful of chunky northern pike, time to move on.

From there I tried some steeper banks with current breaks
figuring that with fluctuating water the fish could easily adapt, only produced more northerns and a few short largies.  My next stop was the closing dam that produced most of my fish last year.  My first few casts with produced nothing, but I didn’t feel like I was getting bit, so I up-sized my mojo weight to a 1/4oz tungsten weight and instantly caught a chunky prespawn smallmouth.  I got bit on the next few casts, which included 3.5lb class fish.  I then picked up a DT6 to see if they would hit a reaction bait, my first cast over the sweet spot yielded a double.  It was another big smallies with a keeper hanging on for dear life until shaking loose next to the boat.  This was actually my first every double for bass.  Rather than cast anymore there, it was time to find more fish and more water areas in the same section of the river.

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One of the good fish from the school in practice

I spent the rest of the day going back and forth trying to
duplicate this smallsmouth spot and checking for largemouth getting ready to move up.  I ended up catching two more keeper largemouth on a MJ rig or Power Spinner rig, depending on what you call them.  The 2nd fish was a good quality fish and was at the mouth of a likely spawning pocket that had what looked to be the makings of a good area if the weather warmed at all.


My take on the MJ Rig, bulked up a bit…

Day 2 of practice was a complete grind; I worked all kinds
of water new and old to scratch out 3 measly keepers, 2 on a jerkbait and on the MJ rig.  I called my practice a little early to get up to La Crosse for an interview with the local NBC news affiliate, embedded below was the result.  My feeling going into the tournament is that if that school of smallies held up I could have another Top 10 finish, if they didn’t, I knew it would be a grind just to get a limit.

WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

I ended up drawing boat 110 out of 152, which made me a
little nervous about getting on my fish, but also the late check-in time could be well worth it with the sunny warm day that was forecasted.  My co-angler was a local, who agreed that fishing had been pretty tough for him as well.  Take off and getting down to my fish went as smooth as one could hope.  It only took a few casts with my mojo rig to connect with a keeper smallie.  Not the fish I was hoping for, but showed me fish were here and in the past this spot has mixed sizes of fish.   By 8am I had my limit of smallies, but most of them small and my co-angler had 3 smallies, but he got two bites in the 3lb class.
We both missed and lost what felt like good fish early.  It kind of felt like some fish had left this spot, so I tried bouncing around the area to fish areas where I thought they were headed and then I would return to this area hoping they would get a rest and be ready to bite again.  It worked once for a nice cull, but it just wasn’t producing enough bites or the size.

A little before noon, I headed down to the area where I caught one good largemouth in practice.  Working my way in we quickly connected with several short fish, but this felt like a good sign of activity for fish moving into this area.  I missed a few bites, my co-angler got 2 keeper largemouth on bladed jig, and I got one good bite flipping to get rid of another sub-standard smallmouth.  With
one hour of fishing time left, I decided to go back to the current area.  Honestly, I think I could have gotten another bite or two in the largemouth area, but I felt my best chance for a big bag was to go back to see if that school had reposition or fired up.  Since I am not fishing all the BFLs this year, points didn’t really matter and I wanted to shoot for a good payday.  I ended up catching a short, a catfish and a walleye in the last hour.

Rich Lindgren BFL
Photo via Coulee Region Adventures

Final result was 10lbs – 15oz which was good enough for 31st,
one spot out of the money by 2oz.  Kudos to my co-angler Josh, catching those two nice smallies propelled his limit to 11lbs and a 4th place finish on the non-boater side.  Honestly I think I had a decent game plan, if I had gotten the right bites I could have had a nice check, but maybe I overestimated the quality of the school or not recognized they were leaving and put too much time into it during the tournament, but that is fishing and it’s all about decisions.

For those that don’t like to read, feel to watch the video summary below and I also have some GoPro fish catches from practice and tournament morning.

Rich

  

Bass Fishing Podcasts worth Checking Out

After getting several comments on my Facebook page asking what fishing podcasts I like to listen to, I knew I needed to write a blog to list them out.  Most of these posts and time listening to these podcasts was done while shoveling.  I have been busy and not doing a ton of blogging, but while walking my dog and catching up on some episodes, I figured I better knock this blog out before my boat gets back from its spring check up at Extreme Marine.

In no particular order or ranking, here is a list of podcasts that I am subscribed to on using Podcast Addict App on my android phone.

Bass Squad Podcast
This podcast is spearheaded by former UWSP college fishing angler TG.  It’s an eclectic mix of nerd reports, interviews, ramblings, but for the most part it centers around bass fishing and it pretty entertaining.

FLW Outdoors Podcast
Joe Opager and Jody White  both employees at FLW Outdoors do a weekly show recorded on Wednesdays.  Covering all things FLW fishing from BFLs, Rayovacs and Tour events, plus pro interviews, fantasy fishing and more.

The Outdoor Scoreboard
Best way to describe the TOS, is a couple of good ol’ boys from the Tennessee River Area talking all things bass fishing and some SEC sports.  Matt & David don’t take themselves to serious and have lots of guest interviews from all levels of bass fishing from highschool to Elite Series and more.

Ultimate Bass Radio
This is actually a California based radio show hosted by Kent Brown.  It definitely has a bit of a west coast slant, but cover a lot of tour level bass fishing and general fishing as well.  Downside is the all the commercials you get form a normal radio show are all left in.

Fantasy Fishing Insider
I may be slightly biased as I am often a contributor / co-host in the podcast.  Greg, Jason & I focus mostly on Bassmaster Elite Series fantasy fishing and occasionally if Greg is not too busy we do FLW picks as well.  Fair amount of guest interviews and quite a bit of slap stick and mockery along the way.

BTL – Bass Talk Live – Added 5.1.14
Thanks to a few comments & suggestions, I have started listening to Mark, Matt & Drew breaking down bass fishing as well as some fringe topics.  Usually multiple shows per week, this is actually a live webcast you can watch and participate via live feedback, but I just catch the replays via podcast.
http://www.thebasscollege.com/topgreenCopy.jpg

Most of these are on iTunes for you iOS people…  But I subscribe to all of these by entering their RSS feeds into my app on my phone.  Then my phone does all the work automatically downloading new episodes and I listen to them at my leisure with phone and headphones or through my truck speakers.

If you got suggestions for other bass fishing podcasts, leave and comment below, I’ll check it out and maybe add it to this list and my listening queue.


Learning to setup your electronics

Whether we are talking GPS, sonar, depth finders, fish finders or whatever you want to call them, this is a great time of year to learn a few things on how to set them up and get the most out of your electronics.  Let’s face it, today’s modern GPS units have come along ways since the first basic LCD Fish Finders hit the market years ago.

I am no expert on today’s modern electronics, but I make an effort to learn as much as I can, and I find a great way to learn is to check out tutorial videos on YouTube.  Manufacturers like Humminbird, Lowrance & Garmin make some good videos, but there is also some great stuff put out there by Pro Staffers and general users.

Here are a couple of my favorites, if you have some good ones or find some good ones, post a link in the comments below!

Super neat trick to better understand side imaging whether is Lowrance or Humminbird

This one shows common images & tell you what they are for a Humminbird Side Imaging unit

This video does a good job of showing an advanced technique of catching drop shot fish using a Lowrance HDS Fish Finder

Doesn’t hurt this guy had super sweet Dobyns Rods to feel those smallies either!

Hope a few of these videos and others that you search on YouTube help you find and catch more bass!  There are a ton more videos on how to setup sonar, mapping, updating software, managing waypoints and the list goes on and on….

When you’re in the fishing business, you already know how important it
is to always be prepared with all the tools that you need to do the job.
You’re well aware of how important safety is on the job. You know that a
hard day’s work should be rewarded with a nice profitable catch, not a
stay at the hospital – or worse.

And this is exactly why you should never settle for less than the
absolute first class when it comes to outfitting your boat with all of
the marine hardware supplies that you need. Because when it comes to
dangerous fishing and trawling work, lives are always on the line.
Anything less than top notch equipment simply won’t finish the job, and
may even be putting lives at risk.

Luckily, you never have to settle for second or third rate equipment
when it comes to stocking up your vessel with hardware supplies. A quick
browse through any major search engine on the internet will turn up
hundreds, if not thousands, of top notch equipment manufacturers and
suppliers.

One of the industry’s chief hardware suppliers is Alario Brothers. This
family owned company has been on the scene for many years now, and is
considered by many to be the top rated supplier of nautical hardware
currently operating on the modern international market place.

Log on today to see what Alario Brothers can do for you. If you’re
serious about safety, and serious about your hardware, you won’t be
disappointed.

 
 

Good things from a small package

Hey all, just wanted to share with you a bait that is quickly becoming a go to bait for me.  It is something that I picked up last year to be a punching bait and now is proving to be more versatile then I could’ve hoped.  The bait is the Kompak Craw from Evolve Baits.  If you don’t want to read the whole blog post and have a short attention span like me, just watch the quick video.  I show several rigging techniques in this video.


For those that want every detail, keep reading!

Last summer, I had excellent results using the Kompak craw behind 3/4 – 1oz flipping milfoil on lakes like Minnetonka and others, honestly kind of what I expected based on first glance of the bait.  Then in September, I was looking for a follow up to my sweet beavers down in La Crosse to go back through areas and show the fish something new.  My eyes were opened to the potential of this dimunitive craw when I went through an area after going back and forth twice with a beaver only to catch 3 bass including a 4lbr on the Kompak craw on my 3rd pass and my partner not getting a bite on his offerings.  This gave me confidence to keep flipping this craw on lighter 3/8oz weights to wood, cut banks, etc and caught both smallmouth and largemouth.

Fast forward to November and December last year, where a buddy an I found deep schools of smallmouth on a river in 25-25ft of water.  Football jigs worked deep with just about any trailer worked until the water temps dropped into the 30s.  I then rummaged through my options to find a subtle trailer, after trying a couple, the Kompak craw became the deal on the back of a 1/2oz football hair jig.  I continued catching nice smallies and occasional walleye on the Kompak craw through the winter on a different winter location, by presenting them on 3/16oz EWG Football Shakey heads.

Fast forward again to this spring, fishing pool 2, getting a few bites but not what I was hoping or expecting.  After scouring a harbor with my usual offerings, I pick up a Kompak craw rigged on a Jika Rig and catch a 4lb fish plus several other bass in water that I and another boat just fished pretty hard.  Fishing the Kompak craw on the Jika rig and small texas rigs has been in a regular mix for me so for this year, catching bass on little lakes in MN, the Mississippi river from Minneapolis to La Crosse and all the way over to Lake Winneabgo.

There are a lot of good plastics and baits on the market and most of them have a time and place, but I think the Kompak craw is something for you to try, it is quite the versatile bait and the bass just seem to eat it!  Don’t take my word for it, just ask the fish!

Rich

Cliff Pace holds on for Bassmaster Classic Crown

In bass fishing’s biggest event, labeled as the Super Bowl of bass fishing, Cliff Pace, Bassmaster Elite Series Pro from Petal, MS, looked like
he was in position to blow away the Bassmaster Classic field at the end
of the day two weigh-in.  Back to back days of surpassing BassTrakks
best estimations with over 21lbs each day gave him what seemed a quite
comfortable 7lb margin over Brandon Palanuik who was in second place.  It was strange watching Bassmaster.com coverage as closely as I did and see most of the fields weights be pretty close, but then be so off on Cliff Pace’s BassTrakk weight every day.  After watching footage, I lend it two things, Cliff is a pretty big guy, so 3lb bass might look like 2lbrs when he is holding them to some, but more likely, when he would catch a fish, he would yank them in the boat, unhook and stuff into the livewells in a blink of an eye.  I don’t think his Marshalls ever had a chance to really eye up these fish, then they probably asked him how big and he low balled them.

Pace holds off field at Grand Lake
Cliff Pace 2013 Bassmaster Classic Champion!!!

Pace worked a two bait pattern all week, he would target deeper bottom hugging fish with a 3/4oz V&M Football Jig
and then look for fish higher in the water column with a suspending
jerkbait.  The tough thing about his pattern, he was fishing for about 6-7 bites per day, but they were the right ones, as shown on day 2 when he had two 7lbrs.  Some reports suggest his jerkbait of choice was a Jackall Squad Minnow, but Mark Zone reported that he fished a more traditional and larger Smithwick Rogue jerkbait rather then diminutive Squad Minnow.  The Rogue actually
makes more sense, as it is a well known producer on Grand Lake, and
with the bigger fish keying on jumbo Gizzard Shad, the Rogues larger
profile does a much better job of matching the forage for this event.

source:  V&M 3/4oz Football Jig – Image from BassZone.com

As far as the football jig itself,
Pace trimmed a few strands from the weedguard to help with the deep
water hook up ratio and he also dipped the ends of his V&M Twin Tail trailer
with orange dye to help generate a few extra strikes in the dingy Grand
Lake waters.  And it was the jig that Pace utilized to catch his last
two fish, giving him 4 fish for 11lbs that held off a hard charging
Brandon Palaniuk and went on to win by about 3 pounds.

This Bassmaster Classic win solidifies Cliff Pace as one of the great
up and coming bass pros and the $500,000 in his bank account should
help him fish more comfortably for years to come! Even though he didn’t show much for emotion when he won, I am sure Cliff is intensely satisfied and excited on the inside!  Catch some videos of the moment here.


Even though I was pretty much glued to my laptop all weekend, it will still be cool to see the coverage next weekend on ESPN2 to see more of the fish catching footage from all 3 days.


Bassmaster Classic Week = Tulsa Time!

This week marks the official unofficial start to major tournament bass fishing for the year; yes we have had some Everstarts & Bassmaster Open events, but the real show starts with the Classic.

Like most years, I will be glued to the coverage all weekend long, so feel free to follow me on Twitter or on my FB page and I will make sure you are kept up to date on the high points.

Fantasy Fishing continues to grow and so do the prizes, so make sure to join up, couple of good leagues with free prizes, including those presented by BassTEK & Bass Utopia.  If you need some help making your picks, make sure to check out the Fantasy Fishing Insider Podcast that I help out with.  The high points of my picks are Jason Christie, Alton Jones, Brandon Card, Casey Scanlon, & Jared Knuth, to here the details and my co-hosts picks, catch the podcast.

Also, the Bassmaster Classic always gets me in the mood to buy lots of new tackle & gear, which means I will be listing stuff on ebay this week to make room for new stuff, catch yourself some deals!

 

My Tackle Grab UnBoxing Experience

I recently had the opportunity to try Tackle Grab for a month.  The basic principle behind Tackle Grab is you sign up for a monthly membership ranging from $12-16 depending on how long you sign up and you get new baits in the mail every month.  Kind of like fruit of the month club, but for fishing.
  Interesting thing about Tackle Grab is that you fill out a profile, which asks you questions about the species, type and location of fishing you do most often to help tailor your tackle pack to your needs and wants.  Check out the following video to see what I got in my box.

All in all, I think the value that I received in my initial January box was worth more then the $15 box of single box membership.  I got a sample pack of two drop shot weights from Road Hog Baits, a Kahara Yajirobee 3 Blade ($15 value), some Optimum drop shot baits, and some Evolve Kompak Craws ($5) & a Yo-Zuri Pin Minnow jerkbait ($8).  So 5 things with a retail value around $30-$35.  It is all stuff I could use, not sure if I would have bought it all if I was shopping, but that can be a good thing as well.  The Optimum Baits Wacky Shads are solid, as I have used them before (comparable to Jackall pintail or cross tail shads) and I love the Evolve Kompak craws, I have actually caught smallies on the ones in Tackle Grab between filming video and posting this blog.

I guess the other unique thing, is you earn points every month for being enrolled, you also can earn points by doing reviews, referring friends and other activities, those points can be used to shop in the Tackle Grab store of additional items, either new stuff  you want to try or if you want more of the stuff you already received in your box.

Overall, if you are into trying new baits, and wanting to build your bait arsenal, this can be a pretty cool service for anglers.