Saturday, July 30, 2011

Canadian Invasion @ the FLW Everstart in Clayton NY

This weekend was the FLW Everstart event in Clayton NY and there must have been a northern breeze blowing as the top three spots all went to Canadian anglers.

(photo: FLW Bio Page)

The Event was won by Bob Izumi a staple on the Canadian fishing scene (and TV's) since I was a kid. Bob weighed in 21lbs on day three to bring his total up to 58.1lbs over the three days. For his troubles Izumi took home over $25,000 in cash prizes as well as a new Ranger boat

2nd Place went to John Mcgoey from Omeemee Ontario. John nearly matched Bob fish for fish and in the end finished 1lb off the pace.

In 3rd place fresh off his win in the Kingstson Canadian open is Cory Johnson. Cory shares my home town so I may be a little bias here, be he appears to be on a hot streak finishing up the event with 56.08lbs.

I have to mention the other member of the Johnson family, Chris Johnson finished in 7th place making it a total of 4 Canadians in the top 10. I hope this trend continues as it very exciting to see some local talent doing good on the big stage.

(photo: FLW page)

fore more info..

Congrats to all!

Friday, July 29, 2011

July Recipe - Asian BBQ Trout with Salami Wrapped Asparagus

For recipe #3, I thought it was time to move away from planked or wrapped fish and go with an "on grill" recipe. This is an asian inspired BBQ sauce with salami wrapped asparagus.  This is a quick grill on a weeknight, and takes minimal prep. (Im playing with a new photo app on my iphone so bare with me while i work through some "artsy" photos)

Salami Wrapped Asparagus

Asparagus is one veggie that stands up well on the grill, many people (myself included) will steam asparagus in a tinfoil  tent, but if you really want to pick up the flavor it is best cooked directly on the grill. You can use many different deli meats as the wrap, I prefer to use Salami or Prosciutto, they both have deep flavor and the texture allows them to stand up to heat and movement on the grill.

-  12 x Asparagus pieces
-  6 x Salami slices
-  6 x toothpicks
-  Sesame Oil
-  Butter
-  Salt & Pepper

Take you 12 asparagus pieces and trim off the woody ends (find the natural breaking point). Pair them up so you have 6 pairs of asparagus. Take a slice of salami and wrap it around the asparagus. Then use a soaked toothpick to spear the two pieces an salami together..set aside and repeat with the other bundles

Heat grill to 350 and place bundles on in-direct heat. Heat to desired crunchiness, and looked for char marks on the salami and asparagus. While grilling I like to baste the asparagus bundles with a mix of butter and sesame oil, this gives them a nice sweet nutty flavor

BBQ Trout

when placing any fish directly on the grill, be sure to grease the grill liberally. I like to use skin on fillets when direct grilling as it gives a barrier between the fish and the heat and helps to keep the natural moisture in.

 - 1 x Trout Filet (boned)
 - sesame oil (and or olive oil)
 - salt and pepper
 - 1 garlic clove (crushed)
 - toasted sesame seeds
 - tomato puree
 - hoisin sauce

This recipe is sort of an Asian inspired BBQ sauce. Trout and Salmon both respond well to the sweet and savory flavors in this and other BBQ sauces. I give the skin side of the trout a rub down with sesame oil and then place on a grill preheated to 400, once the fish is on the grill I turn the BBQ down low, the initial heat will give you a great sear on the skin and help Bake the fish while on the BBQ.

I mix the tomato puree with hoisin sauce to taste. You are looking to keep the natural tomato flavor but pick up on the sweetness of the hoisin. Add the Crushed garlic and give the sauce a heat through to help cook the garlic and blend the flavors. Toasted sesame seeds are added at the end.  This can be done in advance and placed on the Trout while cool or warm.

Depending on the size of your fillet the trout can take anywhere from 10-20 minutes. the skin should be sizzling under the meat and it should flake easily without drying out.

This combo pairs well with rice, I like a wild rice mix, over traditional white... enjoy

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Berkley NanoFil - Where's the Beef?

The two most hyped products this season have to be the Suffix 832 Braid and Berkleys NanoFil "not braid" or "unified filament"  Being a bit of a new product junky I have given both of this products a run for their money and both left me thinking.. where's the beef?

I dont have time or space in a single blog post to tell you how I feel about both of these lines, so lets start off with the most hyped line I can ever remember.. Berkley NanoFil

I started researching NanoFil line about a month ago, reading blogs, products reviews and talking to guys on the water. The consensus was that this was the softest smoothest casting line on the market.. so with reviews like that I had to take the plunge. I placed an order for 12lb (the highest strength available) and as soon as it arrived I spooled it up on my Shimano Stradic 1000 and hit the lake to give it a test run.


As advertised NanoFil is a smooth casting and feeling line, it comes off the reel extremely well and has a decent sink rate. Spooling NanoFil was a breeze, and even when slightly overfilled, did not come off in a tangled mess

The "white" color, or "clear mist" as Berkley named it, is very high vis from above the water, and does not seem to effect the bite below the water. The line is highly sensitive, probably the best and most accurate feature contained in the advertising campaign. I could feel every little thing that my line and bait came into contact with while in the water.

the line does seem to have some strength behind it, i hooked and faught a large musky on the 12lb line and it help up fairly well, until the fish decided to put some serious pressure and teeth to it.


I found a few cons to this line, first and foremost the price, in Canada this line can be found as high as $24.99 for a standard spool. In the US the current average price is $19.99. Although these prices are not outrageous (for todays standards), they continue to set the bar higher and higher for new lines that come on the market, and we should expect line to reach close to $30 a spool in the coming years.

The 12lb line being the highest strength available is a concern to me, with many anglers being raised on braided line, we have grown accustom to thin diameter lines with superior strength. Yes Nanofil line is thin, but I can purchase 20lb Power Pro line at a similar diameter to the Nanofil line, and get that added strength Im looking for.

Knot strength is not so much an issue, but tying a knot is. When I first attempted to tie a hook on, the knot slipped on my first three attempts. This hut my confidence while on the water and trying to retie quickly.

The Wrap-Up

Yes, NanoFil is a new technology and maybe we will see some improvements down the road, but at this time the NanoFil line is just a slight improvement to Berkley Fire line Crystal, a line i hated and ripped off my reel soon after applying it.

Nothing about NanoFil is an drastic  improvement to my current brand 'PowerPro", other then the price. Sure it casts well, but I saw minimal difference between the two lines when throwing the same bait on the same rod and reel. Sure it has low memory, but when you get up into the 12lb range it begins to take on the characteristics of Fireline Crystal, it has that same feel (a bit more waxy then Fireline) it begins to loose the limpness and pick-up a more of that ridged feel that Fireline is known for

As with anything I would recommend giving it a shot and see how it compares to your current brand. For me it really left me wanting more and wondering with all this hype.. where's the beef?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Kingston Canadian Open - The Final Results are in!

Saturday afternoon marked the conclusion of the secon annual Kingston Canadian Open. As mentioned on Thursday he three day event was shortened to two days when a weather warning cancelled day 1 of the event.

 On Days 2 & 3 the anglers did not disappoint bringing in some beauty 20+ lb bags on both days.
After Day 1 the leader was Mike Blair with a bag just over 23lbs, Bob Izumi was tied for second with Chris Johnson just 1lb behind the leader. Other notables on day 1 included Dereck Strub (10th) the winner of last years event and WFN host JP Derose (11th), both brinining over 20lbs to the scale

Day 2 started off with nice calm waters, but the heat and wind picked up as the day progessed. By 2pm some anglers were already dropping off bags of fish and calling it a day, 1 full hour befor the tournaments official end time. While speaking to anglers, many made long runs on day 2, some as much as 80 miles, making the trip from Kingston down to Trenton and beyond. In search of jumbo smallies many anglers were forced to switched over to largemouths when the smallies appeared to get lockjaw. Not all smallies were so temermental and bag after bag of monster smallmouth bass where on display at the podium.

When all was said and done and the last bag was weighed, the Event was won by Cory Johnson (Pro) with 44lb', beating out the 2nd place winner Mike Blair by just over 1lb.

On the amateur side Darren Izumi son of Canadian TV legend Bob Izumi, took home top prize a lund boat packaged worth $20,000. The young Izumi was one of three members of the Izumi family fishing in the tournement, father Bob and Uncle Wayne both fished on the Pro side and were a crowd favourite. Darren held his own on stage taking time to make fun of his father, toss out goodies to the crowd and enjoy some candy floss

(Darren Izumi and JP Derose on the hot seat)

As a first time audience member, I though this was an extremely well run event. The city of Kingston is a beautiful backdrop for the tournement and the sponsor came to educate and made sure there was a ton of prizes to be given away (many of the pro's were handed loot bags and hats that were tossed into the crowd while on stage). No child left empty handed and a few even shared the spotlight getting some time on stage to tell a fishing related story.

The crowd for the event was pretty decent, with a good mix of local anglers top notch professionals and TV personalities there was somthing for every fan. The kid in me still gets excited to see the likes of Bob Izumi, and the adult in me could not wait to see the bag brough in by Mike Desforges. Even in the heat of the day the crowd stuck it out to see a winner crowned.
To see 50 or more pics from the Day 2 weighin please click the below link

here are the final results for the top 30 Pro's, First place for the Pro's was $40,000 and the Amature takes home a $20,000 boat package from Lund

Cory Johnson 44.4
Mike Blair 43.3
JP DeRose 43.0
Franklin Janson 42.7
Peter Savioa 42.6
Chris Johnson 42.25
Bob Izumi 41.80
Paul Climpson 40.25
Doug Brownridge 40.1
Curtis Richards 38.3
Josh Myers 38.85
Ralph Papiest 38.45
Bruce Tufts 37.60
Derek Strub 37.3
Oliver Grigull 37.25
Bill Sheppard 37.05
John Whyte 36.40
Ryann Susanna 36.3
Rob LaFrambois 36.2
John McDonald 35.8
Jim Estebrook 35.5
Greg Hammond 35.4
Rob Webster 35.25
John McGoey 35.15
Jamie Janzen 35.1
Mike Riccardi 35.06
Mike Desforges 34.07
Johnny Liscio 34.55
Mike Nabulsi 34.40
Jay McCormack 33.05

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Dobyns goes Camo

If you follow the Icast event and all the cool products that are introduced, then it should be no surprise that Dobyns Rods introduced a new rod that caught everyones attention..

The New ABA (Army Bass Anglers) camo rod was introduced, and quickly became a crowd favorite. The rod was originally designed for the ABA sponsorship with Dobyns but has proven so popular that it looks like it will slip into the Dobyns everyday line-up. With more information to follow, you can expect at-least 6 if not 8 rod options in the Camo series.

No dates are available at this time, but watch for more information, if my dream comes true and these rods are available to the gen public you know I will be adding one to my arsenal (may look good with that new white Chronarch).

Check out this review of the rods on TackleTour

Oh yeah, and in case you missed it, Dobyns also introduced the new Savvy series rods with Micro-guides. Im not sold on the importance of micro-guides as of yet, but I will be giving one a thorough test drive for sure

Kingston Canadian Open - Day 1 Cancelled!

As a bass fisherman and a fan of the sport I was disappointed to hear that day one of the Kingston Canadian open was cancelled today due to dangerous weather.

Day 2&3 are still on schedule for Friday and Saturday morning

For those not familiar with the event the Canadian open is brings in 100 top Canadian and US Pro's and pairs them with 100 very qualified Amateurs. Up for grabs is $50,000 for 1st place as a Pro and $20,000 for the top Amateur. This event draws in some pretty big industry names including some TV personalities (Bob Izumi and JP Derose)

This event brings great awareness to the sport of bass fishing and shows Canadian anglers that there is real money to be had as a professional.

I hope to see some of you down at the weigh-ins, but if not, don't fear.. photos will follow

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Fear & Loathing on the Tournament Trail: Weslemkoon Lake

So when you enter a series of tournaments you would think that the lake you are the most familiar with would be your strongest performance, right? not the case with Weslemkoon

(Our ride for the day)

My partner has had a place on Weslemkoon for 20 years and fishes it every chance he gets, I personally make a few trips to the "koon" and have good success, usually walking away with at-least 1 fish over 4lbs and more often the not, it is over 5lbs. But alas it was not our day..

The day started off poorly as my partner woke up with flu like symptoms, he had chest congestion, aches pains and a wicked head ache, he actually spent part of the day laying on the deck of the boat working the trolling motor by hand.. but he would not call it day

(Loading up the boat)

we drew number 23 out of 30 boats and knew we had to make a fast run if we were going to beat the guys to our spot. When we arrived at spot #1 one I broke out the flipping stick and started to work the area as my partner through top water. after about 40 minutes neither of us had any hits, and it was time to move on.

Spot #2 was a back bay with sporadic cover and stumps, we worked a wacky worm along the cover and open spots. This area produced three fish, only one worth mentioning (2.9lbs). the fish were obviously on the move and we had a hell of a time finding them.

Spot #3 was similar to spot number #2 but the focus was more on stumps. we pitched in and around the stumps adding a fish or two to the live well.. again not much worth mentioning.

As the sun got high and the temps rose up to the high 90's for you americans in the bunch and 40 for the Canadians, we turned our attention to some boats houses that had proven success in the past. After hitting the first group, a family on the sore yelled out to ask how the fishing was, when we said "could be better" they responded by stating we were the third boat to hit those boat houses in the last 30 minutes. needless to say we pulled up the trolling motor and moved on.

late in the day we worked some shadowed shorelines as well as a few brush piles that usually hold fish.. but today was not our day. One hidden brush pile I love to fish on the "koon" was our last stop of the day.. as I pulled up I noticed we were beaten to the punch by a father and his young son that were floating bobbers over my beloved tree.. oh well, those are the breaks.

We hit weigh-in a few minutes early and noticed we were not the only one there. We weighed in a whopping 9.45lbs good for 11 placed (damn, just missed that top 10 finish)  and now sit 14th in the overall standings.

(the days catch)

The winning team came in with a series record 23+ lbs, they had the three biggest fish caught that day, the largest being 6.10lbs. they could have thrown that fish back and still placed first.. what a bag.. congrats to them for a job well done..

Weapons of Choice:

Dobyns DX706SF w/ Shimano Stradic - Wacky Worm rig
Dobyns DX795     w/ Shimano Curado - Zoom BrushHawg
Dobyns 735C        w/ Diawa Viento     - Live Target Frog (now retired)
Dobyns SS693SF  w/ Shimano Stradic - Tube/erie darter

Friday, July 15, 2011

The fish of 1000 Casts..frog fishing 101

Musky have always been called the fish of 1000 casts, rumour has it this is because you spend all day casting and very little time catching. Frog fishing for bass can be a very similar experience, sometimes numerous casts are needed to even evoke just one strike. Many times anglers don't throw enough casts or cover enough water when they pull up to a good frog hole.

Here are a few tips for the next time you are out on the water and decide to pull out a frog...

Read between the lines.. the lines in the slop left from previous anglers are good story tellers, the long lines show you if an area has previously been fished and how thorough. If you notice a hole in the middle of a line (large or small) there is a good chance the hole was left from a strike/blow-up. Wide lines usually represent areas that fish have been caught and pulled through the slop. Read the lines and then choose your course of action

Just because an area has been fished does not mean you should move on. I often fish the same frog hole a few times a day as the sun and temperatures rise. I start off in the morning, and return in early afternoon, if I'm on the lake all day I may end my day in the same spot.

Go where no man has gone before... When I pull up to a new frog hole I read the lines (see above) and look for areas that have not been thoroughly fished or even better, have not been fished at. Many times when you enter an area you will quickly notice that the cast lines only go back 80-90% of the way. This is usually due to very thick vegetation that many anglers don't want to cut thorough.. me, i see it as the gold mine. I will slowly work my way back as  and make sure I can get my frog past the lines left by other anglers, even short distances such as 2-3 feet will produce fish.

If your boat has a hard time cutting through the thicker vegetation you may need to up your frog size. My current favourite frog is the Live Target hollow body  5/8 oz, in situations in which I need to get way back in, i may increase to the 3/4 oz frog, or change over to a Spo frog that usually has some more weight to it.

Tip: Going where no man has gone before does not just entail hitting the backs of bays or frog holes, it also means working in and around structure. If there is any structure sticking out of the water always be sure to edge up to it or through it, hopping over logs, under over hangs and through brush may increase your stress level (frogs arn't cheap) but it will also increase your fish catching totals.

Last but not least, cast until your arms fall off. I recently read an article in FLW magazine in which the pro discussed how he made casts 2ft apart and covered an entire area with his frog, this could means dozens (if not hundreds) of casts in each area.. taking this a step further, after you have covered the area it is time to switch up directions and cover the area from a different angle, similar to crank bait fising the direction of apprach can be a key to success.. surely you cant do this all the time or you will burn an entire day in a single spot, but if you want to really learn a frog hole and increase your confidence I recommend taking the time to test out these few small tips, you will quickly learn techniques that work for you and be able to use them on various lakes

Weapons of Choice

Dobyns 735C rod
Diawa Viento Reel (love the twichin bar when frog fishing)
Live Target Hollow body frog (small size to start)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dobyns @ Icast

Icast is definitely an event on my fishing bucket list. I was not able to make the trip this season but with Icast in full swing I though I would share some cool Dobyns rods info from the show.

At the Dobyns booth you can get a first hand look at  7 new models of the DX rods, 5 new Champion Series rods and the full line of Savvy series rods with “micro” guides. (these are the next item on my "wanted list")

(photo provided by Dobyns Facebook page)

The new DX  rods include 7 new models, (4 spinning rods and 3 casting rods). As a guy who loves the 735c I was happy to see the new 745C. “The 745C is a rod that every angler can turn to for just about any application”, stated Gary Dobyns. “It’s best for heavy jigs, Carolina rigs and pitchin’, but it makes a great top water rod, small swimbait rod and heck Rich (Richard Dobyns current FLW Western Everstart points leader) even used it flipping Senkos in the last FLW Delta event.”

In the Champion Series Dobyns is adding 5 Models including 4 spinning models and 1 casting model. Dobyns continues to increase the lineup in the most popular line the Champion Series because as Dobyns puts it, “Angler’s just love ‘em.” (that includes me)

For anglers  looking for a great rod at a great price the Savvy series is a great place to start The Savvy  was introduced at ICast in 2010 and has been very popular with anglers and dealers because they sell well and the fish fantastic.

For 2012 Dobyns Rods is answering the call from anglers everywhere and releasing the full Savvy series of rods with “micro” guides. Savvy rod lovers don’t fret, they will still be available with Dobyns’ tried and true guides as well. This pushes the Savvy series lineup to a full 26 models.

For more great info on Dobyns check out the facebook page and watch for icast updates

(please note some of the info for this blog post has been pulled from a Dobyns Rods press release)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

YUM Money Craw.. worth every penny!

The Yum Money craw has been on the market for a few years now, and since day 1 it has garnered rave reviews from the high profile anglers who use them.. that being said I was a little skeptical. For the most part I saw them used by anglers sponsored by Yum and talking them up on various TV shows but i saw little of them in local stores or on the water. They came in at a whopping $8 (or more) a pack and came in packs that I could not open to look, feel or even sniff the bait (yes I’m one of those people).

Recently while placing an order on with tacklewarehouse  I saw a sale on the Yum money craw. Thinking this was my chance to give it a test I picked up a pack. When it arrived I was a little disappointed to find that it was the smallest version and not really what I was hoping for. But, it it did give me the chance to put it through the look, feel and sniff test. And I liked what I saw.

The next day I headed down to my local tackle store and picked up a couple packs to give it an official test drive, (I opted for the middle size ,just under 4inches)

(F2 Version Shown here)

Test Results:

Right off the bat I’m a fan of the feel and consistency of the plastic used in the Yum money craw, it is soft, yet durable, the fish held on well without destroying the bait after just one bite. They are heavily salted (the F2 Version) and this combined with the plastics consistency make for a bait that the fish wont let go

Like many other creature baits (or flipping baits in general) the body of the Yum Money craw has a ribbed textured look and feel, the most aggressive part of the bait is its claws or arms. The designs allows for maximum movement when the craw is falling or swimming yet they are thick enough to withstand the bite and the fight. To me this is smaller profile bait, but it does have “bulk” it is dense and durable and makes a great commotion while in the water.


I have been using two techniques with success. First off, the Money craw is a great flipping jig. The slender profile allows it to slip through cover with ease but the design still gives it great action and a slow fall. I love to flip it around docks, pads and thicker shoreline slop. They money craw is a great bait for getting in between boats and docks in any marina. 

Pitching in and around weed beds will also bring you success. This bait is built to stand up and whether you throw in on a shaky head or a bullet weight it will fall properly and give a raised profile when paused.  When pitching this bait  I also like to swim it between cover, the arms of the money craw act very similar to the legs of most frog baits. When swimming it over short distances I have experienced some pretty explosive strikes and many of my larger fish have come from the swim of the jig presentation. Pitch the jig to the desired cover, lift, pause and twitch, when you want to move on to the next piece of cover slow roll or burn the craw to the next spot. Many fish watching you previous presentation will hit the craw as it swims away.

Color & Size:

There are two versions of the money craw still available. The standard craw comes in three sizes starting at 2 ¾ inches and going up to 4 ¾ inches. It has a few color options and painted on eyes

The F2 series that came out this year is only available in one size; a 3 ¾ inch model and the painted eyes are no more. It has the F2 scent as well as heavy salt. I prefer the color options available in this line to the original, and the bait still has the same slow falling action.

In the short time I have been using the Money craw I have had great success, I have gone from skeptic to believer, now I guess I just have to work on my lack of confidence in the Yum Money hound!

Weapons of Choice:  Dobyns DX795 or 735c
                                 Shimano Curado

Friday, July 8, 2011

Slip-bobber Bass'n (and Crappies too!)

Slip bobber fishing is an often under utilized technique in my part of the world. I picked it up just over 4 years ago and have not looked back since. It is the perfect technique for pan fishing and early season bass.


Like all techniques the equipment you choose will be the key to your success, this isn’t you grandfathers red/white bobber, these are upgraded bobbers designed to cast a mile, walk in the water and still be seen in all types of light conditions.
There are a ton of Slip bobbers available on the market today, my personal bobber of choice is the  “Mr. Crappie Slip bobber” made by Betts. These previously were a Bass Pro Shop exclusive but can now be found almost anywhere.

The key to what makes this bobber a success is the body shape, the long oval body allows me to cast this bobber with great accuracy and walk it in and out of open patches of water. (see more on “walking a bobber” below).   I  also prefer to use a weighted bobber, this allows me to use lighter jigs/baits and still cast long distances. Weighted bobbers have a small piece of led placed at the bottom of the bobber, not only does this improve casting as mentioned above, but is also ensures your bobber sits up properly while fishing it.

Other Options: Obviously Thill is one of the major bobber manufacturers in the market today. They make a quality product and provide anglers with a wide selection of bobbers for all your needs. here are a few of the thill bobbers in my arsenal

Tip: Try to avoid slip bobbers that have the long thin stems on the bottom of the bobber. Although these stand up well in the water, they do no walk as well and may slow down your retrieve.

Most slip bobbers come with string ties and beads. These are used to set your desired depth for fishing. Personally I don’t use the string and opt for a rubber bobber stop. Again these are very common and can be found in most local tackle shops. The rubber holds tighter then string stops and can be adjusted multiple times without loosening up on your line.  Rubber stops are available in various colors, I like to use either a black stop or the high vis yellow stops. When fishing further away the high vis yellow allows you to see when you bait has reached its desired depth.

For Bass fishing Im usually a braid guy, but when fishing a slip bobber I do prefer to work with floro, as it slide more easily through the slip bobber it self.

Rod of choice for me when slip bobber fishing really depends on the species Im targeting. For panfish I love long rods that come in from 8ft to 10ft. These assist with long casts and hook sets at a long distance. If you are targeting bass, I will shorten the rod length down to the 7ft range and look for a Medium to Medium/Heavy with an X-Fast tip.  You want to be able to work the bobber, and still have the backbone to land the lunker.

My bait of choice when fishing is slip-bobber are “crappie tubes” these 1.5 inch tubes move well in the water with little to no action needed from the angler. They come in hundreds of colors and can be weighted as small as 1/32oz. My second bait of choice is a wacky worm rig. The bobber allows for extra distance on your cast, keeps  your bait off the bottom and imparts motion from the waters current.

If you like your live bait, a slip bobber can also be used when worm or grub fishing, split shots may be required to get you bait down, and in these cases I would move away from the weighted bobber.


There are many ways to fish a slip bobber and be successful,  the following this my preferred method to fish using a slip bobber.

Walk the dog (stop and go). As mentioned above I use bobbers that allow me to walk them back on the retrieve. By slowly retrieving the bobber and pumping the rod you get a motion very similar to  the top water technique “walking the dog”. What’s cool about this technique is that is allows you to combine two killer bass techniques in one. The bobber walks and causes commotion on top of the water drawing attention to your bait. The jig/bait acts like a follow-up bait softly jigging behind the bobber. 

I walk the bobber a few feet at a time and stop in and around and structure or holes I can see.  As with any technique the speed of your retrieve and the amount of pause will change depending on what the fish is looking for.

Spot, stop and wait is the second common technique, Once you set the depth on your bobber you cast to an area or hole/spot, and let the bobber sit. I will make small twitches to the rod tip to impart motion to the jig but I wont move the bobber very far in this technique. You hit your spot, wait, then yank it out and cast to a new spot.

Tip: Both of the above techniques will require some testing when it comes to what depth to set your bobber, that is something that will change with each body of water, each species and each day. Don’t be afraid to change it up, If I don’t know the depth of the area Im fishing I will start with about 2ft, watch the bobber and your bobber stop, it will tell you if the bait is sitting on the bottom or if something is wrong.

Last but not least I want to introduce a bobber that is not very well known or widely used. A casting bubble although not technically a "slip bobber" shares some of the same traits that the above bobbers do, and has a unique locking feature to replace the rubber stopper. Simply thread your line through the clear bobber, twist the end cap and an elastic band locks you bobber in place on the line. This bobber is great for casting fly's on spinning equipment. The bobber acts as a weight to cast for distance but stays on top of the water like float line. the shape of the bobber also works well as a strike detector.. if you have not yet tried one, I highly recommend it.

Bobber fishing is not just for kids or weekend warriors, they are a great technique that help you fish with small light weight baits and get them into areas you normally can not reach. They allow you to adjust depth and presentation with every cast, be sure to slip on a bobber this season and tell me what you think

Thursday, July 7, 2011

How it all began..

I started this blog a few months back, and have spent a lot of time talking products and techniques, but I have shared little information about me personally. So i though I would spend some time today to cover a few 

I have three people that I can blame for my addiction to fishing. My Father, my Step Father and my Grandfather. All of them each effected my love of fishing in a different way.

My Grandfather has been retired since I was three years old, and since he was not one to take it easy, he always had jobs he liked to do. One of those jobs was to run a boy scout camp. Each summer I would get time to go and stay with him at the camp. He was not much of a fisherman but he always made sure we had everything we needed to spend the day fishing, Wether is was bobbers and worms from the dock out back, or carting us by boat to various hot spots. He always made it easy for us by having access to water and unlimited amount of free time I was able to fish all day long, all summer long

My Step-father is also not much of a fisherman. He owns a rod and reel, but the only time I have seen it in his hands was when I was a child and he was carting me off to various fishing derby's. He made sure me and my friends could always attend these derby's that were usually held out of town. It allowed us to have a great time and grew the competitive side of my fishing. For a man who is always active and like to keep moving it must have been hard for him to stand around for hours on end to watch us cast (and catch very little). To this day I appreciate the fact that he was willing to there for us

Out of the 3, My Father was the biggest influence. He loves to fish. My parents separated when I was only 4 years old (so 27 years ago) He never had much money, and when it was his weekend to look after my sister and I, the one thing he could afford was a couple dozen worms. 

The weekend always started with a trip to the coffee shop where he would grab the morning coffee (a donut for us) and then it was off to the bait shop. We were worm fisherman, a bobber, a hook and a worm was all we needed to keep us occupied for a large part of the day.

My Dad found this cool little fishing hole, just off the main road. It was an old railway bridge with a back bay that comes off the Ottanabee river. It was a pan fishermans dream, with deep pockets and small clumps of weeds everywhere.  We caught everything from perch & gills, to bass, carp and mudcats. We even managed the occasional frog and turtle. 

My first ever fishing tale grew from this very spot. My father and I watched as a couple fisherman using bobbers and frogs fought a monster bass that eventually snapped their line above the bobber. We watched as the bobber floated away, only to turn around and head back up stream, the fisherman threw everything at it, finally snagging the bobber and pulling in the 5lb largemouth that had snapped them off only minutes earlier. I have been telling that story so long now, I don't even remember how much of it is true anymore.. but it is part of my fishing heritage and part of what makes me me

I have hundreds of great memories of this area, and to this day spend time each season fishing this exact spot . Things have changed and this once run down rail way bridge is now a running and bike path that is constantly in use by sport enthusiasts and family's alike. My private childhood fishing hole is no more.. but it still draws my back and I can take a look around and know.. this is where it all began

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Shoreline Angling - Anywhere Anytime

 My wife has Yoga on Mondays and belly dancing class on tuesdays.. this gives me two great windows to get in some fishing afterwork. Shore line angling is still an often overlooked way to get in some fishing when time is tight but if your like me you will want to take advantage of ever minute you have, and nothing get you fishing faster then shore line hot spots.

here are some tips to help make your shoreline trip a success.

Scout out the area

In your everyday travels keep your eyes open for good shoreline spots. Spots that can be accessed by foot and allow you to get right up to the waters edge are nice. (This means less equipment is needed, some spots may require a net if you cant get right up to the water). Weekends are a great time to scout out shoreline spots, spots that are frequently fished on the weekends are not usually as busy during the week, take advantage of this when you can.

Be prepared

In the trunk of my car you will find a small tackle bag along with a 2pc rod. This is what i call my "emergency kit" it allows me to stop anywhere anytime and fish. The Bag contains a mixed bag of lures and baits that are geared towards common shoreline species (Bass, Walleye, panfish and carp). The bag contains sun screen, pliers and a back-up pair of sunglasses. I usually carry a rain suit in my trunk as well. It is rarely needed but nice to have.

Tip: Cameras are a must, some of these shoreline haunts hold big or unusual fish, and if you dont capture them on film they become just another fish tale. Digital cameras are great, and most cell phones now have cameras built it, but both of these take batteries, and batteries die, one sure fire way to ensure you always get the picture is to buy a throw-away film camera that can be found at almost all corner stores. throw it in your trunk and you will never miss the pick of a lifetime

Know your route and when to leave

I have three shoreline spots that I like to hit on a regular basis, as you fish them you will begin to learn there strengths and weaknesses and when to move on. Many shoreline spots provide you with limited space to fish, and will hold limited fish. If you pull up to a spot and catch 3 fish in the first 10 minutes and get nothing for the next 30 minutes it is time to move on. I personally have a spot that holds 1 fish, it is on the way to another shoreline spot I fish, so I stop catch my 1 fish then get back in the car and move onto the next location (this is something I learned over time, Im not condoning just randomly catching a single fish then leaving)

Shore-line angling can provide some awesome moments and get you into spots that some boats cannot get to.  My wife uses Yoga to relax, me, I grab a rod and reel and hit the closes shoreline.

Monday, July 4, 2011

ishad, a new technique to revolutionize the sport or just another ifad

Ishad.. thi name seems a bit advanced to me, did Jackall need to get Apples permission before launching this new line of baits? Or maybe they come with an app for your iphone? All i know is this new technique has been making quite a buzz, and I want in. 

Similar to a bait i reviewed earlier this season the ishad is bucking the norm, it is a bait designed to limit movement in the water.. let me say this one more time.. it is designed to limit the baits movement in the water. The ishad technique was designed to look and act like a non wounded, non threatened bait fish. It goes against everything we have ever been taught about what makes a goo dait.. yet anglers
(like me) seem to be eating it up.

The ishad has to be one of the easiest techniques on the market today.. just cast, and reel it in, as straight and steady as you can, no jiggling the rod tip, no jerking motion, no pumping the rod.. just reel. It sounds so easy that it may even be hard.

They are fairly slender profile bait with a slightly ribbed body an ultra thin tail that gives the bait it’s only movement.  It is available in 3 sizes (the largest being 4.8inches) and close to 12 colors, but you will have to look hard to find them since they are not even available on the jackal website and most dealers I found only carry 6 or so. The body is a dense and gives you confidence that it will last for more than one fish, but the tail will be easily destroyed by the smallest of panfish 

The Ishad is meant to be fished with a nose hook jig that is also produced by Jackall. The nose jigs come in 3 sizes all fairly light and designed for the most part for the ishad. A short owner hook and weed guard finish off these tiny jigs nicely. 

As the name states the ishad is meant to be nose hooked, similar to fishing a drop shot. Just slid the hook into the hose of the bait and you are good to go. Obviously to keep the bait running straight you will want to be sure to place the hook in the centre of the hose. The small lead tip will allow for a straight retrieve and give little resistance.     

This technique is all the rage in Japan, or so I’m told. Does it sound to good to be true? hmmm, Only time will tell. But baits that buck the current trends are becoming more and more relevnt as lakes see more and more pressure pressure from anglers. Im all for new tricks and techniques and Im looking forward to giving this one a thorough workout      


This past weekend I was able to put this new technique to the test. I gave it a thorough work-over with little to no success and I gave my wife one to test out.. what better way to test a lure with no action then to pass it to a non-fisherman who will straight retrieve without thinking twice. Both of us had the occassional tap, but no significant bites or fish. Im not ready to write this one off as of yet, .. more info to come

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Frog Fishing with Friends.. My Dobyns 735C and Live Tagrets Hollow Bodied Frog

What better way to celebrate Canada Day and the 4th of July then spending some time on the water fishing. Even better then that.. "frog fishing"

Recently I have added some Dobyns rods to my arsenal and one rod that I had been dying to break in was the 735C, a baitscasting rod that is perfect for throwing frogs. Today I paired the 735c up with one of Live Targets new Hollow bodied frogs, I picvked up a few of these in the off season and have been waiting to thorw them around.

The Day:

I hit the water this morning just befor 9am, the sky was clear and the temps were already up over 20. I headed right for a favourite spot of mine that looked pretty much un touched even though there was havey traffic on the lake today. In the first 30 minutes I have already managed 4x blow-ups.. all missed.. I chalked it up to me beeing a little rusty and continuted to throw for another 20 minutes without a sniff.

I moved on to spot #2, this spot was covered in line marks all throught he slop and I ccould see that parts of it had been beaten up (fish holes) but other parts looked untouched.

I worked the entire area with the frog and was quickly underfire, the first blow-up resulted in a nice 3lb largemouth and that was followed-up by a  pair of 2lbers.

each area I worked produced fish.. agressive fish.. I started to think about the first spot i hit today and began to wonder if it was rust that made me miss the 4 fish, or if the fish were just not aggressivly hitting the frog. I made a mental note to head back that way before leaving for the day to see if more sun/heat would turn the fish on. By the time I left spot #2 I had landed 5 nice frog fish

Around noon I  headed back to the spot in wich my day began. Almost immediatly I had my first blow-up and fish. The first was followed by a second, a third and a fourth. There was a drastic change in the 2.5 hours since I had left this spot initially.. was it confidence or was there a change in the way the fish were taking the frog.. I think a little of both.

My 4th and final stop of the day was a heavily padded section close to the launch. I love fishing this spot as routinely you will see the wake as a fish cahses down your frog. Spot number 4 was productive adding 2 more fish to my tally.

All in all it was a great yet strange day on the water, a few missed fish to start the day off, and for the life of my I could not get a fish to take a follow-up bait. The high skies and warm weather played in my favour.

Equipement Breakdown

The Dobyns 735c is the ultiamte frog fishing rod, I was able to cast the small Live Target frog a mile reaching sportst that had yet to see a bait today. The soft tip allowed me to place the frog whereever I wanted and the backbone easily bullied the bass from the slop. As for the frog, these live target frogs have great motion in the water and sit really low on the pause, the tail end is down similar to a popper and this I beleive helps with hook-up ration. It took a beating today but still looks out of the package new

The Final Score: