How Frank Talley caught em, 14 inch shakey rig, Couple cool dock tips!

Hope you caught some this weekend! I didn’t — got to do dad stuff instead. ALMOST had a little temper tantrum over it lol. Anyhow, instead I Eddie Van Halened my new boat.

What I mean is, back in the day Ed — who grew up poor — was known for doing all kinds of stuff to his gear to find the tone he wanted. Rip this out, put that in, cut holes in stuff, change electronics, attached a light dimmer to a 100-watt amp, etc. So….

Got my hands on a mythical Garmin LiveScope unit. I either had to pay someone to install it (smart but $$) or do it myself. Since I couldn’t fish and HAD TO HAVE IT before I went fishing next (which was yesterday afternoon) — and hate spending $ unless it’s baits — I friggin’ did it man! Never did anything like that to a boat before, let alone a new boat, but I ended up doing all the research I could to try to find some kinda self-confidence/plan, then just went at it…and prayed too.

I DID drill a “I don’t have the right tools but dang it it’s gonna happen” hole for the wirin’s, but you can’t see it. Ended up using industrial-strength velcro for the LiveScope “black box”…

…powered it all up using the Blue Sea Systems block deal Vexus installed in the nose of the boat, hooked up the transducer — attached to the trolling motor and cable NOT using zip ties like Garmin says (use ‘lectrical tape) — and BANG it friggin’ works! So proud of myself I was feelin’ like:

Tested it out yesterday on a lake that was so bad I didn’t SEE a single fish other than 2 bluegill by the ramp, and the LiveScope didn’t either. Not. One. Fish. Ain’t doin’ herring lakes no mo. Texted Brian el Carpentero of Ike Live — who likes that lake — said that chasin’ bait balls is only fun on the Atlantic Ocean and that’s all hahaha! Shoot, I love bassin’ cuz it AIN’T that kinda fishin’! My 2c….

>> If you’re getting the BassBlaster for the first time it’s cuz a bud signed you up!

Today’s Top 4

Frank Talley got hisself a blue bassin’ trophy!

WTHeck just happened? Frank Talley had never had a top 10 in his 2 years on the Elites, and at Guntersville decided to fish where no one else was fishing, used a green pumpkin bladed jig to catch fish that were feeding on shad, and basically didn’t have much of a shot of winning being in 6th and 4 lbs out but won by 2.25 lbs???

Yes that makes sense cuz this is the Elite Series, where guys routinely come from significantly behind to win. Not sure why, but it’s a fact Jack. Here’s some video of Frank on day 4:

Hahaha yeah that’s right! Wow. Here’s some deets on how Frank smashed ’em, rest in the full rundown on the BB site:

> “…main-river bank that ran straight with some overhanging trees that were not important, I’m just describing it to you. What I keyed in on…from the bank on the dirt, eelgrass grew. Up on the bank it was matted up, then slowly tapered down to about 2′ from the surface…15-20′ then a sheer dropoff into the channel.

> “I was positioning the boat to cast parallel to that eelgrass wall. I’d run that Thunder Cricket down that vertical wall. The boat was in 8-9′ and I’d cast parallel as far as I could…steady retrieve.

> “I tried buzzbaits on the edge, I tried fishing the edge with a 1.5 squarebill…were a lot of 2-3″ threadfin shad swimming in and out of the eelgrass. More importantly you’d get groups of 8-10 gizzard shad 6-7″ long that would swim in a little school. I think the bigger fish keyed in on the gizzard shad. Every fish caught down in the lake [by other competitors] were skinny, but all of these fish were like butterballs. I had 2 fish that were 2.5 lbs and weren’t even 15” I had to throw back.

> “That Thunder Cricket mimicked the bigger shad better. The water was super-clear [4+ feet viz]. Some perch [bluegill] were there too — they were keying in on gizzard shad and shad, but I felt like they wouldn’t pass up a perch/bluegill.

> “I think green-pumpkin works best in clear water. [He also threw that gp Thunder Cricket in all those northern tourneys.] I also threw white but couldn’t get them to bite…followers but they’d never commit.

> “…straight retrieve it [with the current], and when it would touch a little eelgrass I’d twitch it — not snap it, just a quick ‘pop pop’ to free it…[then] continue to reel and half the time that’s when they’d eat it.”

> Main bait: 1/2-oz Strike King Thunder Cricket (gp) with a 3.8 Strike King Rage Swimmer (gp/pearl belly) or Strike King Blade Minnow (gp, tail dyed chartreuse with Spike It).

> 7′ 3″ MH Lew’s Magnum Hammer Rod (“fast tip and some backbone — when they’d inhale it, it would load up”), Lew’s Custom Pro Reel (6.8), 17-lb Strike King Tour Grade Fluoro.
> Plopping frog (looks like a Teckel Sprinker in “pearl white”) — said it was the only color he had), 50-lb Strike King Tour Grade Braid, Lew’s Pro-Ti Reel (7.5), 7′ 2″ H Lew’s Custom Speed Stick Lite Magnum Grass Flipping Rod.

> “I fished the frog perpendicular to the current…fire at 22-degree angle [across the current] so the presentation would look natural….

> “I practiced for 14 hours a day and fished 8-hour tournament days, and they were releasing 43-45K cu ft/second over there…extremely high. The current was ripping and I fished against it all day long — I was on 8 to stand still and 10 to move forward. I was using Impulse Lithium batteries and had full power the whole time. That’s worth mentioning because one guy’s lead-cell batteries crapped out after 4 hours of doing it.”

5 Qs with the champ.

Here we go:

1. When you win a tourney do you want a steak or a hot dog with the works?

> “Definitely a ribeye.”

[Thought for sure Frank was a hot dog guy. I should’ve asked if he’s ever cut up a ribeye and put it on a dawg?]

2. Was it always your plan to win the 15th Elite you ever fished?

> “No. Not in my wildest dreams.”

3. Is it true Trip gives a guy 3 polygraphs and makes him say the alphabet backwards if he’s never gotten a top 10 and then wins one?

> [He cracked up.] “You’re killing me. No.”

In case you doubt my Q, Trip was a consultant on this episode:

4. How do you stay so chill with an Elite win and 6-figure payday on the line?

> “Honestly because if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. You can’t stop it if it’s mean to happen, regardless of what you do. And if it’s not gonna happen, it doesn’t matter what you try to do to get it back on track, it’s not gonna happen.

> “If it’s meant to be, you can’t stop it. People told me that in the past — you know when it’s your time, everything goes right for you 110%…just the Lord pushing me there, that’s the bottom line.

> “I didn’t have any pressure on me being 4 lbs back in a fall tournament. Even on legendary Guntersville that’s a big chunk when there hasn’t been a 20-lb limit weighed all week. I just thought, Fish as hard as you can, try to get the right bites and see where it plays out.”

5. You thanked Jesus — where was He in this tourney?

> “In my mind 24/7, praying to Him.”

2nd-5th Gville Elitist baits.

2nd: Randy Sullivan

> “Berkley Frittside 5, ‘honey shad and ‘creampie.’ I was fishing riprap and bridges. The target depth was 2-4′. I was reeling the crankbait pretty hard and bouncing it off those rocks to entice a reaction. That was really the only bait that worked and even then they were just nipping at it.

> “Just the riprap was key on day 1. After that, the actual bridges and any shade I could find started piling up with fish after the sun would come out, so I never really did any damage after about 10:30.

> “I was asking around for anyone with Frittside crankbaits since I was hard on them.

> “My rod was a 7′ M Sixgill Fishing Kranken Rod. It’s a composite rod that’s very forgiving. Without that I probably wouldn’t have gotten anything in the boat. The reel was a Sixgill Fishing Wraith (6.3) and 12-lb fluoro.”

3rd: Luke Palmer

> “YUM Spine Craw and YUM Bad Mamma [both] black and blue, 3/0 and 4/0 hooks, 1.25-oz weight, 80-lb Sunline FX2 braid, Abu Garcia REVO Beast Reel, 7′ 6″ MH Abu Veritas Rod.

> “I was flipping matted eel grass and hydrilla in 2-6′.”

4th: Wes Logan

> Zoom Z Craw Jr (b/b), 1.5-oz Ark Tungsten Flipping Weight, 60-lb Sunline FX2 braid, Lew’s Pro-Ti Reel, 7′ 11″ H Ark Tharp Series Guntersville Special Rod. “Fishing the edge of thick grass — grass was in an average of 4′.

> “I also caught some fish on other-style creature baits later in the week.”

> 1/4-oz Dirty Jigs Canterbury Buzzbait (white) with a Zoom Z Craw Jr (white), 40-lb Sunline SX1 braid, same reel, 7′ 3″ MH Ark Reinforcer Rod. “Scattered grass on flats.”

5th: Kyle Welcher

> Flipping wood: Missile D Bomb (gp), 4/0 Gamakatsu Straight Shank Hook, 1/2-oz weight, 25-lb fluoro, 7′ 6″ H Point Blank Rod.

> Punching grass: Same everything except 4/0 Straight Shank Hook, 1.5-oz weight and 60-lb braid.

> 1/2-oz Ever Green JackHammer (gp) with a Yamamoto Zako (zako), 20-lb fluoro, 7′ 3″ MH F Point Blank Rod.

That was all 2-5′, and he also fished a jig deep — 5-20′:

> 1/2-oz prototype jig (no name for that color yet) with gp trailer, 20-lb fluoro, 7′ 3″ H Point Blank Rod.

Would you 14-inch shakey??

Dude goes by @stacherman (don’t think it’s a Finsta?) says:

> 14-inch @romanmade Prologue Worm! I fish it Neko or on a @ownerhooks Magnum Shaky Head.


1. BPTer Jesse Wiggins ain’t right.

Click it to see:

2. Check out the bed in Jay Yelas’ bud’s house.

Hahaha love it! Anyone else have this — any boat brand?

3. Dave Lefebre will only tell you once to get off his property.

Just what this shot makes me think he’s thinkin’ — either that or he’s hangry:

Believe that’s a real nice-lookin’ Storm Arashi Cover Pop.

4. Bassin’master of the Year Race update.

Things that stand out:
– Clark Wendlandt has a sizable lead
– How ’bout Taku and Seth is in it!
– Once again, Scott won it last year — impressive.
– 5th-9th real tight…

1. Clark Wendlandt – 503
2. Taku Ito – 478
3. Seth Feider- 466
4. Scott Canterbury – 463
5. Brock Mosley – 452
6. Cory Johnston – 452
7. Micah Frazier – 450
8. Paul Mueller – 447
9. David Mullins – 447

5. Here’s one reason I love Dave Mercer.

Not only does he bring it every day, he makes it as fun as possible all the time. Bless you man!

6. MO: Big swimbait wins another $100K at Ozarks.

That’s a 6.67-lber — isn’t this the 2nd year in a row (?) this deal was won by an outta-towner with a big swimbait?

> Cole Anderson is a 22-yr-old electrician’s apprentice, former state mountain-biking champ, and avid fisherman obsessed with catching big bass on big swimbaits. It was his first time to visit Lake of the Ozarks, and he came equipped with KGB Swimbaits, his 2017 Tracker with a 60-hp outboard (“That’s all you need”)….

> For the tournament, Cole and Brennan mainly used the KGB Legend, a 9″ glidebait they threw in shad patterns. Brennan caught a 5.92-lber on Sunday with that bait, winning another $1,500 as 1st place in the 9-11 am weigh-in slot. Brightwell was fishing the Bash last weekend too, and he won 3rd place in the 1-3 p.m. slot on Saturday, with a 5.45-lber caught on the Legend lure.

7. FL: Fellsmere Rez is fishing red hot?

Reason #172 to move to FL if you’re a bass fisherman stuck in NJ:

> Anglers can catch more than 40 bass on a good day at Fellsmere, with the chance at a bass over 8 lbs.

8. UT: Mead covered up with baitfish?

> Gizzard and threadfin shad…schools dominate practically every cove and bay. Green sunfish and bluegills are everywhere….

9. UT/WY decreasing bass limit at Flaming Gorge.

Not sure why WY needs an extra year but okay:

> …from 10 fish to 3 fish (smallmouth and largemouth combined)…. If approved by both states, this regulation would go into effect in the UT portion of Flaming Gorge on Jan 1, 2021, and the WY portion on Jan 1, 2022.

10. DC: President Trump extends fishing/boating trust fund.

This is a much bigger deal than you might realize:

> President Trump recently signed into law a short-term spending bill, which funds the federal government through Dec 11 at current spending levels. The measure averts a shutdown of the federal government and includes a provision to extend the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund for 1 year — a top priority for the recreational boating industry.

> Congress was unable to pass its appropriations bills by the Oct 1 deadline….

11. CatchCo will regularly donate some profits.


> …the company behind brands like Mystery Tackle Box and Karl’s Bait & Tackle [and BioSpawn, among others] is proud to announce a new initiative called Catch Co. Gives Back. The program advances Catch Co.’s mission of “rescuing people from the indoors” by partnering with select nonprofit organizations that are doing amazing work across the fishing industry and society at large.
> For 1 week every quarter, Catch Co. will donate 10% of sales from the Karl’s Bait & Tackle ecommerce site to a nonprofit organization. The company is proud to announce that C.A.S.T. for Kids has been selected as its first partner organization.

Remindin’ you that Jay Yelas is a big part of C.A.S.T. for Kids.

12. Big T-H Marine G Force sale ends TOMORROW.

I need me an Eliminator Prop Nut fo sho…. Btw this is happenin’ cuz it’s T-H’s 45th anniversary. Here’s a little more info on T-H’s bassin’ origins, plus what to expect from ’em this month:
> “I was just a kid at the time, but I vividly remember how T-H Marine began in 1975,” said T-H Marine CEO Jeff Huntley. “It was my dad, 2 of his buddies and a vision for an innovative new product that would change the industry forever. Since I was about 7 yrs old, I had already helped put together fishing lures for my dad and his company, Bumble Bee Baits. Now, I got to help out with boat parts as that business got started and grew. You could say I was part of the business operations from the beginning.”
> Jeff Huntley’s dad, Bill Huntley, may have worked a day job at the local hospital diagnostics lab, but he could be seen fishing Pickwick Lake several nights a week…. It was second-nature for him to involve his friends and family as he developed gear for the sport he loved.

> “He wanted to improve the boating and fishing experience,” Jeff added. “At first, it was through custom fishing baits, followed by an idea about how to enhance the throttle control with a built-in trim handle. The T and the H in ‘trim handle’ inspired the company name as well as an ever-growing catalog of innovative products.

> “My dad started with just some ideas to make his experiences better when he was boating and we have continued to try to have that same focus as a company — to make excellent products that allow everyone to better enjoy their passion on the water.”

Still doin’ it and much appreciated. Here’s Bill with a nice feesh and what T-H is up to this month:

– $100 gift card giveaways throughout the month of Oct
– G-Force Customer Appreciation Sale: 10/1/2020 through 10/7/2020
– Atlas Outboard Performance Boost: 10/8/2020 through 10/14/2020
– Hydrowave Feeding Frenzy: 10/15/2020 through 10/21/2020
– Blue Water LED Fall Install Special: 10/22/2020 through 10/28/2020

13. Wal-mart says 10 MILLION MORE folks are fishing now?

If true, dang!

> …before Feb, 25 mil Americans would go fishing on a regular basis, said Brett Biggs, the company’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, in an August conference call for stock market analysts. That number has since grown to 35 mil….

Fishing biz folks are like:

So…10 mil more anglers in the US alone, boat sales through the roof but Evinrude can’t sell motors?? Just sayin’….

14. Academy is now worth $1.1 bil.

Went public:

> The offering price placed Academy’s overall valuation at roughly $1.1 bil. The company previously planned to sell the shares from $15 to $17 apiece for a valuation of around $1.5 bil.

15. IA: Zebras now in Black Hawk Lake.

Can’t link it….

Headline of the Day

Fisherman catches rare ‘super cow’ using a balloon

So wish that was about a bass tourney, but nope it’s tuna feeshn.

On right now…
Note: The TackleWarehouse links in this email are affiliate links, meaning if you go through them to make a purchase I might earn a commission…at no cost to you. Click here if you want to learn a little more about links in the BB.

Tip of the Day

Couple quick dock-flipping deals.

WI Opens angler Brian Post recommending ’em to a guy:

> He told me to keep an eye on the corners underneath the docks as we trolled by. If a spider had spun a web, that meant no angler had sent a cast through that particularly area yet that day, which meant you’d be hitting a fresh spot.

> Brian also told me to try and cast my bait into the water directly below the motor of boats that were on a lift and out of the water at their docks. The boat’s motor…tends to clear a bit of a hole on the floor of the bay, and fish sometimes like to hang out or even spawn on that spot.

Quote of the Day

The practice of catching a fish only to throw it back can give you a Zen outlook on life and an understanding that it’s the journey that’s important, not the destination.

– Say who?? The destination is either tellin’/textin’ yer buds what you caught or it’s the WEIGH IN where all eyes will be on YOU. Shoot it ain’t just the journey mang! Same post also had this head-scratcher:

> Most anglers start their passion for fishing as kids, sitting patiently for hours and catching up with loved ones. This kind of fishing is about the pure pleasure of relaxation, and often not about the fishing itself.

Don’t know ’bout you but personally I have never sat patiently for hours, except certain holidays at my in-laws…and after about an hour I fidget a lot man….

Shot of the Day

Okay this is highly impressive — never happened to me, never even seen it. You? I think it’s a @bor_outdoors shot someone else posted:


Wow Crowder! Gotta give props to Elitist Bill Weidler for hippin’ me to the band Crowder — or really just recommendin’ I give ’em a listen. I was a little hesitant cuz as a geetar-slingin’ musical snob I typically ain’t a huge fan of a lot of “contemporary Christian” music. Well, this Crowder album “I Know a Ghost” is some of the best TUNES of any kind I’ve heard in a while. The whole album — real rare I can dig a whole deal. Variety, quality, lotta southern in there, love it. Whether you’re a believer (yet!) or not, give it a listen if you like your tunes. Thanks Bill!

Ya got me
Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup

of the best, worst and funniest in bassin’, as curated by me — Jay Kumar. I started, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a bunch more in bassin’. The Blaster is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o’ bass so thanks for readin’!

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