Best mustache ever, Ice tourney pros are nuts, Bass thumb ain’t nothin

Today’s Top 5

And the “Best ‘Stache Award” goes to…

Some stiff competition at the St. Paul Ice Show…but I think the best ‘stache award has gotta go to NAIFC tourney pro Lawrence Luoma. Here’s why:

 

How awesome is that? Lawrence can for sure pull it off — wish I could.

He didn’t say so, but I’m thinking that ‘stache has gotta be part of his pre-tourney plan for the NAIFC Championship coming up this weekend on Bass and Snider Lakes near Naytahwaush, MN.

Think about the intimidation factor when dudes with a ‘stache like that are NOT smiling…. Can’t say I’d recommend fishing too close to any of these fellas in a tourney:

 

Will be 50 (or 60?) teams fishing for the $10K 1st-place payday, and of course the bragging rights that go along with winning a set of $7K gold championship rings. #ChaChing

Ice-tourney pros are a different breed.

Anyone else find it fascinating that ice-tourney pros can fish circles around us using those old-fashioned $3.99 “Schooley” reels? If you’ve never seen ’em before, they’re nylon level-wind reels that basically weigh the same as air. They also prevent line twist so your bait’s not doing the death spin when a fish is giving it the once-over:

Lawrence had a wife-and-kid-free night, so got his Schooleys rigged for this weekend’s NAIFC Championship. When the tourney-nuts post or talk, I listen, ‘cuz their brains are just rigged differently…in a good way.

Sure, this looks like a simple pic:

 

But can already tell I’ve got some digging to do, ‘cuz after taking a closer look at that Instagram pic ^ I noticed Lawrence 1) has put an extra eyelet on some of his rods where the handle meets the blank, and 2) some of those Schooleys look like they have beefed-up handles I’ve definitely never seen before.

So now imagine the bag(s) of tricks he’s got under wraps that we can’t see in a simple Instagram post…. [chin-scratch emoji]

Hope to bring you way more gear hacks and technique-y schtuff from some of these diehards soon.

How aggressive is this bait?!?!

Dustin Garthus (@gnarthus) hasn’t let a broken femur slow him down — by the looks of it, he was sick of sitting around and decided to get all sorts of aggressive on the SK slush melons:

 

That’s a “glow white tiger” color Northland Rippin’ Shad he decked-out with VMC Bladed Hybrid Trebles. And it’s not just for looks…get this:

> “Went for a doc appointment in Regina…tried the evening bite on the way home at Last Mountain [SK]…everything worked out and I landed this 10.69-lb HAWG!”

 

Way to grind, dude!

“Is this the Mount Rushmore of fishing?”

– Funny Derick Berhow comment under this selfie I snapped at the St. Paul Ice Fashion Show:

 

Nahhhh, we’re just a bunch of goofballs that like to catch the fishes. I’d imagine the “Mount Rushmore of fishing” would be something more along these lines:

Can you name ’em all?

Bass-heads catching walleyes on purpose.

Seen incidental walleye catches by bassin’ pros quite a bite, but thought it was awesome that Ott DeFoe goes out and targets ’em on purpose.

Ott stuck this cold-water sauger — plus a bunch of walleyes for dinner — throwing a “moss back shiner” color #8 Rapala X Rap with his dad:

 

And in typical bass-head fashion, they aren’t afraid to get right after it. #BassWalleyeThumb

 

Love it fellas! When’s dinner?

News

1. Berkley founder Berkley Bedell passed on.

He began tying flies and selling ’em in a local tackle shop while still in high school (1937)! RIP fishing brother.

2. MN: Mille Lacs walleye winter regz in place.

Reminder: Can keep 1 walleye between 21-23″, or 1 over 28″ this winter.

The main lake has barely frozen over — have heard reports of anywhere from 2″ to 8″ and it can change in one step.

Find it interesting that people are juuuust starting to poke their way out and the DNR has already commented this about the winter walleye harvest:

> “If high catch rates continue this winter, harvest may exceed the 15,000 lbs of walleye taken last winter. This may also directly affect open-water angling opportunities.”

 

3. ND: What are you doing this weekend?

 

Lol! Talkin’ the new Fargo Ice Show happenin’ THIS WEEKEND. Great deals on gear, lots of giveaways, and loads of fishing seminars on some killer topics:

 

Also super cool they’re making it an even more kid-friendly event including: Santa’s Village, and an all-new “Kids Zone” with a free fishing simulator and arcade games. Btw kid’s get in for free on Sunday with adult admission.

Lots more info on things they’ve got going on here on their FB page.

4. CO: Record blue catfish caught on Lake Pueblo.

 

The write-up said Randy Stillwell caught the 29+ lber “jigging for crappies with a 3/4-oz spoon” and “spent 30 minutes trying to keep pressure on his 14-oz [??] test line.” What the…. Lol. Awesome fish either way!

5. Can your auger bit do this?

Of course we’d never recommend trying this…but check out this Eskimo Pistol Bit getting steamrolled by a truck tire in -23° temps [!] and not breaking:

 

Sheesh. I wouldn’t even wanna try that with a metal unit…. The Pistol Bit’s flight sections are made of “high-strength nylon/polymer” — believe the 6″ model weighs 3.2 lbs, and the 8″ weighs 3.9 lbs.

6. MN: Folks already ice fishing on Lake of the Woods.

Sounds like they didn’t get hit with the pile of snow like most of the rest of the state, and are making ice fast. Some resorts even have ice roads open to ATV and snowmobile traffic.

7. Burbot folk: Big-Nasty Tackle brought back…

…their “glow red” Trout-N-Pout Spoon since so many people were ‘pouting (lol) it was discontinued.

8. MD: First documented effect of snakeheads…

…on fish populations (PDF). Study is from the Blackwater River watershed. Don’t believe there’s any walleye in there, but here’s the scary part about how snakeheads can/could/did change a fishery:

> Of 21 species that were captured both pre- and post-snakehead, 17 declined in relative abundance with percent reductions ranging from 30%-97%.

> Pre-snakehead surveys were more evenly distributed and dominated by white perch, black crappie and brown bullhead, while post-snakehead surveys were less even and dominated by common carp and gizzard shad.

9. WI: Gunpowder PR/marketing adds Josh Ward.

Coming from Game & Fish. Gunpowder is a new-school marketing company working with Humminbird, Minn Kota, Costa, Merc, GoPro and others. #HeavyHitters

10. We just got another round of…

…Target Walleye ‘Ugly Fishmas Sweaters‘ back in stock!

 

Just a heads up — They’re not the itchy/scratchy old-school sweaters most rock around the holidays. They’re a soft, lightweight material that feels just like those fancy fishin’ jerseys the pros wear — love mine.

Btw – Apologies if I told you at the St. Paul Ice Show that we were sold out of ’em — didn’t think we’d get stoked back up so quickly. Check ’em out here.

The big Target Walleye Holiday Sale runs thru Dec 23, all items are 20% off! Use the code HOLIDAY at checkout. Please note: The last ship date for USPS Priority Mail is Dec 21.

TargetWalleye.com Highlights

Tip of the Day

It’s absolutely insane how much info Korey Sprengel can spit out in under a minute, and this vid from The Next Bite TV is no different:

I watched that thing 3 times and still picked up something new each time.

Quote of the Day

“Come for some bro time and catch walleye on this Great Lake — my buddy in Sandusky, OH says we can crash at his place.”

– That was a $1,000 clue in Monday’s episode of Jeopardy, where Jennifer Quail had the correct response of: “What is Lake Erie?”

Bummed I missed the episode ‘cuz it wouldn’t been nice to know an answer for once lol.

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

Zack from Devils Lake, ND (not sure where he was fishing) iced this massive ‘gill on a “red glow” PK Predator Tungsten Spoon:

 

That’s a smaller 1/16-oz panfish version of the known walleye slayer:

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Who is Target Walleye
Target Walleye — walleye during open water and all species during hardwater — is brought to you by Al and Ron Lindner, Jim Kalkofen, Brett McComas and other diehard fish-nuts like you! #fishheads
Brett McComas is the main man for Target Walleye He was discovered in Brainerd, MN after years of wondering how in the heck people break into the fishing biz. He’s in it now, but still can’t answer that question…. Brett is one of those guys who majored in marketing, only because there was no such thing as a “fishing degree” at the time…. Get him at brett@targetwalleye.com
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