Target Walleye/Ice email

Youngest NWT champ ever, Suspended cisco eater tip, Spinnerbait walleye vid

Today’s Top 4

Youngest NWT champ ever wins Devils Lake!

20-year-old Dylan Nussbaum sacked up 55.43 lbs over 2 days (10 fish) to take home the ‘dubyah’ at the last regular season NWT stop on Devils Lake, ND. The 22-hour trek back home to PA won’t seem so bad now that he’s got some mega walleye hardware and a $63,926 check riding shotgun:

Get this: He came in 4-ish hours early each day of the tourney:

> “This was not only my first time to Devils, it was my first time ever being in ND. It’s a big lake, so I used my Lowrance and my Navionics charts to break it all down. Started in the main lake and then went to Pelican…didn’t like what I saw, so then I went to East Devils Lake.

> “I ran up a breakline and saw giant marks on the screen. On my first pass I caught a 6-lber, and then I made another pass and caught a 4-lber. At that point, I knew they were hanging on deeper rock structure on sharp breaklines. If there was rock there, there were walleyes.”

Said he didn’t find his winning spot until Monday (2 days before the tourney), but judging by this shot he posted on Saturday, his “B spots” were still kicking out hawgs. #SelfieGameStrong

Caught his fish running Sufix 832 Lead Core — with 8′ and 10′ 15-lb Sufix fluorocarbon leaders — 200′ and 220′ back to get his crankbaits ticking the tops of rocks in 35-45′.

Used Rapala Down Deep Husky Jerks and Berkley Flicker Minnows. Said the #10 and #12 Husky Jerks caught most of his fish, and that yellows were best — both stock and custom-painted by Dutch Fork Custom Lures. Sent me this shot:

> “The key was getting away from all the boats and finding your own water out deep. The deep-water fish seemed more consistent — they don’t move daily like shallow fish. I think most of the locals were fishing shallower.

> “I think not knowing much about the lake actually helped. I used SideScan on my Lowrance to see the rock. Sometimes I’d get some decent sized perch, which I think the bigger walleyes were feeding on.

> “It’s a dream come true. I wanted to prove to these guys I could fish, and that’s what I did today. I’ve been fishing tournaments with my dad since I was 10 years old, and this is all I’ve ever wanted to do. Winning against these anglers means the world to me — I don’t really have the words to describe it — I’m still shaking.”

Saw him bopping around checking a ton of spots when we were prefishing. Remember seeing the tinted windshield on his Lund 2075 Pro-V and thinking I’d do the same thing if I ever got a windshield boat:

Can tell he’s no stranger to big, open-water trolling by those Smooth Moves suspension boat seats….

Congrats on the win, dude! Well deserved and no doubt we’ll be hearing lots more from you in the tourney world.

Is PA taking over?

It’s no coincidence the guy who landed in 2nd place is also from PA…name’s Ryan Rieger and he travels/practices with Dylan. He put together a hefty 2-day bag of 49.83 lbs for a $22,320 payday. #Bigguns

Love the sportsmanship:

> “I couldn’t be any happier with 2nd. Dylan is an awesome kid…I met him back when he fished club tournaments on the Kinzua Reservoir with his dad. What he just did as a 20-year-old is a breakthrough.

> “The Kinzua is where we figured out the leadcore bite. So we came to Devils, jumped on the deep leadcore gig, and it was on.”Caught most of his fish on a “firetiger” #12 Rapala Down Deep Husky Jerk behind Sufix 832 Lead Core with a shorter 15-lb Seaguar fluorocarbon leader:

> “[Day 1] I caught most of my fish on one hump. [Day 2] I stayed in the same area in East Bay, but I fished more of a contour line in 38-45′.

> “It’s unbelievable…it’s surreal for me. I just want to thank my friends and family for supporting me while I’m on the road. My grandfather would take me fishing to Lake Erie during the summers, and that’s where this all started.”

Ryan’s cashed 4 checks in his 7 NWT events = [hammer emoji]. Keep it rolling, man!

Carroll’s 1-2 punch for 3rd.

Walleye pro Jim “JC” Carroll landed in 3rd place with 47.06 lbs for a $14,880 payday:

Smile says it all! Caught his fish rip-jigging #9 Rapala Jigging Raps and trolling Berkley Bad Shads in 36-47′ in East Devils Lake:

> “The Bad Shad is a fairly new crankbait designed by bass pro David Fritts. Looks very similar to a Flicker Shad, but it’s got a little flatter, wider wobble. Started experimenting with it up in Canada and I’ve been impressed.”

JC trolled the Bad Shad (“purple glimmer” and “yellow perch” colors) on 18-lb leadcore with a 15-lb FireLine leader at 2.2 mph and “sometimes faster.” First I’d heard of that bait, so here’s a closer look in the colors he ran:

> “I wanted to win, but I did everything I wanted to do the way I wanted to do it. We put it all out there and had fun.

> “I’ve never seen fish that deep before on Devils Lake, and I fish here often…not exactly sure what it is. I think some of it has to do with clear water and some of it has to do with the lack of baby white bass. I never saw or snagged a baby white bass during the tournament or in practice. That’s unusual.

> “I think they’re deeper because they’re eating more perch. The cool thing about Devils Lake is that it’s different every time we come here…forces you to adapt. If you fish memories on Devils Lake, you’re in trouble.”

Insider video: Prefishing the Devils Lake NWT.

I had the chance to get out to Devils Lake a couple days early and prefish with pros Mike Olson, Robert Cardenas and Drake Herd. We caught walleyes pulling leadcore, on Rapala Jigging Raps, slip-bobbers and even spinnerbaits (seriously).

Busted out the camera during one of those days to gitcha an inside look at a day of prefishing for the National Walleye Tour — hope you dig it:

If you don’t have time to watch the full 13:56 Vlog, few highlights from the day:

0:07 – Mike took a Jigging Rap to the “shorts”:

1:18 – A walleye pooped on my camera:

5:12 – New PB white bass:

5:21 – Most fish I’ve ever seen on the graph at once:

8:49 – Wiffle-ball bats make peeing easier:

10:40 – Will’s slip-bobber tank:

12:29 – Stuck a chunk on a SPINNERBAIT and boat flipped it in like a bass lol:

Incredible fishery — can’t wait to go back! Stayed at Woodland Resort and would for sure recommend checking ’em out if you’re heading that way — has everything you need on the grounds and awesome fishing right out the front door.

Leave a comment here if you want to see more fishin’ Vlogs like this….

News

Back with the regular news section on Friday!

Tip of the Day

Ever fished baits that run 10′ or less over 100′ of water? Sounds crazy…is crazy…but works. Especially the last hour of the daylight when cisco/smelt rise up in the water column eating bugs:

Quote of the Day

Just a tinner, flasher and rod. Sometimes working harder makes the reward that much better.

Vanessa Toews talkin’ about this Manitoba hawgbelly she stuck on a “blue hologram” PK Panic:

Word is PK Lures is comin’ out with a bunch o’ new stuff for both ice and open-water baits. Keep you posted….

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

I had a blast fishing with pro JR Sivek on day 1 of the Devils Lake NWT. Most walleyes I’ve ever caught in a single day — probably 70-ish.

We had a real heartbreaker at the end of the day when a GIANT popped off half in the net. JR went back to the same spot — with the same bait — on day 2 and stuck a mondo (maybe the same fish?). Believe she was dang near 10 lbs:

Way to fish through the pain man! #EarnedThatOne

Second Dose of ‘Eye Candy

Was sent this shot from Kyle Steinfeldt with Do-It Molds — his buddy Wyatt (9-years-young!) joined the 30″ club last week on Lake of the Woods with this stout 30.25-incher:

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