Posted on May 21st, 2019

Here we go, less than a week until bass season opens and many of the biggest tournaments of the year are about to go down. There isn't a lot going on in West Michigan for the opener. I don't know if that is because we have it so good during the rest of the season or what. But there isn't anything notable until the West Michigan Bass Tom Cook Memorial Day tournament. I'm not sure that one is setting up great for me especially with a college tournament on Muskegon 2 days before but I'm going to get in on it anyway.

I still don't have much loaded in my boat because it has been such a cold water fishery this year. I'm working on that all this week as well as getting some supplies sent in from ClearH2O Tackle. Hopefully by Friday it will be all ready to roll for the next few weeks. It is a busy start to the season this year with the opener, the HOTD on Grand Traverse Bay, and a D&R on Muskegon all in consecutive weeks. It is definitely shaping up to be a lot of smallmouth fishing to start. This spring has been pretty busy with the brown bass anyway so I'm all for it. Cameron and I will also be fishing all the Case of the Mondays - West tournaments this season. It's the best looking schedule for that league yet so we are excited.

Before I get into any more fishing stuff, I've got to give a huge shout out to Hopp Electric and Ron and Yvonne Hopp. Many years of hard work paid off and they recently sold the business. The business will continue to operate in Chelsea and be called Hopp Electric. My time with Hopp Electric has come to an end but I am extremely grateful for the many years of support from Ron and Yvonne.

Another company I have been heavily involved with since its beginning has also switched hands. I'm excited to work with the new owner Michael to continue to help Reel n Smoke grow. I'm also excited to introduce one of Michaels other brands The Original Zip Sauce. Zip Sauce can be used on just about anything you can imagine but it's traditionally used on steaks. Add a little butter to it and use it to drizzle over a steak. It has a loyal following and people rave about it. I'm looking forward to seeing what all the excitement is about. I also want to thank the original Reel n Smoke crew for the opportunity, it was a lot of fun, and having some lifelong friends from the adventure is a good deal!

In the meantime fishing has continued to be pretty darn good this year. Bites and big ones have come easy and that's the beauty of springtime. Fishing really isn't all that challenging, but as prespawn fades away things catching big ones is going to get much more difficult. I'm looking forward to tournaments getting underway and the whole new mindset that goes with it. Over the weekend I made my last trip where the goal was just to get as many bites as I possibly can. Fortunately it was on one of the coolest places in Michigan to fish, Grand Traverse Bay. There are so many good options up in that area but if the wind allows it I always choose the bay. There is something about such a vast and unique body of water that just sucks me in. I can't wait to get back there in a couple weeks and actually get to spend some time fishing it. I've never been able to really dive into exploring it so having a few days there is going to be really fun whether I catch them or not. We had some terrible weather for this most recent trip but despite raining most of the day it was at least calm. Fishing was decent and we caught a bunch of quality fish but no true bay monsters. We did manage some lake trout and surprise walleyes too. My local buddies up there always say they rarely see walleyes in the bay. So as soon as I said there aren't many and we won't catch any, we of course caught 2. Fishing will always make you eat your words.

I'll be looking forward to seeing everyone over the next couple weeks as tournaments kick off. I'm hoping I can cut down on the lost fish and missed opportunities this year and have a much better season than last year. I'm feeling good about it and am ready to get this party started!