Vance McCullough's blog

Tidewater bassin' - to run the tides, or to camp? That is the question.

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Justin Lucas recently won an Elite Series tourney by camping near a pier on the tidal Potomac for 4 straight days. photo by Garrick Dixon/B.A.S.S.Justin Lucas recently won an Elite Series tourney by camping near a pier on the tidal Potomac for 4 straight days. photo by Garrick Dixon/B.A.S.S.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vance McCullough

I grew up in St Johns River country. Tidewater bassing can be great, but there are some adjustments that need to be made.

And Bass for All!

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The growth season for Southern fisheries is nearly all year long, so fish are going to be big.

Christina Weber fishes bass tournaments on big lakes, such as Kentucky and Fork, in her kayak. photo by Christina Weber

John Cox has made a successful professional fishing career out of a simple concept: lighten-up and go where others can’t so you can find cooperative, and often bigger, fish.

His choice is an aluminum boat made by Crestliner. At 20 feet in length the craft provides ample storage along with the length to span rough waves. It fishes a lot like a huge fiberglass boat only . . . different.

Defending Cup Champ Brad Knight focused on 'Task at Hand'

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Brad Knight will defend his Forrest Wood Cup title this week on Wheeler. photo courtesy FLWfishing.comBrad Knight will defend his Forrest Wood Cup title this week on Wheeler. photo courtesy FLWfishing.com

 

Bassmaster Classic Bracket - is this what the future of professional fishing looks like?

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Did the Bassmaster Classic Bracket set a new standard for professional fishing? photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.Did the Bassmaster Classic Bracket set a new standard for professional fishing? photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.

 

As he fished from the front deck of his bass boat, breeze rippling his jersey, Kevin VanDam reflected on a career that has seen all the changes of format that B.A.S.S. has thrown at anglers in the modern era: the MegaBucks hole-style events, the E-50's that morphed into the current Elite Series, and so on. He had high praise for the tournament in which he was competing during the final, championship, round - the Bassmaster Classic Bracket.

Kevin VanDam wins Bassmaster Classic Bracket, pending protest by Brett Hite

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Kevin VanDam is riding high after posting his 23rd career Bassmaster win - pending Brett Hite's protest. photo by Steve BowmanKevin VanDam is riding high after posting his 23rd career Bassmaster win - pending Brett Hite's protest. photo by Steve Bowman

After 4 days, 8 anglers have gone head-to-head in bracket style competition at the Bassmaster Classic Bracket. Finally, we have a winner.

Maybe.

When the seconds had ticked off the clock in today's championship round, Kevin VanDam had 20 pounds, 3 ounces on the scoreboard. Brett Hite had 13-9.

But VanDam caught a fish weighing better than 2 pounds just beyond the boundary of this week's playing field.

Hite cruises, VanDam squeaks into finals at Bassmaster Classic Bracket

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Brett Hite has made a splash, piling-up the heaviest cumulative weight among all anglers with one lure on one spot this week. photo by James Overstreet/B.A.S.S.Brett Hite has made a splash, piling-up the heaviest cumulative weight among all anglers with one lure on one spot this week. photo by James Overstreet/B.A.S.S.


 

 

 

 

Wacky, wonderful Day 2 at Bassmaster Classic Bracket as 4 pros advance

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Jacob Powroznik cheers-on Koby Kreiger, the guy he's supposed to be fishing against. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

Jacob Powroznik cheers-on Koby Kreiger, the guy he's supposed to be fishing against. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

 

As a fan of professional bass fishing, confrontational drama on the water has never bothered me. Some say that it 'gives the sport a black eye' or whatever. I say that's true - only if you're trying to reinvent golf. Wake me up when you're done with that. I'll be over here watching Happy Gilmore. "Gee, I hope none of those players have a fight right here in front of us," said no hockey fan ever.

And fans do watch NASCAR for the crashes. At least a crash occurs because somebody is trying too hard to win.

Today we witnessed the complete opposite of that.

Day 2 Midday update from BassMaster Classic Bracket on Niagra River - Excitement Abounds!

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Dean Rojas mounts a late comeback. Super cool photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.Dean Rojas mounts a late comeback. Super cool photo by Steve Bowman/B.A.S.S.

 

Ten minutes left to go in this morning's action. Dean Rojas was 5 pounds behind Jordan Lee; 5 pounds out of tomorrow's semifinal round. He connected with 3 pound, 3 ounce smallmouth. On the next cast his rod bent, he set the hook and nursed another into the boat. Tripp Weldon said the fish needed to weigh at a pound, 13 ounces then read the in-boat digital scale and declared that it weighed 2 pounds, 13 ounces.

And those tuned-in to WatchESPN saw it all happen. Live.

"This format's the best," said Rojas. "There's nothing like it!"

Morning bite stronger on Day1 of Bassmaster Classic Bracket on Niagra River

Judging from the weight totals, it seems like the early bite was stronger than the afternoon bite.

Three of the four pros who fished this morning caught limits of bass. Only one of four competitors did so this afternoon.

Tomorrow they flip-flop which means Kevin VanDam will defend the tournament's biggest Day 1 lead atop what should be an even more difficult hill for Elite Series rookie Drew Benton to climb. Benton caught one bass this morning while KVD led all anglers with 10 pounds, 4 ounces, though he's only competing against Benton today and tomorrow.

Bassmaster Classic Bracket off to interesting start!

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Kevin VanDam is off to a hot start. Under this new format, that could make him harder than ever to catch. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.Kevin VanDam is off to a hot start. Under this new format, that could make him harder than ever to catch. photo courtesy B.A.S.S.

 

This would be 'half time' for our Classic Bracket anglers in matches #1 and #2. They will pick up the rods again tomorrow against the same opponents and carry today's weight toward their 2-day total to determine who moves on to Thursday's semifinal rounds.

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