Americana Outdoors E-Magazine - August 2022

Please enjoy the August edition of the Americana Outdoors Presented by Garmin E-Magazine!

AUG 2022




AUG 2022 - 39 th EDITION I n this issue ... Garmin Unveils LiveScope XR 04 06 Ranger Boats Z521R Yamaha Outboards “How-To” Series 07 Big Bite Baits Exclusive “SCENTSATION” Line of Soft Plastics 08 AFTCO Bass Care Guide 14 Garmin Brings LiveScope Plus to its Lithium-Powered ice Fishing Bundle 24 The Story Behind Secret Lures® 30 Tread Audio System from Garmin 34 Which Crossbow is Right for You? 40 Hunting the “NO” Buck in Early October 43 Yamaha Launches 2023 Proven Off-Road ATV and Side BySide Lineup 46



Smith & Wesson Introduces the Model 350 55 Nominate Your Hero for Bucks for the Brave 59


ATTENTION This is an interactive E-Magazine. Click on the links and logos throughout, directing you to company websites, products, and videos.




Happy August! The month of August for me has always been about gearing up for the upcoming hunting season, planning for next seasons fishing tournaments, chasing redfish, and reviewing all the new fishing goodies I’ve seen at ICAST. This issue of our Americana Outdoors E-Mag covers all of that and more. You will see new items that were recently launched at ICAST, items that are new to the market for the upcoming hunting season, and some great coverage of fishing tournaments with highlights from the Texas Team Trail, National Walleye Tour as well as the preseason college bass fishing rankings! We hope you enjoy this issue, and we cannot wait to see all of you in the field or on the water soon.



Wade Middleton President - Careco




Garmin brings revolutionary live-scanning sonar technology to coastal and open-water fishing with the new LiveScope XR System

Garmin International, Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd. (NYSE:GRMN), the world’s largest1 and most innovative marine electronics manufacturer, recently unveiled LiveScope™ XR , the latest addition to its award-winning live-scanning sonar lineup, now with an extended range for deeper and open waters. With excellent image sharpness at both close and long ranges simultaneously, LiveScope XR delivers real-time images of fish and structure up to 500’ in front of or below the boat—over 200%more range than the leading competitor system. New transducer offers live sonar ranges up to 500’ in freshwater and up to 350’ in saltwater

consumer sales. “LiveScope XR offers significant range performance without sacrificing image clarity and resolution. Having set the standard for live-scanning sonar, we’re thrilled to continue to bring this game-changing technology to deeper waters so even more anglers can experience the LiveScope difference.” See more with an extended range With an optimized design for deeper water, the LiveScope XR transducer has extended elements so anglers can see both long- and close-range views in real time. Anglers can see further around and below the boat – up to 500’ in freshwater and 350’ in saltwater – and the Reverse Range feature allows them to utilize more of the screen to display fish and structure. To see detail closer to the boat, the Compress Range feature displays a live look in sharp detail up close, while still allowing the angler to keep an eye on targets further away at the same time. With seven color palettes to choose from, anglers can see fish and structure in vivid contrast and

Explore deeper waters with LiveScope XR in action.

“You’ve never seen real-time images of fish and structure at distances and depths like this,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global

clarity. Like all LiveScope transducers, LiveScope XR is equipped with additional sensors that allow it to constantly adjust the sonar beams to compensate for boat motion, so even in rough conditions, anglers will still see a steady sonar image, even at an extended range. Three modes in one system The LiveScope XR System delivers three unique vantage points with one mount that can be easily adjusted to fit an angler’s fishing techniques and preferences, no tools required. Simply turn the transducer forward for a live look at what’s out in front of the boat; point it down to see directly beneath the boat; or turn it sideways with the included Perspective Mode Mount to enable the ‘top down’ perspective mode that’s perfect for scouting open water or shorelines. Select the LiveScope mode that best fits that fishing spot, and the view will automatically change on a compatible Garmin chartplotter2 screen. Upgrade to the LiveScope XR advantage The LiveScope XR System includes a compact GLS™ 10 black box with a LiveScope XR LVS62 transducer, along with a trolling motor barrel and shaft mounting kit, perspective mount bracket and a simple plug-and-play Garmin Marine Network connector for easy installation and integration with a compatible chartplotter. With a free software update, the LVS62 transducer (sold separately) can be added to an existing LiveScope System black box for customers who want to upgrade. Both the LiveScope XR System and the LiveScope XR LVS62 are available now, with suggested retail prices of $2999.99 and $2499.99, respectively. LiveScope XR is compatible with a wide range of Garmin GPSMAP® and ECHOMAP™ chartplotters and combo units; click here for the full list of compatible devices.


THE PINNACLE OF PERFECTION The tallest order in the boating world is creating the next flagship Ranger bass boat. Doing so requires an extensive knowledge of—and appreciation for—the past, while putting forth complete dedication to delivering a paradigm shift in all-around performance, fishability, quality, safety, and style. The all-new Z521R represents countless hours of R&D, testing, and continuously raising the bar, and the boat you see here is not only unquestionably worthy of the Ranger name, but instantly evolves and elevates what a bass boat can be. FIND A DEALER BUILD YOUR OWN Watch the video tour by clicking the PLAY Button

MyYamahaOutboards App

All New Helm Master EX

HOW-TO SERIES A how-to series featuring the latest and greatest products from Yamaha! Click on any of the images to start watching these great tutorials from Yamaha Outboards. You can also download the FREE Outdoor Action TV app to your favorite streaming device to view these videos and more!

Battery Management System

Helm Master EX Single-Engine

New for 2022, Big Bite Baits is launching our exclusive Scentsation line of soft plastics. Scentsation was developed after numerous requests from the Big Bite pro angler team and consumers for a soft and buoyant soft plastic that was infused with a powerful, fish attracting scent that would be more effective for wary fish with greater scent susceptibility. The Big Bite production team initially began working with a 30-year PhD chemist for months to develop this proprietary formula with greater fish attraction. In a collaboration, this plastic formula was developed after multiple rounds of testing for fish attraction and manufacturing capabilities. It really stinks and it really works! Once the formula was developed it went to our pro angler team for testing thru the remainder of 2021. Responses from our pro team were very strong and they saw an immediate impact on their fishing in many areas. That testing continued across the country throughout the off season on many different bodies of water. Our team also worked on a list of new shapes that would be available in this one of-a-kind plastic formula. BIG BITE BAITS IS LAUNCHING AN EXCLUSIVE SCENTSATION LINE OF SOFT PLASTICS.

Bassmaster Elite Series angler Clifford Pirch (bottom left) is known for his prowess with finesse techniques, especially his mastery of the drop shot. Pirch, along with other Western anglers have been utilizing custom hand poured worms for years to entice fish under pressured conditions. Big Bite Baits tapped into Clifford’s decades of knowledge to help them develop the Cliff Hanger 5 Worm and the Ramtail 35 along with providing input on the other new Scentsation shapes, and he is extremely pleased with how the final product has turned out. “It’s been awesome working with Big Bite Baits on their new lineup of Scentsation soft plastics. The new scent formula has a strong drawing power for both smallmouth and largemouth and causes the fish to hold onto the bait longer resulting in more fish catches,” says Pirch. While scented plastics have been a known commodity for smallmouth for quite some time, Pirch is equally excited about its’ effectiveness on largemouth. “I’ve gained an enormous amount of confidence during the development process of the Scentsation line of baits on how effective they are on largemouth. The willingness of largemouth to bite these new baits has been an eye opener for me, and I am looking forward to utilizing them in largemouth scenarios as much as I am for smallmouth. When you can combine the characteristics of good hand poured plastics and an awesome fish attracting scent you have a serious player, and Scentsation is just that,” Pirch concluded. Major League Fishing Pro Michael Neal has been one of the hottest anglers at the tour level over the past 18 months and has been a big believer in the Scentsation formula since he received the first sample shipment. “Tough conditions and more pressured fish are all too common for me, and Scentsation has helped me get more bites on a number of occasions and has proven especially effective for smallmouths,” says Neal. He continues, “ I developed the Skinny Stick 5 for my use with drop shots and wacky rigs. I love the action this bait has, the texture and the strong

scent formula has helped me get more bites while playing a crucial role in several of my wins and high finishes in the last year. I also selected the colors in this worm and feel they can go anywhere in the country and catch fish.”

Lindner’s Angling Edge has been producing sport fishing content for more than 50 years. They focus on helping anglers catch more and bigger fish of all species. They fish all species from bluegills to musky in every condition across hundreds of bodies of water in a season. The angling edge team of Al Lindner, James Lindner and Jeremy Smith tested Scentsation plastics on walleyes and smallmouths in 2021. The results they saw were impressive for targeting small mouth or largemouth bass and walleye. The mix of minnows and finesse shapes proved deadly in Northern waters for their team.

Elite Series pro Drew Cook utilized his Scentsation prototypes in a number of ways. He found it effective for smallmouth and largemouth alike. “I was really excited to get this “stinking” plastic and put it to work. I found out quickly it really worked for either bass species. I also was excited to develop my Quarantine Craw 425 to be a ned rigging finesse craw combo bait. It works great on a jighead or as a finesse jig trailer. I had an idea for this shape during the quarantine period of 2020 and started making prototypes. I saw immediate results, and to be able to have this shape in the Scentsation plastic is going to be a sure winner.”

Scentsation Cliff Hanger Worm

Scentsation Quarantine Craw

Scentsation Skinny Stick

MICRO ANCHOR Power-Pole Micro Spike Driver can hold Jon boats and small skiffs up to 1,500 lbs (including passengers) and is perfect for kayaks and paddle boards. Micro anchor unit is easily-removable making storage or transfer to other vessels simple. Includes quick-release bracket. Other mounting options available including custom mounting brackets or transom mount adapters. Includes 15 ft power cord for 12v battery or if no on-board battery is available, add the Micro Battery Pak & Charger (sold separately) and go wherever adventure takes you. Micro driver unit accommodates any 3/4” spike, including the Power-Pole Heavy-duty or Ultra-lite Spike (sold separately). CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE


Choosing the proper size and type of braided line can be intimidating. We get a lot of questions about which type and size of Sunline braided line to use for various techniques. Here are some of our recommendations!


*NEW* Engel Rechargeable Live Bait Aerator Pump • Now Available in White and Tan • Engel’s all-new Lithium-Ion rechargeable live bait bubbler • Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery • 36-hour battery life • Standard USB-C charger and cable • Magnetic pump mechanism (no cogs or moving parts) • 4 Speed & Intermittent • Quietest pump on the market • Water-resistant and saltwater approved

• 2 Year Warranty • Patent Pending


Bass Care Guide: How to Take Care of Your Catch Prior to Release

Catch and release can have minimal effect on bass survival if fish are landed quickly, carefully, and held in livewells with sufficient oxygen and temperatures at or below 84 degrees. Keep these 5 helpful points in mind. 1. Water temperature is the most important factor in largemouth survival. Maintain water temperaturesofnomore than84degrees inyour livewell.Keepfrozenwaterbottlesinyouricechest to use for cooling your livewell water as needed. 2. Fish need oxygen. Maximize aeration and flush the livewell with fresh water periodically to insure you have adequate oxygen levels. 3. Land your fish as quickly as possible and keep them in the air for as little time as possible. 4. When handling the fish be careful not to remove the protective slime or damage the gills. Wet your hands before handling, and don’t “boat flip” your bass onto the deck. 5. Proper positioning when handling fish is important. Hold bass horizontally with two hands, or fully vertical with one hand. Do not put the weight of the fish on the jaw, or the jaw could be damaged.

largemouth bass resource. Starting with Ray Scott and his creation of B.A.S.S. and the catch and release ethic in bass fishing, anglers and bass tournaments have been and continue to be protective of this valuable resource. An important key to a future healthy resource, and continually growing bass fishing opportunities is how anglers care for the bass we catch. The purpose of this guide is to help educate anglers on the basics of how to best care for largemouth bass. The increasing number of largemouth bass anglers and tournaments at all levels makes this information more important now than ever. Many tournaments provide live-release boats and good weigh-in conditions that help survival of fish, but they cannot save injured or severely stressed fish. It is essential that every angler understands that the conditions during capture, handling, and livewell confinement are critical in determining whether a bass ultimately survives after release. Over the years there have been several valuable studies and publications on bass care. One of the best and most detailed resources continues to be Keeping Bass Alive: A Guidebook for Tournament Anglers & Organizers by B.A.S.S. Conservation Director Gene Gilliard and Hal Schramm. Another excellent study was done in partnership with Phil Morlock, Director, Environmental Affairs at Shimano and Dr. Bruce Tufts and his team at

We are fortunate here in the U.S. to have a healthy

Queen’s University and the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada. Most recently, a research project funded by ten state fisheries agencies conducted at Mississippi State University evaluated the effects of water temperature, livewell temperature and dissolved oxygen, and fish landing time on largemouth bass survival. This study took a practical approach of duplicating actual conditions that largemouth bass face during a tournament from catch, to livewell holding, to weigh-in, to release back into the water. Survival was measured after 8 hours of livewell retention and for five days after weigh in. Under controlled conditions, adult bass were then subjected to angling times of 1 minute and 3 minutes, 8 hours in a livewell at dissolved oxygen concentrations of 2, 5.5 and 8.5 parts per million (ppm), and livewell temperature of no change in temperature, cooling the water 7 degrees F, or warming the water 7 degrees F. All trials were conducted at temperatures ranging from 63 to 91 degrees F to fully represent the temperature conditions when most bass tournaments occur. MSU Study Summary Fight times, handling, low dissolved oxygen, and warm water impact survivability. Catch and release tournaments have minimal effect on survival if fish are landed quickly, handled properly, and kept in livewells with quality water at 84 degrees or less. WATER TEMPERATURE It is always best to maintain water temperatures in the livewell and at the weigh-in site as close as possible to (or slightly below) the temperature where the fish came from. Fish are “cold blooded” animals, so their body temperatures are not regulated internally but rather by the water temperature around them. Depending on the time of year and ambient temperature in the lake, the optimum temperature for largemouth bass is below 84 degrees.

The MSU study confirmed that at 91 degrees, livewell water temperature is a serious problem for bass. You want to keep the temperature in your livewell close to the water temperature the fish came out of. It is important to remember that the temperature gauge on your boat is reading the water temperature near the surface, and your bass may have been living at a depth with a lower temperature than you show on your boat. Once the livewell temperature reaches 84 degrees, keep it from getting any warmer by cooling it down with ice. Sudden temperature change of more than 7 degrees can be harmful to largemouth bass. To allow for longer, slower cooling of the water in your livewell, use block ice if available, or freeze water in a plastic bottle or another container and place in the livewell. Keep frozen plastic water bottles in your ice chest, so you can place them in your livewell to cool water as needed. At the weigh-in, fill your weigh-in bag with cooled water from your livewell rather than dipping in warm lake water.

PRO TIP #1 Water temperature is the most important factor in bass survival. Maintain temperatures of no more than 84 degrees in your live well and weigh bag. Keep frozen water bottles in your ice chest to use for cooling the water as needed.

THE AMOUNT OF DISSOLVED OXYGEN IN YOUR LIVEWELL AND WEIGH BAG IS A FACTOR IN LARGEMOUTH SURVIVABILITY. Bass and all fish obtain needed oxygen by passing water over their gills. TheMSU study proved that the minimum level of dissolved oxygen in your livewell is 5.5 ppm. It also showed that higher oxygen (8.5 ppm) wasnot aproblemat 77degreesor 84degrees, but these higher dissolved oxygen concentrations were not enough to prevent mortality at 91 degrees where the mortality rate was over 50%. In other words, oxygen is essential, but more oxygen will not make up for too-warm temperatures. Cool water is essential to survival, but cooling water also aids providing sufficient oxygen. Cool water holds more oxygen and reaerates faster than warmer water, and bass in cooler water use less oxygen than bass in warmer water. In addition, more or bigger fish in your livewell use dissolved oxygen faster. More oxygen can be added to your livewell by adding fresh water periodically, but you must remember to add ice to maintain temperatures below 84 degrees. Add air to your live well diffused through an air stone creating small bubbles or run recirculating aerators continuously to maximize the amount of oxygen absorbed in the water.

PRO TIP #2 Fish need oxygen. Maximize aeration and flush the live well with fresh water periodically to ensure you have adequate oxygen levels. THE MSU STUDY CONFIRMED THAT THE AMOUNT OF ANGLING TIME DOES IMPACT SURVIVABILITY. Largemouth bass angled for one minute survived better than did those angled for three minutes. However, if the fish is landed quickly and handled carefully, catch and release has a minimal effect on survival. Bass have a protective slime coating that helps to protect them from disease. It is important to be careful to not remove this coating when handling your fish. Wet your hands when handling the fish. It is also important to not “boat flip” your fish directly onto the rough dry carpet or deck of your boat as that will cause slime loss. Grip the fish’s is lower jaw to remove the hook. Remove the hook as quickly as possible and use caution to not damage the gills. Keep the fish out of water for as short a time as possible.

PRO TIP #3 Land your fish as quickly as possible and keep

them in the air for as little time as possible. Wet your hands before handling the fish being careful not to remove the protective slime or damage the gills. Don’t “boat flip” your bass onto the deck. BASS HANDLING Anglers should be especially careful when handling big bass not to damage the jaw. If the jaw is damaged, it is likely the bass will no longer be able to feed, leading to higher rates of mortality. Hold bass in a fully vertical position or use two hands to support the body. Using a single hand to hold a bass without proper weight distribution can damage or dislocate the jaw.

Teams Ranked 1st to 5th are revealed as the Association of Collegiate Anglers provides the results from its annual pre-season poll The Association of Collegiate Anglers, which operates the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year program presented by Abu Garcia, is excited to showcase the pre-season rankings for college bass fishing, according to a voting poll of top coaches, schools, media personnel and fishing industry personalities with experience in college fishing. This poll is a one of a kind poll, similar to rankings in other college sports, that will help kick off the season-long race for the prestigious School of the Year title. Every day this week, the ACA will count down and showcase teams that made it into the Top 25. Today’s article will show teams that were selected 1st to 5th in the pre-season rankings.

one team entering the upcoming season of the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. Just over one month ago, Montevallo secured its second straight title at McFarland Park on the shores of Pickwick Lake in Florence, AL following the conclusion of the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops. “Really wanted to come back. We won this thing last year, and we knew we had a good chance to do it again this year,” noted Adam Carroll, University of Montevallo angler. “We came up here and did it, and we couldn’t be happier about it.” “Anytime you can win a Championship at any level in any sport, it’s always special,” added William Crawford, Head Coach of the University of Montevallo Bass Fishing Team. “To do it back-to back and be one of only three teams to do that, it’s really special.” Montevallo’s 2021-22 season was full of high water marks. One of the most impressive achievements came at the 2022 Barnett Reservoir Rumble where the team earned the maximum possible points a single team could earn at the ACA double points event. Merritt Arnold & Chance Schwartz and Adam Carroll & Trey Dickert finished first and second respectively to earn 2,490 points for their school.

University of Montevallo (1st Place Votes: 18) Montevallo, AL

The University of Montevallo earned 7,330 points at ACA events last season.

Entering the 2022-23 season, Montevallo will be looking to become the first team ever to win the title in three straight years. In order for them to do that, they will have to maximize the double and triple points opportunities on the schedule. After capping off the school’s second straight title in as many years, the team’s focus now shifts

2022 Final Ranking: 1st School of the Year Titles: 2 (2021, 2022)

Coming off of back-to-back titles, the University of Montevallo is once again picked as the number

country. It feels good to know that our hard work has not gone unnoticed.” A former winner of the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops, Auburn University entered this past year with a bit of a chip on their shoulder. The team encountered a few hurdles that limited the total number of events they could compete in during the 2020-21 cycle, resulting in a 15th place end of year ranking in 2021. However, the strong finish to the season Auburn had that spring gave them the confidence they needed to go out and prove that they belonged in the conversation amongst the best teams in the country. Auburn’s performances spoke for themselves, as the team amassed 18,080 points to finish the season ranked second overall. Having been so close to winning it all last season, Auburn enters this year with just one thing on their mind…taking home the title. “Our goal for the 2022-23 season is simple: Win SOY and Win the National Championship. Easier said than done, but our roster is full of talent and is more motivated than ever. This year marks the 15th anniversary of the team and there would be no better way to celebrate than bringing the SOY title home to the plains,” concluded Maddux. McKendree University Lebanon, IL

to doing it again during the 2022-23 campaign.

“We’ve got a lot of great guys coming in, it’s our best recruiting class ever,” added Crawford. “Excited to see what’s going to happen and see if we can’t win three in a row and become the first team to ever do it.” Auburn University (1st Place Votes: 7) Auburn, AL

2022 Final Ranking: 2nd ACA National Championships: 1 (2016)

Auburn enters the 2022-23 season ranked second in the ACA pre-season poll, following a second-place finish in the 2021-22 race for Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. Last season’s second place finish marks the best end of season national ranking Auburn has ever achieved. The team is thrilled to know that their hard work and effort is being recognized by fellow anglers, coaches, media members, and industry representatives alike. “Being ranked within the Top 5 is not only a great honor for our active members, but a testament to those who have helped build this team from the ground up over the years,” noted Carson Maddux, Auburn University Bass Fishing Team member. “We strive to maintain our status as one of the top collegiate fishing programs in the

2022 Final Ranking: 3rd School of the Year Titles: 2 (2019, 2020)

is Carson-Newman University. The team from Jefferson City, TN receives a pre-season ranking of fourth, following a fifth-place finish in the 2021-22 race for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

“We are very honored that our McKendree team has been ranked as one of the top five schools in the country,” said Jon Rinderer, Head Bass Fishing Coach at McKendree University. “It is very rewarding to know that our peers and industry leaders feel like we are doing all the right things to maintain a very solid program.” Following a third-place finish in the 2021-22 season of the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, McKendree University is ranked third in the ACA pre-season poll. McKendree University has put together one of the best runs of any team in the nation over the course of the past seven years.

“It means the world to me and my program that we are considered a Top 5 team, especially because of how hard we all work,” said Ben Cully, Carson-Newman angler. “Top 5 sounds really good, however we all know our capabilities and want to continue our goal to win SOY.” Carson-Newman has been trending upwards over the course of the past five seasons, but did take a slight step back in 2021-22:

2016: 4th Place 2017: 5th Place 2018: 6th Place 2019: 1st Place 2020: 1st Place 2021: 2nd Place 2022: 3rd Place

McKendree University competed in all three ACA events this past season, earning 5,655 points. “With the new changes in the scoring mechanism, our primary goal is to have at least two solid finishes at every major tournament we fish and hopefully bring home another School of the Year Championship,” added Rinderer. Carson-Newman University

2022: 5th Place 2021: 4th Place 2020: 10th Place 2019: 20th Place 2018: 37th Place

Entering the 2022 Barnett Reservoir Rumble ranked third this past April, Carson-Newman had attained the team’s highest ever ranking in program history to that point. With a new season set to get underway, the team hopes to see the number one in front of their school’s name to finish the season. “Our main goal, without a doubt, is to win SOY this year. We’ve got some incoming freshmen this fall that will definitely boost our talents,” added

(1st Place Votes: 1) Jefferson City, TN

2022 Final Ranking: 4th

The next team to check in on this rankings reveal

racked up major victories and top finishes at national events across the country. Adrian College also had a team place in the Top 12 at every ACA event: 2021 AFTCO Collegiate Bass Open 3rd Place – Griffin Fernandes & Zach Manneback 2022 Barnett Reservoir Rumble 3rd Place – Matthew Davis & Dalton Mollenkopf 2022 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shop s 12th Place – Matthew Davis & Dalton Mollenkopf For Adrian College to break through and win the school’s first-ever title of Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, they will have to capitalize on the double and triple points opportunities available on the schedule. Adrian College is a definite contender to end the year ranked number one. “I think our goal next year is to be more consistent. We had some really good events last year, but we also had some really bad ones,” noted Davis. “It is crucial that we have good events throughout all of the major collegiate trails.” Follow this link to view the complete results of the ACA Top 25 Pre-Season Poll, as well as see which other teams received votes by the pollsters.

Cully. “I believe our team chemistry is now better than ever and I’m hoping that will help overall communication and better finishes from Carson-Newman.” Adrian College Adrian, MI

2022 Final Ranking: 4th

“It means a lot that we are recognized as a Top 5 school in the country, it reflects the hard work and dedication of all of our guys year-in, year out,” said Matthew Davis, Adrian College Bass Fishing Team member. The final team to be highlighted in this feature is Adrian College. Adrian College has been picked by anglers, coaches, media members, and industry representatives as the fifth best team in the ACA pre-season poll. This marks back-to back seasons in which Adrian College has made the Top 5 in the pre-season rankings. Along with consecutive years in the Top 5 for the pre-season poll, Adrian College has finished each of the last seven seasons ranked in the Top 20 for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. After finishing in the Top 3 for the three previous seasons, Adrian College ended the 2021-22 campaign in fourth overall.

Throughout the 2021-22 season, Adrian College

BoatUS offers fresh and saltwater memberships to provide boaters with exceptional services. A BoatUS membership gives boaters and anglers assurance that they will be assisted out on the water and safely returned to the ramp. They’re always happy to see us, whether it’s a minor battery jump or tow from out in the middle of the water to their home marina. They always have that peace of mind knowing that we are coming and will be there for them shortly and that they’re getting help.

BoatUS was on site for the 2022 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops. All week BoatUS was offering their services for free to anglers that might need assistance, such as towing, fuel, helping with a mechanical breakdown, or even getting them off a sandbar, BoatUS was there to help all 400+ anglers. “I always tell people when they ask about it and they are usually like, “My friend will tow me here... My friend will tow me there. I always tell them this is just the cheapest thing you will ever spend on your boat. $99 a year for the unlimited towing is just a piece of mind.” - BoatUS Capt. Chris Day

Learn more about all the services BoatUS offers here.


Garmin brings LiveScope Plus to its lithium-powered ice fishing bundle Garmin International, Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd. (NYSE: GRMN), the world’s largest 1 and most innovative marine electronics manufacturer, recently announced the LiveScope™ Plus Ice Fishing Bundle LI, a chartplotter and transducer bundle with the latest live-scanning sonar technology powered by a lightweight lithium battery. The ultimate portable solution for anglers on and off the ice, LiveScope Plus delivers brilliantly clear scanning sonar returns and 35% improved target separation over the existing system. And thanks to the included lithium battery that weighs one-third of comparable lead acid batteries, anglers can cover more ground on the ice with up to 65%more battery life 2 . “With the adjustments we’ve made to the screen clarity, transducer sensitivity and target separation in LiveScope Plus, it’ll be easier than

ever for anglers to pinpoint and follow schools of fish below the ice,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global consumer sales. “Paired with a lithium battery, our LiveScope Plus ice bundle is easy to carry around from hole to hole and most importantly, it will keep you fishing for hours longer than before.” Image definition like you’ve never seen below the ice Optimized for precision and accuracy, the new design of the LiveScope Plus transducer not only delivers 35% improved target separation, it’s also capable of identifying and separating targets as small as 14” at distances 100 feet from the hole. With brilliantly clear sonar returns – available with seven vivid color options – anglers can see exactly what they need to with improved image stitching, reduced noise and fewer on-screen artifacts that impede the picture of fish and structure. The LiveScope Plus Ice Fishing Bundle LI features two modes in one transducer – forward and down

Navionics+™ and Garmin Navionics Vision+™, the ECHOMAP UHD 93sv includes more than 18,000 lakes with up to 1-foot fishing contours that provide a more accurate depiction of bottom structure for improved fishing charts and enhanced detail. Fish with LiveScope Plus season to season When the ice thaws, the versatile LiveScope Plus Ice Fishing Bundle LI can easily transition to the boat in the summer months thanks to the LiveScope Plus Boat Kit. The kit, which retails for $149.99, includes a trolling motor mount and the necessary power and network cables to take advantage of LiveScope Plus technology year round. Expected to be available in September 2022, the LiveScope Plus Ice Fishing Bundle LI has a suggested retail price of $3249.99. Garmin also added new 5” ECHOMAP UHD2 ice fishing bundles, which retail for $549.99, to its ice fishing arsenal. With a variety of bundles that include an affordable STRIKER Plus 4 to the premium 9-inch ECHOMAP UHD, Garmin has everything an angler needs to get on the ice and start fishing. The new LiveScope Plus LVS34-IF transducer is also available for $1199.99.

– so anglers can see fish and structure in real time up to 200’ in any direction below the ice. Each view provides incredibly sharp, real-time scanning sonar images of fish swimming and moving toward or away from the hole and below the surface with remarkable target separation and clarity. The transducer can easily be adjusted to fit the angler’s techniques and preferences while tracking schools of fish and determining where to drill the next hole, and the view will automatically change on a compatible Garmin chartplotter3 screen. A built-in flasher also provides a view of jigs and fish as they swim into the beam. Premium experience and portable convenience Equipped with everything needed for hardwater fishing, this new bundle includes a large ECHOMAP™ UHD 93sv touchscreen combo with keyed assist, the LiveScope Plus System, a swivel pole mount for the transducer, plus the rechargeable lithium battery, battery charger and LiveScope Plus transducer cable that stays flexible in the cold—all in a convenient, glove friendly portable bag. The ECHOMAP UHD series has an easy-to-use interface that allows for customized combination screens, so anglers can easily access flasher, map, sonar, and other data most important to them, and its glove-friendly, user-programmable keys allow for one-press access to an angler’s favorite pages. Preloaded with Garmin’s latest and most detail rich LakeVü g3 maps with support for Garmin

DEWEY DOUBLES DOWN, DOMINATES MARINETTE Green Bay is known as perhaps the premier big-walleye fishery in the country, but catching a five-fish limit can be difficult. This week at the fourth and final qualifying event of the 2022 National Walleye Tour season, presented by Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s, bait was abundant, which meant coaxing walleyes to bite was downright baffling at times. In these challenging conditions, the cream of the crop always rises to the top. For the second time in his young career, the best of the best was 35-year-old Duane “Dewey” Hjelm. By doubling down, Hjelm proved he’s not just a Missouri River stick; he’s one of the best in the business. Lately, Green Bay tournaments have been domi nated by fishermen who run north and structure fish. Casting and reading forward-facing elec tronics is a thrilling way to target huge walleyes, but it’s also nerve wracking as the anglers know they’ll be lucky to receive a handful of bites. For

that reason, Green Bay leaderboards are notori ous for flip-flopping. Proving their mettle, Hjelm and others at the top stayed remarkably consis tent this week. Hjelm said he drove his Ranger 30 to 40 miles north from Marinette – staying on the west shore and heading up towards Big Bay de Noc. There, he sampled offshore structure or what he called resting spots. “They are starting to set up on their summer homes,” said the Pierre, S.D., native, who first won on Lake Sakakawea in 2017. “We were keying in on areas that didn’t have as much baitfish. There was tons and tons of baitfish around, but up there, there wasn’t hardly any. It wasn’t like it was everywhere else; they seemed more friendly.” While there was some rock in his area, rock wasn’t exactly the deal.

point, Hjelm still had four hours to ease back to Marinette. The end result for his best five was 41.72 pounds. Combined with his 31.68 from day one, Hjelm finished the tournament with a cumu lative total of 73.40 pounds. “The key to this one was putting in a lot of hard work and long hours. At first, it was figuring out water temperatures, current, baitfish and all that stuff. I was just trying to figure out what the heck was happening with the lake. Then, it was trying to figure the fish out and duplicate it in spots A, B and C. Lastly, it was about relying on and trusting my equipment, especially my graph.” For his second NWT win, Hjelm earned a Rang er 620FS Pro with a 250-horsepower Mercury Pro XS, plus $15,000 cash and another $2,327 of Anglers Advantage cash for a total purse of $101,322. Hjelm also tightened the Lucas Oil Angler of the Year race. Kevin McQuoid leads with 717 points. Eleven points behind McQuoid is Max Wilson, and Hjelm sits one point behind Wilson. “Winning any of these tournaments is a huge ac complishment. I don’t take any of this for granted. I’m super blessed and super grateful. I know what it takes to win one of these, and to walk away with another one is crazy. Two weeks ago I married my longtime girlfriend Valerie, and my parents have been traveling with us for the last few events. It’s overwhelming the amount of support I’ve received lately. They all plan on coming to Dunkirk too.”

“It was basically little shoals or little knobs that had current deflections. Walleyes could get in front of it or behind it, depending if they were resting or feeding. Rocks were a good thing, but if it didn’t have rock, we didn’t rule it out.” In gin clear water, Hjelm’s fish were suspended 2 to 10 feet off the bottom in water 18 to 24 feet deep. At times, he would slide up as shallow as 14 feet. Hjelm threw a variety of glide baits in natural colors to catch his fish. He had trolling gear with him, but never caught one trolling in the tourna ment. “We had our trolling rods ready in case the wind and weather wouldn’t let us execute. But the conditions were almost perfect for glide baits. We would let it hit bottom, then rip it up. You get most of your bites right before it hits bottom or near the top of the stroke. Sometimes when you go to lift up again they already have it. The action at the top of the stroke, it just makes them super mad.” When Hjelm, the Dakota Lithium pro, sat on his primary area this morning, he instantly started seeing fish. However, the first five or six schools weren’t interested at all. Then, they’d experience a 45-minute bite window where they’d catch three or four. Then a lull. Then another bite win dow. Hjelm’s co-angler, Michael Yarema, caught a 30-incher as their sixth and final fish. At that


Korey Sprengel, known by many as the Green Bay GOAT, finished second with a two-day total of 61.27 pounds. On day one, the Berkley pro caught 30.14 pounds, and today he improved slightly to 31.13. Sprengel dominated the 2020 and 2013 NWT events on Green Bay, his home pond. In 2020, he won the event by over 17 pounds. This week, however, he was content with second. “For the first time and maybe the only time, I’m happy with second,” said the Beaver Dam, Wis., native. “Dewey just put it out of reach. I’m glad he crushed them or there would’ve been a lot of things I wished I did differently.” On the final morning, Sprengel debated a mega run north. It was a gamble, and he ultimately opt ed against it. While he still ventured north, he only went roughly 20 miles from Marinette. “Part of me really wanted to swing for it this morning, but for whatever reason, I couldn’t do it. I knew it was a tougher bite, and I knew in these other areas I could catch fish.” Sprengel’s pattern was essentially the opposite of Hjelm’s. Instead of casting glide baits, he trolled standard crawler harnesses. “I trolled the whole time. The thing with glide baits is that you lose about half the fish that bite. In a tough-bite tournament, that’s everything. I know with a crawler harness, my odds of losing them are a lot slimmer.” Sprengel said his harness setup was an octopus hook up front and a treble below. Golds, purples and chartreuses in both Colorado and willow blades produced. “To be honest, there was nothing that stuck out this week. It’s just what I have confidence in. It’s the presentation that kind of made my career. I can manipulate depths, up and down, deep and shallow, to trigger a bite.”

Sprengel’s speeds were 1 to 1.5 mph. He wanted the crawlers near the bottom in 15 to 20 feet.

“It’s a fine line. You want to be close to the bot tom, but you can’t touch it or it’s over with the moss, zebras and gobies down there. Some were rock breaklines. Some were just big-boulder spots. On these tough bites, I key on short pass es and fish the high-percentage spots. Some of these passes were as short as 200 yards. Right now, they’re so full of alewives, so it’s tough. With a tough bite, sometimes curiosity wins. You pull a crawler harness slow enough, it’s going to follow it, smell it and then eventually eat it.” Side Imaging helped Sprengel identify the struc ture. His vessel itself also assisted with fine-tun ing his trolling program. “I had to go sideways through the wind, but my Ranger tracked straight, and it didn’t swing around with that deep keel. It’s one thing a lot of people overlook, but it made a big difference.” Sprengel will head to the year-end championship fourth in the points, seven behind Hjelm.


The biggest move of the day belonged to local Fond du Lac, Wis., fisherman Josh Wiesner. Af ter catching four quality walleyes on day one that weighed 24.46 pounds, Wiesner caught four giants Friday that weighed 36.52 pounds. Despite

not weighing a limit either day, Wiesner took third with 60.98 pounds. “Yesterday I caught all the big ones trolling crawl er harnesses, which I never do,” said Wiesner. “To day we made the same run north. We got around the bend and the fish were there, but it just wasn’t working. We pulled in two boards, and there were two marks on the LiveScope. I dropped down and caught one of my two big ones.” Wiesner said that first fish quite possibly could’ve been the biggest walleye of his life. “I didn’t mea sure it, and I didn’t weigh it, but it could’ve been 12 pounds.” Like Hjelm, Wiesner did his damage today with glide baits in 16 to 20 feet. His best was a No. 9 Jigging Rap that was painted by Hot Shot Cus toms. “We had four fish in the boat by 11, but we never could get the fifth. There were other areas south of Marinette where I could’ve caught a smaller fish, but I tried for the win and came up short. Yesterday, I lost a 5-pounder next to the boat on the second net attempt. That would’ve had me in second. Considering I didn’t find these fish until the last day of practice, I’m absolutely thrilled with third.” HERD RETAINS FOURTH, MCQUOID UP TO FIFTH

Rounding out the top five are Minnesota pros Drake Herd and Eric McQuoid. Walleye fans may remember that Herd and McQuoid stole the show at last year’s championship on Otter Tail Lake. Herd clinched Angler of the Year in front of family and friends while McQuoid became the youngest pro to ever win a tour championship. This week on Green Bay, Herd was remarkably consistent. On day one, the Alexandria, Minn., pro caught a limit weighing 28.18 pounds. Today, he improved to 31.63 pounds, finishing with a total weight of 59.81 pounds.

McQuoid, fresh off a team victory on Green Bay, also improved as the tournament continued. On the first day, McQuoid caught a limit weighing 25.60 pounds, and today he managed 32.91. Combined, the 22-year-old had 58.51 pounds for the week. UP NEXT The final event of the 2022 season is the NWT Championship, the most lucrative event in profes sional walleye fishing. Only the top 40 pros and top 40 co-anglers qualified to fish the no-entry fee tournament, which takes place Aug. 24-26 on Lake Erie out of Dunkirk, N.Y.


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In a recent episode of Americana Outdoors presented by Garmin, they spilled all sorts of secrets from Secret Lures, from how they made their mark in the fishing world ,to all the stupid bass fishin’ baits, hooks, and lures they carry! There’s no one better to give us the history on all things stupid than the Secret Lures man himself, Danny Blandford! Danny takes us through what he and his wife Holly call their, “Little Tackle Box,” which is to say, a couple thousand square feet of products that they guarantee will help you be more successful on the water. In the past you may have heard the stories of how the Stupid Tube™ came to be and learned how to properly rig this stupid little bait, so this time Danny’s giving us the rundown on pairing tube sizes with hook selections. As we’ll learn, the standard 3.7” Stupid Tube™ is made for the STH line of hooks, which is a Gamakatsu Wide Gap Hook available in 3/0 and 4/0 sizes. The HD Hook is a Mustad 4/0 Heavy Gauge Extra Wide Gap Hook available in 1/8, 3/16, and 1/4 sizes, and pairs perfectly with the 4.2” Flippin’ Stupid Tube™. For anglers who want to go even larger, the Stupid Tube™ 5/0 Ledge head is perfect for the 4.5” Big Dummy and fishing deeper, off shore waters. To see the Stupid Tube™ in action, we’ll throw it back to our time on the water with Jeff Reynolds and Terry McWilliams where they threw this stupid little tube on Lake Beshear! Up next, after seeing the success with the Stupid Tube™, Danny and Holly wanted to see how they could expand on some of the attributes of the Stupid Tube™ and figure out what else they could do with it along the lines of hollow bait technology, and from there, the Stupid Craw™ was born! This bait is 3.7 inches of crawdad goodness. The Stupid Craw™ also features a hook trough to protect the hook from snagging, rigging dots on the bottom that ensures perfect alignment when rigged, and the most active pinchers you’ll find on a craw bait out there. We’ll spend time on the water with Jeff Reynolds and Wade Middleton to

see just how awesome this bait can be for you!

Secret Lures are the MVP’s when it comes to jig head selection, and you can break down their products into four categories: The MVP Flippin’, the MVP Football, the MVP Swim, and the MVP Finesse. As we discuss jig head selection we’ll focus on two options from the lineup, the MVP Football Jig, and the MVP Swim Jigs. As the name implies, the football jig has a football shaped head, which gives you a large surface area that allows for great bottom contact. As far as Swim Jigs go, Secret Lures offers three main variations, the North Version, the South Version, and the HD Version. Tune in to find out what conditions these swim jig heads perform best in, and which ones will be perfect for your fishing needs! To round out the show they shook things up with one of Secret Lures’ most popular products outside the Stupid Tube™ lineup, the Secret Lures Shaky Heads! Offering two options in their shaky head lineup, the Secret Lures Ledge Shaker and the Secret Lures Tail Shaker, shaky heads are the perfect option for pro anglers looking to round out their limits in tournament settings, as well as beginners who just need to tie on one lure to their hook and sinker to get to fishin’. Along with learning about the shaky head products Secret Lures has to offer, you’ll see Jeff Reynolds reel in some massive bass using his trusty Ledge Shaker! It’s clearly no secret anymore that Secret Lures carries every product imaginable to guarantee you reel in big ones on the water! Like Danny said, the Secret Lures team is constantly hard at work to bring you quality products, and we love showing you their latest creations in action! If you’re tired of watching all your buddies reel in the big ones and you’re ready to get in on the secret to success, click here.

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