As a life-long angler some of my best memories are days spent fishing, well I really mean days spent catching fish. I still remember the very first fish I caught, just a small bass off my uncles’ dock on a small lake in Michigan. This bass was hanging out in a concrete block turned on its side right under the dock. It took me all day, but I finally caught it, he was about 6” long, I was about 5 yrs. old and caught it on a live worm, small rod and a Zebco 202. I remember summer days in my mid-teens fishing the St. Johns River north of Lake Washington in Melbourne with my best high school friend John Lorton – days when we caught over 50 bass each, back then you could keep 10 bass per angler. We brought home over 65 lbs. one day with our best 20 bass and fed all our neighbors with a huge fish-fry. Another great memory was a day fishing with my youngest son Josh Wolf (now 34) in the spring of 2003 on Lake Okeechobee, we had an epic day catching 4 bass over 8 lbs. and our best 7 weighed over 49 lbs. Previously Josh’s biggest bass was a little over 5 lbs., he caught his personal best 4 times that day not including 2 monster’s he lost that were bigger than any we landed.
Recently a pair of tournament anglers had an epic day fishing on the famous Kissimmee Chain of Lakes on Lake Toho. A day when you catch a bass over 5 lbs. is a day and a fish catch you will definitely remember but catching a 5 bass limit in a tournament with all of the fish at 5 lbs. and over is a day anglers dream about. Ryan Fleck, owner of RNF Marine, Mercury Marine Specialist on N.OBT in Orlando and his team partner Steve Goree a 20 plus year law enforcement officer with OPD recently had such a day in April of this year while fishing in their monthly Bass Club event with Central Florida Bass Hunters. The pair was competing against another 35 boats and finished the day weighing in 5 bass for 35.61 lbs. anchored by the tournaments biggest bass at 10.06 lbs, to say this was an epic day is an understatement. Winning tournament weights of bass often get into the 30 lb. class from early spring till about late June on the Kissimmee Chain but usually not much more. 35 pounds plus is a huge sack, even here, at over a seven pound average, WOW! The pair of anglers caught and released over 25 keepers that would make most teams happy to have during the day. All of their fish came from an off-shore grass and hydrilla area that was loaded with keeper bass. After dialing in on a stretch of grass of about 100 yards long where the biggest fish seemed to be the anglers mentioned to another boat that they had about 27-28 lbs. currently and if they could get rid of their smallest fish in the live-well, at just under 4 lbs. that they could have a mega-bag. (35 plus lbs.) Changing baits seem to be the key, so about noon time Ryan picked up a Rattle Trap and started throwing it. After making just a few casts he catches the giant a 10.08 monster allowing them to cull the 4 pounder and adding another 6 pounds or so to their total weight. As a longtime tournament angler culling fish of 4 pounds or so is the best thing that can happen in any event. The pair not only won the event, had Big Bass for the event, they also won over a $1,000 bonus for the largest “Sack of the Year”! Congrats from all the anglers who tournament fish and from the staff here at Orlando Coastal Angler Magazine.
If you have Mercury Marine power on the back of your boat, need service or are thinking of re-power with a new motor give Ryan a call to schedule an appointment at 407-745-5020 or to just tell them congrats on their “Catching Day to Remember”.