Great Time At Kayak Bass Adventures Bash 2014

Great Time At Kayak Bass Adventures Bash 2014

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Kayak Bass Adventures is pleased to announce that we just raised over $20,000 for Heroes on the Water – our chosen charity and a fabulous organization committed to helping our injured military personnel.

The funds – $20,812.65 to be exact – were raised at our Second Annual Poker Tournament on October 2 hosted at the Colleyville, Texas home of Terry Sandlin, a principal of Sandlin Homes. This is the second year in a row that we held this fundraiser for this worthy cause, bringing our total raised to almost $50,000.
I first learned of Heroes on the Water at a bass fishing tournament – and was so touched by the veteran’s story and so impressed by the organization that I wanted myself and my fellow bass fisherman buddies to do our part. Heroes on the Water helps our nation’s veterans from all branches of the military unwind using the therapeutic qualities of fishing from kayaks. Founded in 2007, this unique fishing program gives these warriors a chance to decompress from the stresses associated with combat and the rigorous physical and mental rehabilitation they must endure when they get back.  Guided fishing trips are hosted for these veterans by Heroes on the Water and held in local communities around the country. Funds raised at our Poker Tournament will go directly to help hold more events.
I can’t think of a better way to support our community as well as our military than this worthwhile cause. It was an honor just to be involved. I have experienced such joy from my fishing that I am always looking for opportunities to share it with others and what could be better than combining honoring our serviceman with the opportunity to get out on the water and enjoy nature?
At the event, participants enjoyed a fabulous dinner, played poker and took part in a raffle. Top prizes included an Ipad, gift cards, exclusive fishing equipment and a Hobie kayak. The winner of this grand prize kayak kept the love flowing and donated it to the Heroes on the Water organization. For more information, visit their website at http://www.HeroesOnTheWater.com and consider your own fundraiser as well!
I would like to extend some special thanks to our sponsors and those who donated raffle items including
Title Sponsor- Valley-Dynamo, the largest manufacturer of pool tables, air hockey tables and foosball tables
Table Sponsors – Valley-Dynamo, Mariner-Sails, Champs Americana, Dominic Via, Guild Mortgage, Sandlin Homes.
Partner Sponsors – Hot On Homes, Anderson-Hanson-Blanton, Perry Hix, The Getz Team,
Product Sponsors – Temple Fork Outfitters, Smith Optics, Brute Outdoors, Hobie Fishing, Xcite Baits
And of course, to our poker players for their participation and donations!
If you missed the fun this year, mark your calendars for next September and be sure to join us again!

The Power of One

When we were kids and someone gave us a penny it wasn’t a big deal. Mainly it was a hassle and what can you buy with one cent. I thought this up and to the point that I was told about the power of one.

The power of one showed me that even when I think I’m not getting thru or doing something that is memorable I do still have an effect on people. That’s the key! Whatever you do and whoever you are in contact with have the potential to catch a part of your passion and spread the word. One to one, to hundreds, to thousands to millions – you never know.

Many of you know that Heroes on the Water is special to Kayak Bass Adventures. Below is the impact that one, small, event had for the organization. Whether you give of time, talent or money it is important for those who are spreading cheer, peace and good times on the water for some of Americas heroes. I would invite anyone reading this to check out Heroes on the Water. These guys are changing lives and you can help!

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Take Time To Remember

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“A nation that does not honor it’s heroes, will not long endure.” – President Abraham Lincoln 

This weekend marks the official start of the summer season. I know that after the polar vortex that many of us suffered through this winter we are looking forward to the sun on our face and the rod loading up with the catch of the day. While you are enjoying that time with family and friends take a minute and remember what this weekend is about. Service, Leadership and Honor come to mind when I remember those who paid the ultimate price. 

I enjoy supporting Heroes on the Water. It’s just not about the fishing for me but it’s about hearing the stories of the guys that have served and what they lost during that service. Heroes on the Water takes wounded men and women out on the water so they can enjoy a day of kayak fishing. Our local Dallas / Forth Worth chapter does an outstanding job of blending a great time with beneficial healing power. If you haven’t had an opportunity to get involved check out their website, you will be glad you did.

As I put out my flag this weekend I will remember those who have served, been injured and who have given their all to protect my freedoms. Kayak Bass Adventures wishes you and your families a great weekend and remembers those who make that possible!

KEEP LIVING THE DREAM

 

 

The Ripple Effect

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There is one thing I love about kayak fishing more than anything else; hitting the water, at first light, is the top of the mountain. The wind is down, the water is like glass and you and the kayak move effortlessly through the water. You roll up to your favorite spot and take your first shot of the day. The bait goes flying through the morning air and softly lands on the water. There’s just something beautiful about the ripple effect. That got me to thinking about what ripple effect are we causing in our sport?

The ripple effect is defined this way, a spreading effect caused by a single action or event. It can be also thought of as the domino effect. You’re probably asking what does this have to do with kayak fishing. I say it has a lot to do with our sport. With the spring fishing season upon us I am hearing from and seeing a bunch of new people getting kayaks and asking for advice. Most of the folks I’m dealing with aren’t as hardcore as the rest of us, but getting into the sport nonetheless. These guys are eager to listen, learn and try out what they have learned. They also need folks to fish with and take an interest in putting them in the right fishing situation so that they can have an enjoyable experience. I know that most of us always take time for the new guy and to encourage, listen and teach what we know. That’s the ripple effect I’m talking about; paying it forward to new people in our sport and supporting them in what they are trying to do. I get excited to see new Facebooks groups, bloggers and videos. I try to reach out to those guys and let them know we all appreciate their work. The more folks we have talking, blogging and videoing kayak fishing the better the content will become. Positive ripple effects, just like the bait thrown in the exact spot produces an excellent and rewarding result.

Sometimes you have to ask the hard questions. First, am I taking more from the kayak table than I’m bringing to it? Second, am I the type of person that is welcoming to new guys and encouraging what they’re trying to do? Third, Do I always fish with the same crowd? Lastly, Do I enjoy helping out and seeing others reach goals and milestones? These questions are things I ask myself weekly, because if you’re not careful you find yourself pushing potential people away instead of bringing folks closer, while focusing more on what you are trying to achieve.

You know those pictures above the dentist chair, the ones meant to relax you? The other day I saw this quote above the chair, “Your thoughts and actions are like stones dropped into still waters causing ripples to spread as they move outward.” This season take inventory of yourself and be that better person, the guy who is a friend to all and walks in line with promoting one of the fastest growing segments of the fishing population. Take time to say thank you to the folks that brought you into the sport, thank those that are following and supporting your fan pages and videos. Also take time to apologize to those that you may have offended, disagreed with or grown apart from. What kind of ripple effect are you having on people?

Those are my thoughts. Feel free to agree, disagree or share a story about what you are doing to further the sport. I look forward to hearing from you

Keep Living The Dream!

Let’s Talk Tackle!

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Let’s talk tackle! It is well documented that I have a tackle addiction. All I have to do is look at forums, facebook ads or any fishing magazine and I have to try it or at least acquire it for my collection. This leads me to another problem. Tackle organization, what to carry with me on the trip and how to store it. If I have learned one thing from tournament fishing is that you have to be organized and have a plan. When I first started fishing tournaments I had my tackle everywhere. You can call it inexperience, but my kayak was a mess. When I first took up kayak fishing I wasn’t fishing in a platform that allowed me much storage or much stability. The old yak was much like a counter balance system, anything that was added needed to be added with equal weight to the other side. I never knew what they might be interested in so I carried a little of everything. As you would figure out whatever I had the least of is what the hot action was on and thus once that bait was gobbled up the action for me went cold.

The start of the 2013 season found me in the Hobie Pro Angler 14. This kayak has ridiculous amounts of storage. Hobie thought forward and included a compressed tackle deck at your feet so now I could keep things organized. Yak-Attack came out with the Black Pac so I could really be organized. However, old habits die hard and I found that my tackle was in the same shape it was when I was paddling the big box store kayak. Yes, I once paddled. Even though I had great resources for a management system I failed to act and spent more wasted time digging thru my new organizational system to find anything. This equaled less fishing time, less fish and more frustration. Yes, I had a great tackle collection, but that’s all it was. I decided to research how the top guys organized themselves and why they organized themselves. With that information collected a change had to be made.

This off season I spent several days taking all pieces of tackle: soft plastics, hard baits and terminal tackle out to formulate a plan. I found out that for me to be organized I needed to use the Plano water proof boxes, that come standard on the Hobie Pro Angler 12 & 14, as my terminal tackle boxes. This gives me quick access to hooks and weights and C-Rig set ups. I then turned my attention to my Black Pac and organized the hard baits by size and function, clearly labeling the Plano boxes. The giant hurdle was the soft plastic situation. What on earth am I to do with the several dozen soft plastic bags? Enter the Plano Molding 3600. This roomy soft sided tackle system afforded me enough room to place all my soft plastic, separated by bait type in zip lock bags – thanks Mike Whitaker for the tip. It also affords me the ability to carry extra terminal tackle. This tackle bag is loaded with pockets, Plano boxes and has helped me conquer the tackle organization situation that I needed. With all things organized I found myself with more tackle so I went further and broke it down by season. So now when I hit the water in the Spring I’m not loaded with my winter or summer gear. We’re keeping it simple in 2014 and so far it’s paying a great dividend.

Final note, last week my brother asked me about where to find fishing information in the Austin Area. I directed him to the Keep Austin Fishing Facebook group. I spoke to him this morning and he referred to it as his fishing church. He wanted me to say thanks for the information and tips on the local lakes, as well as welcoming him to the group. That is what this community is all about!

KEP LIVING THE DREAM!

Mariner-Sails: Leading the Southwest In Everything Kayak!

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It is a well established fact that I have a tackle, gear and gadget addiction. I also know that there are many like me in the kayak fishing community. As most, I am an impulse buyer, meaning I’m at a place of business and see the product, purchase the product and then use the product. I get real frustrated when I make a purchase and have to wait the fourteen days for free shipping. Heck, with my track record I may have forgotten why I wanted the stuff in the first place. I am also a huge last minute guy. As tournaments or appearance draw near I always need that one last thing and there is not time for ordering. What a kayak bass angler to do when he’s impulsive, in a hurry and doesn’t have the time or knowledge to install items correctly? He goes to Mariner-Sails.

I want to spend a segment and tell you why Mariner-Sails, in Dallas Texas should be your one and only stop for kayak fishing merchandise. Yes, they carry every name brand under the sun and are knowledgeable about each product they represent, but what separates them from the rest of the pack is that they have it in stock. When you walk into the shop you are overwhelmed by the scale of kayaks and supplies they have to offer. I have deemed them the largest, most knowledgeable kayak supplier in the Southwest. For all those folks reading in the Southwest this is your one stop. For those of you that are out of town they have an excellent website that’s easy to use. This site gives you pricing, specs, sizes and all the information that you need to make an informed decision. You may ask what if I have a question. Well pick up the phone and call, (972) 241-1498; make sure you speak to Shaun Russell or Dave Potts. These two guys are lights out when it comes to answering your questions relating to any kayak fishing product.

So, if it’s not enough to have the largest stock in the Southwest or to have an available help line to discuss you questions you can add service and warranty. Mariner Sails takes those two items to the extreme. You can search all over fishing forums and see the testimony of all the folks who are not only satisfied, but are raving fans of Mariner-Sails. I have seen the team jump hurdles and crawl under wire to satisfy customers in a warranty situation. The great thing is your never alone wondering what’s up. Mariner-Sails offer excellent follow up and communication so you know exactly where you are in the process.

I say the above 448 words to say that not many people go to the lengths to satisfy, support and educate their clients. The shop offers numerous support seminars that educate you from water safety to catching a limit of crappie and everything in between. When you are looking to make that kayak or kayak accessory purchase make sure you call the team at Mariner-Sails.  These guys are the only people I trust with my Hobie Pro Angler 14’s.

Remember that when you are in a hurry and feeling impulsive and need over the top service call Mariner-Sails. You will not be disappointed and heck you may see me in there loading up another basket of greatness. I have learned that when you’re doing business you want to make sure you’re dealing with folks who know what they’re talking about, treat you fairly and have it in stock!

 

KEEP LIVING THE DREAM

KBA’s Best of 2013!

Where would we be without innovation? This year has been an outstanding year of Innovative products for the Kayak Angler. All of these new products have improved the fishing experiences for those that have used them. These products are ranked in no particular order, so I hope you enjoy Kayak Bass Adventures Best of 2013.

Kayaks:

Hobie Pro Angler 14: In my opinion this is the most outstanding fishing kayak on the market today. The Pro Angler has the size and stability to handle the largest bodies of water. Hobie has provided massive amounts of built in storage, from the front hatch with removable liner to the twist and seal hatch with retractable tackle management system. The crown jewel, for me, is the fully adjustable vantage seating. When you spend hours chasing bass it is helpful to have a seat that supports your back and sits high enough to give you fantastic leverage on fish. Lastly, this kayak offers multiple rod storage so you do not have to constantly retie your baits. The Pro Angler gives you six horizontal rod holders, along two vertical rod holders. For me the best kayak for 2013 is definitely the Hobie Pro Angler 14.

Hobie Outback: When I am not in the Pro Angler 14, I prefer the Hobie Outback. For creeks, rivers or small neighborhood ponds I feel this kayak gives me everything I need to be comfortable. Again, Hobie provides outstanding storage, above and below deck, the comfort of the Mirage drive for hands free fishing and the Lowrance ready mounting system for the fish finder. This kayak is light weight and allows me to handle with ease for loading and unloading.  

Kayak Accessories:

Yak Attack Black Pac:  This great innovation has changed the way I store my tackle and has greatly improved my organization on the water. The Black Pac is more than a milk crate offering you endless opportunities for rigging. A few of my favorite items on my Black Pac are my gear tracks. These allow me to mount my cameras in order to capture awesome video. I also have a spot for fish grips, pliers and marking buoys and the Hawg Trough. Kayak Bass Adventures believes this to be the best accessory of 2013!

Brute Outdoors: Nothing completes a Kayak more than a great cooler. The Brute Box is an outstanding product that offers thick insulated walls for maximum ice retention, two heavy duty cantilever latches, rubber gasket for extra tight seal, grab rails for easy carrying, over sized anti-skid rubber feet and multiple tie-down slots for cooler security. I have had numerous coolers and the Brute Box is for real! The Brute 25 fits perfectly behind your seat and allows for easy access. Lastly, the boxes are true to size, meaning that 25 – means actual 25 quart with room for long necks to stand straight up. The perfect kayak pair will be the Brute Box 25 on board and the Brute 50 back at camp. These are made in America and you will see the difference.

Yak Attack Zooka Tube w/ 8’ Parking Pole: I don’t use an anchor trolley because it doesn’t suit my style of fishing. I move a lot and try to cover max water. When I do need to hold a spot, such as grass, pads or timber I count on the Zooka Tube and 8’ Parking Pole.  I realize the primary function of the Zooka is for rod holding, but I have found it to be an excellent piece of equipment for the bass angler during the spring spawn. The reason I love it is because it is quick and easy to deploy and the 8’ Parking pole is a great weapon to push off gators or snakes that get to close for comfort. If you haven’t tried this application- try it.

Battery Pack & Pelican Case: I like simple and easy. This watertight case along with battery gives you security in knowing that you battery is safe from moisture and from the damage caused from dropping. When you have to charge it is charged in the case. I call this my battery brief case and don’t leave home without it.

Supernova Fishing Lights: These bad boys hit the kayak scene this year and took night fishing to the next level. I currently don’t have a set, but when the kayak goes into dry dock this season you can rest assure that we will be installing a set. I like these because they also go along with safety and being seen. I look forward providing a full report next season. From those that I know that have them, it was their Ah Ha moment for fishing after dark.  Great job Supernova!

Fishing Electronics:

Lowrance Electronics: You can’t go wrong with any of the HDS – Gen 2 series of products, enough said!

Hydrowave Mini: This is one of those products that will have doubters, but I have seen it in action and it’s the real deal. Whether you are a tournament angler or a weekend warrior you will put more fish in the boat when you fire up the Hydrowave.

Fishing Rods:

Temple Fork Outfitters: There is not a more quality, well balanced or greater feeling rod than the TFO GTS rods. These rods are lightweight, extra fast at the tip and have amazing feel. One of the things that make a TFO Rod is the tactical series guide with machined stainless steel inserts that are super-hard chrome anodized then swaged into a chromium- impregnated stainless frame. I say all that to say its tough and saltwater safe. TFO rod blanks are selected by Gary Loomis and engineered to the highest quality. I personally prefer the 7’-3’’ GTS in Medium, Medium Heavy, Heavy and X-tra Heavy. Can’t wait to tell all you guys what is coming down the pipe for 2014!

Outdoor Clothing:

Columbia Sportswear: We are all out in many different elements over the course of the season. I have found that Columbia meets all the challenges. A few things to check out is, anything in the Omni-Heat line as well all their performance fishing gear clothing. It’s highly important that you are comfortable and look sharp, Columbia Sportswear brings it all together.

Well, there it is – The Best of 2013! Hope you guys will check out these products and companies and discover the difference it will make in your fishing experience. There is one great retailer to look to when you are searching for quality kayak angling gear and that is the fine folks at Mariner-Sails. You will not find a more knowledgeable and helpful staff anywhere. Feel free to stop by the showroom or shop on line at www.mariner-kayaks.com.

KEEP LIVING THE DREAM!