Author Archives: ronniegarrison

Zeroing A Club Tournament at Lake Oconee

Days like Sunday, April 11 make me wonder why I am addicted to bass fishing.  Seven members of the Flint River Bass Club fished our April tournament at Lake Oconee.  After eight hours of casting we brought four bass weighing about seven pounds to the scales.  There were no limits and four us zeroed.

Jerry Regan won with two bass weighing 3.57 pounds, Don Gober had one at 2.01 pounds for second and big fish and Phil King’s one weighing 1.65 pounds was third.  That was it.

It was a weird trip for me.  AS week ago Sunday night after a shower I stepped out and the cool air hitting my body made me go into chills, shivering uncontrollably. I  was miserable all night.

Last Tuesday, after two very bad nights with chills and body aches, I tested positive for both Covid and the flu! I had my second vaccine dose on March 24 but a second more accurate test Tuesday afternoon confirmed the Covid, even after the vaccine.

I did not feel terrible during the day but at night I hurt, to the point moving cover on my skin made me want to cry in pain.  It felt like every muscle, joint and bone in my body ached.

Tuesday I took Tylenol every six hours and put some by the bed. That kept the pain down and I was able to sleep some, and felt better Wednesday morning and the fever was gone.

The doctor that gave me the test said I was the first they had to test positive after the vaccine, and warned me to quarantine myself for ten days. A few hours later I got a call from the state health department asking questions about where I had been and who I had contact with during the past two weeks. And they told me to quarantine myself until Wednesday this week.

    I felt fine Thursday and Friday, night and day.  I decided me alone in my truck going to the lake and in my boat alone on the lake was quarantine and fished the tournament. Plus, I was going stir crazy in the house!

    To add to my woes, when I checked the boat Friday night, oil was dripping very slowly from my motor lower unit.  Saturday morning, I tried to add oil to it.  You have to remove two screws and pump the oil from the lower one to the top one.  I pumped enough to see some oil come out the top hole and stopped.

    Last summer I hit something and bent the prop shaft a little, just enough to let the oil leak out without my knowledge, and it cost me $4500.00 to fix it. 
Every time I cranked up Sunday I could hear the “clunk” in my mind of the motor locking up last year.

    I idled around a little, never leaving sight of the ramp and never getting on plane, and fished close by. That is my excuse for not catching a fish, I could not go to where I won the Sportsman Club tournament at Oconee three weeks ago!

LOGGERHEAD Sea Turtle NEST SEASON BEGINS WHERE MONITORING BEGAN

Loggerhead sea turtle nesting tracks
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
from
Georgia DNR 

BRUNSWICK, Ga. (May 3, 2020) – Nesting season for loggerhead sea turtles has started on schedule.

The annual cycle of these massive turtles returning to beaches in the Southeast to lay their eggs began in Georgia with a nest found Saturday morning on Little Cumberland Island. Georgia Sea Turtle Cooperative members reported a second nest Sunday on Sea Island.

Georgia Sea Turtle Program Coordinator Mark Dodd said the first nests are “always around the first of May.” “It’s kind of like clockwork.”

This year’s first also has historical ties. While nesting has been monitored on all Georgia beaches since 1989, the network took root in 1964 when former University of Georgia professor Dr. Jim Richardson started the Little Cumberland Island Sea Turtle Project. That loggerhead monitoring effort is the oldest in North America and shares the status worldwide with a program started in South Africa the same year.

Little Cumberland Project Director Russell Regnery documented the nest on Little Cumberland Saturday. Hundreds more will follow on Georgia barrier islands, with nesting season for the state’s leading marine turtle and a protected species hitting full stride by June.

Predicting a total is anyone’s guess, according to Dodd, a senior wildlife biologist with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. But one question is whether 2021 can top the 2,786 nests last year, or better yet, the 3,950 in 2019, the most since comprehensive monitoring began.

The state’s previous record was 3,289 nests in 2016. The total in 2019 also marked the first time the chunky-headed marine turtles had topped a Georgia recovery benchmark of 2,800 nests.

The loggerhead population has been increasing at approximately 4 percent annually since the early 1990s. However, a new population model developed by UGA and the U.S. Geological Survey using nesting and genetics data indicates the population will plateau at current levels for about the next 20 years, its progress hindered by low recruitment during the early 2000s, Dodd said. If current protections remain in place at least through that period, the model suggests loggerhead numbers would then start to increase again, possibly reaching levels not seen since the late 1950s.

Supporting that rebound is the goal of Georgia’s Sea Turtle Cooperative. The DNR-coordinated network of about 200 volunteers, researchers and agency employees patrols beaches daily during nesting season. Working under a federal permit, members mark, monitor and protect all loggerhead nests, plus those of other species that seldom nest in Georgia, such as green and Kemp’s ridley.

The effort not only eases predation and increases the number of young that hatch, the data collected is used to assess loggerhead populations, assess threats and inform management. Cooperators also help with beach management. The program has been in play on Georgia beaches for more than 30 years.

“The cooperative has done a tremendous amount of work,” and with a measurable impact, Dodd said. “We started out averaging about 800 nests a year and we’re now up to about 3,500.”

Like other marine turtles, loggerheads – named for their large heads – crawl ashore on barrier island beaches, dig a hole at the base of the dunes and lay their eggs, usually at night.

To prep for the season, Dodd and staff have been training interns, working with volunteers, partner agencies and organizations, and teaming with DNR’s Law Enforcement Division, all while navigating social distancing and other requirements involving the coronavirus pandemic. Game wardens enforce regulations including the use of turtle excluder devices, or TEDs, in commercial shrimping.

The process followed on Little Cumberland and Sea Island last weekend will be repeated hundreds of times this year. An egg from each nest – less than 1 percent of the average clutch size on the island – was collected for UGA genetic analysis documenting the number and relatedness of loggerheads nesting in Georgia. The nest was then covered with a screen to protect the eggs from predators.

DNR’s Wildlife Conservation Section works to conserve sea turtles and other wildlife not legally fished for or hunted, as well as rare plants and natural habitats. The agency does this largely through public support from fundraisers, grants and contributions.

Key fundraisers include sales of the monarch butterfly license plates and sales and renewals of bald eagle plate and older designs, such as the ruby-throated hummingbird. These tags cost only $25 more than a standard plate to buy or renew. Up to $20 of that fee goes to help wildlife.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

All marine turtles in Georgia are protected by state and federal law. To help conserve these species:

§  Minimize beachfront lighting during sea turtle nesting season. Turn off, shield or redirect lights.

§  When walking the beach at night, don’t use flashlights and flash photography. They can deter turtles from coming ashore to nest or cause them to abort nesting.

§  If you encounter a sea turtle on the beach, remain quiet, still and at a distance.

§  Leave turtle tracks undisturbed. Researchers use them to identify the species and mark nests for protection.

§  Properly dispose of your garbage. Turtles may mistake plastic bags, Styrofoam and trash floating in the water as food. After ingesting trash, it can kill them by clogging their intestines.

§  Protect beach vegetation: It stabilizes sand and the natural coastline.

§  When boating, stay alert and avoid turtles. Of the sea turtles found dead or hurt in Georgia last year, 26 percent suffered injuries consistent with being hit by a boat. Boaters who hit a sea turtle are urged to stand-by and immediately call DNR at 800-2-SAVE-ME (800-272-8363).

§  Also report any dead or injured sea turtles seen at 800-272-8363. (If the turtle is tagged, include the tag color and number in the report if possible.)


Sources: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Georgia DNR

ACCIDENTAL CATCHES

Anglers who hook or entangle a sea turtle should call DNR at 800-2-SAVE-ME (800-272-8363). Also:

§  Keep your hands away from the turtle’s mouth and flippers.

§  Safely land the turtle using a net or by walking it to shore. Do not lift the turtle by the hook or by pulling on the line.

§  Leave the hook in place; removing it can cause more damage. (Anglers are encouraged to use non-stainless, barbless hooks when possible.)

§  Keep the turtle out of direct sunlight and cover it with a damp towel.


If an angler cannot reach DNR, cut the line as short as possible and release the turtle.

LOGGERHEADS AT A GLANCE

§  Caretta caretta: Most common sea turtle on Georgia’s coast; found off coast year-round. Also one of the world’s largest turtles, topping 350 pounds and sporting a carapace up to 44 inches long. How long loggerheads live is not known.

§  Range: The Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans, and the Mediterranean Sea. Nests in the U.S. from Virginia to Texas.

§  Nesting: Females reach sexual maturity at 30-35 years. From about May through September, they crawl ashore at night, dig a hole in the face of dunes along barrier island beaches, and deposit and cover eggs.

§  Pilgrimage: Eggs hatch in 55-65 days. The young scramble for the water, beginning a journey that can take them from sargassum weed off Georgia’s shores to a current-powered loop that circles to the Azores and the eastern Atlantic Ocean, south to west Africa and back to the western Atlantic.

§  Eats: Fish eggs and small invertebrates when small. As adults, they eat mainly crabs and mollusks, but also forage items like jellyfish and dead fish.

§  Status: Federally listed as threatened since 1978. Georgia DNR reclassified loggerheads in the state from threatened to endangered in 2006.

§  Threats: Primarily mortality associated with commercial fishing activities, but also nest predation by raccoons and feral hogs, poaching, loss of habitat, boat strikes, and even ingestion of plastic litter mistaken as food.

MORE ON THE NET

 

NESTING IN GEORGIA
Annual loggerhead nest totals since comprehensive surveys began in 1989.

1989 – 675
1990 – 1,031
1991 – 1,101
1992 – 1,048
1993 – 470
1994 – 1,360
1995 – 1,022
1996 – 1,096
1997 – 789
1998 – 1,055
1999 – 1,406
2000 – 1,060
2001 – 852
2002 – 1,028
2003 – 1,504
2004 – 358
2005 – 1,187
2006 – 1,389
2007 – 689
2008 – 1,649
2009 – 997
2010 – 1,761
2011 – 1,992
2012 – 2,241
2013 – 2,289
2014 – 1,201
2015 – 2,335
2016 – 3,289
2017 – 2,155
2018 – 1,735
2019 – 3,950
2020 – 2,786

Source: Georgia DNR

Boat Trailer Steps

Boat trailer steps from James Hewitt

James installed these on my boat last Sunday after our West Point tournment for $250! You can get some from him at 706-668-3459 cell or 770-854-8713 home.

Lake Guntersville Weekly Fishing Report from Captain Mike Gerry

Guntersville Winter Bass


Fishing Report, Lake Guntersville 5/1/21


It been a great week on Guntersville this past week the numbers have increased greatly and
catching has been more the norm than anytime this season so far. I believe the fish are way
behind many other years, but the good times are here and getting your line stretched is lots
of fun!


We fished mainly with Missile Bait D-Bombs, their 48-stick bait, and some traditional lizards
most of the week, my old faithful Tight-Line swim jig and Picasso Spinner bait is also
producing especially if you want to cover water and just locate some fish or let the wind push
you through an area with decent results. The key is depth and cover if you are in the right
depth with correct cover your catching fish!

Come fish with me I have guides and days available to fish with you no one will treat you
better or work harder to see you have a great day on the water. We fish with great sponsor
products Duckett Fishing, Mercury Motors, Lowrance Electronics, Ranger Boats, Vicious
Fishing, Lews Fishing, Boat Logix mounts, Dawson Boat Center and more.


Fish Lake Guntersville Guide Service
www.fishlakeguntersvilleguideservice.com
www.facebook.com/FishGuntersville
Email: bassguide@comcast.net
Call: 256 759 2270
Capt. Mike Gerry

Stinking Up A Lake Lanier Tournament

Last Sunday 27 members of the Potato Creek Bass Club fished our April tournament at Lake Lanier.  We landed 84 14-inch keeper bass weighing about 174 pounds.  There were nine five-fish limits, and one person did not weigh in a bass.

Jamie Beasley won with five weighing 13.16 pounds, Sam Smith was second with five weighing 12.93 pounds, third went to Jeff Wright with five weighing 12.75 pounds and Edward Folker was fourth with five weighing 12.57 pounds.  David Martin had a largemouth weighing 4.74 pounds for big fish.  Most of the fish weighed in were spotted bass.

I went up on Tuesday and camped at Don Carter State Park.  Don Carter is our newest state park and it had very nice facilities. The campground is spacious and there are great bath houses but there are also hiking trails, horse riding trails, a beach and cabins.

I put in at the park way up the river on Wednesday and fished the stained water in small coves. The water was stained and in the low 60, a perfect combination for the way I like to fish this time of year, but after five hours I landed four keeper bass. 

I did catch two nice largemouth on a buzzbait, one about 2.5 pounds and one close to four pounds, but both hit later in the afternoon. I did not think it was worth the 20 mile boat ride up there from our tournament launch site.

Several folks told me there was a good bite on the lower lake fishing Flukes around boat docks, so Thursday I put in at Balus Creek, our tournament launch site, and tried that pattern for several hours without a bite. The back end of Balus Creek was stained and there were shad everywhere but I could not get a bite there, either. 

I did finally catch a four-pound largemouth from a dock in the back of a creek, on a Carolina rig of all things, but that was no pattern. One bite does not tell me much, even though it was a good one.

On Friday I tried different things and final caught one keeper spot from a brush pile on a Fluke. I had no idea what to do in the tournament, so I decided to fish memories.

The first rocky point I want to fish Saturday morning had a boat fishing it so I tried other things.  At 11:00 I had not caught a fish so I went back to the first point and caught two keepers and two short fish and lost another keeper, all in 20 minutes.

By 2:00 I had not had another bite, including fishing all the docks where the big hit on Thursday.  I stopped on another rocky point on the way in to the ramp and caught two more keepers the last hour. All four hit a Carolina rig but four weighing five pound was good for about 20th place!

Maybe I should have made that run up the river.

Side-Imaging for the Walleye Crowd


By Joel Nelson, Northland Fishing Tackle
from The Fishing Wire


Walleye-anglers are a traditional bunch in-general.  New techniques and technologies are directly compared to known commodities, and rightly so.  There’s no use making things more difficult than they need to be, yet sometimes along the way what’s learned is in and of itself valuable.  I find that to be especially true in the case of side-imaging electronics for walleye fishing.

So often, structural anglers are used to locating a spot of interest via high definition contours, then picking those locations apart with traditional down-sonar in an effort to locate fish, catch them, and store location (GPS) information in order to return to that spot someday down the road.  Lest we forget, at one time this technology was also new, though its adoption was rapid among the ranks of professionals and casual anglers alike.  Still, I’ve heard it mentioned in even upper echelons of walleye nerdery that side-imaging is only for “bass-guys.”

A staple among tournament bass anglers these days is side-imaging runs that map both structural elements, and individual fish to target.  At last year’s Bassmaster Angler-of-the-Year tournament on Mille Lacs, dozens of complete strangers to the fishery pulled 60lb. bags of smallmouth bass during the 3-day competition, most of them leaning heavily on using their side-imaging to locate large boulders and individual bass off them.  This very application, while being a classic use of the technology, is not a reason to classify it as a “bass-only” benefit.

Shallow water walleyes can be found throughout the warm-water months during big wind events, even in clear water.  That same clarity provides a solid reason to consider side-imaging on your next electronics purchase, as walleyes rarely tolerate overhead boat traffic in clear-water shallows.  The imaging becomes your eyes up shallow, allowing you to stay back off of the fish, and put a multitude of presentations to them without pushing them around and killing the bite.  Shallow fish are typically feeding, so these are the fish you’re looking to target anyway.

While side-imaging proves very valuable for any species relating to shallow structural elements, the same also holds over the depths.  It’s a common misconception that side-imaging isn’t useful at the same depths we’re typically targeting walleyes.  On a recent trip to Grand Rapids, MN, I used my Lowrance Carbon-12 to image an underwater point I’ve fished often, both during open-water and through the ice.  While I knew there was an 8-foot rock-pile along the shallow lip of it, I didn’t give credit to that rockpile and how it affected walleye movements out and away from it.  All of our bites came off the pile some distance in 14-18FOW, as fish staged there before dark awaiting the low-light evening assault on those shallow rocks.  Not surprisingly, immediately out from the pile was a hard-bottom, rock-free shelf.  It was noticeably different from the surrounding break, and drew the majority of those fish.  Once I knew what I was looking for, I could find it on the down-sonar, but it literally jumped out at me on the side-imaging.

An even deeper application can be found on the famed mud flats of Mille Lacs, where savy anglers for many years have known that not all parts of all flats are mud.  There is a surprising amount of rock and gravel in certain locations, though most are in small out of the way places along the edge of the flats.  With a good chop, and the resultant screen display of your sonar showing a “wavy” bottom, it’s difficult to detect the tell-tale signs of rough or un-even rock bottom.  These locations, being different from surrounding substrate for at times, miles, almost always have fish on them or nearby.

Perhaps the best way to introduce yourself to the technology is to image an area you already know, preferably if you know it holds fish.  So often as walleye anglers we stumble onto a mere piece of the puzzle.  We catch fish on one side of a reef for a short period of time in late afternoon, without realizing that we only intercepted fish in a 30 minute window making their way out of the depths and up to structure to feed.  Even if we know fish are likely to be up top and actively eating, we know not what locations have the largest boulders, the most pronounced feeding shelves, or what areas are too weed-choked to effectively fish in low-light.  All of those answers can be gleaned from a quick pass or two around the structure of interest.

Take this technology for a spin on a few locations you’ve fished for years, and be amazed at the depth and level of information it offers you.  Consider it the best real-time map that’s offered today, and get used to seeing and interpreting what information in the plan direction really means to your fishing, rather than just the profile depth direction we’re so used to seeing in the sonar of old.

See more like this at www.northlandtackle.com.

If Its Got Tires…

There is a saying that goes something like “if it has tires you will have trouble with it.”  That is especially true if you dunk the tires under water often. Boat trailer tires are notorious for causing problems.

    For many years maintenance was fairly simple. You checked and repacked your bearings every year and kept a watch on them during trips. Even with that care you could have problems.  Before he passed away, Jack “
Zero” Ridgeway took care of me and my boat trailer.  It is hard to find a good reliable place to work on boat trailer tires.

    One time when I was leaving for Lake Martin, a 125 mile trip each way, I noticed one of my tires wobbled a little. I stopped at Zero’s shop and he changed the bearings and got me on the way in a few minutes.

    Twice I have had to replace one of the axles on my EZLoader Skeeter Trailers.  One time I hit a curb trying to get out on a busy highway and bent the spindle on one tire.  I was wearing out a tire every 400 miles on that spindle, so it was very cost effective to replace it.

    Another time I was backing in at Lake Lanier and someone hollered at me that I was losing a tire. I got out and one tire was at an angle.  It fell off with a little tug. I had to get a flatbed wrecker to bring my boat home to Zero to fix. Somehow that tire hung on all the way up the 5 different interstate highways at 70 plus MPH and waited until I was on the ramp to fall off!

    My newer trailer has oil bath bearings, not the old kind you kept grease in. These hold oil and are supposed to be long lasting.  I never noticed a problem with that tire before it fell off, but it was bad enough to ruin that spindle.

    Last week I noticed one of my tires and rims had oil all over it, not a good sign.  I really did not know what to do, just that something had to be done. Luckily, I was referred to Mike’s Trailer Hitches and Accessories at 3418 North Expressway.  I took my boat to him and he checked, the cap was leaking a little and he filled it back up with oil and ordered me a new cap.

Service was friendly and helpful and its nice finding someone to work on wheel bearings on boat trailers.  I hope I don’t go there much, but when I need work done I know where to go!

Drum Up Some Spring Angling Excitement

By Chuck Long
 Arkansas GFC Northeast Regional Educator
from The Fishing Wire

Many spring anglers turn their thoughts to a wonderful silver-hued fish, the crappie. Another silver fish readily available to anglers throughout The Natural State and much of the South also provides a great angling opportunity, but freshwater drum are often overlooked by anglers, despite their hard fight, potential to reach large sizes and fine table quality.

Drum are found throughout Arkansas and other states in most flowing waters and larger lakes. They primarily feed on the bottom, looking for crayfish, macroinvertebrates and small fish. They are not very selective feeders, which makes them an ideal target for anglers.

Any rod and reel can be effective for drum fishing. A basic spincasting rig will handle most drum, while a spinning rod or baitcasting setup can also be very effective. Monofilament line in the 15- to 20-pound range will be effective, but a better choice might be braided line in the 20- to 30-pound range. Drum are often found in deeper water with current and the thinner diameter of the braid lessens drag of the current while waiting on a bite.

Terminal tackle for drum fishing is simple. Begin the rigging with an egg sinker about ½-ounce or larger, depending on the current flow. Slide the main line through the egg sinker and then tie on a barrel swivel, which will allow the sinker to slide freely up and down the main line. Attach a monofilament leader of about 12 inches to the swivel and tie on a hook. Drum have a relatively small mouth so a small hook is typically better. Baitholder-style hooks in the no. 2 or 4 size are very effective. Drum are very prone to light bites and swallowing the bait so a circle hook can also be a great tool. Circle hooks in a light wire no. 1 with a wide bend are very effective. When using a circle hook, there is no need for a sharp hook set, just tighten up the slack and pressure will allow the circle hook to penetrate into the corner of the fish’s mouth.

Drum can be caught on a variety of baits, but there have probably been more caught on worms than any other. Crawdad tails and pieces of cooked shrimp can also be very effective. Drum often are incidental catches by bass or crappie anglers, as they also will strike artificial baits like small grubs, swimbaits and jigs that are fished near the bottom.

As with most fish, being able to read the water is critical to catch drum. Current breaks, eddies, dropoffs and structure will hold drum. Anchor above a likely area, cast out several rods to cover multiple depths, sit back and wait for the bite. Drum are great for bank anglers as they are very accessible from shore. Read the water, set out a few rods and get ready for a tug on the line. Drum will provide a great fight for any angler and are especially good for young anglers because they can provide lots of action. They often travel in schools, so once a fish is caught concentrate on that area.

Drum are often seen as subpar for the table but this is far from the truth. When caught out of cool water, they are excellent additions to a meal. Ice the fish as soon as possible and fillet them just as you would bass or crappie. There are no intermuscular bones, and the meat is firm. With a little trimming of the dark red meat just under the skin, drum can be prepared in a variety of ways. Drum fillets are good for the traditional fish fry with a covering of seasoned cornmeal and immersion in oil at 350 degrees for about six minutes. Like their saltwater cousins, the redfish, they are also excellent with a blackened recipe. The texture and consistency also lends itself to a unique recipe, poor man’s lobster. There are many variations to this recipe, but the basics are to cube the fillets into bite-sized pieces, boil for 5 to 7 minutes in crab boil seasoning and serve with a butter-based dipping sauce. It makes for a great appetizer or main meal.

Chuck Long is a regional educator based at the AGFC’s Forrest L. Wood Crowley’s Ridge Nature Center. He has taught hunting, fishing and enjoyment of Arkansas’s outdoors for 30 years.

ZEBRA MUSSELS FOUND IN GEORGIA

MORE ZEBRA MUSSELS FOUND IN GEORGIA; DNR URGES PUBLIC TO KEEP WATCH

Remember to Clean, Drain and Dry Vessels Used in Other States

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (April 20, 2021) – With zebra mussels found on a boat in the Lake Lanier area, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources is urging boat owners to CLEAN, DRAIN and DRY their boats, and be aware of the potential for transferring these invasive mussels from waters in other states.

Owners of a boat taken to Lanier after being used on the Tennessee River near Chattanooga, Tenn., recently spotted zebra mussels on the boat and called DNR.

Staff from the agency’s Wildlife Resources Division removed about 1 gallon of dead mussels from the boat and worked with the owners to ensure the vessel was drained, properly cleaned and thoroughly dried. DNR commended the owners for recognizing the issue and taking the necessary steps to report it.

Zebra mussels, a species native to eastern Europe that has spread to many U.S. waters, including the Tennessee River, pose a significant risk to Georgia. If established here they could spur major ecological and economic damage. Zebra mussels and other aquatic invasive species can cause millions of dollars in damage to boats and water intake pipes, while undermining native mussels and other aquatic species. 

There is no known established population in Georgia. However, in March zebra mussels were found in Georgia pet stores attached to moss ball plants being sold for aquariums.

For more information on these aquatic invaders and how to report them, as well as how to properly CLEAN, DRAIN and DRY vessels, visit georgiawildlife.com/ans.

St Croix Victory Rods and the Koza Family

St. Croix Voices of Victory: Lee Rose and Carter Koza

PARK FALLS, Wisc. – Carter Koza is senior at Mount Paran Christian School in Kennesaw, Georgia. His sister, Lee Rose Koza, is a sophomore at Carson-Newman University in Knoxville, Tennessee. Both siblings have fished competitively for the past several years, and credit their father, Jamie, for their love of fishing and drive to compete.

“My dad fished tournaments ever since he was a little kid, so he got us involved early,” says Carter, adding that their dad also runs a tackle shop. “We were surrounded by fishing all the time. We’d go to school, then to the shop, and the rest of the time we were fishing,” adds Lee Rose, who admits that her decision to fish competitively did not come without challenges.

SEE THE VIDEO HERE

“I really had to get over my fears of jumping into the sport. Carter was already fishing and having success on our high school team, but I didn’t join until my junior year,” Lee Rose says. “It took a lot for me to make that leap of being one of the only girls in high school bass angling in the State of Georgia. But I’m proud and grateful that I did. Putting myself in that boat and fishing in a male-dominated sport turned out to be a great decision and I consider that my first personal fishing victory. My second was when Carter and I fished together and won Angler of the Year in 2019 – our last year fishing together as a team. When we got handed that Angler of the Year trophy for the whole entire State of Georgia, that moment was victorious; it was indescribable.”

Carter agrees, and dives deeper into what it takes to earn consistent success as a tournament angler. “We fish all over the place. Showing up to a new lake at a certain time of year, you’ve got to figure it out. It’s like a puzzle,” he says. “Being able to not only catch fish, but also have a good finish and cash a check in any tournament… that’s victory.”

Carter and Lee Rose have been partners with St. Croix for almost five years now. “Being able to work with a company that stands behind me, not only providing support but treating me like I’m a member of the family is another great victory,” says Carter. “My tournament career is still relatively young, but I know and appreciate how special St. Croix is as a company and am truly grateful to be a part of their team.”

Both Lee Rose and Carter were among the St, Croix pros who had early access to the new Victory Series rods for beta testing and input. “I’m really excited to see where this series goes,” Lee Rose says. “Being college and high school anglers, we are definitely on a budget. We can’t go spend $500 for a single rod, and a lot of other anglers can’t either. Seeing these American-made technique-specific high-performance rods being offered at such an affordable price with a 15-year warranty is a really big deal. For the weekend angler or someone striving to fish the Bassmaster Classic, these rods are attainable for almost anyone and will definitely help give anglers the upper hand on the water.”

St. Croix’s all-new made-in-the-USA Victory Series rods were conceived and designed to deliver bass anglers more victories on the water – no matter how they’re defined. Featuring technique-specific lengths, powers and actions that yield lightweight performance with extreme sensitivity, durability and balance via an all-new SCIII+ material, eight new Victory rods are available right now at select St. Croix dealers and online retailer. Angler-friendly retail prices for these new, American-crafted Victory rods range from $180 to $200.
#stcroixrods #stcroixvoiceofvictoryLike the rods? You’ll love our lifestyle apparel.