Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Tandem Fishing in the Frontier for 3rd Place Finish

Tournament Report from Team NuCanoe member Kenny Ratliff

Recently, I had the pleasure of fishing a local fundraiser tournament with one of my sons.  This was the second year for me and third for him.  Due to business travel the first year it was held, I wasn’t able to participate but his mother contributed her limited fishing knowledge in my absence.  In spite of that, he took 1st Place that year which you’ll see is a significant part of the story. 

Last year we both fished from the Frontier.  It was one of our first outings and we had a few things to learn about watching your back cast, optimum storage of gear, and most important – what gear not to bring!  We missed first place by a few ounces but determined we would return.

This year we knew the lake better and how to be more efficient for the 5 hours on the water.  I have to tell you, I can’t imagine another kayak that would be any more comfortable and stable for that length of time.  He stood often, while I remained seated.  But the stability of the Frontier allowed me to swing my legs over the side without throwing him off-balance.  In that fashion we were able to fish water to the front and back just like you would on a big bass boat.  The coolest action of the day occurred when we both placed unplanned casts within a foot of each other, then both of us immediately set the hooks.  Our first exact double in all the time we’ve fished together!  Mine kept and his didn’t, but we were both pumped!

Once back at the weigh-in, the winning boat only brought three fish to the stand.  However, one of them was a little over 3 pounds.  We weighed four fish that were good enough for 3rd Place, as the 2nd Place finishers weighed the maximum five fish.  The heartbreaker was knowing we both lost a keeper apiece that might have given them a run for that spot! 

At the end of the day, it was great to be on the water.  We fought the wind nearly the entire time, but again the design and stability of the Frontier allowed us to maneuver without any problem.  So, if you haven’t figured it out yet – Dad doesn’t seem to be taking the finishes the right direction.  Mom made sure to comment that maybe Ethan should consider going back to his first partner – her of course!