Today in Smallmouth Magazine – Volume 1 Issue 7, we continue looking at the first year of the magazine dedicated to the smallmouth bass and the anglers who chased them. Unfortunately, unlike the prior two issues, this issue went back to the four-page format, leaving the reader wanting more. Still, even within those four pages, there was some good information being shared.
One example is a piece written by long-time bass-fishing writer Darl Black. Black wrote a feature on Lake Erie smallmouth fishing and gave a complete synopsis on the fishery – circa 1985. It’s a snapshot in time of a Lake Erie that current Erie anglers would not recognize.
Back then it was large schools of herring the smallmouth keyed on for forage. This made the smallies a lot more pelagic in nature. Although the smallmouths of Erie will never be accused of staying in one place very long, at least the gobies have changed their nomadic lifestyle a bit. Couple that with the zebra muscles and the current fishery is very different than in the 1980s. If you’re a Lake Erie enthusiast, it’s a great article to read.
The second page features Billy Westmorland’s column and this month he went into color and how important he felt it was. I really liked this article because it falls along the same lines of what I’ve felt for many years. Color matters only to the angler – which in itself is very important. You may agree or you may not. It’s always a great discussion, though.
Page three continues with Black’s feature from page one but also has a funny little update on the 13-year locust migration and how the smallies in various states had turned on to them. I never had to deal with locusts, but I did have an experience in Idaho when the Mormon Crickets (no kidding) invaded Brownlee Reservoir one year. The bite was off the hook not just for the big smallmouths that inhabit that lake but also the catfish. Cast out a small black topwater bait near the shoreline and you didn’t know if you’d get a 4-pound smallies or a 10-pound cat.
The final page of the July Newsletter had a piece penned by Tom Zenanko on fishing smallies from the shore. Last month Rodgers had printed a piece on streamside smallie tactics and this piece by Zenanko showed that Rodgers was into showing everyone, with or without a boat, that they too could enjoy the old brown fish.
The entire issue is posted in the gallery below. Click on the first image and scroll through the entire issue.