I threw Chad Brauer’s rod and reel into a lake once as a result of an overzealous cast. You know Chad – his dad, Denny, was on the cover of the Wheaties’ box and the fishing genes must run in that family. As we watched it sink, he said, “That’s OK, I got that one when I was a kid and it was sorta special to me.” Then, he grinned at me and handed me another rod and reel. After all, he had umpteen thousand of them baited and lying there, waiting for me to throw them into the lake.
A bassin’ gal, I ain’t. I like to pitch and flip and all that, but for some reason, whenever I get to fish with a pro, I really look like Day #1 amateur.
I am pumped to hear that angler Sharon Rushton will be on the lake for the final event in the 2009 Academy Sports + Women’s Bassmaster Tour from Sept. 10-12 at Old Hickory Lake in Hendersonville, Tenn., this year, after kicking ovarian cancer out of her life recently. Way to go, Sharon. Those of you who know Sharon, will know she is a class act through and through. She says she believes the power of prayer was greater than the power of chemo.
As for the day in the life of a bass pro angler, I experienced that – thanks to Scott Pauley – a couple of years ago at Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks when he recreated a tournament experience for me, starting with a race across the lake to a fishing spot he’d chosen. We continued to race around and fished hard and then, raced back to the home dock.
I tried to imagine 100 boats doing the same thing. What would it be like to win one of these beautiful boats? What would it be like to haul it all over the country? As Chad once reminded me, “We can’t fly our boats to the lakes. We gotta haul ‘em there.”
It’s more than just fishing for a boat or tournament cash, though. The more I talk to women anglers, the more I’m convinced it’s the “sport” and the camaraderie involved in competing. It’s a huge sorority of bassin’ gals – there to support each other and to provide healthy competition.
If you’re interested in reading more about women and bass fishing, check out this excellent resource at http://sports.espn.go.com/outdoors/tournaments/wbt/index