Saturday, 29 December 2012

WRVO - Reno Viola Outdoors

I wanted to update you guys on something that's coming down the pipe in the new year that I'm really, really excited about.  Canadian fishing icon Reno Viola has a 24 hour a day Internet radio network coming to us live, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week!  As a part of this 24/7 network, Reno is also going to have a section on his website,, strictly for bloggers to provide tips and tactics to the readers.  I'm very excited to say that I will be one of those bloggers!  It's an opportunity I'm really looking forward to, and I can't wait to see the launch of WRVO Radio, January 21st, 2013!

Sunday, 23 December 2012

New Sponsors Update - Angler's Choice, Ardent, McCoy

Just a quick update on some exciting things for the 2013 tournament season!  I recently signed with three GREAT new sponsors that everyone should take a look at.

First off is an outstanding up and coming soft plastics company out of Wallaceburg Ontario.  Angler's Choice really have become the angler's choice in the recent years.  Owned and operated by Dave McCready, these are some of the softest baits on the market.  And with some amazing colours these baits will be on the end of many lines in the very near future.  Check out what my friends over at had to say about their flippin' baits:

Next is Ardent Reels.  Known for being 100% made in North America, I'm very excited about joining Team Ardent.  Made right here in North America, Ardent reels are workhorses in the reel world.  With Drag Tracking Technology, the Ardent Edge Elite is one of the best reels on the market.  Take a look today!

Last but not least is McCoy Fishing Line.  Known mainly for their excellent mono-filament Mean Green, McCoy also has some outstanding braid and flourocarbon.  I really think this line will help boat some pigs this year.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

The Rod Glove - Everyones Favourite Rod Protector!

Today I wanted to take some time to talk to you about The Rod Glove (@THERODGLOVE).  The products made by Jim Van Ryn and VRX Fishing have been a LIFESAVER for me while tournament fishing and also fun fishing.  Now let's get started talking about everyones favourite rod protection company.


This is what the brand is known for - they're outstanding, durable, 100% North American made Rod Gloves.  The standard gloves come in both spinning and casting models as well as microguide models, have a hard plastic tapered tip, come in multiple sizes to cover rods anywhere from 6' to 8' and a rainbow of 17 (!) different colours.  These gloves are made of woven material that protects the investment you made in your rods and they come in two standard lengths; the standard casting glove comes in a 5.25' length which perfectly covers your rods up to 7', while the spinning gloves standard length is 5.5'.  They also have the 6' length for casting rods and 6.25' for spinning.  Both do a fantastic job keeping your longer 7'+ rods safe.  They all expand to easily slide over the rod guides.  There is also the PRO series which are made of neoprene.

The Rod Glove - on the left is a spinning version, the other 3 are casting versions.

Notice the hard plastic, tapered tip.  Makes putting your rods in your car or rod locker a breeze!


This product has to be one of my favourites by far! These reel protectors are durable, easy to put on and like every other Rod Glove product is quality made.  It's made of neoprene, easily fits on the reel and attaches to the rod.  The way they are designed you can put it on while still being rigged up, there is a place for the line to come through the cover.  The casting version comes in two different sizes to fit any reel, and the spinning version will fit up to a 3000 series reel.  As I said, these are by far my favourite reel covers on the market today.

Reel Glove - one of my favourite products!


The Rod Glove also has a few other products to make anglers lives easier on and off the water.  They make a handy little product called the Bait Glove.  I transport my rods fully rigged in my truck and let me tell you I used to have crankbait trebles hooked into everything! Not anymore with the Bait Glove.  It comes in three different sizes - 6", 9" and 12" - and has been a life saver for transporting fully rigged rods.

Another innovative product from VRX Fishing - the Bait Glove!

There are also the Technique Tags which help make you more efficient on the water.  Now you can simply look at your rod and see what's tied onto it.  The Technique Tags simply slide onto the original Rod Gloves and save you time on the water by letting your readily identify what's tied on.

The Rod Glove Saver and the Rod Glove Wraps are also handy products to have.  The Saver allows you to attach a clip to your Rod Glove, then wrap it around your reel handle, effectively eliminating the chacne that the wind might grab your glove and blow it out onto the water.  The Wraps allow you to wrap your rods into a nice, easy to carry bundle, making it a breeze for transporting all your rods to and from the boat.

Hopefully you're beginning to understand why the Rod Glove family of products  is by far one of my favourite companies out there today.  Not only do they make an outstanding product that helps EVERYONE angler out there, the owner, Jim Van Ryn, really goes out of his way to ensure that you - the customer - is 100% satisfied.  Check out the Rod Glove today, you won't be disappointed!

Great product, great service - what more can you ask for?

Monday, 10 December 2012

Denali Custom Rods

I decided to take some time to write a blog about some of the best custom rods on the planet - Denali Rods.  All these rods are lightweight and extremely sensitive, starting from the entry level Jadewood series right up to the high end Noirwood series and are also technique specific, which makes choosing your next rod a breeze.  I'll take some time to go through each series today.


This is has to be one of the best entry level rods on the market these days.  Starting at just $89.99 these rods are focused at the recreational angler, but are lightweight and sensitive enough to be used everyday and on the tournament trail.  As I said earlier, each rod is technique specific, so if you need a crankin' rod Denali has it, if you need a drop shot rod Denali has that too.  These rods are made with a split-grip EVA foam handle, and has an Asian hardwood known as 'Jadewood' (hence the series name) as the foregrip.  Not only does this look sharp, it actually adds to the sensitivity of the rod, transmitting the bites you get better and allowing you to set the hook on even the shyest of biters.

Denali Rods Jadewood series.  Note the EVA Foam split-grip handle and the Jadewood foregrip.

The Jadewood series comes with a limited lifetime warranty which is outstanding.  They come in sizes from 6'6" right up to their multipurpose A-Rig/Swimbait rod which measures in at 7'11".  Check out the link to see all the rods the Jadewood series offers.  During this past season, I regularly used the Jadewood series and came away impressed with its sensitivity, backbone and how lightweight they are.

Close up of the Jadewood foregrip. Added sensitivity and it looks great too!

All Denali Rods are technique specific, as you can see here with the Crankbait, Spinnerbait and Multipurpose rods


The Rosewood series is the next step up for Denali.  These rods are their mid-level rods and start at $189.99.  Made with Hi-Modulus BSTI-10 blank, these rods are known for their incredible sensitivity and for being ridiculously lightweight, aided by a high grade Portuguese cork split-grip handle and the Rosewood foregrip.  The Rosewood series uses the same guides as the Noirwood series, guides that are lighter and made of stainless steel.  They are also more durable due to the recessed ring design.

Rosewood Series.  Look at the high grade cork handles and the beautiful Rosewood foregrip

The Rosewood series are all technique specific and range from the 6'6" Finesse rod to the 7'11" extra heavy Rig Rod.  Denali is so certain that the Rosewood rods are they best on the market that they've backed it up with a LIFETIME warranty.  That's right, LIFETIME.

Close up of the Rosewood foregrip

All Denali rods are technique specific.  Here we have a Worm & Jig rod, as well as a Shakey Head rod

Denali Custom Rods also has the Noirwood series, which is their top of the line rod.  Starting at $369.99 these rods are the best of the best.  Also, I would recommend checking out the Signature Series.  Mike Murphy, Ray Scheide, Mark Tyler and Terry Bolton all have models in this series, which is the Rosewood Series, but designed specifically to these pro's designations.  Definitely check them out as well.

So there's an overview of the Denali lineup, you should most definitely give them a hard look the next time you're in the market for a rod.  Lightweight, sensitive, outstanding craftsmanship and out of this world service!

Saturday, 8 December 2012

TBBA Angler Jared Blair on Reno Viola Outdoors!

Hey everyone, just thought I'd make a quick entry about the interview my tournament partner did with Reno Viola on his radio show Reno Viola Outdoors.  It was a great interview by both and really promotes the TBBA Tournament Trail.  Click the link below to hear Jared talk about how he got into tournament fishing and what it takes to succeed at it.

Friday, 7 December 2012

It's Been So Long / TBBA

Well, it's certainly been a while since I updated this silly thing...I promise I won't let it happen again!  I'll be updating this blog throughout the winter with announcements, reviews and other fishing articles.

I'll do a quick recap on my Tri Bay Bass Association season.  Although I would've loved a bit more success on the tournament trail, it was good to get into my first competitive, tournament angling.  The first qualifier of the season was out of Turkey Point aka Long Point Bay.  My partner and I decided that, although there was a decent chop on the Bay, we'd make our way to the outer Bay for some smalljaw action.  Let me tell you, we were somewhat rewarded with our efforts!  As soon as we roll up to our spot, second cast in my partner hooks into a 4+ pound smallie, what an exciting way to start a tournament.  Ten minutes later, boom! Hooks into another one! Unfortunately this beast, which was bigger than the first, spit the hook at the side of the boat.  Both these monsters hit a tube being dragged.  Eventually we were getting rocked out there so we headed closer to the inner bay.  We were able to get a limit, but not able to upgrade that limit, finishing 58th out of more than 70 boats.

Blast off! Turkey Point TBBA 2012. Myself and Jared Blair blasting off, starting the 2012 TBBA Season

Next we had the Rondeau Bay Qualifier.  After prefishing, we thought we had a good chance. We found fish and consistently caught them flippin, throwing spinnerbaits and topwaters.  The day of the tournament was ridiculously windy, but it turned out to be a great day.  Just like in prefish we found them flippin' docks, throwing topwater frogs, and tossing a spinnerbait.  We had a better placing in this tournament, 34th, but there were less boats.  You win some you lose some.

The last qualifier of the season was on Lake St. Clair out of Mitchell's Bay Marina.  Let me tell you first off that I just LOVE Lake St. Clair, its a Smallie FACTORY.  We were able to sit on our spot all day and just hammer them, clone after clone.  We got into some nice 3 pounders, but so did everyone else haha.  The most exciting moment came when Jared called two chasers up on his Livetarget Perch crank, and I tossed in my tube to the follower.  We hooked up at the same time and had a nice double header of 3 pounders.  Again, we finished 34th, but it was a lot of fun hammering those smalljaws

Weigh-in at Mitchell's Bay - yes I know, I suck at holding fish

Unfortunately we didn't qualify for the Classic on the St. Clair River, but congrats to all that did and to the eventual winners, Chad Wentzell and Brad Coon.

Weighing in at Long Point Bay.  Photo cred to