I just got back from Eufaula, AL, and after finishing my first day of practice for our second Elite event, I knew it was going to be tough.
Eufaula is not a lake we fish in June, but because of our unexpected sabbatical, we were there to kick off the rest of the Bassmaster Elite Series.
We always hoped we would get started again in June, we hoped for earlier, but as we all have had to do, we had to adapt. And there is no winning at fishing if you are not adaptable. You never know what conditions you are going to face until you get out on the water. You can have every app, all the maps, every bait known to man, and trust your weatherman more than your mother, but you never really know what you are going to face until you throw that lure in the water.
There are so many variables that you face as an angler. This time of year, we are faced with a lot of pleasure boaters out having a good time with their family and friends. There are competing tournaments vying for your honey holes. There is also the weather, the water temperatures, the air pressure, and sometimes, you, yourself, do not want to fight all the stuff coming at you.
If you ever plan to fish professionally, or just to get food on your table, you must be able to adapt to the hand you’re dealt.
Today we are faced with so many unprecedented circumstances, but you have the choice to stay in your lane or swallow your humble pie and try something new.
Now, that does not mean you leave all your trusted equipment behind. Having the right equipment supporting you helps you feel more comfortable about taking chances with other things. Knowing I can take my Xpress boat into shallow or deep water allows me to decide what water I should fish for the conditions I am facing. With my Minn Kota Ultrex trolling motor and Talons, I know I can get out of shallow spots or stay stable in the rough deep waters, which helps me be more adaptable on the water when I need it the most…in the moment. Knowing I have the most reliable motor on the back of my boat, my Yamaha 250 SHO, lets me travel as far as I need to and know I will be able to get back to the weigh in on time. All these things allow me to be more adaptable on the water. Without having to worry about these things, I can take risks others will not be willing to. I can make that one last cast or try that new color in water I am unfamiliar with because I know that my equipment will get me home.
So, take a chance, but make sure you are set up with a strong, and reliable foundation. If you have that, you can be adaptable in any situation. July finds me and the family heading to upstate New York for 4 back-toback tournaments. Looking forward to the cooler weather and the big smallies.
So keep an eye out and join us as we travel north. Keep believing big and do the work!
Harvey Horne, native of North Louisiana, and former Union Parish resident, is in his second year fishing the Bassmaster Elite Series and also fishes the Bassmaster Eastern Opens. He currently resides in Northwest Arkansas with his wife Rhonda, a native of Marion, and their two children.