When you enjoy fishing so much, even watching it is fun

The hardest thing about writing a fishing column is figuring out what interests the readers most. Of course, the simple answer would be “fishing,” but it’s never simple. I try to be informative, but everyone who picks up a rod and reel may have a different interest.

I am interested in just about all things fishing. I like to chase after just about all species of fish. I’ll use every technique I know how to use. I’ll fish in every kind of water. If I am not fishing, then I am reading about fishing and if I can’t read about it, I’ll watch it on television or on the internet. I tend to get totally consumed by fishing.

That said, I’d love to hear from my readers as to what it is about fishing that trips your trigger. Let me know, please. I can’t promise I will get to your particular passion immediately, but I will get around to it as soon as I can.

I just spent a considerable chunk of time watching the Major League Fishing Redcrest Championship. It was held on Alabama’s Lay Lake. Lay Lake is not the state’s most famous lake, but it is both productive and challenging.

Redcrest was won by Dustin Connell, an Alabamian who is one of the fastest rising anglers in the ranks of pro fishermen. I know Dustin and have to say that he is one of the nicest fishermen on the tour. He works as hard as anyone ever has, and he deserves any success he attains.

Connell made history by becoming the first two-time Redcrest champion in the short history of Major League Fishing. Connell began his career claiming MLF Rookie of the Year honors in 2017. He has won five major events in his career, racking up a total of almost $2 million in prize money. His payday for last week’s Redcrest win was a cool $300,000. Kindly remember that Connell is merely 31 years old and has a lot of fishing in front of him.

Connell’s win was tremendous, proven by the fact that the second-place finisher ended up 30 pounds out of the lead. Unlike the traditional format for bass tourneys, the Redcrest anglers are able to weigh in and score every legal-size fish that they catch, rather than the traditional five largest fish of the day.

Major League Fishing has introduced many major innovations in the rules for bass tournament fishing and I feel that is what makes their brand so exciting.

Even though Redcrest has concluded, you can watch it at I used to think that I had to see an event live or not watch it at all, but my mind has changed. MLF’s style of broadcasting its events is so exciting that a replay is almost as good as watching the event live. If you haven’t watched a fishing tournament on television lately, prepare to be shocked.

All the boats have cameramen onboard, and every angler is closely followed. You can watch exactly what they are doing, and you can really pick up a lot of tips and techniques when you are watching the best fishermen in the business competing for huge money and explaining what they are doing as they are doing it.

Next up on the pro schedule is the Bassmaster Classic, Friday through Sunday on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Classic is often referred to as the “Super Bowl of Bass Fishing.”

You can watch all of the pomp and circumstance of the Bassmaster Classic on Fox Sports and also at It will be quite a show.

• Daily Herald Outdoors columnist Steve Sarley can be reached at

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