Mulling things on my morning ramble with Storm, the family's mixed Lab.
I like tournament fishing.
I'm built that way. The competitive aspect of it appeals to me. Even with my best fishing friends, it is an impromptu competition, whether counting fish, species or biggest.
Yet, there are parts to tournament fishing, that drive me nuts.
The primary one is cutesy withholding of information.
In my world, if you win a tournament, you owe some explanation of how, the more detailed the better. Not during the tournament, I understand that, but afterward.
Which brings me to Sunday, and the 24th MWC tournament on the Illinois River at Spring Valley.
At first, I thought the winners--the Wisconsin team of Kevin Dahl and Steve Stack--were less than forthcoming after the announcement of their win.
So much so, that I started to walk away. I'm getting too old and too far into my career to play that game.
Then Dahl started talking with useful information about how they were jigging. And I am glad he did, it restored my faith. Apparently, the Corps was monkeying were water levels at the dam, and Dahl/Stack found they had to follow the fish shallower (10-12 feet) and deeper (14-18), depending on how the fish were responding to water levels.
Knowing fishermen, I suspect a lot of others probably stuck to the depths that had produced for them on Saturday or during prefishing.
So I was feeling better about my fellow fishermen.
But then I had to consider the Downstate team--Brad Linton and Bob Apple--that caught the big walleye, a beautiful 4.7-pounder. It was like pulling teeth to get even the rudimentary info on how and where it was caught.
For God's, that's not the first good walleye caught below Starved Rock Dam or around Plum Island. In fact, there have been far better ones caught there.
It should have been a celebration of a wonderful fish, a highlight to the tournament.
Instead it left such a bad taste that a fellow writer called late Sunday, pissed off enough to wonder if he could print exactly where the walleye was caught, according to what other fishermen told him.
I suggested not exactly. Some things aren't right.