In 2017, our team of Brand Ambassadors is on a mission for personal bests. We sat down with Yak Gear Brand Ambassador Holton Walker to see just what he is looking to top in the coming months.
What is the mark you need to beat this year?
It's funny - my personal best while fishing from a kayak came early in my kayak fishing days as you can tell from my rookie set up. It was a 10.5lb, 24.25 inch Largemouth Bass. What made the catch unique was that I caught the fish in a place it shouldn't have been. Given the time of year and weather conditions that day, I should have been skunked. It was a blistering August afternoon in North Carolina with absolutely no wind. The heat index had to have been over 105.
What were you throwing?
I was throwing a Carolina rigged 6-inch watermelon chartreuse trick worm. I worked it into the shaded creek drop offs and ledges, targeting where bass should be given their summertime patterns. When I work the backwater creeks, I make sure to leave no angle uncovered - even if it's an unlikely spot for a hit. So, with that mindset, I threw the worm into about a foot of water near a downed tree. Within five seconds saw a large swirl from a fish charging and taking the bait. I set the hook and fought the fish aggressively because of how shallow the strike was on such a hot day. To be honest, I thought it was a bowfin as I had caught a 30-inch Bowfin in the same area the day before. Then it jumped and I changed my rod angle immediately.
When did you know it was a PB?
As I got this fish a little closer to the kayak. I managed to get the fish to the side of my kayak after a short fight and should have got my Fish Grips into its mouth but I didn't have time to spare. With a fish like this, I needed to get my hand on the lip before it threw the hook.
That fish was - in my opinion - a bass of a lifetime. Here's to topping it at the Kayak Bass Fishing National Championship on Kentucky Lake this March.