During the calendar year of 2017 I fished a total of 65 times, landing 1,086 fish. My average fish per outing came in at 16.7 fish/trip for the year. The past few years have seen that average stay around 11 fish/trip for me, making 2017 an extraordinary year for me. This year also game me some unique opportunities. I was fortunate enough to get to meet and later fish with Drew Gregory the host of the Kayak Fishing TV show Hooked on Wild Waters and inventor of the Jackson Coosa and Coosa HD. I got to fish in KBF National Championship and participate in the first ever WVKA season.
This year marked the first year that I was able to fully commit to a full tournament schedule on both the county and state level. The amount of friends I have made from points all around the state of WV through fishing WVKA events this year has been amazing. I was also blessed in 2017 to fish many beautiful places throughout the state that I otherwise would have never fished. After finishing 67th out of 359 anglers at the KBF National Championship in March at Kentucky Lake I then went on to have a head to head in state tournament record of 405 wins and 16 losses in 2017. That level of in state success will be extremely hard if not impossible for me to maintain or duplicate in the coming years. In ten in state kayak bass tournament fishing starts I finished 1st in three of them, 2nd in three more, and finish 3rd in two more. My worst in state finish of the year was 8th place.
Greg and I started the WVKA season off with the goal of winning the 2 man team of the year award. In four team starts we won three events and finished 3rd in another out of 50 teams to secure the title as the first every 2 man WVKA team of the year. As an added bonus I was able to secure the WVKA Angler of the Year award in that process. I look forward to attempting to defend both of those titles in the 2018 WVKA tournament season. I finished the SCKBA season tied with the amazingly talented Joe Farley for AOY each of us having 61 points. Joe secured that title by way of winning big fish tie breaker by less than a half inch. Joe Farley deserved that title and recognition for the amazing season and effort he put in. Joe Farley is absolutely one of the best if not the best kayak tournament anglers int he state of WV.
I will be returning to the KBF NC in 2018 at Kentucky lake in March of 2018 for what will probably be my last National Kayak Bass Fishing Championship. The amount of time away from home, money, a effort it takes to compete at that level is a hard fit in my life right now. I find it far easier and more rewarding to spend my time competing at the state and local level where everyone knows everyone else. At the end of the day I love to fish and I love the mountain state and those two thing marry together very well at WVKA and SCKBA events. I hope to fish them for many years to come. 2017 will be a year I will never forget as an angler and my very well be me in the prime of my career doing what I love with people I consider family.
2017 also marked my 11th year of writing this blog. I have averaged 615 posts in those 11 years coming out to an average of 55.9 posts per year which comes out to a post per week over that 11 year span. I have enjoyed documenting the journey that my hunting and particularly my fishing path in this life has taken. It is fun to look back and provides a useful source of information for building a pattern prior to a fishing outing. When I started this blog I never imagined it would go this far but now that it has it I will continue to write it so long as I am fishing and hunting.
My best five fish limit totals for both practice and tournaments in 2017 month by month:
April - 68.25" (13.65" average keeper length)
May - 58.25" (11.65" average keeper length)
June - 61.44" (12.2" average keeper length)
July - 66.0" (13.2" average keeper length)
August - 69.54" (13.9" average keeper length)
September - 62.9" (12.58" average keeper length)
October - 62.5" (12.5" average keeper length)
2017 aggregate 5 fish limit average = 64.47" (average keeper length 12.89")