Author: Troy Jackson

Friday Flashback – May 24, 1997

There’s an entertaining bunch of young fishing YouTubers out there who pursue various species in spillways around the country. Such posts bring back memories of scaling the slope down to the Lake Bracken Spillway. Tales that date back to my first visit in the late 1970s with several teammates from the Galesburg Little League Rangers.

May 24, 1997 – Geek and the Top Carp of the outing at 7-8

But the trip featured today was with another former teammate and longtime friend, Mark “Geek” Junk. We spent plenty of hours chasing the carp that called “The Spillway” home as well as many more hours on other pursuits. Basketball, baseball, golf, darts, concerts, and just a few beers along the way. Many good memories. Some I remember, others are a little fuzzy.

May 24, 1997 – yours truly with a 7-6 carp

Watching the modern Spillway YouTubers, I smile at those youngsters and their pursuits. And as I officially head into fisherman “old-timer” status, I can’t help but think that we were doing this sort of thing before most of them were even born. Years of adventures from The Spillway with the likes of Geek, his brothers, Jim and John, my brother, Brent, and Matt “Hack” Reynolds. I must admit that there is a tinge of jealousy at times, wishing that we’d had GoPros and YouTube “back in the day.”

But then I come to my senses and realize that it is probably for the best that some of our hijinks were not preserved for posterity. Talk to you later. Troy

 

Top 5 Update

Another angler has a limit with this week’s submission from an old favorite fishing hole, Lake Storey.

Weight: 1-3 (13”)
Angler: John Kirkemo
Date: May 10
Weather: 80s
Water Temp: 64-68F
Location: Lake Storey
Lure: Rapala Floating Minnow (black/silver)
Angler Comments: This fish was in two to three feet of water. Casting parallel to shore. Only bass in four hours of fishing.
Top 5 Weight: 8-4 (2-5,2-0,1-13,1-3,0-15)

Well done, John, and looking forward to the culls as the year rolls on. Talk to you later. Troy

Friday Flashback – May 19, 2007

Senko fishing on the strip mines can be a sight to see when the conditions are right. Fifteen years ago this week, the stars were aligned, and the bass dealt me a winning hand. Below is the original report from that outing as posted to family and friends before becoming a blogger.

Original log entry from May 19, 2007

Julie was headed for Jacksonville for a stamping workshop, the girls were in Canton, and I didn’t have to work until 3:00 pm so I decided to give Little John another try. Initially I thought I would try Muskrat Lake but passed the gate and headed for Club Lake instead. Being a Saturday morning, I was not surprised to find a boat already fishing near the ramp, so I opted to head for Skeet Lake. This small lake also had a fisherman, and I didn’t want to share so I continued up the road to Long Lake. A guy was just loading his boat onto the trailer and said luck was fair at best. We talked for a while, and I eventually made my way back to Muskrat Lake where I was intending to start in the first place. As I wished, I had the lake all to myself. My delayed start would prove rather fateful as I had quite a day once my Senko hit the water.

Stats
Date: May 19, 20007
Location: Muskrat Lake – Little John Conservation Club
Time: 8:45am-11:00am
Weather: Sunny/windy
Air Temp: 65-75F
Water Temp: not available
Totals: 15 bass
Lures: 5” Yamasenko wacky rig (natural shad)
Top Bass: 5-3 (Senko)
Top 5 Weight: 15-9 (5-3,4-6,2-1,2-0,1-15)

I began fishing at 8:45am and told myself that I would stay until around 11:00 am before heading home for lunch and to get ready for work. The Senko wacky rig (natural shad) was responsible for all fifteen of my fish and set the lake record, twice. After catching only two bass in the first forty-five minutes, I finally happened upon a successful pattern. The bass were hiding under overhanging bushes on the southern banks of the many chutes and fingers of the lake. Such cover provided a shady ambush point as opposed to the bushes on the northern banks which were exposed to direct sunlight. This stuff is textbook bass fishing and really makes you feel smart when you read the conditions right. At one point, I tried an experiment that boosted my confidence even further. I was sitting in a narrow chute with overhanging bushes on the north exposed to the sun and overhanging bushes on the south creating a shadow on the surface. A cast of the Senko to the northern bushes came up empty. In contrast, a healthy two-pound bass nailed the lure seconds after it splashed under the shady, southern bushes. Man, what I wouldn’t have given for an audience.

9:21am – a new Muskrat Lake Top Bass at 4-6 on the Senko wacky rig

At 9:21am, my pattern produced a 4-6 to best the lake record of 4-0 set by Tim on 4/12/00. This record would be short lived as my final bass of the day proved to be my best ever from the strip pits at Little John. Just southwest of the Fremont Road boat ramp is a tree sitting in 8-10 feet of water just out from the deep edge of a lengthy weed bed. On 7/19/03, Dad had nailed a nice 2-3 on a jig off this piece of structure while we fished together. I intended to make the spot my last stop and fired my second cast to the tree right at 11:00am. As soon as I set the hook, I knew that I had a good fish but was still surprised when the bass broke the surface. Upon landing the fish, I thought that it had a shot at the six-pound mark which would be a new personal best. However, the fish fell well short as it only weighed 5-3. I was not at all disappointed despite my error in judgment. The bass sets the bar pretty high for Top Bass 2007 but there’s a whole lot of year left.

11:00am – a bad pic of a good bass at 5-3 on a Senko to break the Muskrat Lake Top Bass mark again

All told, six bass joined the record book in my best ever outing on Muskrat Lake. The top two bass were the heaviest two fish combo I’ve posted in one day eclipsing a 4-10 and a 4-0 caught at Lake Bracken on 4/14/99. Not only were the conditions right for the particular pattern I was fishing but I’m also convinced that I wouldn’t have caught most of the fish were it not for the Senko wacky rig. The slow, tantalizing fall of the lure continues to produce impressive results. Along with the previous trip on Hopper Lake, the Senko has posted the best results that I’ve ever had on these two lakes and there are still several other lakes at Little John where I have yet to give it a try. I feel it would also be appropriate to pass along a word of thanks to the nameless anglers who beat me to the other lakes that morning.

Senko wacky rig in the natural shad pattern, best color ever but they quit making it for some unknown reason

Quite a showing by the bass in the early days of fishing the Senko. No doubt that it revolutionized our bass fishing, particularly on the strip mines. Well, it’s May and high time to see what the Senko can do fifteen years down the road. Talk to you later. Troy

Prowl The Canal – April Lessons

I am a stat guy, so I really dig the numbers for my fishing trips as the previous post conveyed. However, there is a learning aspect to every trip that is enjoyable as well. Whether it is employing something you’ve learned in the past, or obtaining new information in the present, both will contribute to future success. And this is particularly true on new water, like The Canal.

Lessons

I need to fool around more with the Whopper Plopper as the topwater season progresses.

When you are unable to Prowl The Canal in person, invest some time prowling it on the internet.

Speaking of the internet, you’ve gotta love it for a fix. In this case, I learned how to switch my scale back to pounds after inadvertently setting it to kilograms.

 

Thank goodness that my “phone” is also a calculator, so I don’t have to do the metric conversion in my head.

A watercraft is the ticket, even if it is probably fifty years old with a near fifty-five-year-old “motor.”

 

Before the weeds take over, some spots on The Canal are awesome for spinnerbaits. Just the ticket for a guy who caught the fishing bug in the early-80s when spinnerbaits ruled.

The Canal is a great place to beat the wind. Unless it is getting a direct hit, even the recent gale force winds are negated on much of the narrow, predominately east-west waterway I fished in April.

There are not many true points on The Canal. But when you find one, fish it from different angles with different baits and at different times.

 

The Canal is a good spot for a young “Guest Prowler” as it is a great place to learn.

Make sure that you have a wacky rigged Senko at the ready when fishing the Whopper Plopper or other topwater lures. A well-placed follow-up on a missed strike is usually too much for those shallow water bass to resist.

April was productive in terms of both numbers and knowledge. A pair of May trips have contributed more of the same but those are tales for a future wrap-up. And with less than a year of experience on The Canal (just over 40 hours), there is plenty more to learn. Talk to you later. Troy

Prowl the Canal – April Stats

(NOTE: All trips described below were on sections from Colona to Geneseo, and all bass were released)

After a bit of a delay, the monthly “Prowl the Canal” feature is back for another year. And it looks like me and The Canal are going to see a lot more of each other in 2022. My first ever attempt to fish The Canal took place on June 5, 2021, and I was pleasantly surprised. Between that success and this administration’s fuel prices, more of my 2022 fishing will be closer to home.

The uptick in time on The Canal also means that the “Prowl” series debut for 2022 will be a two-part piece. First up, “Stats” with “Lessons” to follow.

April 15 at 5:30pm first bass from The Canal for 2022

Stats

Date: April 15, 2022
Time: 5:25pm-6:55pm
Totals: 3 bass
Weather: Overcast/breezy, temp 49-45F
Lures: Special K Spinnerbait (bold bluegill) with Zoom Creepy Crawler Twin Tail trailer (root beer pepper green) – 3 bass
Top Bass: no “keepers”
Top 5 Weight: no “keepers”
Comments: My initial prowl of 2022 was on foot, and I came armed with a new spinnerbait that was made by an old high school and Legion baseball teammate. It was a winner run parallel to shoreline riprap or brush.

April 23 at 8:00am – 2022 Top April Canal Bass 3-5 (18″) on a spinnerbait

April 23 at 7:07am – 2022 Top April Canal Bass #2 at 3-2 (18″) on a spinnerbait

Date: April 23, 2022
Time: 7:00am-9:45am
Totals: 10 bass
Weather: Sunny/breezy to windy, temp 64-72F
Lures: Special K Spinnerbait (bold bluegill) with Zoom Creepy Crawler Twin Tail trailer (root beer pepper green) – 9 bass, Strike King KVD Rattling Squarebill Crankbait (sexy shad) – 1 bass
Top Bass: 3-5 Spinnerbait
Top 5 Weight: 10-8 (3-5,3-2,1-9,1-6,1-2)
Comments: On the heels of my spinnerbait success on the first outing, I hit a new stretch of The Canal that was littered with wood. An ideal setup for a spinnerbait fan and the bass were right in the thick of the structure.

April 24 at 7:24am – 2022 Top April Canal Bass #3 at 2-12 (18″) on a crankbait

Date: April 24, 2022
Time: 7:20am-10:20am
Totals: 16 bass
Weather: Overcast/breezy, temp 60-59F
Lures: Mann’s Baby 1- crankbait (red craw) – 13 bass, Spinnerbait (bold bluegill) with Zoom Creepy Crawler Twin Tail trailer (root beer pepper green) – 3 bass
Top Bass: 2-12
Top 5 Weight: 10-1 (2-12,2-5,2-4,1-8,1-4)
Comments: Different structure on a different stretch, with riprap taking top billing over wood, was a spot for a shallow crankbait to shine. The Mann’s Baby 1- dominated the haul in another textbook approach, cranking parallel to riprap shoreline and weed edges.

April 24 at 8:04am – 2022 Top April Canal Bass #4 at 2-5 (17.5″) on a crankbait

Date: April 29, 2022
Time: 5:40pm-7:55pm
Totals: 2 bass
Weather: Overcast/breezy, temp 64F
Lures: Whopper Plopper (I Know It) – 2 bass
Top Bass: 2-3
Top 5 Weight: 3-7 (2-3,1-4)
Comments: I brought my son, Jayce, along and was focused on finding him some bites with a one-two punch of the Mann’s Baby 1- and a Whopper Plopper. I’d seen several posts on social media of bass with the latter lure lodged in a lip and was optimistic that we might entice some topwater bites. Two decent bass were right on target and the Whopper Plopper has a new fan.

April 29 at 6:28pm – Jayce with a 2-3 on a Whopper Plopper that narrowly missed the April Canal Top 5

April Totals
Time: 9.50 hours
Totals: 41 bass (Troy 39 bass, Jayce – 2 bass)
Lures: Spinnerbait (bold bluegill) – 25 bass. Mann’s Baby 1- crankbait (red craw) – 13 bass, Whopper Plopper (I Know It) – 2 bass, Strike King Rattling Squarebill crankbait (sexy shad) – 1 bass
Top Bass: 3-5 Spinnerbait on April 23
Top 5 Weight: 13-12 (3-5,3-2,2-12,2-5,2-4)

April 24 at 9:53am – 2022 Top April Canal Bass #5 at 2-4 (17.5″) on a crankbait

RECORD BOOK UPDATE
Hennepin Canal (2021-present)
Top Bass: 3-6 Troy Jackson 7/21/21 Plastic Worm
Best Top 5 Day (only 4 bass at 12” or better): 7-4 (3-6,2-10,2-0,1-4) 7/21/21
UPDATE BEST TOP 5 DAY: 10-8 (3-5,3-2,1-9,1-6,1-2) 4/23/22
All-Time Top 5 Weight: 15-6 (3-6,3-4,3-1,2-14,2-13)
UPDATE: added a 3-5 and 3-2 to boost the All-Time Top 5 Weight
NEW ALL-TIME TOP 5 WEIGHT: 16-2 (3-6,3-5,3-4,3-2,3-1) culls 2-14 and 2-13
Comments: It now takes a bass over the three-pound mark to enter the all-time Top 5 list.

So, that’s the April Prowl by the numbers. Coming next is the “Lessons” portion of the project as each visit is a learning experience. Talk to you later. Troy

Top 5 Update

This week’s update sounds like one of those cheesy horror movies, “Attack of the Two-Pound Bass.” Solid catches all the way around though, as anything in the two-pound range is what I call a “good one” and they boost the weights of a couple of anglers.

Weight: 2-5
Angler: John Kirkemo
Date: May 2
Weather: Overcast with recent rain
Water Temp: Mid 60s
Location: Sangchris Lake
Lure: 4” Floating Rapala (black/silver)

Weight: 1-13 (15”)
Angler: John Kirkemo
Date: May 3
Weather: Heavy clouds with a stiff wind from the south
Water Temp: Mid 60s
Location: Sangchris Lake
Lure: 4” Floating Rapala (silver/black)

Weight: 2-0 (17”)
Angler: John Kirkemo
Date: May 4
Weather: Overcast and windy
Water Temp: Mid 60s
Location: Sangchris Lake
Lure: 4” Floating Rapala (silver/black)
Angler Comments: All three fish caught while casting Rapala close to shore in about 2 – 3 feet of water.
Top 5 Weight: 7-1 (2-5,2-0,1-13,0-15)

Weight: 2-11 (17.5”)
Angler: Troy Jackson
Date: May 8
Weather: Overcast/breezy
Location: Hennepin Canal
Lure: Booyah Buzz Buzzbait (snow white shad)
Structure: Tree
Angler Comments: Always fun when the topwater bite starts to kick in and it only took a couple casts before I got this result on a buzzbait. On the downside, I only got one other bass on the lure. On the upside, this is only the beginning of the topwater bite on The Canal.
Top 5 Weight: 14-9 (3-5,3-2,2-12,2-11,2-11) culls 2-5

A good showing during limited time on the water due to weather and priorities. Well done by John in getting it done on large and relatively unfamiliar water. And fun for me as my continued exploration of The Canal is making the miles more familiar. Talk to you later. Troy

Top 5 Stats

Hey, here we go with an overdue “monthly” Top 5 Stat Update that takes us through April and includes 47 bass and one trout.

2022 Totals
January = no submissions
February = no submissions
March = 15 bass
April = 32 bass

Top 5 Weight by Month
January = no submissions
February = no submissions
March = 14-2 (3-3,2-15,2-14,2-12,2-6)
April = 28-10 (6-9,6-0,5-12,5-4,5-1)

Boat vs. Bank
Boat = 11 bass
Bank = 36 bass

Boat vs. Bank Weight
Boat = 13-1 (3-5,3-2,2-12,2-3,1-11)
Bank = 28-10 (6-9,6-0,5-12,5-4,5-1)

Public vs. Private
Public = 47 bass
Private = 0 bass

Public vs. Private Top 5 Weight
Public = 28-10 (6-9,6-0,5-12,5-4,5-1)
Private = not applicable

The Baits (* = new record)
Lipless Crankbait = 15 bass (Top Bass 4-6 Jim Junk)
*Chatterbait = 13 bass (Top Bass 6-9 Jim Junk) tops 5-15 Jim Junk 6/22/20
Spinnerbait = 7 bass (Top Bass 5-4 Brent Jackson)
Jig = 4 bass (Top Bass 3-9 Brent Jackson)
Crankbait = 2 bass (Top Bass 1-11 Troy Jackson)
Propbait = 2 bass (Top Bass 2-3 Jayce Jackson)
Swimbait = 1 bass (Top Bass 4-3 Jim Junk)
Grub = 1 bass (Top Bass 0-13 Troy Jackson)
Plastic Worm = 1 bass (Top Bass 5-12 Jim Junk)
Underspin = 1 bass (3-12 Jim Junk)

Monthly Top Bass
January
No submissions
February
No submissions
March
3-3 Jim Junk
April
6-9 Jim Junk

2022 Top 10 Bass
6-9 Jim Junk 4/4/22
6-0 Jim Junk 4/15/22
5-12 Jim Junk 4/21/22
5-4 Brent Jackson 4/24/22
5-1 Jim Junk 4/4/22
4-7 Jim Junk 4/4/22
4-6 Jim Junk 4/19/22
4-3 Jim Junk 4/21/22
3-15 Jim Junk 4/19/22
3-12 Jim Junk 4/13/22

Angler Weights
Jim Junk 27-13 (6-9,6-0,5-12,5-1,4-7)
Brent Jackson 13-13 (5-4,3-9,1-12,1-11,1-9)
Troy Jackson 12-13 (3-5,3-2,2-11,2-0,1-11)
Jayce Jackson 3-7 (2-3,1-4)
John Kirkemo 0-15 (0-15)

Other Species – Trout

John Kirkemo 12” (12”)

Jim Junk continues to impress with his catches and thumbs up to our anglers for a good start. And the hits keep coming as we have several bass catches lined up for the first Top 5 Update of May. Here’s hoping that some better weather provides an opportunity for folks to get out on the water. Send them my way when you catch them at troy@troyjacksonoutdoors.com. Talk to you later. Troy

Friday Flashback – May 9, 2007

These sort of posts make the Friday Flashback series a worthy project in my book. A remote “nameless” lake, a portage to reach the water, Dad along for the ride (and drag), and a successful version of a project aimed at enhancing “fish stories”.

Excerpts and pics from original 2007 post

Day On The Lake (DOTL) version five was a trip that Dad and I took to an unproven lake at Snakeden Hollow. The lake got my interest on March 27th of this year when I caught a pair of record book bass (2-3 and 1-8) in the span of fifteen minutes while fishing one of the limited access points available to a bank fisherman. Including that outing, I’d only spent an hour and fifteen minutes on this nameless and remote lake located near the largest lake on the site, Lake McMaster. I’ve since taken it upon myself to remedy the “namelessness” and now officially refer to the body of water as Locust Lake. I arrived at this appellation due to the prevalence of locust trees around the steep and nearly inaccessible banks.

 

Date: May 9, 2007
Location: Locust Lake-Snakeden Hollow
Time: 4:30pm-6:30 pm
Weather: Partly cloudy/breezy
Air Temp: 77 F
Totals: 21 bass (Dad – 11, Troy – 10)
Lures: Chatterbait (white) – 16 bass, Senko wacky rig (natural shad) – 4 bass, Buzzbait (white) – 1 bass
Top Bass: 1-11 Chatterbait
Top 5 Weight: 7-1 (1-11,1-10,1-8,1-3,1-1)

As we launched our boat, we spied three Common Loons swimming on Lake McMaster. They are a large and relatively easily identified bird with a rather distinctive call (unfortunately they were silent during our encounter). While not rare, they are a generally uncommon visitor to much of our area. These were the first I’d seen in quite a few years since occasionally spotting some at Lake Bracken. As I later thought of our trek up the bank with the boat, I could imagine an observer reporting a couple Uncommon Loons at the lake as well.

Part of the plan for each DOTL outing is to compile a photo essay by taking a picture of each bass that we catch. Often the pictures say more about the anglers than the bass, which all look quite similar unless we catch a record book fish (maybe someday a researcher will find out if all humans look alike to bass). Below are some shots and notes detailing selected catches.

Bass #3 – My 13” fish has a mouthful of Chatterbait and vegetation with subsurface weeds visible in the background. The photo says it all about the conditions and one technique to catch “slop” bass.

Bass #6 – Dad’s 14” bass has a Booyah Boogie dangling from its lip as he broke down and followed suit by tossing his version of the Chatterbait after initially falling behind three bass to one.

Bass #7 – I’ve assumed my customary backwards lean to ensure that I get into the frame. When fishing in the little boat, quarters are rather close requiring extra work to get a good shot.

Bass #8 – A classic shot of a Dad’s 1-11 as he pivots sideways in his seat while the photographer snaps a good image of the lake and surroundings to frame the angler and his catch.

Bass#9 – It appears that me and my 1-1 bass are about to fall out of the boat as I lean back. Dad hates vertical shots but gives it a try anyway and nearly misses me and my fish who reside in the lower right-hand corner of this photo.

Bass #10 – Dad nails this shot of my 1-0 but I hold the bass like that Wilson guy from Home Improvement, obscuring the bottom half of my face (got a lot of shots like this).

Bass #11 – I’m missing my ever-present fishing shades in this shot as preferred by Julie. She’d probably also like a smile, but the bass just wasn’t big enough to cause such a reaction.

Bass#12 – An action photo of Dad lipping a bass with his left hand while performing some dental work with the pliers in his right hand lends some variety to our poses.

Bass #15 – This shot of Dad holding up a bass with a Booyah Boogie in the side of its mouth is a bit distracting. The aim on this photo is right up Dad’s shirtsleeve so the focus is drawn more to his armpit than his catch (I’m a fisherman, not a photographer).

Bass #17 – Dad’s gill hooked bass is dripping blood in this shot as he looks concerned about where the lost blood is going to fall.

Over the years, I have made several return trips to Locust Lake with my last visit being on July 30, 2017. On that outing, I was greeted by the unpleasant stench of decaying fish and observed numerous dead bass floating on the surface including a couple that would have pushed the four-pound mark. I gave it a shot anyway and wound up with three bass, one of which looked so sickly that I was a bit leery to even grab it. A sad state and I have yet to determine whether it was an intentional fishery eradication or some sort of random fish kill. Whatever the case, I have not invested the effort to take another look at the once promising fishing hole. Talk to you later. Troy

Top 5 Update

A new, old angler, who is actually young, joins the chase for 2022. He’s new for 2022 but has participated as far back as 2018 when he was a nine-year old kid. Give him about four weeks and he will be a teenager, so still a youngster.

Weight: 2-3
Angler: Jayce Jackson
Date: April 29
Weather: Overcast/breezy
Location: Hennepin Canal
Lure: Whopper Plopper 90 (I Know It)

Weight: 1-4
Angler: Jayce Jackson
Date: April 29
Weather: Overcast/breezy
Location: Hennepin Canal
Lure: Whopper Plopper 90 (I Know It)
Top 5 Weight: 3-7 (2-3,1-4)

Way to go, Jayce, and watch out, those Whopper Ploppers will get an angler hooked as well as some bass. I had the good fortune of having a front row seat for these catches as I was his “rower” in our little johnboat. Although, as he is soon to be a teenager, perhaps it’s high time that he rows old Dad around the fishing hole one of these days. More on the outing coming up in an April “Prowl the Canal” wrap-up. Talk to you later. Troy

20 Years of Fish Stories

Today marks twenty years since I started writing fish stories and such for public consumption. It all started out on April 30, 2002, as something that I called the “Family Fishing Hall of Fame Newsletter”. The intent was to share fishing reports and data with a small group of family and friends. The archives reveal that I sent out a total of forty-six posts during the remainder of 2002. Since then, the project has undergone a few changes of scenery. Without getting to carried away, I will mark today’s anniversary with a timeline of some of the writing highlights over the last twenty years.

April 30, 2002
Launch of the “Family Fishing Hall of Fame Newsletter” to share and collect fish stories with family and friends via email.

June 14, 2003
“Day on the Lake” feature debuts as I “borrow” the concept from Bassmaster to give a sort of play-by-play of a fishing trip. The first edition covers a trip to Lake Bracken with Brent.

April 6, 2010
I accept an offer from Peoria Journal Star outdoor writer, Jeff Lampe, to blog for free at the Prairie State Outdoors website which is associated with the newspaper. I entitle my blog “Meandering” to reflect my outdoor writing style.

March 25, 2011
Declining interest in by those in charge of the Prairie State Outdoors website after Jeff Lampe’s departure prompts me to do the same.

April 5, 2011
After a couple weeks off from blogging, I receive an offer from Jeff Lampe to blog on the Heartland Outdoors website as he has purchased the longtime regional publication.

March 19, 2014
Inspired by the record keeping of a fellow angler, Terry Isbell, I launch the “Top 5” project which invites readers to share their bass fishing catches. The project continues to this day.

May 1, 2017
Finding myself as the lone dedicated blogger on the Heartland Outdoors website, I bid farewell after six years of “Meandering’.

May 1, 2017
Troy Jackson Outdoors launches along with electing to do the social media thing to promote the new venture.

July 23, 2017
Julie and the kids get me a GoPro camera for birthday number fifty. What a fun addition to my fishing hobby, a constant companion ever since.

September 5, 2017
Trip Tunes debuts allowing me to find a way to include my passion for music with my passion for fishing. I envision a Final Jeopardy clue someday stating, “The first song to appear on Troy Jackson Outdoors’ Trip Tunes”. The contestant triumphantly responds, “What is ‘Bad Medicine’ from Bon Jovi?” And the crowd goes wild.

March 16, 2018
Friday Flashback debuts as I take a weekly look back at outdoor adventures from 5,10,15…45 years ago.

 

April 1, 2018
First Blooper Reel

October 25, 2018
Lake Lowdown feature is launched at Lake Storey and I am smart enough to bring Brent along for some highlights and he sets the new lake record.

March 15, 2020
YouTube debut

July 4, 2020
The “Snakeden at 30” series celebrates the July 1, 1990 public access debut of Snakeden Hollow, many, many fish ago.

August 1, 2021
“Top 40 Fishing Lines” borrows a page out of Casey Kasem’s book with a countdown of songs containing fishing references. It also coincides with the 40th birthday of MTV.

March 19, 2022
After nearly a year without a post, it’s time for a YouTube return to play catch up with videos old and new.

Time marches on and so do the fish stories. Stay tuned and talk to you later. Troy