January, February, & March 2021

28 lb. King  Pacific Ocean
3/13/21 Soldotna, Alaska


27.93 lb. Atlantic Salmon
114' down, Salmon Buster 4.0
Baltic Sea, Russian Federation

P21 Strip Teazers
60% came on STs

XG Frog  Strip Teazers
Production Process
Click to Purchase

Archived Daily Log 
(Dating back to the year 2000)

Click here for my first Salmon I caught on Oct. 1, 1968

3/31/21  Wind, wind and more wind is the story for Manistee, MI that has kept the fleet on the dock.  Perish the thought of my 1st trip.  Too busy with production and shipping orders to entertain the thought.  Looks like the 1st part of next week for me.
              Part of the  back-story on my thought process for our new 2021 Strip Teazers herring replacement strips?  The poll I run every fall about: "your best method to catch adult Kings"?  Watched meat decline in popularity, as bait became harder to come by.

3/30/21  From a pollywog to a frog is a good caption for today's featured photo.  Last week's introduction of XG Frog STs were in high demand and almost sold out.  This prompted another production run of Strip Teazers, cuz you can't sell what you don't have.
              Not bad for a product that was not even on the radar at this time last year.  It wasn't even an idea yet.  The motivating factors came into play when you couldn't buy whole frozen herring in Manistee last year and the existing strips were cut too thin.
             Strips that were available in 2020 left a lot to be desired.  Too thin was the reason I wouldn't buy any.  Thin means the weight distribution was off to get the right roll-kick 6" looping action our meat heads are famous for. Click Frog production
             The seed for the Strip Teazers is when I bought some soft plastic baits for my 16' Grumman tin boat.  This is what got the ball rolling in my head to consider testing.

3/29/21  Weather changing for the bad has limited the fleet fishing Manistee, MI waters of Lk. MI.  Improving temps and more favorable winds should have the small boat fleet back in action towards the end of this week.  Good news is there's been a few Brown Trout being caught this year unlike past years when they were scarcer than hen's teeth.
              Caught up with the backlog of orders that was a miracle in itself.  Being behind don't work in a small operation like mine with a covid limited zero workforce.
              Better days are ahead with more vaccinations everyday.  I look forward to having shop help again and hiring more people.  This lone ranger stuff sucks. 

3/28/21  Day off from updates, but not doing my job.  About 6-7 orders behind that must be cleared up today.  Busy beats the alternative.  Slow with time off is good too.

3/27/21  Worked perfecting one of our Strip Teazer flagship glow colors, the XG Green Frog.  Finally hit on the right combination that's a stunner.  Adding some pearl to the bottom with some silver flake put the Frog way over the top. Click ST XG Frog
              Glow baits need to do double duty and work in bright full-sun conditions.  Having an eye catching color you can have confidence in is important.  Know the Frog will put adult Kings in the box aboard my boat this coming August.  Want to take any bets?
          Mark my words, will revisit today's chat this August with photo confirmation.

3/26/21  Productive week with several goals accomplished.  Finally designed a perfect color mix for the XG Green Frog/Strip Teazers.  This is a spot on match to the highly popular XG Frog Meat Head.  Know this one is going swimming this August on my boat.
              1st Street Boat Launch in Manistee has added more docks.  Looks like there's 3 of the 9 installed.  Good news is the 2021 season is here for central Lk. MI ports.
              Looking for a window for my 1st trip when the stars lineup with a light workload on a weekday afternoon.  Then, it's game on for yours truly.  Click 3 Manistee docks

3/25/21  Even if you do everything right, things can go wrong is a good way to start today's chat.  It's easy to overlook things like proper water levels in batteries that cuts into the service life.  Costly replacement is the only option.
              Forgetting to put air in trailer tires and you rig has sat all winter.  Low tire pressure builds heat and that destroys tires that will blow out.  Leaving you stuck on the side of the road changing a tire.  Both things mentioned have happened to me over the years probably more then once.  Proper care only takes a few extra minutes.

3/24/21  Reel-fishing report from Manistee, MI today.  Wayne J. fished the harbor N to Orchard Beach State Park just off the beach.  His tally for 5 hours of effort was one small Brown Trout on a jointed stickbait.  His neighbor fished 20' to 22' of water and did much better with 4 Lakers and a Brown off riggers and short lead cores.
               Water temp on the beach was 40° and this says the fish have not moved in close and are laying a little further offshore.  This can and will change if the smelt come into spawn.  Barr Lake outlet, just N of the state park and about 5 miles S of the harbor to Guerney Creek are potential hot spots.  If there's a run of smelt this year?

3/23/21  Ground-up learning curve makes Strip Teazers all proprietary creations.  Not easily duplicated by the less inspired pirates waiting to steal my invention. 
              Color mix to temp curing we're in charge of from start to finish.  This didn't come easy.  Long months of trial and error formulating mixes was all part of it.  Seeing a new batch being born has it's own rewards.  Click Strip Teazers being born
              Injection part in our custom built special molds is not time consuming.  It's the work-up to get to this point and scent curing that takes days to accomplish.  My mantra is to make tackle that lasts for many seasons.  Not just a year, or two.  No brag, just fact!

3/22/21  Recent action in Manistee, MI's harbor left a lot to be desired according to Wayne J.  He shared there was 1 Coho caught from a couple of tin boats doing circles inside the breakwalls.  Wind was brisk that curtailed fishing.  Even though on land, yesterday's temp was 65° at my place, wind across the water will make it feel a lot colder.
             Gusts today from the S pushing 40 mph will keep the fleet home another day.  You can bet, when it's unseasonable warm, heavy S wind is going to happen.  Silver lining is the warm S winds with drive up water temperatures and that's a good thing.
            Inshore Lake Trout are active in 36° water and up.  Browns if there's going to be any this year?  ....will hit in 38°.  Best for Browns was 40° to 44° water on the beach.
            There's a lot of moving parts for my 1st Lk. MI trip of 2021.  Has to be an afternoon event with a light workload in the shop.  Then, I can escape for a few hours.
            Looking for opportunities using the resources on my Great Lakes Info page says the new season is here.  Finding days to hit the pond is good. Click Great Lakes Info

3/21/21  Weather was too nice to sit indoors yesterday with temps pushing 60°.  More of the same is on tap for today with even higher temps.  Put the lawn chairs outside the pole barn protected from the breeze.  The hot sun in a tee-shirt was wonderful.
               Set aside today to button up all loose ends for 2021 season boat prep.  Stereo is kaput and need trace wiring and get it fixed.  Don't play music on the water, but it's great for boat projects in the barn.  Hopefully, a splash & dash will happen soon.

3/20/21  I'd like to personally welcome you to spring 2021.  Temps today in the 50s and 60s tomorrow is great news and seed thoughts of what's to come.  This winter wore on all of us with the virus being a major dark cloud.  Good to see we're on our way forward!

3/19/21  Last day of winter.  Been waiting on the arrival of the new season since last fall.  2020 was limited to only a few days on the water.  Not by choice.  Project 2021 Strip Teazers transitioning into production consumed every spare minute.
              This year I'll be able to bear the fruits of Strip Teazers by always having bait aboard.  Not having to dig thru the freezer for bait beforehand is good.
              Not having to re-bait after every fish is good.  Not having to tune whole herring before sending lines down is a mammoth time saver when you're over fish.

3/18/21  FINALLY, the weather is going to break in our favor.  It's going to be like flipping a switch into springtime weather this weekend.  Welcoming spring 2021 will lift our spirits after a long covid avoiding winter.  After today, for the next week, every day will be in the 50s and the nighttime lows for the most part will be above freezing. 
              Prefect weather to seriously getting a head start on the 2021 Great Lakes season.  Know I can be ready to splash in a few hours.  Problem is finding the extra time being extra busy shipping tackle orders.  This is a good thing and a hindrance too.

 3/17/21  Happy St. Patrick's Day.  May the luck of the Irish be with you every time lines are set waiting for the next bite.  Come to think about it, green is a big deal for Salmon.  Especially, green glow for Salmon that rule the roost for summer adult Kings
              Took step backwards from spring with 2" of snow yesterday.  Mr. Winter is in the ICU and he'll be a goner in 3 more days when the plug is pulled on March 20th.
              Winter 2020/2021 and been mild by anyone's standards in Manistee County,MI.  Coldest we had was 5° and looks like will end this season with close to 70" of snowfall.
          My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 69" (67 + 2).

3/16/21  Perfect timing with St. Patrick's Day tomorrow.  Coleman K contacted me from Killarney, Ireland about a inshore shallow water spoon program for Atlantic Salmon like we do in April for Lk. MI Browns and Lake Trout.  Click Coleman's Irish Salmon
              After a few back and forth emails Coleman settled on a few spoons for Atlantics.  Life is live and learn, because I was not aware Ireland had a Salmon fishery. 
              Guess most of the fish they catch are in the 10 lb bracket.  Hopefully, we'll hear back in a couple of weeks another success story with our Salmon Buster spoons.
             Tomorrow, news from Alaska's King Fishery with the flavor of the day.

3/15/21  Pulled an all-nighter and still not caught up on orders as of 5am this morning. 
                Hopefully, I'll have some time later today for a meaningful post about Ireland's Atlantic Salmon & an update from Capt. Dan in Soldotna, AK with big Kings on the menu. 
               Greatest thing about my job is being in contact with fishermen from all over this world.  Today's 28 lb. AK King pic is a sneak peek of what's to come later this year.

3/14/21  Going to do my best to enjoy today's day of rest after I reset my clocks.

3/13/21  Survived the Johnson and Johnson "1 and done" single shot with no ill effects.  So far, the injection in my arm is not sore.  Did get sleepy and took a long nap, but that could have been relief knowing my journey avoiding the Wuhan Flu is just about over.
              Shots were given at Manistee's senior center by 2 employees from Rite Aid Drug Store here in town.  Wait time after the forms were filled out were minimal and a 1/2 later my wife and I were on the way home.  Didn't take any pics, you know what shots are about.  When you can get a shot, do it asap and let's put the China virus behind us.
             Manistee County, MI is closing in on 800 infected and pushing 20 people that died from covid.  Census says about 22k in Manistee.  Times 4 the 800 is 3200 that got this virus is probably still way-more than the untested actual numbers since 1 year ago.

3/12/21  This the weekend when when yoyo the clocks ahead 1 hour (spring forward).
MI fishing licenses fishing licenses expire the end of this month.  Purchasing online is easy once you have an account setup. 
Click Online MI Fish Licenses
              Boat registration reminder needs to be mentioned too.  Easy to overlook this task and can delay your 1st fishing trip of the season unless you want a costly ticket.
             Don't know what shape I'll be in after my J & J covid vaccine today.  Taking the weekend off while I prep my boat for it's maiden 2021 voyage.  Checking air pressure in the trailer tires is always a good idea.  Boat is pretty much ready to splash.

3/11/21  My thanks to Mike for his testimonial for today:

"John, no hurry on the order I just submitted.  Been waiting for a bait offering like this for quite a long time now, I think I can wait a bit longer.  My personal opinion is that your creation will revolutionize the way we fish Salmon in the Great Lakes and beyond.

I am hopeful to field test them this May on the Niagara Bar.  Appreciate the videos, have learned a lot about my pursuit of salmon.  Have a Safe and Healthy 2021.
Tight lines, smooth sailing."   Mike J --- REEL COWBOY

           Future chat:  best option about using our new Strip Teazers.

3/10/21  Good News, yesterday's high temp of 61° at my place in Manistee, MI was a tremendous moral booster.  Being cooped up all winter and avoiding the Wuhan virus needed a glimpse of springtime to dream of better times ahead.
               More good news!  Made appointments for my wife and I this Friday at the Manistee Senior Center to get our "1 and done" Johnson & Johnson covid vaccinations.  In 2 weeks our immune systems should take hold.  4 weeks is when the threat of a severe case and the ICU is taken off the table.  Nobody on 3 continents died from covid on J & J.
              Tomorrow a serious sale on Leader Lockers.  3 for 79.95 is a heck of a deal considering you can protect 72 of your meat rigs and trolling flies for about a buck a piece.

3/9/21  Today's featured photo 1 shows our 2021 Strip Teazers drawing 1st blood of the 2021 season off Gary, IN.  John Z had 4 other hits on it too.  Last I heard, the ST was none the worst for wear and still looked new.  Click 1st ST Salmon of 2021
             Featured pic 2 is John Z's limit catch of feisty spring Coho in the 15" to 18" range.  For this early, growth rate is very good seeing these fish were only 6" long when they were planted in the spring of last year.  Click 3/7/21 limit of Coho
            Indiana does plant a fair number of Coho.  So, save your email opinions about killing a lot of small fish.  Spring is the big deal in the S end of Lk. MI.
            I have no doubt, if the numbers were here now, the central Lk. MI fleet wouldn't give a second thought about boxing limits of the same sized fish.

3/8/21  50°s today and maybe 60° tomorrow is preview of what's to come.  We won't see 50° as our average daytime high temp in Manistee, MI until the last week of March.
            Good news is official spring 2012 is only 8 days away.  Winter is on life support, as we look forward to this season full of fish tales yet to be written.
            Manistee does have 1 dock in at the 1st Street launch that will be used by the early season by the diehard small boat fleet today.  Click 3/4/21 Manistee dock
            Lots of good news coming from the S end of Lk. MI with spring Coho 15" to 18" grabbing the headlines for now.  More on this tomorrow

3/6/21  Been hitting pretty hard for the last 2 weeks.  Taking the weekend off.  Be back Monday with recent pics of Manistee, MI's harbor and Lk. MI.  Have a great weekend!

3/5/21  Today's featured video proves Strip Teazers do the job with the 1st King ever on our herring replacement strips.  We caught 3 Kings in the Frankfort, MI test sessions.  2 of the 3 came on Strip Teazers.  1 of the 2 came in low evening light.  The second one was full sun, after 9am.  This was a jaw dropper for me. Click 1st ST King video
            Product development begins with a high amount of skepticism.  Theories and feeling don't count.  Results do!  This ended up a lot better than originally thought.
            Developing ideas that turn into fish killers is the fun part.  The manufacturing is not near as motivating, but it's all part of the process.
            Built a gateway page to our 2021 Strip Teazers with all 6 videos and links to all 5 of the individual articles.  Turned out awesome in my book. Click ST Gateway page

Have recent photos of Lk. MI and the harbor at Manistee, MI that will be shared soon.  This could be one of the earliest seasons ever with one dock already in at the 1st Street launch ramp.  Predicted highs in the 50s next week will have boats on the pond.

3/4/21  Today's new video is pretty much self explanatory.  This is where I share my knowledge with you.  Tomorrow's new video is a jaw dropper! Click page 5

3/3/21  Today is the 3rd installment of the ground breaking Strip Teazers replacement herring strips.  There's 2 full HD videos.  1st video is about the general layout with background info before underwater speed tests.  This was critical in the development stage to make sure our Magnum Meat Heads had the right looping roll kick in a 6" arc.
            Second movie is all underwater action where we adjust the speed from 1.5, 1.8, 2.0, and 2.2 mph.  All prime attractor program trolling speeds. Click page 4
             Over time, we'll spot light all videos once the rollout is completed.  Last 2 fishing videos scheduled for this Friday removes any doubt on the effectiveness of STs.  You'll see history being made when the 1st Strip Teazer King met his fate on 8/12/20.

3/2/21  Moving the Strip Teazer debut along, decided to introduce pages 2 and 3.  There's a massive amount of content and want to finish this up by the end of this week.
             Page 2 focuses the design phase transitioning to production with several photos to share about this process.  Scent is all important.  Re-Scent 100% pure baitfish extract used in small amounts adds a lifelike smell to our Strip Teazers.  The future and cost effectiveness is another part of this article brought to light. Click for page 2
            Page 3 is a video demonstration that shines on the extended glow properties of our herring replacement strips.   This is a 100% honest video shoot in 1 continuous scene with no edits, or video enhancements what-so-ever.  Click for page 3 
            There's 4 glow colors involved that are especially hard to capture on a still camera. Too much light.  Had to wait for the color to dim.  XG colors Red, Chartreuse, Blue and Green are a lot more visible to the naked eye.  So, I know you won't be disappointed.
Rather have a poor photo with knock your socks off product.  Click glo in the photo

3/1/21  Today, it's my great pleasure to formally introduce our soft plastic herring replacement Strip Teazers to the big water fleet. Click Strip Teazers Part 1
             Frozen bait, herring has progressively been harder to get in MI.  You couldn't even buy whole Green Label Herring in Manistee, MI in 2020.  Price went up, because it was scarce.  Frozen strip quality has backslid from what we had 10 years ago.
             Part 1 tells the reel-story on how Strip Teazers came into being.  If you're looking disembark the bait train with a viable alternative, please stay tuned.
             Rock solid choices are the XG Green Glow and King Kryptonite Strip Teazers.  Know these 2 produce, because we caught, or had hits on them.  There's many other selections know will work too, as this season progresses.
Click for Strip Teazers

It's game on for the S Lk. MI. fleet.  Only launch with no ice is Burns Ditch, IN.  Boats are launching there and running W to Gary. Limits of eager spring Coho to 17 inches.  Boats that fished Saturday boxed out.  Yesterday the fishing slowed and dodging ice was an issue.  1st verified fish report for 2021 made possible by Tom M's wiliness to share.   

2/28/21  It was over 50° yesterday at my place in Manistee, MI.  This was the warmest day we seen in a long time.  Soon days in the 50s will be common place.
               Posted a sneak peek at Project 2021 that I've been working on since last July.  Official grand opening is tomorrow with 6 soup to nuts articles, along with several new videos.  Page 1 debuts tomorrow.  Each day this week another article will be revealed.  There's a lot of new digital content I look forward to sharing.  Click sneak peek P21

2/27/21  Good news on all fronts today.  Project 2021 now has patent pending status:  Provisional Patent Number: 63/154,228   Filing Date: 26-FEB-2021.  This will stop down the copy-cat,/knock-off thieves conniving to steal and make money off my hard work.
            Good news continues with more covid vaccines becoming available.  Tom M from E Chicago, IN received his shot from the National Guard recently.  Tom M is noted for his excellent reports and photos from the S end of Lk. MI.  His honest fish reports is keeps us informed and what we have to look forward to.  Click Tom M's covid vaccine

2/26/21  Great News about our patent pending status for Project 2021 that will be filled today.  The new articles and photos that debut this coming Monday are part of the legal proof my invention is completely unique unlike anything prior.
              Patent attorneys entered all the written text in said articles into the filling process to gain full patent rights to put a choke-hold on the bogus copy cats.
              The long journey that began last August will enter a new phase when Project 2021 is introduced at my webstore on 3/1/21.  This will change the way many of you fish.
 Like the part about developing new tackle.  Rest of the production stuff? ...not so much.

2/25/21  Final proof reading for the Project 2021 for the articles set to debut next week.  Worked with images the last couple days that's very time consuming.  Hopefully, I'll be better prepared for tomorrow's chat once I get my face un-stuck for this computer screen.

2/24/21  Seems like Mr. Winter punched himself out during the recent blast of frigid weather.  43° at my place yesterday is a sure sign spring is not all that far off.
               Place where I've sold the most tackle since last January (dollar value) is Soldotna, AK where the famous Kenai River dumps into the Pacific Ocean.  While I can't be there in person, know my tackle is doing an excellent job representing itself. 
         It's lofty dream of mine to visit the Godfather of all Salmon ports ...some day.

2/23/21  Push come to shove time with the world debut of Project 2021 next Monday.  Still have a few production issues we're to dealing with.  Good news is the articles and videos have all been put to bed, other than for minor tweaks.  Covid slow down allowed for the extra time to introduce this game changing tackle like it should. 
              Only drawback? ...I've had to keep up with webstore orders and make all the tackle myself.  Looking forward to bringing shop help back when this China virus has been driven into extinction.  Hiring more help is another option I'm considering.
         My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 67" (64 + 3).

2/22/21  Next Monday is the big deal for Project 2021 when it's finally revealed.  Job one for now, is to protect my intellectual properties so this invention stays mine.  Patents are hard to get and costly.  Having others steal your brainchild costs more in the long run.
              Delay could be possible if Project 2021 is not locked down with at least a patent pending by next Monday.  This is 1st step towards a gaining full patent rights.
             Began work on Project 2022 that will be in the test phase this season.  Testing is the fun stuff that's an open book yet to be written.

2/21/21  Good news, feel good story for today.  Vietnam vet, Wayne J received his 1st vaccination shot for Covid 19.  The VA in Cadillac is taking care of our vets.  Well done!
               Spoke with a customer from PA today who had his 1st vaccination recently.  So, there is a light at the end of our China virus tunnel.  Click Wayne's 1st shot
               My wife and I are on a vaccine list, but see the need for any and all workers who serve the public getting their shots before us.  These are the people that keep the wheels turning and should be moved to the head of the line after over 65s.

2/20/21 Big snow storm is a good enough reason for me to make this a snow day.  Looks like a foot, or more with the promise of spring only 4 weeks away.
        My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 64" (52 + 12).

2/19/21  Wow 33° at my place yesterday in Manistee, MI.  Ever better was last night's low temp (19°) was higher then most of the days we've seen in 2 weeks. 
               First day above freezing since the 5th of this month.  Weather has to improve with the days getting longer.  Official spring 2021 is about month out on 3/20/21.  We're gaining 20 minutes of daylight every week.  This is good news we can all appreciate
              My struggle with the USPS's Stamps.com program 17.7 update that's trash.  Support said call.  Called and told me they can't answer.  Suggested to try email support.  Did that and they can't reply.  This what happens when the current Postmaster General is not qualified to run the US Postal Service. Click USPS inept proof

2/18/21  People who fish do so for many reasons.  Some are into hook and cook enjoying the food they put on the table.  Tournament jockeys fish to bolster their ego.  Fishing buddies do it for camaraderie and the reel-challenge.  Families that fish together, stay together with a common goal of recreational bonding.
             My reason is pure escapism.  Getting on the boat washes my soul clean.  Trying to catch fish is a head game that leaves room for nothing else.  99.9% of the time, who made the tackle that's in water is not on the table.  Fishing is a universal language where all walks of life cross the same path.  What a wonderful thought!
            Yesterday, plowed the pole barn road just in case we have an early spring.  Better to plow now before too many freeze-thaw cycles that turns the snow into a glacier

2/17/21  Great News! Nanook is packing up his igloo and retreating back to the north pole.  Frigid single digits and teen for the daytime high temps has been well below normal for the past 9-10 days.  Pushing 40 next week is more good news.
               This is the time of the year when the 2021 season seems a long ways off.  Not for me.  February is on the downward side early season anglers will be on the pond again.
               Do know my 1st trip for Manistee, MI shoreline trolling is about a month out.  Rods and the boat is 95% ready.  So, this will be a splash and go event.

2/16/21  Big deal issues preventing shipping of international orders with Stamps.Com.  The US post office used to be as steady as a rock across the board.  Now, it's big problem with their 17.7 version update that don't work.  Being locked out of shipping international is a huge hit for us.  Did find a work around, but it's difficult to process shipping labels.
            This falls under the broad heading of personal grief caused by idiots!

2/15/21  President's Day, legal holiday for US mail, no orders shipping today. 
               In 2 weeks, long awaited secret Project 2021 will debut.  Will this sizzle, or fizzle?  I'm betting on the sizzle and wide fleet acceptance before this season is over.
            My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 52" (48 + 4)

2/14/21  Valentine's Day update begins with better weather and improving temps by the middle of this week.  Not the 10°-15° below normal we've been tolerating.  Average daytime for this time in February highs push 30°.  Not single digits of last week.
              My math says 56 days of winter has past.  In 34 days official spring 2021 arrives on March 20th.  March can go either way, but we'll surely see some warm days.
              This brings us ever closer to the big water 2021 season that's not that far off.  By mid-March the boats are beating up the spring Coho in S end of Lk. MI.

2/13/21  Weekend off.  Monday will feature important news about Project 2021.  Not good at keeping secrets.  Proud of keeping this hush-hush since last year.

2/12/21  News from the S end of Lk. MI is their soon to arrive Coho season looks good.  Word is from those who fished LK. MI before the bottom fell out of the thermometer is there were no sub 14" Coho (legal size) caught this past January. 
              Good growth rates, means bait and that's a bright spot for all of us.  Being close to major metropolitan areas the S end fleet size rivals, or surpasses some of the big name ports.  The big deal down S is early season, then it wanes towards summer.
                  MDNR free fishing weekend if you can tolerate the deep freeze.

2/11/21  It's really amazing to offer broadcast quality 1080 HD videos.  During the past 20 years the internet has made things possible we never dreamed of in the 1960s.  I fully embrace all the technology that's offered to us within my skill set. Click video editing
               My video editor can do voice-over narration, display titles/text, speed up, do scene cuts, cool transitions and insert photo overlays.  These are the same tools TV networks have and so do I.  Doing video editing is a major time drain, the outcome makes it all worthwhile.  In 17 days you'll have 6 new movies to ignite the 2021 fishing bug.
              To be able to share HD fishing videos is reel 21st century tech!

2/10/21  Figure we're about mid-point for this winter and we all need to look forward to spring.  When I was a kid in the 1960s, we called people that had to stay at home "shut ins."  Well, we've all been "shut ins" to curb the deadly China virus.
               There will be a spring soon and this Nanook weather will be a distant memory. That's what I'm doing to keep my spirits up.  How you keeping a good outlook?
                Winter is speeding by for yours truly with Project 2021 world reveal due on 3/1/21.  There's 6 new pages of original content, 30 new photos, and six 1080 HD videos made possible by the economic slow down caused by covid.  I put this time to good use!
        My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 48" (46+2)

2/9/21  Brutal cold snap delayed the good news my injection molding tools have found a new home.  Featured pic is the first tool I had made going back to 2003.  This is a 12" flasher single cavity tool is at least 20k in today's money.  Didn't have the dough back then, being a startup to have a double cavity tool cut.  Click 12" flasher tool
             Presently, we've grown to 5 tools that make 7 different pieces of tackle being: 4.0 spoons, 4.65 spoons, mag meat heads, super mag heads, bullet heads, 12" flasher and 10" BTI flashers.  This been accomplished over the past 17 years.
        My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 46" (43+3)

2/8/21  Hope your weekend went much better than mine.  Had to plow a path to the satellite dishes Friday night when it was close to single digits.  Battery in my plow truck gave out the following (Sat.) morning when I had to plow again.
            Upgraded the original stock Ford 625 cold cranking amps with a 850 cold cranking amp model.  Joy was swapping it out Saturday in 14° snowy weather.  Batteries seem seldom fail when it warm outside.  It's the cold that takes a toll on them.  Service life out of original battery in my 2014 F250 lasted 7 years.  So, it was time to replace.
            Battery failure was brought about by the 1st major snow event for Manistee, MI.  Know we got plus 12" Friday, more on Saturday, and Sunday too.
         My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at 43" (25+12+6)

2/5/21  Today's scheduled chat is postponed.  Posted this yesterday at 6pm with a wet a snow falling that clogs up my sat dish that will be soon worthless until is cleared of snow.  Forecast says major snow event with totals more then a 1' in the next few days.
             Big news is winter has upgraded to 2.0 with highs in the low teens and lows in single digits for the upcoming week, 10 days, possibly longer.
             Be back Monday, cause I'm not going to fight with the satellite dish.
     My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 25" (24+1)

2/4/21  Good news!  Found a new company to handle our injection molding needs. 
Oh, what a relief this is.  Knowing we can have product this year gets me out of a rock and hard place.  Plan is to have our 2021 production run of Magnum Meat Heads in-house sometime this April.  Still have to move our 5 injection molds and colorants, but that will be handled in due time.  Been looking for a new supplier for about the last 3 weeks.

2/3/21  Sun was out yesterday in Manistee, MI.  Mr. Groundhog for sure seen his shadow that predicts no early spring and 6 more weeks of winter.  While we'll get a few nice days in March, it's still wintery until mid-April.  So, I'll take 6 more weeks of winter, but highly doubt on 3/16/21 it will be time to lather on the sunscreen.
            Biggest thing we have to look forward is winter does have an expiration date of 3/20/21. Spring weather will happen by April in Manistee and that means Lk. MI fishing.
    My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 25" (24+1)

2/2/21     >>>>>>>>>  Breaking News - Special Report <<<<<<<<
Mr. G. Hog has predicted 6 more weeks of winter for Manistee, MI.  The sun was out yesterday and that's a rare occurrence for my place during this time of the year.
               While G. Hog did not predict an early spring, in 6 weeks on March 16, 2021 we'll hold his feet to fire on spring-like weather (+ or -5° from the target number of 50°)
                   Tomorrow: is King Salmon tagging and fin clipping necessary?

2/1/21  The event/debut Project 2021 is 28 days away to March 1st.  Scheduled 1st Lk. MI trip is 4/1/21, possibly sooner.  Boat is ready and and waiting.  Rods are ready too.
             Folk lore says tomorrow a Groundhog can predict spring with his shadow.  Doubt this seriously, but I think we're all desperate for some good news ...fun, fake, or not.

1/31/21  It's been intense lately editing videos.  Piecing scenes together is a long drawn out process.  Good news is: there will be 5-6 new You Tube videos to share with you soon.  Along with several new articles to spotlight Project 2021.
               Pre-pandemic time would not have been available for an all out maximum effort.  Creating new content will have it's rewards in the end with a helluva huge sense of accomplishment.  Just have to keep pushing forward till it's done.  None of this is easy.

1/30/21  Shelf life on January expires tomorrow. We've just about made it thru the longest, darkest and usually the coldest month of winter. 
              Next up is Groundhog Day, then Valentines Day as 2021 marches forward.  My 1st Lk. MI trip is only 59 days away.  World debut of Project 2021 is in 30 days.

1/29/21  Guest fishing report today from Capt. Jesse L. who hails from Soldotna, Alaska. This is where the famous Kenai River enters the Pacific Ocean. 
                Here's what Capt. Jesse said:  "Hey bud, ran that spoon you sent me with the flasher and it was a killer combo on multiple fish yesterday." (1/27/21)
                Combo he was sharing was our 12" White Lightening flasher with the same color in 4.0 Salmon Buster™ spoon.  Click AK King and this combo
                Checked the weather for Soldotna and it was cold, like in the low 20° range. Proving that Alaska Salmon fishermen are cut from a hardy piece of cloth.

1/28/21  Today's featured 3 in 1 photo depicts how my mind works.  GPS chart show we hit a good place and a yoyo retrace/reciprocal troll path.  Bait location dictated the turn.
              Only thing that was getting bit?  It was all Super Silver Bullet tackle.  Paired up the divers to match just adds more confidence, not indecision. Click 3 in 1 reel-story
              Reviewing archived photographs is always good for a reel-story.
    My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 24" (21+3)

1/27/21  Good news, days are noticeably longer.  It's getting dark at 6pm instead of 5pm like it was in December.  More daylight means spring is not all that far off.
               Good news on January web sales too.  Spoons are outselling meat heads by a 3 to 1 dollar advantage.  This don't happen very often with meat heads mostly leading the way.  Salmon Buster™ spoons hold up well over the seasons.  5 year old spoons look like they just came out of the package, less the teeth marks.  Click SB spoons & Steelhead
             There's nothing to fade, tarnish, chip away or the coating discolor like metal painted spoons.  The colors are molded in for a lifetime of fishing catching service.

1/26/21  In 2013 purchased a Solid State Hard drive for 200 bucks.  2 weeks ago bought a 1 terabyte SSD for less than a 100.  That's 4 times the storage for half the price.
              Data storage, mostly video files requires big hard drives.  6TB regular spinning disk hard drive for 100 bucks with dock on Amazon I couldn't pass up.  These tools are part and parcel of our soon to debut Project 2021 videos.  Click hard drives

1/25/21  About once a year I clean my desktop computers with compressed air from my paint booth.  Anything with a fan, or fins will collect dust from the high volume of air pushed thru the computer cases to keep your system operating like it should.  In a pinch, think the blower end on shop vacs will work.
              Desktops have lost ground to cell phones and laptops.  Unless you have an expensive laptop they cannot do the heavy lifts of video editing.  Click dirty fan
              Size of the screens on laptops is a big short coming too.  That's why I'm a huge fan of desktop work stations that can do everything.  Have 3 frontline desktops.
              Cell phones have their niche for viewing the internet if you can stand the tiny screen.  Consider smart phones a taskmaster and can live without electronic slavery.

1/24/21  The Book of Genesis said on the 7th day God rested.  I'm going to take a hint from the big guy and take the day off too.

1/23/21  It's lot easier to be socially distant in Manistee, MI when the daytime highs don't hit 20°.  Mr. Winter 1.0 has upgraded from a mild 0.5.
              Best news is the shelf life of winter is 2/3rds of what it was back in December.  Official spring begins on Saturday March, 20, 2021 that's less then 2 months away.
              Indoor list for today is rewrites and proof reading the new P21 articles set to debut on 3/1/21.  Amazing thing about penning a new work is after it marinates, there's always a better way to make your point by changing just a few words.
       My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 21" (19+2)

1/22/21  Today's thought for the weekend is: it's not how many times you've been knocked down?  It's how many times you got back up.  Adversity comes with big water fishing is automatic.  Miles, miles and more miles of water, most not holding many fish.
               Esteemed visitors of this website have emailed in 3 suggestions for injection molding companies.  Most promising is in Reed City, MI that I've already sent sample parts to.  A big thanks for the help, as we sort thru the options.
              Done business with Kruger Plastics since 2005.  Their tool and die shop made the Super Mag Heads, 10" BTI flashers and 2 sizes of our Salmon Buster™ spoons.  Feel like a dear friend has passed away with this company being dust in the wind.

1/21/21  Our last fish box pushing 200 pounds is today's featured photo that happened on 8/10/16.  Think there was 8 Kings to over 28 lbs and a 12 lb. Laker.  So, the math is works out.  Question is ...will this be my last big catch?  Answer is ...absolutely not!
               Fishing is notoriously uncertain and anything can happen at any giving time.  Adult summer Kings are programmed to bite.  Even if their stomach has contracted and they can no longer swallow their prey.  Keep this in mind: it's not your fault if you're not catching.  It's your location that's not producing.  Click 200 lb. box
            Especially, in this day and age when King Salmon are scarce in the first place.

1/20/21  Downturn in the economy is taking it's toll.  Kruger Plastics (my former injection molding company) sold to now, Springboard.  Contact person informed me they moved from the Bridgman, MI facility to South Bend, IN. 
              Worse yet? ...Springboard no longer going to make parts for small business like mine.  So, I'm up "you know what" creek without a paddle until I find another injection molding operation to make our flashers, spoons and meat heads
              My 1st concern is what are these folks in a small town going to do for a job?  Kruger had probably well over 50 workers on 3 shifts at one time.  
              Another concern is our tooling.  They have 5 tools that cost a small fortune & a stock pile of colorants worth 1000s.  Hopefully, I can resolve this problem ASAP.
  The big kick in the gut is we were just getting ready to order approx 10k meat heads.

1/19/21  Yesterday mentioned my years with this website and other timelines.  Left out the important part of being in the fishing business for past 38 years.  Going back to 1983 when I quit my paycheck job for good and never considered looking back.
               Longevity for my 38 years is accomplished with never having a plan "B."  That means you already had a hunch plan "A" was going to fail.
               Think most over expect from the fishing business with grandiose illusions.  I've always set my sights within reason.  Seen too many fail who did not.
       My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 19" (18+1).

1/18/21  2021 marks the 21st year this website has been on the internet.  That's over 7300 daily updates and counting.  I'm honored every time you visit this site. 
              7300 chats does not scratch the surface on big water fishing & related subjects pertaining to our sport.  So, there's never a shortage of topics to focus on. 
              It's only about 70 days away from my 1st Lk. MI trip of our shiny brand new 2021 big water season.  Reel fun stories have yet to unfold ...and to be told.
              The debut of Project 2021 is 44 days until the world reveal of our 1st production run on March 1, 2021  This is a big time winner-winner, chicken dinner!
              2021 marks our 17th year in the tackle business that has flew by.
       My 2020/2021 winter season front yard snowometer stands at only 18" (16+2).

1/15/21  Wet and rainy this morning with temps in the mid 30s, as 1/2 winter continues.  Each day that keeps the temperature moderate reduces chances of Lk. MI freezing solid. 
              Lake Huron froze over when the baitfish population crashed in the earlier i2ks.  Ice shutting down sunlight that limits the food chain is not helpful.
              From what I seen last August out of the Ports of Frankfort and Manistee, MI we marked plenty of bait and that's a good thing to look forward to in 2021.
             Internet free zone this weekend for yours truly taking off both Sat. & Sun.

1/14/21  Approaching the mid point in January it was 42° at my place in Manistee, MI.  1st 2 weeks of 2021 has been mild that's unheard of at the time of the year.
               Back to fishing.  The 3 and 1 photo that been front and center this week.  All 3 photos have 1 thing in common.  Water temp was the same top to bottom within a couple of degrees.  Deep fish 155' down in April were marked on my sonar.  Fish 60' down and higher in Manistique, MI were marked.  Seeing target zones was a big part of the puzzle.
              The 2019 trip out of Rogers City, MI no such luck on the sonar.  We were not marking fish.  This was a clue to run part of our spread high 20' to 30' that paid off.  High fish do not mark on sonar.  Wary adult Kings up high can become boat shy and scatter.

1/13/21  3 in 1 photo taken 9 years apart that took place in April, July and August.  Each pic was a different location, or port with a variety of water temps and depths.
               How do you figure this out? ...unanswerable.  The process of elimination plays big, if you have an open mind?  Here, experience has been my greatest enemy. 
               Relying on a tremendous bag of tricks that's worked in the past can be a major hindrance.  That's why, ...I like new ports with a clean slate.  This allows for fishing in the moment with no ill preconceived archived notions. Click 3 in 1 pic
               Solving speed and depth are big hills to climb to fend off the black kitty.  My deal is to keep trying new tactics until it works.  Then, ride it into the ground.

1/12/21  Today's 3 in 1 photo starts off with a meat rig catch from 4/25/12 with Kings being caught down 155' in 35° water off the Port of Manistee, MI. 
               These spring Kings were sluggish being only 4° away from frozen that wanted a slow 1.5 mph presentation to pry a bite.  Click 3 in 1 photo
               Second is from 7/20/16 with Kings eager to bite in 60° to 62° water that wanted only spoons moving at 2.5 to 2.8 mph.  This catch came from the UP's Manistique, MI on the northern end of Lk. MI at 30' to 60' down. 
              Wasted most of the morning trying to get dialed in with not much to show for it.  Evening fish was another reel-story when we figured it out.
              Last of the 3 pics in from Rogers City, from Lk. Huron on 8/24/19 that will be carried over until tomorrow when I try summate the never ending unknown of fishing.

1/11/21  March 1, 2021 is scheduled for Project 2021 release/debut date.  Worked long and hard on P21.  There's still a lot of loose ends for the big reveal 48 days from now.
              Been in the rocking chair with mild January weather.  This has been a godsend being spared big snows and frigid temps.  20s and 30s is about as good as it gets for this time of the year.  Even had one day last week that got into the 40s. We've only had 16 inches of total snowfall accumulation for winter 2020/2021.
          Tomorrow's topic will be trying to explain the mystery photo. Click for this pic

1/10/21 Computer is off today and so am I.

10/9/21  Just a quick heads up that a play on words too.  Our Magnum Meat Heads will be on limited supply until we get Project 2021 off the ground.  Do have a good supply for now, but not enough to last thru the season.  Hope to have all shortages fixed by summer.

1/8/21  Going to skip today's chat for the most part.  It's not been a good week for our nation that I'm at a loss of words to explain.  God bless America.
             Be back Monday with a fishing mystery when I was surfing past photos.

1/7/21  Since the FireDot pattern was 1st introduced to the Lk. MI fleet back in the late 1960s, history says this is a reel-summer Salmon slayer.  In my charter days (1983-2003) this color produced 20 to 30 fish limit catches for my guests. Click FireDot August Kings
             It's wrong to think this is just a Coho killer.  August Kings jump on this like stink on dog poo.  Clown suit school bus yellow and red dots are Bozo colors that the fish love for some reason.  When I know, I have to absolutely catch August fish?  There's at least 2 FireDot combos swimming in my spread.  Old school is better than no school.

1/6/21  Next Monday will be announcing the reveal date for the ground breaking secret Project 2021.  This had been in the works since the early part last July.  Keeping it under wraps has been a challenge by limiting what I can share with you, in the here and now.
            There's only 4 people in the world that know what we've been up to, counting my wife and I.  Turning P21 loose when the time is right is crucial.
             For 2021 we'll have a new 3 page article.  Along with 3 new You Tube videos that will debut well before spring.  Have great plans in the works for 2021!
Tomorrow? ...cost effective piece of tackle my boat would never leave the dock without.

1/5/21  Making plans for 2021 is a happy place for yours truly.  Tentative trips to new ports are on the agenda.  If, and when the dark covid cloud has lifted.  New places and returning to old ports like South Haven is a good bet for spring Kings in May.
             Project 2021 is done for the most part.  Have an idea for Project 2022 in the planning stage once we introduce the new game changing tackle for 2021.  Having to stay close to home does have it benefits, when the time is budgeted wisely.
        For the time being just going to enjoy the mild January weather while it lasts!

1/4/21  Reel great news keeps coming!  It's only 86 days until my 1st Lk. MI trip out of Manistee, MI. for my target date of 4/1/21.  Possibly, sooner if the weather breaks early.
             Know we will have some tough winter days ahead that will become a distant memory when my boat is no longer on the trailer.
            My vintage 1979 22' Sea Ray is set up for cold weather fishing.  A complete enclosure with a heater and defrosters keeps the cabin cozy for a couple of fishermen.
            Fishing in not supposed to be an extreme sport when you have to suffer the blustery wind that drives cold to the bone.  Hard to have a good time if you're freezing.

1/3/21  Great news again!  Since official winter started back in December, we gained about 7 minutes of daylight.  By January's end? ...we're looking at better then a 1/2 hour.
            Gaining daylight is what brings spring ever closer.  There will be a 2021 season soon.  My target date is 4/1/21 for my 1st Lk. MI trip out of Manistee, MI. 
            We all need something to look forward to.  Mine is getting back in the boat again!

1/2/20  Great news!  Mr. Winter is opening the new year with temps 10° above normal that should last into next weekend.  Having temps in the mid 30s at this time of the year is a godsend.  Thus far, this winter has been mild.  Only had to plow snow once a couple of days ago that was mostly for the UPS driver.  2" of wet snow last night was no big deal.
             My 2020/2021 winter season snowometer stands at only 16" for now

1/1/21 Happy New Year!  Health, wealth and wisdom for 2021.

Continued below back to the year 2000:

2021 Results
January, February & March

2020 Results
January, February & March
April, May & June
July, August & September

October, November & December

2019 Results
January, February & March
April, May & June
July, August & September
October, November & December

2018 Results
January, February & March
April, May, & June

July, August & September
October, November & December

2017 Results
January, February & March
April, June & June
July, August, & September
October, November & December

2016 Results
January, February & March
April, May & June
July, August & September
October, November & December

2015 Results
January, February & March
April, May & June
July, August & September

2014 Results
October, November, & December
January, February, & March
April, May, & June

July, August, & September

2013 Results
January, February, & March

April, May, & June
July, August & September
October, November & December

2012 Results
January, February, & March
April, May & June
July, August & September
October, November & December

2011 Results
January, February, & March
April, May, & June

July, August & September
 October, November, & December

2010 Results
January, February, & March

April, May & June
July, August & September
October, November & December

2009 Results
January, February & March
April, May & June
July, August, & September
October, November, & December

2008 Results
October, November & December

July, August, & September
April, May & June
January, February & March

2007 Results
October November & December
July, August & September

April, May & June
January, February & March

2006 Results
October, November & December
July, August & September
April, May & June
January, February & March

2005 Results
October, November & December
July August & September
April May & June
January February & March

2004 Results
October, November & December
August & September 
June & July  April & May
January, February & March

2003 Results
Jan Feb  Mar  April & May
June & July  Aug & Sept

Nov & Dec

2002 Results
Nov & Dec  Oct  Sept  
Aug   July   June  May  
April  March  Feb  Jan

2001 Results
April Brown Trout  
May & June
July Salmon
Aug. Tuna Time

2000 Results
Dec. Nov.
   Oct.  Sept.
July   June
May  March & April
January  February