NWT Little Bay de Noc 2014

Good friend Tracy Hayward and I left Cedar Rapids on Friday, August 23, for Escanaba, MI and practice for the third event in the
Cabela’s National Walleye Tour season. We had high hopes for many walleyes. However, we were greeted with four days of practice without a walleye! We fished Little Bay, Big Bay, above Menonomee, above and below the Cedar River checking out spots. We finally connected with fish in the Black Bottom area of Little Bay using inline weights and spinners on Wednesday and Thursday of practice. Chris and Matt Speicher arrived to fish as co-anglers in the event. Matt came a day early and joined teammate Steve Miller in his boat on Wednesday. Other team members included Chris Burns and Eric Olson. We shared results, information, and waypoints in preparation of the first day of competition. Day 1 of the tournament arrived with high winds from the southeast. Most of the boats went south into the wind and benefited from the best bite of the tournament along the western Green Bay shoreline. Pros pulled both cranks and spinners and the first day weights were spectacular! I only managed a couple small fish for the first day and thought Friday night about where to start on Saturday. Chris and Matt both went south with their pros and endured the long runs in rough water. I went south on Saturday after a half hour delay because of the fog which really didn’t lift until
early afternoon. My co and I caught a nice fish on our spinner setup right away and I thought we were on our way. But…we only had one other fish bite and headed in for our 3pm with our one fish. I got to watch all the anglers come in and discovered the troller bite had died for almost everyone because of the calm water. Keith K. and Gary P. came in first and second by using an innovative approach casting an ice fishing jig for their fish!! Please check out the story on what they did, how they did it, and where they did it at www.nwt.com. Matt came in 25th and cashed a check! Our friend Marty Barski won the co-angler event and $6k!! I want to say thanks to each of our team members for their hard work and effort. Also, I enjoyed having Chris and Matt fish the event and the time we spent Saturday night together sharing stories of our days on the water. What does next year hold? Not sure. Want to see what the NWT schedule looks like and whether it will be more tournament fishing or more fun fishing in 2015!! Spike

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Matt and Mark Courts after weigh-in!

Matt and Mark Courts after weigh-in!

Pictured Rock park before the tourney.

Pictured Rock park before the tourney.

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Ranger/Evinrude Pro Eric Olson with a nice Green Bay walleye caught during practice!

Ranger/Evinrude Pro Eric Olson with a nice Green Bay walleye caught during practice!

Stephanie and Marty Barski at their lake home. Marty helped Chris Burns prefish the Escanaba NWT event!

Stephanie and Marty Barski at their lake home. Marty helped Chris Burns prefish the Escanaba NWT event!

Pictured Rock park before the tourney.

Pictured Rock park before the tourney.

Tracy Hayward helped Spike prefish and caught some nice walleyes!

Tracy Hayward helped Spike prefish and caught some nice walleyes!

Spike's Day 2 partner, John Hoyer, from Minneapolis.

Spike’s Day 2 partner, John Hoyer, from Minneapolis.

Matt Speicher with his Day 2 partner, Mark Courts, watch the scale as their fish are weighed. Matt finished 25th and cashed a check!

Matt Speicher with his Day 2 partner, Mark Courts, watch the scale as their fish are weighed. Matt finished 25th and cashed a check!

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Chris Speicher and his Day 2 partner, Ed Stakowski, on stage interviewed by Chip Leer!

Chris Speicher and his Day 2 partner, Ed Stakowski, on stage interviewed by Chip Leer!

Chris and Ed after weigh-in. Chris lost his hat after fast ride in!!

Chris and Ed after weigh-in. Chris lost his hat after fast ride in!!

Nice fish Chris and Ed!

Nice fish Chris and Ed!

Spike in between NWT winners Keith and Gary!!

Spike in between NWT winners Keith and Gary!!

Pro winner Keith with nice check!

Pro winner Keith with nice check!

Spike at weigh-in!

Spike at weigh-in!

Take care of this fish!

Take care of this fish!

Spike and Day 2 partner, John Hoyer!

Spike and Day 2 partner, John Hoyer!

Marty and Keith with their first place co and pro trophies!!

Marty and Keith with their first place co and pro trophies!!

Bump tankin.

Bump tankin.

Lund Pro Marianne Huskey conducted youth event presentation to a record number if kids at Escanaba!  A number of NPAA members including Spike helped hand out fishing goodies to the youth!!

Lund Pro Marianne Huskey conducted youth event presentation to a record number if kids at Escanaba! A number of NPAA members including Spike helped hand out fishing goodies to the youth!!

The Barski's invited us out to their lake home for ribs during NWT practice--Marty went on to win the co-angler title!  Here's Spike, Marty, Steve Miller, Tracy Hayward, and Chris Burns before dinner!

The Barski’s invited us out to their lake home for ribs during NWT practice–Marty went on to win the co-angler title! Here’s Spike, Marty, Steve Miller, Tracy Hayward, and Chris Burns before dinner!

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