Claire Corlett

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Ish Monroe Bass Pro | Bass Fishing

Ish Monroe Bass Pro | Bass Fishing

Glenn: Hi, I’m with Ish Monroe at the Bassmaster
Classic. Ish, good to have you with us today. Ish Monroe: Glad to be here. Glenn: Can you give us a quick overview of
how you got started tournament fishing, and how you progressed to where you are today? Ish: Well, I’ve been fishing since I was two
years old. Growing up, my Dad took me out fishing and so I really loved fishing. About
11 years old, I saw something similar to Ultimate Match fishing on TV, two guys duking it out,
and they were actually two young kids, and the younger kid beat the older kid. I think
one was 16 and one was 18, and I’m like, “I can do that!”, and the young kid one five
grand, and to me five grand at 11 years old was the world. I mean, it was like a million
dollars now, and so I just started growing a love for fishing that way, working in a
tackle store, joined a bass club when I was 12 years old. I started from there fishing
tournaments and that was it. It never stopped. Glenn: So for a new guy who wants to get into
competitive bass fishing, what kind of advice would you give him? Ish: Take baby steps. Don’t try to run before
you walk, or walk before you crawl. Crawl is basically starting out at the club level,
joining a local club, getting familiar with your boat, and competition in the waters,
and then stepping up to a regional level, fishing something like the BFL’s, of the Federation,
things like that, and then working up from there in to the Strens, or the Opens, and
then try to tackle on the Elite Series or the FLW Tour. Glenn: What would you consider was your big
break into the tournament fishing circuits? Ish: BASS coming out West was the big break,
because everybody has aspirations of fishing for a living, and the only way you can do
it is fishing the bass. The Elite Tour at that time was the top 100’s, and so, they
came out West, gave us an opportunity to fish the invitationals, and I made it my first
year to qualify to fish back east, and so I went. Glenn: So I noticed you have an awful lot
of sponsors, and I know that’s part of being a tournament pro. Can you talk a little bit
about what the sponsors do for you, and what you do in return? Ish: Well, basically for me, it’s more so
what I can do for them, and they help me out to be able to fish for a living. My deal for
them is I go out and I promote, and I help them sell their products. I have a lot of
end design, and things like that, that my sponsors have on products that they sell.
In return, they give me monetary value that allows me to pay my bills and be able to go
out with a comfortable set of mind and know that I don’t have to cash a check to be able
to make a living doing this. Glenn: Excellent. So let’s talk a little bit
about on the water. When you’re pre-fishing for a tournament, for instance, what exactly
are you trying to accomplish, and how do you go about doing that? Ish: Well, pre-fishing for me is, I’m a big
fan of fishing the moment. I do a lot of driving, a lot of looking, my Lowrance 113 with my
Navionics chips, whether I’m in the east, west, south, or north, cover everything for
me. I can be able to search around and pull up on humps and breaks with my Navionics chip
and see the stuff on the bottom with my 113 sonar. Those are the things that I do a lot,
not just fishing. Fishing is a small part of practicing. It’s going out scoping, and
trying to find things, and trying to find the type of structures and techniques you
want to fish. Glenn: So you’re not necessarily fishing that
structure, you’re just checking out to see if it’s potential areas? Ish: Yeah, basically potential areas. I do
fish a little bit, trying to find something and find a pattern. If I find them on one
type of pattern, say I’m fishing breaks in 30 feet of water, then I can go around and
find the rest of those breaks in 30 feet of water real simple, and go back and fish them. Glenn: Okay, so say during a tournament, you’re
on a spot, how do you decide when it’s time to pick up and go to another spot? Aren’t
you concerned that another competitor will come in on your spot? Ish: Especially when you’re fishing deep,
it really doesn’t matter, because most of the guys haven’t found that stuff. They haven’t
spent the time. Navionics has helped out guys a lot, making it easy for them. I tell people,
when I first got them, it was almost like cheating. It was like having you map and having
a guide in the boat who says, “Oh, yeah, there’s a hump sunken down 30 feet that comes up to
12.” Well, of course I’m going to go fish it, but it’s intuition when you know when
to leave a spot, and you’re not feeling it. You just let your emotions and your mind take
over, and just let it flow. I call it the Jedi deal, and just flowing with everything
and the way it moves. Glenn: Let’s talk a little bit about that.
Can you tell me, is the mental aspect of it, as you said, like being a Jedi, is that what
separates the Elite pros from the weekend warriors? What do you think is the thing that
separates you from the rest? Ish: For me, I think it’s my mental mindset.
I don’t drink any alcohol during the season, and I stay focused, and I don’t party, and
I go to bed early, and I have one thing on my mind: concentrating on catching fish. You
look at guys like Kevin VanDam, he loves to trash talk me, because it fires him up; it
keep him going. Ike’s all about being emotional all around, and that’s the mental game for
him. If he’s not emotional about it, if he’s not running 100 miles per hour through his
head, he’s not feeling comfortable in fishing, and that’s what it’s all about. Just feeling
comfortable, and going out and going fishing: fishing the moment. Glenn: Cool. Let me talk a little bit about
the tournament rules. They change every year. There’ s a little bit of adjustments made
all the time. If you had the opportunity to change one rule, what would it be? Ish: I would make it, instead of a 30-day
off limits once they arrange the schedule, a complete off-limits from information and
being on the water. Glenn: Really? Ish: Yes. Glenn: And why is that? Ish: Because there are guys who don’t do a
lot of promotions, who get the time to go out with guides and stuff before the off-limits
actually hits, and getting help. To have a true sport, you should be able to do everything
on your own, and I think someday that BASS is actually going to go to that, and so that’s
why I never get help. I never pre-practice on lakes a month ahead of time. I never even
came out for Classic pre-practice before off-limits, even on Hartwell, and I’d never been there
before, because I feel like you should be able to do it on your own. Glenn: Excellent. Excellent. So let me ask
you this, what do you consider as your most unusual bass fishing tactic? Ish: My most unusual bass fishing tactic?
I really can’t say I have one. Everything works. I don’t know. I don’t have an unusual
bass fishing tactic, I just go fishing and keep it simple. That’s why. Glenn: Just two more questions. You have 30
seconds for a shameless plug moment here. Do you want to say anything to your fans,
promote anything you want to? Go. Ish: That’s kind of a tough one, just to shamelessly
go out and promote anything. You guys see my sponsors out there and the products that
I endorse. I use every single one of these products. I have a lot of influence on how
these products are made. You look at Daiwa’s 8-foot Steez flipping stick. I had a lot of
influence on that because I was the one who wanted and eight-foot flipping stick. You look at the Lowrance Electronics, the
bigger screen, things like that, those are just things that make your fishing easier.
Navionics, there’s not much more you can say about it. It’s plug-and-go. It’s simple as
can be. Maximum fishing line, the strongest Power Pro grade, you can’t break grade. Reaction Innovations, who doesn’t fish a Reaction
Innovations Sweet Beaver. If you’re not fishing Sweet Beaver you’re not fishing. Hildebrandt
Spinnerbaits, Purolator Oil Filters in my truck, I mean, I’m covering it all. Snag Proof,
Bass West Magazine, Yamaha Outboards, most reliable engine on the market. Ranger Boats.
Ranger’s been around and Ranger’s Ranger. Nothing else you could say about Ranger. Glenn: All right. Ish: And… True Tungsten. Wait until you
see the new stuff we have coming out! Ish Monroe’s Flipping Tube, or not even the Flipping
Tube, the big tube, and the big 12/0 hook and my swim baits, go big or go home! Glenn: All right. All right. One more question.
Jan or Marsha Brady? Ish: Both. At the same time. You get the best
of both worlds. Glenn: Thank you very much Ish, I do appreciate
it. Ish: No problem.

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