For a short spell, we will be vacationing with six of our 10 grandkids and some of their parents in the Northwoods of Minnesota, where we will watch them fish more than we will fish. These family fishing respites to Minnesota have been a tradition that stems back to the 1930s.
Thus, our Midwest finesse columns will be rather abbreviated until Aug. 6, and most of them will be focused on the new soft-plastic baits that were introduced to the angling world at the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trade show at Orlando, Florida, on July 15-18. The first two columns will feature baits made by Fish Arrow of Japan.
During our Minnesota vacation, our kids will wield a variety of Midwest finesse tactics, and we hope to see them tangle with an array of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, northern pike, yellow perch, crappie, rock bass, and bluegill.
Perhaps some of their catches will be featured in a column in the near future and become part of our periodic quest to display the manifold virtues of fishing to the youngsters across the nation.
Of course, from our perspective, one of the best ways to teach youngsters -- and oldsters as well -- how to catch largemouth bass and smallmouth bass is to equip them with a few of the basic Midwest finesse baits. What's more, these baits will inadvertently allure a variety of other species while these anglers are focusing on various black bass species.
As we are preparing for our annual trip from northeastern Kansas to the Northwoods of Minnesota, we are hoping that our grandchildren, as well as their parents and their grandmother, can tangle with a largemouth bass the size of the one that Emily Myers of Lawrence, Kansas, is holding in the photograph below. It was one of the big ones that the family caught last year.