The 14 anglers of the Tri County Elite Bass club launched out of South Bay on Lake Champlain on Aug. 4 and headed into a stiff north wind. The conditions didn’t hurt the fishing any. Joe Tefft of South Glens Falls squeezed out a win with a last-minute cull that moved his five-fish total to 15.33 pounds. Joe’s bag was anchored with the day's lunker of 5.11 pounds, and he earned a total of $505 for his efforts.
Michael Galcik of Schuylerville was runner-up with 14.8 pounds and earned $202 as a reward. Tim Lyons grabbed the last check ($62) with 14.72. For more information on the Tri County Bass go to https://www.facebook.com/tricountyelitesbassclub.
The Saratoga Challenge on Aug. 7 attracted 29 boats, and there were some nice bass weighed in. Leading the way was Jim Bubb (Clifton Park) and Sean Noonan (Saratoga) with 14.41 pounds. Their haul was anchored by Jim’s 6.3-pound largemouth. First place returned $653 and the lunker $290. I couldn’t get my son to tell what they used and where they caught the fish.
In second place and fishing alone was Henry Marshall (Saratoga), who weighed in catches totaling 4.31 pounds for which he received $391. Third place and $261 went to the Ballston Spa team of Charlie Couchman and John Levine with 13.94 pounds.
The Mohawk Valley Anglers attracted 17 two-man teams to their contest at Canadarago Lake; 14 tandems caught a 5-bass limit. Leading the way with 15.07 pounds was the Greenville team of Zach Whitbeck and Bob Misuraca with 15.09 pounds, including the lunker (a 4.38-pound largemouth). They earned $660 for the win and $120 for the big bass. Second place and $440 went to the Rotterdam team of Tim Squires and Bob Poulton with 13.42 pounds. Third place and $320 went to John Irons (Little Falls) with 13.01. Low to cash with 12.57 pounds was Chris Colin (Scotia) and Todd Keenan (Rotterdam), who received $80 and a Popeyes gift card.
Only eight teams fished in the South Shore Marina in that downpour on Aug. 8. The two teams that cashed were Saratoga Springs teammates Dave Munger and John Jenkins with 10.37 pounds. They received $260. Clifton Park's Jim Bubb and Mike Maynard were second with 9.87 and received $160. The lunker bass of the contest was a 2.89 pound largemouth caught by John Ernst of East Greenbush and Tony DiDona worth $80.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY SMOKEY
Basil Seggos, the state Department of Environmental Conservation commissioner, announced that the agency is participating in events across New York this month to celebrate Smokey Bear's 75th anniversary. DEC is teaming up with the US Forest Service, the National Association of State Foresters and the Ad Council to celebrate the 1944 launch of the Smokey Bear Wildfire Prevention campaign. It is the longest-running public service advertising campaign in U.S. history.
"Smokey Bear has successfully educated generations of Americans about how we can all help prevent wildfires," Seggos said. "We invite all New Yorkers to join us and celebrate this national icon at events across New York state this summer. Smokey's words are still an urgent and relevant reminder for all of us to follow -- 'Only YOU can prevent wildfires.' ”
Smokey Bear was "born" on Aug. 9,1944 (we are the same age) when the Forest Service and the Ad Council agreed on using a fictional bear to serve as the symbol for their joint effort to promote forest fire prevention during World War II. Roughly nine of 10 forest fires are caused by humans. Wildfires can be deadly and destructive, and the national annual cost of their consequences can range anywhere from $71.1 billion to $347.8 billion, according to a recent study by the U.S. Department of Commerce. Last year's Camp Fire in Northern California destroyed the city of Paradise and killed more than 80 people, making it the nation's deadliest wildfire in more than a century.
New York State has 18.5 million acres of public and private forest lands susceptible to seasonal wildfires, and DEC's forest rangers are the lead division tasked with control and prevention of wildfires. In 2018, DEC forest rangers extinguished 105 wildfires that burned a total of 845 acres. For more information about the rangers, go to DEC's website.
Reach columnist Ed Noonan at [email protected].