Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hanging in Nashville

The last 3 days have been spent in the Music Capital of the US, Nashville, Tennessee.  As President of our trade association for transformer manufacturers (TTA), it was time for our Spring Meeting and along with the usually strategic sessions.  I did get to visit the Opry Mills area before arriving at the airport, where I am writing this post while waiting for our ride back to Minneapolis.  Opry Mills is a Mall/Entertainment area which is home to Opryland USA, The Grand Ole Opry, and the main attraction in Opry Mills is the Bass Pro Shop.  Although Cabela's is only 5 miles from my home I think Bass Pro Shop's have a much larger selection of fishing tackle and equipment.  Maybe it's because those bass fisherman need more stuff than us walleye guys but again they seldom fish with live bait.  I have been interested in a technique called Drop Shot rigging, very popular for bass fishing.  As you see in the picture a hook is tied anywhere from 6 inches to 24 inches above the end of your line, with the hook attached directly to the line.  At the end of the tag is a sinker that is heavy enough keep you in touch with the bottom.  The theory is that the lure or bait is kept off the bottom and more in the strike zone of the fish's vision.  Like you and I, it is easier to see something at eye level than having to always be looking down for something.  My thought is that this would be a great technique for walleyes on Leech Lake where we normally fish with a simple short shanked 1/8 oz live bait jig and drag it across the bottom.  With the lake ice outs so early this year, I suspect the big females will be in the hunt after having spawned a few weeks earlier and may be hanging in the deeper rock ledges off the reefs.  The plan is to use a live shiner minnow as bait and along with a special drop shot sinker, fish these rocky areas more effectively than with a jig.  One secret is to tie the sinker with a lighter pound test than your main line and if the sinker gets snagged you can simple break the drop line, preserving you minnow and hook.  It seems like it should work and I will give a full report on my rresults in a few weeks.   Bass Pro Shops have a great selection of tackle made for this technique and I loaded up with some special hooks and drop shot sinkers which should make rigging much easier.  I also bought a fish counter for keeping track of the number of fish in the livewell, 2 half ounce bass jigs that were on sale, and a new LED Livewell light.As for the store itself, the Nashville Store is not the largest one I have been in however their aquarium was pretty nice.  Loaded with huge fish I was particularly amazed at the size of a couple of Largemouth Bass swimming around. They were easily in the 12 - 15 pound class,  dwarfing anything I could catch in Minnesota.  Along with a couple of nice paddlefish and wipers (cross between a white bass and a sea run striped bass), like airplanes I could sit and watch them swim around for hours.

Nashville is the home of the Grand Ole Opry, originally started as a radio program in 1925 it survives today with much of the same character as it did 88 years ago.  I had a chance to attend the Opry a number of years back and it was like going back in time.  After a few sets the show would stop for a commercial that was read in front of the audience.  While this was going on the stage was being prepared for the next act.  If you like country western music and want to an institution, I highly recommend a visit to Nashville.  This area suffered under a severe flood 2 years ago and it has recovered remarkably.  The Gaylord Opryland Resort is also something you need to see with it's beautiful indoor atrium's, complete with it's own river flowing through the Delta Conservatory.  Big enough to float a boat, you can go for a nice ride as you pass, catfish, carp, and colorful koi fish.  I will have to get back someday. 

On Monday I dropped off the boat at the dealer to get the cover re-fitted for the new trolling motor and am hoping that it will be done when I get back later tonight.  Once I have the boat back it will be full speed to the opener.  I still have much to do before I go but admittedly it's a labor of love.  The forecast is talking about snow again on Saturday.  Oh well!


Jeff King said...

Man....would I love to get to Nashville. Someday. I suppose your work keeps you from getting down to all the venues, 16th Avenue? Hobo Jum tells the story of him and a banjo playing friend that were trying to make it in Nashiville. They were headed into a bar and his friend didn't lock the car so Jim reminded him so his banjo wouldn't get stolen. He told Jim that he was so discouraged that if someone stole his banjo they could have it....well, they came out of the bar and there were 3 banjos in the car.

Jeff King said...

And Oh...that would be a gorgeous Gibson Hummingbird sticking out of the sidewalk. I could use one of them too.

Dave Anderson said...

I'll see what I can do next trip!