My top 10 bass fishing partners

I am finally coming out of hibernation. An absence that has lasted about 4 months due to a health issue. But I’m back and better than ever and have a fun topic to talk to you about today. I want to tell you about the 10 Best Bass Fishing Partners that I have ever been in a boat with.

Have you ever thought about your top 10? Everyone has a list, not just me, and it’s interesting to think about.

Now, before I expose mine, let me tell you the rules. These 10 are not the best 10 bass fishermen in the world, although they could be, but along with their fishing ability, it must be valuable time spent to be with them.

If you’re comfortable with this angler, then his skill puts him on the list.

In other words, I have been out with some great bass fishermen who were butts to be in a boat with. They will not be making the list.

It will probably take two blogs to get through my list, and a few of them you have never even heard of. Remember, darn good anglers and first-class boat partners.

Some of mine will surprise you, like:

Mike McKinnis holds a largemouth and a spot from Alabama's Lake Martin in 1970.

No. 10 Mike McKinnis

That’s right, my son Mike. Back in 1970, Mike was about 10 years old and I was fishing on Lake Martin in Alabama, with Tom Mann. Mike was fishing out of the camera boat and at noon, Tom and I we’re skunked.

Mike had a nice largemouth and a big spotted bass. I knew at that time that I had a great fishin’ partner on the way.

Since those days we have fished in bass boats, canoes, waded many streams together and I envy his natural talent to catch fish.

Mike has produced Bassmaster television for years and is maybe the best outdoor TV producer in the land, simple because he knows the sport so well.

Billy Westmoreland and McKinnis caught a hefty stringer on Lake Cumberland in 1969.

No. 9 Billy Westmoreland

Westmoreland would be on my 10 best bass fishermen list even if he wasn’t a good partner, but he was a good partner. We use to have so much fun fishing Dale Hallow and Lake Cumberland. One time we were fishing Dale Hollow and I caught a 6-pound smallmouth. I really thought I was something until he caught one that was 9. Biggest smallmouth I’ve even seen in my life.

Here’s something funny about Billy. He thought Dale Hollow was his lake. We fished it in the winter and we’d think we were the only boat on this giant reservoir.

Under these circumstances, he would be visibly upset when another boat would appear. “What is that blanket-blank doing on my lake,” he would say – and meant it.

Fishing and life are kind of the same in that when things are going bad, you should slow down. Billy was a perfect example of that.

Forrest Wood makes Jerry's partner list and their adventure to British Columbia for steelhead will make the list of Jerry's top fishing trips.

No. 8 Forrest Wood

There would be no list if Forrest wasn’t somewhere in the mix. After all, he was the first one I shared a boat with. We both were youngsters and we were not bass fishing, we were trout fishing from a johnboat. I’m going to count that anyway.

Believe me Forrest and I bass fished many days together, however someday I’m going to list the top 10 fishing trips I’ve ever been on and an adventure to British Columbia, fishing for Steelhead with him, will top my list. I think it might top his as well.

Forrest is the ultimate fishing partner and possibly the most important man, for me, I have ever fished with. By the way, he’s a fishing son of a gun.

I still have seven more to go and I’ll get to them here in a few days. I hope just for the heck of it you’ve made your own list. I’ll give you a hint as to who a few of my top seven are.

One is known for his cap, another is known for his initials and then there’s the one that made the “Little George” famous.

You know, I’m starting to wish I had made it the top 15.

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