2013 Elite Series Plano Championship Chase Lake St. Clair/Detroit River - Detroit, MI, Aug 22 - 25, 2013

A grand master bait shop

12:48 pm EDT, Aug 25, 2013 | By Steve Wright

Aaron Martens will finish his day on Lake Erie without the prying eyes of Steve Bowman upon him. Logistically, this is one of the most difficult events our crew has ever attempted to document. It's a three-hour drive to put in at Catawba Island State Park in Port Clinton, Ohio, so you can get to Martens without making that brutal 80-mile-plus boat run.

Bowman and boat driver Chris Noffsinger are probably on the road now, and soon will drive past Rickard's Bait & Tackle in Port Clinton. It's one of the classic old-time bait shops – a master bait shop, if you will (but you probably won't).

Maybe you have to be an AARP member like me to love these places, but I dearly do. I enjoy everything about them, even the smell.

And a good sign of a great bait shop is just that - a good sign. The one to the left of the front door to Rickard's reads, "All our lively bait is guaranteed to die trying." (P.S. You think John Hendricks lifted that worm on the sign at Rickard's to create the Luck-E-Strike logo? I'm kidding.)

So a tip of the cap to Rickard's and every bait shop like it. Long may they live.

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