After setting the hook and battling a smallmouth for a few minutes, Palaniuk dances back to the passenger seat to land it. When the bass sees the boat it sounds and nearly takes Palaniuk's spinning rod with it.
Palaniuk runs to the bow and repositions the boat. Then he lets the bass wear itself down before he returns to the passenger seat to snatch the bass. The 4-pounder allows Palaniuk to cull.
The wind and waves may be subsiding somewhat. That would help Palaniuk's cause tremendously.
After idling around for several minutes, Palaniuk kills the outboard, immediately drops his bait into the water from the driver's seat and quick-foots it to the bow. He's struggling to hold his boat in position. Dropping the bait from the driver's seat ensures that his offering will be where it needs to be, for a few moments at least.
A few minutes later, Palaniuk pulls up his trolling motor, straps it down and runs half a mile into Henderson Bay. The waves are't quite as bad here, but it's still no picnic.
Palaniuk hooks a bass in short order. It gives him fits at the side of the boat. Finally, he hauls aboard a 4 1/2-pounder. This time Palaniuk screams, pumps his fist and fist-bumps his photographer.
"That's the kind I need," he yells to us.
Minutes later, Palaniuk hooks bass number five. It's not a giant, but it gives Palaniuk his limit.
Photo by marshall Dwayne Sawyer
Photo by his marshal Frank Tully
Looking like about 13 pounds ... working his way up.
Photo by Frank Giner