20 Questions with Kevin VanDam

6. What do you love most about bass fishing?

The thrill of figuring out what it will take to catch them on any given day and figuring out a pattern. It's not so much about the catch anymore, but figuring out what it takes to catch them.

7. What is your greatest strength as a bass angler?

My greatest strength can also be a weakness at times; it's just my style of fishing. I fish fast and cover a lot of water. It does help me locate fish really fast, but sometimes I can go too fast and be too aggressive and not realize how good a spot might have been.

8. What is your greatest weakness as a bass angler?

Probably finesse techniques and when I have to fish slowly. If you told me I had to fish a mile-long grassline with a Texas rigged worm, that'd be painful.

9. Where is your favorite place to fish for bass and why?

Well, I really like catching smallmouth, and Michigan is a great place to do it. Lake St. Clair is good, and the northern Michigan area is really pretty country. There are lots of good fish, and the lakes are all deep and clear and beautiful.

10. What question do you get asked most by fans and how do you answer it?

That's not really an easy question to answer. The No. 1 question I get is, "How do you find fish on a big body of water quickly?" There is no quick answer to that. You need to take into account things like the season, type of body of water and the current conditions, among other things. Then you can start to put together a plan. It's not something easily answered. I have a whole chapter in a book about that very thing. Actually, another thing I get through Bass Pro Shops e-mails and other routes is, "How do you properly set up a baitcaster?" That's a little easier to answer, but I still don't know if there's enough room here. In short, I set the spool tensioner first to the weight of the bait, then I set the centrifugal brake to make as stealthy a cast as possible; all that does is slow the bait down toward the end of the cast.