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Pro anglers laud the St. Lawrence River, Waddington

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WADDINGTON — As I watched Day One weigh-in at the Evan Williams Bourbon Showdown on the St. Lawrence River at Waddington, I was impressed by the catches and comments of the 99 elite anglers. Part way through the weigh-in, I started jotting down some of the angler’s comments, and those comments comprise today’s column.

Josh Bertrand of Gilbert, Ariz. who is a newcomer on the pro circuit: “Boy, this is such a healthy river. The fish here are just so fat.”

Keith Combs of Huntington, Texas, who has appeared in two Classics: “This is really an unbelievable fishery.”

John Crews of Salem, Va., who has appeared in seven Classics: “This place is awesome. You guys have a fantastic fishery.”

Todd Faircloth of Jasper, Texas, who has appeared in 11 Classics: “There’s a lot of big ones out there. It’s a great place and a great crowd.”

Shaw Grisby of Gainesville, Fla.: “This is an amazing place. I love clear waters and big smallmouth. These are the best fighting fish in the world, and I love coming up here to fish for them.”

Kevin Hawk of Ramona, Calif., who is a Forrest Wood Champion: “This is one of the most fun and most scenic places I have ever fished.”

Jamie Horton of Centerville, Ala.: “Man, what a great place to fish. I bet I caught 70 fish today. What a lot of fun.”

Randy Howell of Springville, Ala., who has appeared in 18 Classics: “This is the most amazing fishery. It needs to be number one on the B.A.S.S. list.”

Kelly Jordan of Mineola, Texas, who has appeared in nine Classics: “Man, I had a lot of fun. Everybody’s saying what a cool place this is.”

Mike Iaconelli of Runnemede, N.J., who is a Classic Champion: “I fish all over the world, and this is one of the best smallmouth bass waters I’ve ever seen.”

Chris Lane of Guntersville, Ala., who is a Classic Champion: “This is a great town and a great fishery.”

Jared Lintner of Arroyo, Calif., who has appeared in four Classics: “My arm started hurting from catching all those smallmouths on my spinning rod.”

Billy McCaghren of Mayflower, Ariz., who is a Classic Champion: “It’s a beautiful place. This is a great crowd, and I’m loving it.”

Bitt Meyers of Mt. Holly, N.C., who has placed in the money 41 times: “It’s a lot of fun to fish a place where the nearest competitor is two miles away.”

Chad Pipkens of Holt, Mich., who is a newcomer on the pro circuit: “This place is unreal. There are 24, 25-pound bags out there.”

Derek Remitz of Grant, Ala., who has been in three Classics: “This is pretty fun. You start out in the morning catching, and you end up the day catching them.”

Bradley Roy of Lancaster, Ky., who is the youngest angler to ever compete at the pro level: “This is the most beautiful place I have ever fished.”

Casey Scanlon of Lenexa, Kan., who is a Classic Champion: “There’s a lot of fish here. It’s been a fun day. This is a great town.”

Kevin Short of Mayflower, Ark., who has appeared in two Classics: “I think I like this place better than any place I have ever been.”

Brian Snowden of Reeds Spring, Mo., who has appeared in five Classics: “These smallmouth are just amazing. You guys have a great fishery, and I hope to come back here.”

Todd Tucker of Moultrie, Ga., who brought 18 pounds, six ounces of bass to the scales: “This is the best hospitality we’ve ever had.”

Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., who is a four-time Classic Champion: “These fish are so healthy. They are a great testament to the fishery here. We don’t see fish this fat anywhere we go.”

David Walker of Sevierville, Tenn., who has appeared in eight Classics: “What a great event. This is an awesome place.”

Outdoors Calendar

Monday: Trap and Skeet Shooting at Lisbon Sportsmen’s Club (Pray Rd.) at 5:30 p.m.

Monday: Trap Shooting at Moose River F&G Club (Davis Bridge Road) at 4:30 p.m.

Tuesday: Federated Sportsmen’s Clubs of SLC meet at Canton BOCES at 7 p.m.

Wednesday: Trap Shoot at Black Lake F&G Club at 7 p.m.

Thursday-Saturday: St. Lawrence International Junior Carp Tournament (386-4000).

Aug. 24: Bowhunter Homestudy Course at Lawrenceville FD (Pre-register at Lawrence Town Office).

Aug. 25: 3rd Annual Biggest Bass Fishing Tournament at Chaumont (782-2451).

Sept. 7: Hunter Education Course at Camp Mandaville, Winthrop (Pre-register with Hopkinton Town Clerk).

Sept. 7: Bowhunter Education Course at Russell Library (In-person registration at Russell Town Hall).

Sept. 7-8: Hunter Education Course at Mullins Restaurant, Gouverneur (Pre-register at 287-9398).

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