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Herm Hoops Signs Up
For Bass Tournament
by Rod N. Reele


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All area anglers should start getting their gear ready, oil your reels and sharpen your hooks--there’s money to made and honor to be won.

Starting on May 3, there will be a three-day B.A.S.S. (Bass Anglers Sportsman Society) sanctioned bass fishing tournament held on the Little Kanawha River between Glenville and Grantsville.

Sponsored by Cabalas and Zebco, the tournament offers a purse of $100,000 to the person with the heaviest catch of bass, of all species, over the three days, with a bag limit of five fish per day. All fish must be alive when weighed and re-leased back into the river after certification.

Tom Bergeron, vice president of operations for Zebco, said, “According to our research the Little Kanawha River is one of the best bass fishing streams east of the Mississippi. We get a list from the state of West Virginia’s Dept. of Natural Resources each year, which gives the number of citation-size fish that are landed each year, along with where they were caught.

“The Little Kanawha consistently has more citation bass than any other stream in the state, other than the Greenbrier River. The only reason the Greenbrier has the most citation bass per year is the number of guided trips throughout the year on that river.

“There are five rafting companies and 47 individual guides who make a living offering guided day trips on the Greenbrier and New rivers, and those guides always take care of the paperwork needed for the angler to get their citation from the state. As far as we can tell, there is no one offering guided fishing trips on the Little Kanawha. None.

“If there was such a thing as a river being under-fished, it would be the Little Kanawha. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit if this tournament doesn’t spark a lot of interest in fishing the river, and maybe even give some of the local fishermen a chance to make some money in the summer, running guided fishing trips.”

The only rule that will affect most anglers is that all boats must be human propelled, no motors of any kind will be allowed.

So far, the only angler who has signed up for the tourney is Herm Hoops, the river guide who wrote the book on the inflatable raft industry here and other places in West Virginia.

Hoops stated that he is not only coming in for the tournament, but that he plans to win it, and will be floating the river in an original Rubber Crafters raft from 1966. He will using hand-carved wooden bass lures that he has picked up from fisher-men from all over the country.             APRIL FOOL’S

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