Posts Tagged ‘www.animpossiblecast.com Glen Andrews Bobby Murray Billy Murray Jerry McKinnis’

As spring has finally chased off winter, the lake water is finally heating up in the fishing world and the publishing world as well.  After a winter of great publicity through ESPN (twice–see Glen’s Bassography and Jerry McKinnis’s article), Tulsa World, BassFan.com, NPR, and the Shiloh Museum we’re looking to make the rounds in the Ozarks for book signings.  Shane and Glen love entertaining, so it sure to be an enjoyable time for young and old.  We’ve also uploaded some new videos featuring Glen’s storytelling to our Facebook page that were previously only available on YouTube, so check them out too.  In order to bring in the new season, we’ve pulled a new story and a few pictures out of the archives that should put you all right in the boat with Glen to experience the World Champion for yourselves.  Of course you can find many more stories in the book– An Impossible Cast–which you can buy at the Whitefish Press.  We hope you all enjoy!

Some time ago, Glen, Shane, and I put the boat in down at Tucker Hollow on Bull Shoals.  Around 7:30 that morning, Glen came knocking with coffee, chattering excitedly about the day.  Rain had bloated the lake and muddied the water—good conditions for catching bass he said.  Our destination was Bear Creek near Glen’s parents’ old farm.  He’d fished it constantly growing up before it was inundated, but he hadn’t returned in years.  His only concern was the forecasted 5 to 17 mile-per-hour north wind, which he was certain would kill our chances because he’d rarely caught bass with a north wind.

That morning’s trip was sparked by one week earlier when Wayne, an old friend from Rogers, Arkansas, drove across the state with a nice boat and bassin’ fever.  The day he arrived Glen and Shane took him out on the lake.  Shane caught his largest bass ever, a 5.5 pound Largemouth, and Glen wasn’t too embarrassed with a 4 pounder.  They were both embarrassed though that Wayne got skunked.  The next day, Wayne joined the fun as they found a hungry school of Kentuckies near the West Sugarloaf Creek Bridge.  When they called me to come down, Glen had promised that the Kentuckies would still be schoolin’.  His mission was to put me into a mess of them and watch them tear my snuff-box reel to shreds.

Once on the lake, Glen thought we could find lunkers bunched up around the old, submerged Lowry Bridge.  He was confident he could locate the bridge despite our lack of electronics because as a child he’d spent summer Sundays just up the creek near the Lowry grist mill and mill pond.  After church, families would walk down the hill and picnic at the pond.  Children pruned their skin soaking in the water and diving from boulders.  Glen’s memory was accurate.  We found the bridge and Shane caught a 3 pound Largemouth on a crank bait.  Apparently, though, that fish was a loner because we spent most of our time clearing lake trash from the bottom with our spoons.

We weren’t in a hurry though, so the boat drifted with the north wind along a wooded bluff that extended 50 feet into the water from the shore.  Glen decided that he would try for some white bass using one of his homemade spinner baits, which he put on his spinning reel with 6 pound test line.  After fumbling with them for five minutes, he threw them to the bottom of the boat in disgust.  The wind was making his eyes water so that he couldn’t see the line.  Shane put on his glasses and eventually tied the lure on.

“Alright, Jeremy.  You ready to see a big bass.  My squirrel-hair spinner’s gonna tear ‘em up!  Bass love squirrel!”  Glen started to cast and retrieve the homemade lure modeled after Dave Hawk’s Gold Bug.  “Hey Jeremy, did I ever tell you about that time Glen Cossey and I were fishin’ on Greers Ferry Lake back when it was almost new?  Well, we were fishin’ near the bank when we saw a squirrel goin’ after a walnut in a crook on a low hanging branch.  Just as the squirrel reached the walnut, a giant black bass shot out of the water and swallowed that squirrel.  While we were still settin’ there with our jaws between our legs lookin’ at each other, we turned back to the branch, and you know what we saw?  We saw that black bass put the walnut back up in the crook of that branch!”

Throughout Glen’s story, his lure was proving him a liar until the north wind pushed us to the mouth of a creek clogged with washed out branches and trees.  “Uh, oh!” Glen warned.  “I got one.  Aww, but he’s just small one.  Ohhh . . . wait a minute!  Wait a minute, he’s growing!  He’s grown up!  Oh my gosh, it’s big ‘un!  Boy he’s really fightin’ now.  How am I gonna get him in the boat with this little 6 pound line?”  Glen guided the Largemouth to the front of the boat.  He reached down trying to manage both the rod and the bass, “Oh my gosh, I’ve got him!  He’s nearly 5 pounds!”  He threw the monster in bottom of the boat.  “Ha!  My squirrel-hair worked!”  He looked at his contraption proudly.  But that would be the last of the squirrel hair.  As we headed back down the creek, he’d caught some trash on his spinner bait, jerked the rod to remove the trash, and watched as the squirrel-hair arm of the lure broke off and disappeared into the murky water!  Glen blamed the north wind.

Glen's Goldbug sans squirrel hair

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I’ll do one more blog entry before the big book signing at the Shiloh Museum at 118 West Johnson in Springdale, Arkansas. Don’t forget it’s this Saturday, the 20th of February at 10 am till 1pm, beginning with a short presentation then the signing. If you can, tune into Kuaf 91.3 Fayetteville, Arkansas or kuaf.org live feed at 6 pm, Friday the 19th for an interview with me (Shane).

No one needs to buy a book at the signing, just come and show your support. We should have some media coverage and it would be nice to show a crowd.

Now to fulfil our promise of telling you about some more greats that Dad mentored.

Bill Dance was just one of many well known modern-day bass fishing legends that were influenced by Glen Andrews. As mentioned in the January 24th blog, I’ll now talk about a couple of other angling icons none as the Murray Twins.

Glen dropped out of the professional fishing world in 1968 to pursue other careers that actually paid money. Glen’s accomplishments occurred at a time of fishing history disarray. Nothing was left of his mark except microfilm and memories. As far as my research could tell – with the exception of Earl Goldings’ Texas State championship – no one kept logs, records or memoirs of early tournament play until Ray Scott’s first tournament in 1967 called the “All-American Invitational”. That being said, it is quite excusable to not have heard of Glen Andrews. However, for any bass enthusiast it is a little more indefensible to not know who the Murray twins are.

Bobby and Billy Murray were already expert bassers when they met Glen at an unsanctioned ’68 team tournament on Greers Ferry Lake in central Arkansas. While actually organized for fun, the joust brought some of the top names in the early business: Dance, McKinnis, Cossey and the Murrays to name a few. Dad and his team members had presented the other participants with a conundrum by pouring on the dock a head-scratching herd of bass on a cold winter tournament day. How could these four guys catch their limits from this frigid water when hardly anyone else caught anything? The twins made it a point to learn the “deep and slow” method from Glen after he moved his family to Hot Springs, Arkansas for work in about ’69.

Bobby worked at Albert Pike Supply when Dad got to know him and his brother. Dad was always generous with his bassin’ knowledge and since the twins did not get to spend as much time with Glen as often as Bill Dance did, they listened intently. Glen’s know-how was helpful enough to assist the Murrays to new levels. Billy went on to have an incredible career in the fishing business, including a 20 year stint as a camera grip for ESPN’s Jerry McKinnis, and Bobby became twice Bassmaster Classic champion – a feat accomplished by only 3 other men since 1971. In my opinion, that’s the difference between a champion and a legend – the ability to pull the feat off more than once. As Bobby told me, he was already a pretty good fisherman having been mentored by his good friend Pee Wee Wadsworth but, “…it was Glen that actually put the polish on me.”

It was intriguing to me that these superstars of the bass business held my Dad’s knowledge in such regard.

Bobby actually said it best when he wrote of Dad in his letter of nomination for induction to the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame in 2008:

Just before the modern era of tournament bass fishing, one angler dominated the bass fishing scene in the bass belt located in Missouri and Arkansas. In 1962, 1963, and 1965, Glen Andrews won the Missouri State Bass Championship. He also won the Arkansas State Bass Championship in 1965. Before the creation of B.A.S.S., and the BassMasters Classic, the World Series of Sport Fishing Championship was THE fishing tournament which was recognized as the test of the best anglers in the country.
Glen was runner-up in the World Series of Sport Fishing Championship tournament in 1962 and 1963, and was the only two-time winner in 1965 and 1966. He was the founder and owner of Andrews Lure Company, and author of a syndicated fishing column called “Anglers World”.
Glen is probably the greatest angler that no one has ever heard of. However, his influence on modern bass fishing is unparalleled by any other angler. Glen mentored fishing greats such a Bill Dance, Jerry McKinnis, Bobby and Billy Murray, Don Butler, Ray Scott, and a host of others who were an integral part of professional bass fishing history. Glen helped Ray Scott organize the very first bass tournament, the All-American on Beaver Lake, Arkansas in 1967. Soon after, Glen disappeared obscurely due to financial constraints and went on to pursue other careers. .. only to become a faint memory in fishing legend history.
Glen may not be the best angler I have ever known, but he is certainly in the top two. And I would venture to say that if you asked Bill Dance, Jerry McKinnis, Billy Murray, or Ray Scott about Glen, they would hold him in the same esteem as I do. It would be a shame if the Hall of Fame membership did not recognize a person that mentored so many anglers that have been enshrined in the Hall of Fame. Glen was the first true, professional bass angler. His insights into seasonal fish migration, structure fishing, lure development and lure presentation helped forge the basis of many of the country’s leading bass fishing authorities of today. Glen Andrews is the subject of a book that is scheduled to be published in 2009. Glen Andrews is truly a worthy candidate for nomination into the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame. Glen now resides in Lead Hill, Arkansas on Bull Shoals Lake.
Bobby L Murray
2001 Inductee Bass Fishing Hall of Fame
The next blog will feature the inexhaustible, Jerry McKinnis – Google that name if you want a head start.

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