Ted Takasaki

A top professional angler, Ted won the 1995 PWT Top Gun Angler Award and the prestigious PWT Classic Championship in 1998. In 2002, he smashed the all time, one day PWT tournament record with a limit of 5 walleyes that weighed 53.2 pounds. He's a leading walleye expert.

Lessons Learned

Posted by: Ted Takasaki Updated: October 5, 2009 - 4:30 PM
Just got back from the last week's FLW Walleye Tour Championship on the Missouri River out of Bismarck, ND.  Caught quite a few fish during the early part of practice, then the river levels started to drop and the weather turned ugly.  And the fishing started to get tougher as the week progressed.  Still caught fish, but not as many.

I was primarily rigging and jigging in the upper stretches of the river and trolling leadcore and crankbaits in the middle and lower portions (main body of Lake Oahe near the ND/SD state line).  We launched out of the Hazelton boat ramp which is approx 35 miles south of Bismarck.

Now this is where I am fascinated by tournament fishing.  There is nothing better than to fish a body of water for a few days, fish the tournament, and then find out what actually worked.  As I can attest, no one is really happy except for the winner.

As it turned out, I ended up fishing the tournament in two primary spots - Eckroth Bottoms (3-4 miles north of Launch) and Fort Rice (2-3 miles south of Launch).  I decided to troll leadcore line with crankbaits (3 different crankbaits worked well for me - Bomber 24A's, Glass Shads, and the newly re-designed Lindy Shadlings).  Over the years, in rivers, I have traditionally fished at or very near to the bottom with leadcore... Just ticking the bottom occasionally.  This is where I learned something very interesting.

The winner was trolling leadcore/crankbaits in the very same two areas as I was.  So, I had the right spot, the right technique, BUT the wrong pattern.  He was trolling off the bottom by 2 to 3 feet and I was very tight to the bottom.  This dispelled a long time notion that I had always adhered to - River fish are always tight to the bottom.  Lesson learned and take it from me, keep your eyes and ears open to new ideas.  Try fishing a few tournaments and take advantage of them to learn something new.  By the way, I ended up in 27th place.. right in the middle.  Bummer.

The Mighty Mo of North Dakota

Posted by: Ted Takasaki under Fishing Updated: September 29, 2009 - 10:03 PM

Fishing on the Missouri River out of Bismarck, ND this past week has been a lot of fun and challenging.  We are here for the FLW Walleye Tour Championship, where 54 of the top walleye anglers are here to duke it out for a share of up to $100,000 in prize money.

Falling river levels and crazy weather has thrown us all a few curve balls this past week.  It's been good fishing over all, but inconsistent.  This past Sunday, we had 50 plus MPH winds and the water temps have fallen over 8 degrees.  The river has dropped quite significantly as well.  Falling river levels cause walleyes to shift locations and make them tentative to bite.

Tomorrow is the first day of the tournament and I look forward to having a good day.  I've had a pretty good practice period and now is the time to put it together.  I'm a little indecisive on whether to head south to the lake for bigger fish and bigger waves or up the river with shifting walleye locations/current due to the lower water levels.

Oh well... I guess I'll sleep on it tonight and see how bad the winds are going to blow tomorrow (forecasted 40+ MPH).

Lake of the Woods Walleye

Posted by: Ted Takasaki under Fishing Updated: September 1, 2009 - 2:22 PM
I spent last week on Lake of the Woods and it was nothing short of spectacular!  What a fishery!  With smaller fish combined with a few larger walleyes, the action was nice and steady all week.  

I was staying at an awesome resort called Zippel Bay Resort,  They have some phenomenal cabins and great food,  Fished with owner and charter captain, Nick Painovich, for a few days and got a great lesson in fishing with downriggers.  We caught several fish in the 26 to 29 inch range with lots of eaters just below the 19 inch protected slot.  We fished primarily north and west of Long Point and had excellent success while field testing the new, re-designed Lindy Shadling,  Redfish and Golden Shiner were the best colors.  These cranks will be in the stores in a few months, but I was truly impressed by the results.

I also had a great day while fishing out of my own boat with lead core line, again trolling with Lindy Shadlings.  We were fishing in 34 feet of water with 225 feet of leadcore and #5 Shadlings, while trolling at 2 mph.  I figured that the baits were running at about 32 feet down with that much line and at that speed.

All in all a great week of videotaping, taking photos, and fishing.  Hard to beat that!

Is it Raining outside?

Posted by: Ted Takasaki under Fishing Updated: July 30, 2009 - 4:07 PM
 I'm sitting here in my office in Brainerd, looking out at a dreary, rainy day... wishing I was fishing.  There are some die hards who will still go out on a day like this, but if you were to pick the day and didn't have a whole lot of 'em, it wouldn't be a ton of fun unless you were smoking the fish.

It's days like today where I like to take the time to organize my tackle, break down or set up some rods/reels, and clean up my boat.  Having a clean, organized boat is something that I just have to have.  Knowing where your tackle is and ready to fish is another habit I have adhered to over the years.

Wrap up your unused snells on a tackle organizer, like a Lindy Rigger.  Organize your hooks and jigs so you can easily get to them when the fishing is fast and furious.  If your boat is in a garage, it's probably a good time to vacuum and clean up your boat.  A little water and vinegar is a great solution to get the water spots off. 

Take advantage of a rainy day...  It gets you in the mood for fishing. 

Tough tournament

Posted by: Ted Takasaki under Fishing Updated: July 23, 2009 - 5:13 PM
Have you ever been on the water and just never got it put together?  Well... that's exactly what happened to me on Lake Winnebago this past week at the final FLW qualifying tournament.  Although I fished some good spots and fished the pattern (casting crankbaits to shallow weeds) which ultimately the top ten used primarily to catch their fish, I was just slightly off the mark and didn't hook up.  A disastrous finish kept me from the Angler of the Year title which I've been so close to many times in my career.  This is the time to reflect and attempt to learn from a week of frustration.  I've come to the conclusion that I was casting too shallow (3 - 5 feet) and didn't work the deeper weedlines (5-7 feet) enough.  Perhaps I was bringing the lures in too fast or too slow.  No matter what, I was off just a bit and the fish were not cooperative to me.  Lesson learned.  Bummer!  

This is time to unwind and to get back into saddle (literally) and to put this tournament out of my head.  It's now time to summon up positive images and to focus on the final FLW championship in Bismarck.  Now, I've got to say that this was still a good tournament season as I had a 1st, a 2nd, and a 13th place finish earlier and ended up the season in 8th place overall.

Gonna take a few days off the water so I am wishing everyone a great summer of fishing.  I have heard that Mille Lacs Lake and Lake Oahe are both on fire and producing some excellent walleye catches.  Good fishing everyone!  

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