Five Questions for Mike Iaconelli

Category: article

 Nov 20th, 2012 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Nov 20th, 2012 at 12:00 AM

Former B.A.S.S. Angler of the Year and Bassmaster Classic Champ Mike “Ike” Iaconelli had a whirlwind month dealing with Hurricane Sandy, and of course his career and maintaining his family life all through this trying time.

Fishing is still Ike’s favorite activity. (Photo Iaconelli)

Therefore, to help put Ike at ease; BassFIRST slowed him down long enough to answer the tough, hard-hitting, in-depth Five Questions. Let’s hope he survives the grilling.

DLWhat is your favorite activity?

IKE– Fishing. Seriously, it is still fishing. I swear to you. It’s not just bass fishing, but a lot of saltwater fishing too. I did a lot of saltwater fishing as a kid, but got away from it. After four seasons on the City Limits TV show, where I did a lot of saltwater fishing, I started taking time to do it again. I live within 40 minutes of some of the best striped bass fishing in the world. The Delaware River and Delaware Bay are amazing.

DLAre you a fan of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie?

IKE– I am a fan. There a lot of people living around me that aren’t fans. I like him. I feel he honestly looks at and addresses various situations and gets stuff done. Not everything is ideal, but his heart is in the right place. He’s a real New Jersey guy. He’ll work with whoever he needs to take care of the state and the people. When it comes down to it, he just wants to get the job done.

DLWhat is your least favorite fishing technique that other pros love?

IKE– That’s pretty easy, real deep-water fishing. You know, 40, 50, 60 feet deep stuff. It might as well be 80 fathoms deep to me. It blows me away. I totally suck at it. I am amazed at how guys like Aaron Martens use their electronics and are able to catch fish with deep-water techniques.

A close second is sight fishing. The year I won Angler of the Year, 2006, I used sight fishing in four events, but it is still a weak point for me. I’m almost intimidated by it. On tour, I travel with John Crews and Ish Monroe and they’ve helped me a lot. I sure would love to spend a couple of days with Shaw Grigsby or Dean Rojas to learn how they do it.

DLWhat comes first for you, fishing or family?

IKE– Family, that’s an easy one. For example, we just had the Elite Series post season. Beck (Ike’s wife) was due any day. I let the officials know that if my child was coming I was not going to be fishing; I wanted to be with my wife. It ended up that I could attend, but family is always first.

Family comes first for Ike. (Photo Iaconelli)

In my early years on tour, my uncle traveled with me. Now, Becky and the younger kids can travel with me. My mom still runs my fan site. It’s all about family to me.

DL- Where in the United States is your favorite location to visit?

IKE- There are so many beautiful and fun places I’ve been to all over the country. My favorite is upstate New York in the Lake Champlain area, by Plattsburg and Burlington. I traveled to the area for a club tournament in 1991 and have loved it ever since.

It’s the awesome fishing on Champlain. You can fish there and catch 20 pounds of largemouth and 20 pounds of smallmouth in the same bay. A lot of the upstate New York lakes are like that. Plus, the Catskills and Adirondack mountains, it’s just so beautiful.

People often talk about what Heaven is to them. The upstate New York, Lake Champlain area looks like Heaven to me.

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