SC Shrinkage


“The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.”

--Famous quotation, dubiously attributed to Mark Twain

“The coldest I’ve been in a damn bass boat was the last Classic at Hartwell.”

--Famous quotation, attributed to just about anyone who was there in March of 2015.

You remember it, the one where they delayed the take-off because several boats were frozen to their trailers.

The one where Randall Tharp got to his first spot, pitched out a lure, and watched it skitter across a sheet of ice where none had existed two days before.

It was a single digit venue better suited for curling, and the only reason I was prepared in terms of garb was because I’d suffered through a 19 degree ear-freezer just two years earlier at Grand Lake. After that, I’d purchased a Stormr suit, polar weight long handles, warmer gloves and better boots. At the Greenville Cabela’s I added a heavy duty fleece neck gaiter and some remote control heated insoles. All of those items got put to good use, and while I wasn’t comfortable – especially when I had to remove a glove to blog on my phone – it was tolerable.

This next one will be almost a month later than the 2015 event, and while a lot could change between now and the start of the tournament, right now things are looking good, with lows in the 40s and 50s, and highs of 60 to as much as 75 over the next 10 days. Nevertheless, my Suburban will be packed to the rafters with all manners of weather-repelling gear – everything from the cold weather stuff to shorts.

I’m sure that some of the competitors would rather have nasty weather, either to stretch their local advantage or to reduce their flotilla of spectators, but my preference is balmy, tropical conditions. I get paid the same way whether I suffer from snot icicles or whether I get a tan.