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Kevin VanDam – Humminbird Side Imaging and 360
Category : INDUSTRY NEWS
Scoping the Skinny with KVD
How bass-fishing sensation Kevin VanDam recruits Humminbird Side Imaging and 360 technologies in shallow water to see what he’s been missing
Euafala, AL (February 15, 2013) – Kevin VanDam (KVD) is as honest a man as any you’ll ever meet. So it’s no surprise when he admits there have been times in the past he’s not known what, exactly, laid beneath the waterline right in front of him.
Today, however, with Humminbird Side Imaging and 360 Imaging scanning the waterways around the all-time tournament money winner’s tweaked-out rig, the Michigan-based pro sees objects, and fish, in a whole new light. This includes locating fish-holding cover in waters he’s fished before and never even knew were there.
To say that technologically advanced two-dimensional-views have changed the way KVD pre-fishes in shallow water is an understatement.
KVD has used Humminbird Side Imaging to win multiple tournaments, with two of his most prestigious shallow-water top honors including 2010’s BassMaster Classic in Birmingham, Alabama, and 2011’s Classic in the Louisiana Deltas near New Orleans, Louisiana. These exalted back-to-back wins prove the technology can give an already outstanding angler an even bigger advantage.
“The average angler doesn’t understand just how proficient this technology makes you,” says VanDam. “Both Side Imaging and 360 have opened up a whole new underwater world to me.”
How KVD uses Humminbird’s Side Imaging, and now 360, depends on the waterway he’s in and what he’s looking for. “Knowing I’m not going to be able to scan the full field of view like when fishing deep water, I’ll set the unit to show me just 50 feet out. This allows me to see shallow cover the clearest.”
With the push of a button, KVD’s able to place an icon on cover he spies on the screen without ever running the boat over it and spooking fish. “In all the tournaments I’ve won as of late, I’ve been able to locate potential cover without ever having to cast a line. I just lower my trolling motor, move in, see the cover I want to target at tournament time with Side Imaging and then add a waypoint to each one. It’s as simple as that.”
In short: Humminbird Side Imaging and 360 saves KVD a lot of time when he’s fishing stained water; where a mind’s eye of what he thought might be is now proven fact or fiction.
Growing up in Michigan, KVD also knows firsthand the trials and tribulations of fishing shallow in uber-clear natural lakes as well the stained reservoirs and rivers of the south. “Both Side Imaging and 360 work wonders in shallow water,” he says. “With them, I can spot a weed line or a pile of rocks to cast to well before seeing it through my polarized glasses.
“Heck, even a break in a sandy flat [which bass use as underwater highways] as little as a few inches can be seen in the shadows of the picture. Many times I can actually see the fish swimming along those tiny breaklines and can cast to them well before they know I’m there.” Because fish in clear water can be spooked even easier, KVD will set his Humminbird to scan out up to 75 feet each side his bass boat, but only if necessary.
“You just don’t appreciate the technology until you don’t have it onboard. And I can guarantee you; it’s onboard my boat all the time, every time I pre-fish nowadays.”
If you haven’t been using Humminbird Side Imaging in skinny water, you’ve more than likely been spooking fish and missing out on catching more fish. After all, if the technology’s opened up a whole new underwater world for KVD, just imagine what it can do for you.
About Johnson Outdoors, Inc.
Johnson Outdoors Marine Electronics, Inc. consists of the Humminbird, LakeMaster, Minn Kota and Cannon brands. Humminbird is a leading innovator and manufacturer of fishfinders, fishfinder/GPS combo units, ice flashers and digital depth gauges. LakeMaster® is the premier brand of high-definition electronic fishing charts. Minn Kota® is the world’s leading manufacturer of electric trolling motors, as well as offers a complete line of shallow water anchors, battery chargers and marine accessories. Cannon® is the leader in controlled-depth fishing and includes a full line of downrigger products and accessories.