Dissecting a dock for both spotted and largemouth bass with Gerald SwindleBy Shaye BakerAlabama native Gerald Swindle has proven himself as one of the most animated and talented pros to ever tour the Bassmaster Elite Series. Growing up along the heavily docked Coosa River he became a revered dock fisherman. Though he is no one trick pony, one thing is for certain: if there is a dock bite on competition water, look out. Docks are a great, year-round fish attractant that many anglers don’t take advantage of.
Terry “Big Show” Scroggins and Gerald “GMan” Swindle are trying hard to walk through their daily routines as best buddies on professional angling’s most competitive tour and act like it’s business as usual this week in Montgomery.
Problem is, it’s not one bit normal, because the mano-a-mano bracket elimination format that B.A.S.S. is using for Toyota Trucks All-Star Week has placed Scroggins and Swindle in a head to head competition that’s going to force one to directly eliminate the other from the bullfight.
Gerald Swindle is bass fishing’s funniest man. And finally, finally, after 167 B.A.S.S. tournament tries without a win, the 2004 Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year can smile victoriously after leading wire-to-wire to win the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Southern Open.
He reflected on his first B.A.S.S. win as he piloted his Toyota Tundra away from Florida’s Lake Toho.
“Todd Baker was the only one of us kids that could pedal his bike all the way up this hill,” said bass fishing’s funniest man, Gerald Swindle, as he slowly drove his Tundra down memory lane on a Blount County, Alabama back road that used to be dirt.
Todd Baker was one of Swindle’s best childhood friends. Baker’s thighs and heart served well in pedaling up hills, and later for picking up first downs as the fullback on their small Locust Fork High School football team in the late 1980s.
Van Halen’s chart-topping 1984 hit “Jump” blared overhead as Dean Rojas jumped in victorious joy at the Bassmaster Elite Series tournament on Toledo Bend.
Seconds later his thoughts turned to the man he had just outmatched by a mere ounce.
Rojas is a Van Halen fan, but he’s also a fan of Gerald Swindle. “I wish Gerald was still standing here, I’d give him a big ole hug,” said Rojas. Then Swindle, a sportsman to the core, heard the comment and walked back on stage to allow Rojas the chance. The two instantly shared an embrace anchored in respect.