My name is Adam Milstead. I am a former UFC mixed martial artist who has an absolute love for kayak fishing. In 2018 I retired from fighting and set my sights on everything in the kayak fishing world, including competing at the highest level of kayak bass tournaments. I was born and raised in Southern Maryland on the banks of the Chesapeake Bay and I have loved fishing ever since I could hold a rod. While living so close to the Chesapeake, I had all the fishing opportunities a kid could ask for. My childhood consisted of football, wrestling and saltwater fishing for rockfish aka Striped Bass. Even at a young age, I was borrowing neighbors kayaks to fish off shore, I think it was there that I really fell in love with the concept of fishing out of a plastic boat. There was nothing like getting splashed in the face by a mean rockfish or bluefish and paddling through the 4 foot swells past the sandbars. Beyond saltwater fishing, I also enjoyed the sport of bass fishing! When I wasn't fishing, I was watching the greats like Roland Martin, Bill Dance and many other high end tournament anglers build their careers, cash checks and rip lips on the tv and I wanted to be just like them. Though fresh water bass never fought quite as hard as a striper, the thrill of establishing a well executed pattern made me feel like a professional bass fisherman. From there on I haven't looked back and continue to learn more and more about bass fishing. My dream as a kid was always to be a professional athlete. I worked extremely hard and was proud of all that I've accomplished in the crazy world of mixed martial arts but as fun and exciting as it was to compete at the pinnacle of combat sports, the toll on my body was wearing me out. So, after retiring, hear I am. Fishing out of these plastic boats we call kayaks and trying to make my mark as a kayak bass fisherman on the competitive level. I'm finally living my childhood dream of being a professional bass fisherman. I love this sport and everyone I meet in it. So... If you see me out on the water, please paddle up and say hi, I'll add my two cents on whats working for those bass and maybe you can help me land a few as well. In the meantime, tightlines friends. I am honored to be a part of the Fishing Online team!
I'm Adam Nickel, born and raised in NW PA I have been fishing as long as I can remember. Got into Bass fishing specifically and tournament kayak fishing around three years ago. I mainly fish the KBF and KA trails as much as possible. I love the fact that I get to travel so much to fish lakes that I probably never would have gotten the opportunity to fish if not for the tournament trails. My favorite place to fish is lake Erie chasing those smallies. I also enjoy archery and waterfowl hunting. I am looking forward to the 2019 tournament season and can't wait to get back on the water!
I have been fishing as long as I can remember. I have a picture of me as a 6 year old holding a couple of bass I caught in the Florida Everglades. Fishing has kept me out of a lot of trouble growing up and provides a source of relaxation for me currently. I have been kayak fishing for eight years. My first kayak was a $350 sit in, and I upgraded to a SOT the next year. My third year, I broke the bank of a fully rigged, big time kayak and I haven’t looked back. The reason I got into kayak fishing was to get off the bank, plain and simple. I loved squeezing into places that most people can’t get to from shore, or even a boat. As the years have gone by, I now kayak fish to fish new waters, enjoy the comradery with fellow anglers, and to promote the sport to others. Fishing for me, as a kid, kept me out of so much trouble. I cut my teeth as a little boy fishing the Everglades. When I moved to Western PA, I did a lot of river fishing as a kid. I moved to Northern Vain 1987 as a 7th grader, and would fish drainage ditches and small ponds that I would access by sneaking onto the property of Dulles International Airport. The last 10 years have consisted of me doing a lot of kayak fishing during the warmer months and chasing steelhead on the Erie tributaries during the winter. If I had to pick one favorite moment, it would be the first time I fished out of a kayak. I was able to get off the bank and to places that others just couldn’t get to. I had an epic day on a paddle-tail frog, boating 10-12 decent fish. From that day on, I was hooked.
Blace was born and raised in the West Virginia foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. He has always had an enthusiasm for fishing and most recently kayak fishing. His love started at the farm pond where he caught his first fish. His passion for fishing eventually grew stronger with every cast. Now, his main focus is river smallmouth bass. Hinton is known for the famous New River, which consists of turbulent white water and giant bronze backs. Those two things inspired his love for kayak fishing. Kayaks are his way to access the water touched by few and overlooked by many. Honing his skills over time acquired him a spot on the Jackson Kayak Fishing Team. He is a member of the Mountain State Kayak Anglers and actively participates in kayak tournaments around his home state. You might think fishing is his life, but he is also a family man, a proud father, and a caring husband. Promoting kayaking, fishing, and the outdoors is something ingrained in his DNA. He lives to enjoy life while encouraging everyone to appreciate the thrills that nature provides.
I was one of the lucky ones to grow up with a farm pond full of bass and bluegill in my backyard. This is where my love of fishing took root and one of my earliest childhood memories was catching a giant bass from the pond one summer. In my memories, it was at least a five pounder but the years may have added a few ounces to that fish. My passion for fishing and hunting led me to a degree in Wildlife with an emphasis in Fisheries and I put that degree to work by developing a career in fish hatcheries and stocking fish for anglers and fish restoration projects. My career provided many opportunities to live in great fishing locations around the country and fish from the warm saltwater of Florida for redfish, snook, snappers, and groupers to cold Alaskan waters fishing for salmon, halibut and cod to my home waters of Pennsylvania fishing for black bass, trout and other species. I started competing in kayak tournaments in 2014 and this has become an obsession for me. I love the fact that I get to fish so many new waters, meet new friends at the tournaments, share information and have a healthy dose of competition to increase the challenge level. I’m easy to spot at tournaments because you’ll see me with my Jackson Cuda 12 strapped to my truck and I’m hauling a NuCamp teardrop camper which is my home away from home while camping, kayaking, and fishing.
My name is Bryan Baker and I am an Arizona Native. I have been fishing since I was old enough to hold a rod on my own. I remember camping at the lake as a kid and I would spend the entire time standing at the water’s edge fishing day and night. I landed my first largemouth when I was 5 and have been hooked on bass fishing ever since. I fished my first tournament when I was 15 and now compete in multiple tournament circuits throughout Arizona and will be expanding into other states in the future. When I’m not fishing tournaments, I enjoy spending time with my wife and 3 kids on the water any chance we get.
Chad grew up in Carlton, PA where he spent most of his summer months on a buddy’s 10 acre pond catching crappie and Largemouth Bass from a jon boat. Chad’s passion for kayak fishing started in 2014 where he competed in his first Kayak Angler’s tournament on the middle Allegheny River. He finished third overall and has been hooked ever since. Chad is the Tournament and Chapter Director for Kayak Angler’s of Western PA. Chad is on several pro staffs including Team Bonafide Kayaks, NE Regional YakAttack Team, Gamma Fishing Line, The Original O-Wacky Tool, and the Raymarine Regional team. He is a fishing team member for The River’s Edge Canoe and Kayak and Fishing Online. Chad enjoys competing in several KA chapter’s tournaments and the Kayak Bass Fishing (KBF) PA monthly online challenges.
Chasity grew up in Peterstown, WV. She currently resides in Hinton, WV a small, historical Railroad town known for “Where three rivers meet.” Also, the famously known New River. Chasity’s passion for kayaking fishing began in 2017 shortly after her father passed away. Chasity states; “Being on the water, surrounded by Mother Nature truly saved My life. Fishing is how she copes, and it is why she paddles.” Chasity is a Member, Sponsorship, and Club Administrator for The Summers County Kayak Bass Anglers and Member of KBF. In 2018 she started competing. During her rookie season, she proved kayak bass fishing was not something just did in her spare time. She dedicated herself. Her passion, hard work, determination soon opened new doors as she continues to grow as an angler She proudly represents the Bonafide Kayak Team, Regional YakAttack Team, TourneyTag Pro Team, FX Custom Rods State Team, KETCH Team, Line Cutterz Pro Team, Neverlost Gear Pro Team, and ICHTUS Fishing Gear. In addition to her kayak fishing, She also competes in Bassboat tournaments as Co-Angler with her husband, Brian. She is also a full-time mother of two. “It is not about winning; it is about sharing love and passion for the sport. Pushing to achieve new goals, praising the skills of fellow anglers and their accomplishments, learning from mistakes and growing to be a better angler and never giving up.
Growing up on the shores of Long Island New York, I have been fishing since I was a little kid for fun. It wasn’t until my time in the United States Marine Corps that I began to take fishing seriously. I had been a fly angler for many years until an accident at work left me unable to walk correctly anymore. From that day I thought my enjoyment of fishing was over. Until I was introduced to Noah Heck and the Kayak-Anglers community. It was love at first cast. For the past 4 years I have been competing in the Kayak-Anglers Western PA chapter tournaments learning to hone this craft. Since starting out I have traveled across the country to fish in various tournaments on the National level. From Toledo Bend Reservoir, Kentucky Lake for the KBF National Championship and even tight back here to Northwest Pennsylvania for the Northeast regional open on Lake Erie that was hosted by none other the FISHingONline. But my passion will always be Pennsylvania either on the big lakes like Erie or the flowing creeks like the Kiski and famed Susquehanna River there is no shortage of great water here. While I love competing in tournaments my greatest times on the water are the ones I spend with my fiancé Tonya fishing for fun. She competes as well and is an accomplished angler in her own right but just seeing her enjoyment makes it all worth it after a long week at work. As they say, there’s no such thing as a bad day on the water.
Don grew up just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania fishing the many rivers and creeks the area has to offer. My primary passion is kayak bass fishing but I also like to chase Musky from time to time. I average 10-15 kayak bass tournaments a year across the eastern side of the U.S. In 2013, I had four top-three tournament finishes, six in 2014, and placed in several for 2015 that led me to 5th place overall national finish for the year in the River Bassin Tournament Trail. I am also the founder and owner of 412 Bait Company by Donald Corbett. By far my favorite type of kayak fishing is on swift rivers. It's something about the adventures that always seem to present themselves when setting up and doing river floats. The Smallmouth Bass might have a little to do with it as well! I enjoy watching the sport of kayak fishing continuing to grow and sharing my passion with others. Kayak fishing offers a level of relaxation that I hadn't previously found in life and I like nothing more than seeing brand new kayak fishermen discover that. I will always try to continue to improve as an angler and ambassador to the sport! I look forward to meeting and fishing with as many like-minded individuals as possible in the fishing community.
I grew up just outside of Pittsburgh in Bellevue. I've been fishing as long as I can remember. I bought my Jackson Big Rig in the summer of 2016 and it's been my preferred method of fishing ever since. I tend to fish mostly lakes but I've started to get out more on moving water lately. I do have an admitted addiction to Whopper Ploppers which I'm trying to work on without much success. I've been married to my beautiful wife Carol, who's the most supportive woman in the world, for 41+ years. We have 4 children and 2 grandchildren. When I'm not spending time with my family, fishing, or hunting I work as an instrumentation tech at the nuclear power plant in Shippingport Pa.
I was born and raised in Monongahela, PA, but I have fished Presque Isle Bay in Erie for the majority of my life. I started fishing when I was extremely little with my Dad, but I didn’t start getting into the sport until a couple of years ago. I started kayak tournament fishing last year, and it was a perfect fit, especially because of my competitive nature and love for fishing. Kayak tournament fishing has been so rewarding with all of the new friends and their constant support, fishing experiences, and bodies of water that I would’ve never fished before. When I’m not competing, I am most likely fishing in Presque Isle Bay or fly fishing on nearby creeks and rivers!
Hi my name is Heath Mullins I’m from Alderson West Virginia I’ve always loved fishing and tournament fishing has made my love for the sport grow even more and a lot more fun I currently fish out of a Jackson Coosa FD on the rivers and fish from a Nucanoe unlimited on the lakes last year was my first full season of kayak fishing fishing in 2 tournaments I was able to put together a Roy in MSKA club and won AOY in SWVKA I also got my first win in a tournament last season and a few 2nd places finishes fishing these clubs has been amazing and led to many new friendships I’m extremely excited for this season coming thank you for such an amazing opportunity and I can’t wait to help grow the organization. God gets all the glory I have a few sponsors they are venom lures which was my first sponsor, quantum fishing, and yack-it thanks for everything.
Jake grew up on the shores of Lake Erie. Fishing and the outdoors have always been a huge part of his life and made even more so with the introduction to kayak fishing 8 years ago. His favorite kind of fishing is done in his Jackson kayak chasing world-class smallmouth on Lake Erie and its tributaries. When not fishing his local waters he loves traveling around to Fishing tournaments, exploring new waters and making new friends! When not on the water he enjoys spending time with his wife, daughter and two dogs hiking, camping and just being outside!
Being born and raised in Monongahela, PA, I grew up fishing with my Dad and friends on the Monongahela River and other nearby bodies of water and have always enjoyed fishing more than any other hobby that I have ever been involved in. In 2013, at the age of 41, I bought my first kayak and started fishing local tournaments soon thereafter. Doing so, I have met some of the most grounded and skilled anglers and have been fortunate enough to win Angler of the Year in the Laurel Highlands Chapter of Kayak Anglers in 2017 & 2018. In 2018, I also introduced my daughter Hannah into the world of kayak tournament fishing and we have been blessed to be able to spend a lot of time together doing what we both enjoy. When we’re not out competing, you’re likely to find us out on Presque Isle Bay in Erie or floating the Youghiogheny river chasing smallmouths!
I started kayak fishing in 2009 and began tournament fishing in 2013. My passion for kayak fishing really took off in 2014 with the inaugural season of the Central PA chapter of Kayak Anglers where I met a lot of folks who went on to become good friends. I also volunteered at my fist Heroes on the Water event in September of that year and that was a fantastic experience. I found out that I truly enjoy sharing my passion for kayak fishing and introducing anglers young and old to this sport.
Kyler Storm Branaum
Kyler is a Software Engineer part of the week and a kayak tournament angler the rest of the week. I live in Central Kentucky, and I compete on the Hobie Bass Open Series, BASS Kayak series and is a tournament director for the Bluegrass Kayak Anglers tournament trail in Kentucky. I grew up in Eastern Tennessee, stealing my dad's spinning rod to fish the pond on the back end of the trailer park after school and not be home till after dark. Eventually moved to western Kentucky and living near a wildlife reserve that had multiple ponds to fish from, I was able to continue fishing whenever I got the chance to. Got my first kayak 8 years ago and it quickly became an addiction that skyrocketed into competing against the best kayak anglers in the country.
My name is Lee Potter, I'm 49 years old and have been enjoying the outdoors for about as long as I can remember. I grew up in Maryville, a small town just outside Knoxville in East Tennessee. I learned to fish in farm ponds and wading in the Little River close to my home. My favorite fishing personality growing up was Bill Dance because he fished like we did and he always would tell how and why he had caught the fish and that is what drew me to bass fishing, figuring out the puzzle of catching them. I am not a conventional tournament bass fisherman, I do run a small weeknight tournament for East Tennessee Kayak Anglers, but that's as conventional as it gets. I want to find the patterns and techniques that other anglers miss or don't even consider. These have helped me win tournaments and catch fish when everyday techniques fail to produce. Hopefully, I can share some of these techniques and help others become better kayak anglers.
I have been fishing for bass for over 20 years. Only 4 of those years fishing out of a kayak. The rest I mainly fished out of canoes/boats and did a lot of wade fishing. With most of my time spent on local rivers. With the occasional lake or pond mixed in. I would have to say river fishing is my favorite type of fishing. With not looking back threw log books I would have to say I have over 50+ citation bass out of rivers and close to another 50+ out of lakes/pond/streams. I may not be the best angler in the world, but I have spent my fair share of time on the water studying these elusive creatures we call bass. I am a pretty easy going guy willing to help anyone that needs it. So don't ever be afraid of asking questions. I know I'm not. LoL. I could go on for hours and talk about fishing but I'm not so that's just a little something about me. And for all of you who don't know me... If we share water together and you're not having a good time(not catching fish ext..) I will find you and make you have a good time(help you catch fish/make you laugh). I think everyone who knows me will vouch for that. lol Till next time, Tight Lines!
Mel Russell Ashe grew up in the Carolinas fishing farm ponds with his Dad, Melvin and his grandfather Russell. After working many years around the US he landed in Kansas City, MO. MO has so many wonderful ponds and lakes, and Mel went out on many with his friend Matt Clark and his canoe. Matt is the one that came over one day and said ” You gotta see this guy fish out of a kayak” on “Knot Right Fishing”. That was 2012…and in 2013 he was in a kayak fishing Santee Cooper in the KBF Open. He was hooked…line& sinker. Mel travels all over the Midwest, South & East (still haven’t gone West, maybe 2019) fishing KBF events and Midwest Kayak Bass Fishing Series events as well as his local club NEKKA. When not on the water, he loves spending time with his wife, Toni, and his three amazing rescue pit bulls-Remington, Dixie, and Zima. Saturdays during football season, if he isn’t fishing, you definitely will find him on the couch watching his beloved Clemson Tigers.
Growing up in rural Appalachia, it was nearly impossible to not find myself wandering around the outdoors. I picked up fishing at the early age of 4 pond hopping with a bobber and worm side by side with my father. After that, I slowly watched it consume me and become a part of who I am. I bought an old jon boat before I bought a car. Rods, reels, and tackle became more important than a new pair of school shoes or having the latest clothing brand. It wasn’t until college that I discovered kayak fishing and I’ll never look back. Whether it be musky, smallmouth, or any other species that swims there is no greater satisfaction than targeting them from a kayak. It's just you and the fish out there and may the best man win. Along my journey, I have been able to partner up with some of the absolute best companies to work with. I am a Jackson Kayak Fishing team member, 412 Team member, Fishing Online member, and the National Kayak Team Director for Bayou Bug Jigs. With the help and support from these companies I have been able to expand my fishing opportunities, make some amazing friends, and fish waters I may have never had the chance to otherwise. I'm excited about the future and can't wait to see where I end up fishing next.
Shawn spends as much time as he can outdoors, hunting, fishing, and camping. He grew up wading the creeks and streams in Western and Northern PA fishing for bass and trout. Like a lot of people, he started fishing from a canoe and then transitioned to a kayak. He started doing Kayak Bass Tournaments three years ago and loves to chase smallmouth bass, especially on moving water. He enjoys meeting new people on the water and at events and tries to promote and grow the sport of kayak fishing. He is a member of Kayak Anglers (KA), Kayak Bass Fishing (KBF), and is on The Rivers Edge Fishing Team and Fishing Online Fishing Team.
This is going to be a tough one for me, I don’t like talking about myself. But here goes. I was raised in a small coal mining town of Clifftop close to the New River in southern West Virginia. I have been told that I started fishing when I was around 3, so that would give me about 59 years experience at this amazing sport. My Dad showed me what the outdoors could provide, not only enjoyment, but food for the table. He started me out on this path trout fishing small streams where I grew up. He was an awesome man with the patience of Job when it came to teaching me. When I was 10 or 11 my uncle Frank let me fish in his private little farm pond for Largemouth Bass and that gave me the biggest infection for this sport. As I got older my competitiveness started taking over and I started fishing bass boat tournaments and I still fish a few with my sons. Then in the summer of 2016, some of my coworkers got me to fish out of a kayak. That bug bit me so hard that I can’t describe how much I enjoy this new found love. I fish with several local clubs including the Mountain State Kayak Anglers, West Virginia Kayak Anglers, and the Southern West Virginia Kayak Anglers. Also on the national level, I fish with Kayak Bass Fishing, Hobie B.O.S., and the Yak-Bassin clubs. I’m currently fishing the Pro Tour Division with the KBF also. Oh yea I’m 62 years young and I retired last November. So maybe I’ll have a little more time to fish.