Devlin duo hoping to shake monkey off backs at last

Elisabeth Heslop

For the past three years, Ralph Galusha and Pat Steele have come in second at the “Castin’ for Cash” bass fishing tournament on Lake Despair.
This year, the Devlin-area duo is going to take another stab at a first-place catch in the ninth-annual event later this week.
“There’s lots of good fishermen out there,” Galusha said after an afternoon of pre-fishing. “But you just need a couple real good fish and you’ll do all right.”
He and Steele don’t have any secrets or special plans, Galusha added.
“We find that the bass are usually the same place year after year, it’s just a matter of catching them,” he reasoned.
“There are lots of guys that fish a spot and the fish get caught a couple times, and it’s hard to get them to bite the second or third time.”
Galusha said the pair isn’t going to change anything up this year because what they’ve been doing in the past has been working well.
“We’ll probably stay with the same pattern we always use and just hope for the best,” he remarked.
“Other years we’ve come really close, we’ve been within a pound [of the winners],” he noted. “We’ve lost fish that would have won the tournament for us.
“It was just a lucky break.”
Galusha said their greatest challenge is other anglers.
“There’s 60 boats out there fishing and the lake’s not that big,” he said, referring to the difficulty of hooking a fish that already has been caught and released once or twice.
You just have to “be there at the right time and get lucky,” he stressed.
Organizer Bill Godin, who is teaming up with Galusha at the Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship later this month, said the Lake Despair tournament is very much a family affair.
“We get lots of people fishing with their spouses and their kids,” he noted.
“It’s not quite so hectic as the Fort Frances tournament.”
The two-day tournament, hosted by Lake Despair Lodge (located 18 miles north of Devlin on Highway 613), runs this Friday and Saturday (July 10-11).
The boats launch at 7:30 a.m. both days, with the weigh-ins getting underway at 3:30 p.m.
First prize is $5,000, with prize payouts up to 15th place.
There also are prizes for hidden weight, top male/female team, and top team with an angler under age 15.
A fish fry is planned for Friday night, with a dance slated Saturday night featuring taped music by Warren Anderson.
As well, food booths and refreshments will be available both days.
For more information, call the lodge at 486-0532.