Derek & Dana Underwood at the store front before their first Odyssey

This week in the wake of the Odyssey I received an awesome thank you letter from Dana Underwood, who with his brother Derek formed the Brother Bream team.

It was Dana who told me Saturday was one of the best day’s fishing he had had in a long long time. I read the letter, and asked for a few more questions and permission to publish it. It would put things in context particularly the fact that the Odyssey brought the two brothers back onto Ozark waters again

We have followed the Odyssey since the beginning and it has never worked out for us to enter.  We are from Republic MO and last year my younger brother moved to Florida with his family.  I never thought we would get another chance to fish the Odyssey together;  so you can imagine my surprise when I sent him this year’s Odyssey announcement and he replied with an airline booking.  He was very excited to get back into an Ozark stream.

Like Mike Kromrey spreading some of the ashed of his fishing mentor Rick Osborn on the White during the Odyssey and the Underwood’s story below, its the really human backstories that humbles us.

Thanks to the Underwoods and all the Odyssey competitions. See you next year

Dana with the reason for smallmouth mushbrrain

Steve and the Dally’s Crew,
I’ve spent the morning wondering how one can get a hangover without consumption. The
answer is now clear…. adrenaline. The excitement of competition, combined with cold water and
“smallmouth mush brain 1”, took an unexpected toll on the body.

As I reflected on the Odyssey, and
the world returned to is normal pace, the events of the weekend slowly revealed themselves.
In true fisherman fashion, the digits have begun to multiply while sharing the stories with family
and friends.

Sunfish numbers have now reached the 100’s and bass are getting quantified in pounds.
However, I am quickly humbled when asked how many species were caught. 6 . Six is the number that
The Brothers Bream hold like a trophy. Six species brought my brother halfway across America. Six fish
are the result of meticulous planning and strategizing. At last, but not least, the stories of those six will
be celebrated every time we load our gear for another adventure.

For now, the gear is stowed, the waders are dry, and my phone is in a bag of rice. We have
returned from an odyssey with a strange blend of victory and defeat. The victory is shared by those who
participated and hosted; while the defeat is a personal burden carried until the next all species Odyssey.
That leaves us with one option; we will plan our return and spit when we think of the “un-catchables”.

To the victors who caught the un-catchables, to Steve, and to the Dally’s Crew, congratulations!
Congratulations on successfully creating an experience that embodies the heart of every Ozark
outdoorsman. Those who have baptized their feet in our cool waters know how truly awesome an
Ozarks stream can be. In the words of the winners “magical” described it well. Thank you for your hard
work and a job well done.

Until next time,
Dana Underwood
(The Brothers Bream)

1_ The temporary effect on the human mind during and after the catch of an Ozark Smallmouth Bass. – Symptoms
usually include short-term memory loss, poor judgement, and an acute awareness of dark spots in the water.