Derby’s Blake Scharenberg – Wichita Area Outdoors Spotlight Presented by Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, & Tourism

By Travis Sloat

Blake Scharenberg has an answer for the age old question, “If I fish in competitions, will I enjoy it recreationally any more?” According to the 17-year old junior from Derby High School, it’s as easy as where your head is at. 

“I just have fun with it,” Scharenberg said. “I also put in the time. I don’t fish to compete. Don’t get me wrong, competing is a major positive, but I fish because I enjoy fishing and being in nature. My brother and I and my cousins go fishing together pretty often, and we always have some kind of competition going on when we go out there, like who has the biggest or the most.” 

That call to nature has Scharenberg on the water more days than he’s off, especially in the spring and summer months when the days get longer and the weather is nicer. 

“I’m on the water as much as possible,” he said. “In the spring I like to go three to four times a week, and by the time summer rolls around, I’m out there four to five days a week.” 

With the fishing season kicking into high gear, Scharenberg and his team are currently tied for 24th place in the state, and have another tournament coming in April. In the meantime, he said he’s busy watching professionals like Scott Martin on TV and on YouTube. 

“He is really the one person I watch who made me want to get into competition fishing,” Scharenberg said. “If I ever got a dream fishing trip, it would be with him.” 

After high school, Scharenberg said he wants to go to Wichita State University and study law, while competing on their fishing team. Then he wants to make the switch to Washburn in Topeka. 

Scharenberg also said that even with as much time as he spends tossing a football head or flipping jig into the water, he still gets that rush when the stars align and a big bass nails it. 

“I get a feeling of pure excitement,” he said. “When you’re out there casting over and over again, not feeling anything, and all the sudden you feel that bump, you don’t know what it is or how big it is. That is one of the most fun things about bass fishing.” 

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