We had a quick turnaround between Gopher Bassmaster club tournament weekends between late May and early June, but I did prefish both lakes for a few hours the weekend before; thanks to Simply Fishing Extreme Marine for getting me back on the water. I had an idea of the kinds of things that I wanted to do on this lake. New thing this year, I want to try to spend the first 20 minutes or so gambling for a bigger bite or two on each event, then worry about limit fish. With that being said, water temps were in the mid 60's to start and I had a couple small subtle points with grass and hard bottom hoping to intercept some staging fish early.
That did not pan out, so we ran into a couple of small boat canals. I caught 2 out of the first canal on a black 4" tube and another boat beat us into the other cut, so we killed a little time where I caught a fry guarder on a ring fry and then went in afterwards. I quickly caught a small 4th keeper on a tube and then I saw a couple good fish on a bed. While i worked those fish, my partner Rick caught 3 good keepers on a stick worm out the back of the boat. I finally tempted the smaller fish of the 2 nice fish on a white jig, and the bigger fish split.
We then headed to a section of docks, where we hooked a few shorts and lost one keeper and saw several cruising fish that we could not tempt. Shortly after that I caught 2 fry guarders on a drop shot setup, culling 2 of my 13" fish. Rick also picked up his 4th keeper out of some cattails.
Rick them took over and ran the trolling motor through a large reed and pad flat. He quickly put his 5th fish in the boat. A little bit alter, I hooked and landed a 4lb class fish blind casting a weightless ring fry. Not much longer, i see a really good fish just suspending about 10 feet from boat, I managed to get my ring fry in front of her without spooking and gobbled it right up and it was another 3lb plus fish in the boat. We kept pecking away in this reed flat, and i saw a good fish scoot around the boat, but I noticed it quick resettled on light spot behind the boat, so I asked Rick to hold the boat for a little bit. It only took me a few minutes to tempt this nearly 4lb fish with my tricked out white jig.
Working through the pads, Rick was able to get another 3lb fish and get rid of his one little one, so I ran to where I saw some big fish the week before. I quickly caught another 3lb fish around 1pm out of a boat lift on the ring fry. We ran around quite a bit after that, hitting lots of spots, catching a few fish that would not help us.
When the dust settled, I had 16.26lbs for 1st place even though my big fish was only 3.81lbs and Rick caught a nice bag of 13lbs, which got me the team bonus for the 2nd straight tournament. Its nice to get a good bag and win a tournament, but even more fulfilling when you can put your partner on a quality bag as well.
Pictured is my bed fishing setup, 1/2oz jig skirt trimmed to flair more, big rattle, with specially dyed chunk. I think the red contrast can trigger more bites from reluctant fish, plus when the red disappears, you know it is time to set the hook!
No rest for the weary, I had another tournament on Sunday, so it was time to get home and get my gear ready for Sunday.