The fishing was slow initially, but picked up about 9:00 and we caught a few fish. Then the bite stopped around 11:00. We didn't catch any bass again until after 1:00. Even with the mostly sunny skies, the air temperature was slow warming up. The water temperature was in the mid to upper 60's. What really gave us fits was the wind which blew 10-20 mph all day long. We couldn't get away from it even in the coves.
When the bite picked up again in the afternoon, we caught several more bass, most on points where the wind was pushing bait fish toward the shore. We stopped fishing at 3:00 so we could get back to the dock and have our chip at the weigh-in table by 3:30. Each team had a poker chip with their boat number on it. The first group of teams had to be in no later than 3:30 and the second group had to be in no later than 3:45. The lake has some long areas that are "idle only" and we had to allow enough time to get through those.
|Boats coming back for the weigh-in|
There were 34 teams competing in this regional tournament based on their point standings from the regular season tournaments. The fishing was tough and many of the guys talked about how hard it was to get a bite. Several teams had no fish to weigh in and others had one. Jim and I caught 17 bass, two of which were keepers, for a total two fish weight of 5.10 pounds. The winning team came in with a total weight of 8+ pounds with three fish. Nobody brought in a 5 fish limit. When it was all said and done, Jim and I finished 9th out of 34 teams. The top 11 teams from this regional tournament automatically advance to the Nitro Classic tournament being held next spring. That is a 2 day tournament where the top qualifiers from the various regional tournaments compete. The Classic gives away a new boat to the top three teams and holds a random drawing to give away a fourth boat. That's in addition to the prize money. Depending on how many regional qualifiers show up, there will be 200-400 teams competing at the Classic.
Even though we had hoped to bring in more fish, we had a good time and were happy to move on to the Classic.
|Team members filtering in for the weigh-in|