We recently fished our first tournament of the year with our club, Bay Area Bassmasters. Our club is now officially ginormous, as we fielded 47 teams/boats on the Winter Haven Chain of Lakes.
It was the first regular season tournament fishing out of our new rig, a 2011 BassCat Puma. The boat is great, but we weren’t so great in it that day! We lost more than a few fish, as we probably had 10~15 bites with at least 6~7 of those being keeper fish. Out of those potential keepers, we only managed to boat three of them! It was actually fun because we were getting bites, just frustrating that we weren’t capitalizing on those bites by getting them into the boat’s live-well . I know we lost one that was a solid fish that looked to be approaching 3 pounds. Landing that one would have bumped us up quite a bit in the standings! It was a weird day for us…
We finished 35th out of 47 boats (Link to results).
We got the majority of the bites on a club sponsor’s bait that I had won in the club raffle during the club meeting earlier that week. The sponsor, MirrOlure is a new one for our club in 2017. The bait was the Lil-John XL, june-bug colored. It is an interesting bait that looks like a fluke at first glance. I rigged it weightless as we were fishing over and in-between topped out milfoil / eel-grass clumps in a cove. The water was the clearest we’d found in the chain that day, and the depth was between 5-7′. The bait has a great twitching action that is like walking the dog under water or on top. Got some vicious strikes coming off the edges of topped out grass clumps with the bait still on top. It’s a great bait with a unique action. I’ll definitely pick up some more in my usual colors. You can also rig it with jig heads, but we’ve not tried that yet. Looking forward to giving that a shot at some point.
So, we’re not off to a fantastic start, but the Harris Chain of Lakes is our next tournament on the schedule, and we’ve done well in the past there. I’m hopeful about the next one!