Tournament Fishing isn’t for everyone. For some anglers it takes the fun out of the past time or hobby that they love. For others tournament fishing can take their passion to the next level. As frustrating as it can be at times, I enjoy tournament fishing because it gets me out of my comfort zone. It forces me to learn new bodies of water, new techniques and satisfies my competitive side. While fishing in tournaments you are often exposed to the mental aspects of the sport. A recent tournament of mine was a great reminder of that.
On Wednesday, June 25th the 2nd event for the GreenHorn Bass Tour was held on N/S Center Lake in Lindstrom, MN. For those of you that don’t live in Minnesota or happen to know, North Center suffered a bad winter kill this year so all 20 boats fished on South Center. My partner Tony was gone on vacation so for this event I was fishing with my friend Alex whom I’ve fished tournaments with a lot in the past.
South Center Lake was exceptionally weedy for this point in the season and there were a lot of surface weeds which made for some tough fishing in certain areas. We didn’t bring in a bass during the first two hours which left us feeling very unsettled. We had tried most of the spots where we’ve had success in the past to no avail (except one very nice Northern Pike that Alex caught on a drop shot).N/S Center Pike
We went back to the drawing board and decided to hit a nearby line of docks before we motored across the lake. I casted my NorthStar Custom Baits Southpaw Jig into a weedy area near shore when I hooked into a decent fish. It wound up jumping and shook my jig – a nice 2lb keeper bass…gone. Feeling defeated, I casted again to the same spot. As soon as the jig hit the water, it got bit – Fish On! We were finally able to put our first fish in the box.
The nearby line of docks didn’t produce any fish so we turned around and decided to spend some time on the area where I had hooked the two fish. As soon as we casted into the weedy area, we both were hooked up – our only double of the night! Alex boated a solid keeper on a Texas rigged Craw and then helped me net our big bass of the night. We had found ourselves a healthy school of bass!
With smiles on our faces, we filled up our livewell in the next 5 minutes. To finish up our night we decided to slow down and pick apart this area with many different baits/techniques. We wound up catching a lot more bass but none of them we’re good enough for an upgrade.
Time was up so fired up the outboard and made our way to the weigh-in. We brought to the scales a 5 fish limit weighing in at 10.98lbs and our biggest went 3.39lbs. We wound up with a 7th Place finish out of 20 boats. The winning bag that night was 14.1lbs and they also got the Big Bass of the night (4.42lb).
This was a great reminder of how quickly things can change while fishing – for better or for worse. We went from zero fish boated in two plus hours to a fury of action and a full livewell in the next 20 minutes. It only takes a couple of bites to change the result of a tournament!