Monday, February 06, 2017
> Day 1: 5, 11-12
> Day 2: 4, 8-03
> Total = 9, 19-15 (76th place)
After my first day when I had almost 12 pounds, I was jumping up and down with joy and I thought I was going to be way up there in the standings. But once again, I was totally humbled. I really can't believe how well guys caught them.
I was up the river cranking, just fishing my strengths. I couldn't get the deep bite going, so that's what I had to do. Several other guys who've done the same thing are doing well. It's definitely a disappointing performance and I way underestimated things again. I didn't know much about the lake and I guess I should've done a little more research.
Last year I started strong and didn't finish so well, so maybe this year I'll make it my goal to have this be my worst finish and I'll start getting consistently better from here. All I can do is put it behind me and look forward. I've got 10 Pro vs. Joe episodes to film in the next month, so I'll have plenty of work. We'll do some fun-fishing for this next week and then see what we can do at Okeechobee.
Summing my practice up in one word, it would be "tough." It was pretty disappointing and I'm really scratching my head. I've been to some tough places before, but usually I can put something together and turn it into at least something decent, but man, I don't know. There's no doubt that most of the fish are out deep – you can see all the bait out there – but I didn't do a very good job of catching them. It'll be interesting to see how guys like Aaron Martens and Brent Ehrler and Josh Bertrand and other guys who are used to doing that stuff end up.
I caught four keepers in 3 days so it's kind of hard to say yay or nay about anything. Ultimately, I'll probably stick to my strengths and fish primarily shallow. That's how I got my bites and if we get the weather that's expected tomorrow it might be hard to fish deep at all.
I have a couple of little places and I'll just try to get in there and go back and forth and pick up a few fish. I'd be tickled with a limit of any size. If somebody told me where I could go to catch a limit of 12-inch spots, I'd do it in a heartbeat.
From the pictures I saw a month ago, there's some good ones in here, but right now they're sure not easy to find.
Day 1 Practice
I wasn't very impressed with what I found today, and hopefully tomorrow I'll find something else. From what I saw today, I was a little disappointed. I thought I could come here and catch them a certain way and just do that the whole time, but that doesn't seem to be the case. I checked two different areas and I couldn't get anything going in either one. Thank goodness I've got two more days of practice.
The only other time I was here was for a PAA event in like 2010, and it was July and the lake was 25 feet higher. Today I went to the creek where I caught them in that tournament and I couldn't get within a mile of where I was sitting (back then) – it was all dry ground. It's crazy how these lakes fluctuate.
It's so important to get the season off to a good start, so these next two days are going to be critical.