Lake Minnetonka, Wayzata, MN
I hurried home from the river with just enough time to line up a few rods, get some baits prepared and get ready to take to Tonka for the year end Denny’s Super 30 Shootout. After talking over the game plan with team tournament partner Ryan Brant, we came to a very specific pattern that we felt would give us the best shot at taking the two grand first place prize.
Tournament morning started slow with our first couple spots not producing anything. Even our third spot was getting a bit depressing until we came to a small isolated area that always looks good but never seems to produce for me. I even made a comment to Ryan that we never seem to catch anything off this when all of a sudden I get a nice bite. I quickly set the hook on a giant 4+ pound largemouth and as I was getting it to the net it just came off. I couldn’t believe it! This has been a thorn in our side on this lake all season. If it isn’t me than it’s Ryan and if it’s not Ryan dropping a big one than it’s Corey. I’m sure it’s starting to sound like a broken record but sadly it’s true. I guess we should just chalk it up to a type of slump, like when a NFL running back gets a case of the fumbles, but believe me this is a slump that will end soon. We all put way to much effort into finding good schools of fish that we just CAN NOT drop the big ones when we hook up. If I sound a bit annoyed it’s because I am, unfortunately this wasn’t the only big one that we dropped in this tournament. Luckily though, before we could let it get us down Ryan hooked into a nice one that definitely got into the livewell. I managed a few smaller ones and before we knew it, we where well onto our way of filling a descent limit.
We caught fish through out the day making small culls here and there. As the day was starting to get long and the images of dropped fish haunting our thoughts, we decided to call an audible. I told Ryan that not far away was a spot that fishes small but produces good ones. In fact I’ve fished this area 10 to 12 times and only caught 2 fish of it but both where over 5 pounds. We worked the area and as we where about to leave Ryan sets on what ended up being big fish of the tournament at 5.05 lbs. In fact we made another nice cull like this within 20 minutes and where within sight of winning this thing.
Unfortunately time wasn’t on our side and we weren’t able to make any more culls to help our bag. We we’re one of the first to weigh in our 8 fish limit which came to a solid 23.10 lbs. and landed us in third place with big fish honors when it was all said and done. We where both more than thrilled with the outcome. It was an up and down season but we where consistent enough all year to make the top 12 and in the end walked away with the much needed $1000 dollar pay day plus another $300 for big bass!
Now I’m planning to take a week or so off from fishing and start getting things ready for the upcoming Bassmaster Weekend Series Regional Championship held on Old Hickory Lake, just outside Nashville, TN. I’ve been doing all sorts of research trying to put together as much useful knowledge of the lake before I head down. Though it calls for an extremely hard bite, my anticipation level is through the roof. I really feel like this tournament could set up well for my strengths. I’ll try to put up a prelude entry to the event before I go. Tennessee here we come!