Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Starting off the Year

Last weekend I joined the Virginia Tech Bass Fishing Team for the first club tournament of the year on Claytor Lake.  I had prefished on Friday, and caught a decent fish on a double fluke rig, but that was all prefishing provided for me.

When Sunday morning rolled around, my partner, Evan, and myself got up and made some sausage and egg biscuits to give us some energy for the long day.  We arrived at the launch, and I was feeling anxious as we motored out to mouth of the cove with the rest of the team. At 7:00AM everyone blasted off and headed up-lake, but Evan and I made our way straight across the lake.

I started off looking for the topwater bite with a Lucky Craft Sammy, but only had one take a swipe at my lure with no hook up.  We kept fishing, but we struggled for the first hour and half with no keepers and plenty of shorts.  The shorts kept tearing up our roboworms (Martin's Madness & Oxblood), and it was getting annoying!  While Evan was rigging up another worm, I flipped my drop shot up against the bank.  I worked the drop shot off the bank and began to move it by a dock when I felt weight.  I instinctively set the hook, and was hooked up with what I knew would be our first keeper.  The fish went a little over 2lbs, and would prove to be our only fish for a while.

Hour after hour ticked by with nothing but missed fish and shorts.  We moved from cove to cove losing numerous drop shot rigs looking for the elusive bait, but never managed to find it.  On Friday we had been in the same coves and bait balls the size of our boat were everywhere you looked; however Friday they seemed to have moved up lake.

With only two hours left we decided to make the run to Peak Creek.  We fished for an hour with one fish that was 11 3/4in...  0.25in short of 12in (the minimum length requirement).  We threw the fish back, and Evan and I looked at each other.  We knew we had to start heading back towards the ramp, but we figured we would fish our way out of Peak Creek.

We "power-dropshotted" our way out of Peak Creek, and with thirty minutes to go I hook into our second keeper.  It was short, around 12in, but it was a keeper nevertheless.  We fished for the final thirty minutes, but could not manage to catch another keeper for the tournament.  Winning weight was under 10lbs, but most of the top finishers fished up-lake.

All in all though, I had a great time on the lake.  We were graced by a beautiful day on the lake: blue skies, warm weather, and an off and on breeze all day.  We caught many fish other than our two keepers, saw a small water spout, and saw what I believe was a beaver!  Can't wait till we head to Smith Mountain Lake in October!