UPCOMING EVENT: Rayovac FLW Series - 2015 - Lake Erie

Bite by bite

The first and second-place boats take off as the final round of BFL All-American action started with sunny skies and light wind.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - A gaggle of Canada geese searched for breakfast in the dew-dampened grass on a hill overlooking Fish Hatchery Ramp. Feeding one bug at a time, their diligent foraging mirrored the task of boater and co-angler finalists fishing Lake Hamilton in the 25th annual Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League All-American presented by Chevy. After two days of thorough pickings by a full field, the finalists will have to look hard for productive Canada geese foraging on a hill overlooking the launch site mirrored the challenging task of rounding up a limit of bass.waters as weekend boat traffic guarantees plenty of company. For all competitors, success or failure will hinge on time management and bite optimization. Those who make the right decisions and catch everything they hook will fare well. Day three brings mostly sunny skies and light breezes; somewhat of a synthesis between the calm, overcast conditions of day one and the bright, windy weather of day two. A morning topwater bite could offer make-it-it-break-it potential, but once the sun hangs high and fish head for depth or cover, the real hunt begins. Leading the boater field since day one, Kim Carver of Milledgeville, Ga. caught the event's only double-digit stringer (11-6) on day one, but struggled on day two with just 5-7. Seeking his second BFL All-Top boater Kim Carver will give his topwater plug a good workout today.American win (his first: 1988 in La Crosse, Wis.), Carver said he'll start with a surface bait and work deeper as the day warms. "I have to go throw my topwater plug this morning and hope for one bite - two would be fantastic," he said. "I got one yesterday (on topwater), but it wasn't as big as I wanted. I could go over (to my spot) and catch another big one, which on this lake, a 2 1/2- to 3-pounder is a big fish. One fish like that would put me on the edge of locking in the victory." Carver's weight goal: "Eight pounds would be fantastic; seven and I'll probably win." Less than a pound back at 16-1, second-place boater Shayne Berlo of Vienna, Va. hopes he can makeIn the second place boat, Shayne Berlo and his co-angler partner Michael Roy bring a double shot of big bass potential to day three. it three consecutive days of finding the kicker fish. On day one, his 4-pound, 1-ounce fish took Snickers Big Bass honors and one nearly 3 pounds on day two helped move him up from fifth place. "My success has been predicated on finding one big fish per day," Berlo said. "I have to get another big fish today, or multiple big fish would be nice." Both of Berlo's big fish bit jigs, but as a self-described "junk fisherman," he'll try a variety of baits to try and identify consistent patterns. His big-fish jig will definitely get wet today. Berlo's co-angler partner Michael Roy of Ivy, Va. also found a nice kicker on day two. His 4-4 missed Co-angler Michael Roy will use a hybrid wacky worm rigged Texas style for weedless presentations.the Big Bass award by one ounce, but it anchored the day's heaviest stringer in both divisions - 9 pounds, 2 ounces - and moved Roy up 27 spots. Roy caught most of his fish on a wacky-rigged watermelon Zoom trick worm. He hooks the worm Texas style for a go-anywhere weedless presentation. Third place boater, Terry McWilliams of Greenfield, Ind. maintained his position from day one, despite a small limit. He caught 9-14 on day one and followed with 5-5. He'll rely mostly on his trademark "Stupid Tube" - a 1/8- or 3/16-ounce jig with the head positioned inside a green pumpkin tube. McWilliams said the day's bright conditions should favor his preferred bait. "When it's sunny, that pushes the fish back under docks and cover, and this bait works very well in (these scenarios)." Tournament logistics The BFL event, which runs May 29-30, assembles 108 anglers from 26 states and offers a top boater In the fourth-place boat, Ray Griffin, foreground, and his co-angler partner Robert Crosnoe strap on their PFDaward of $140,000 and a top co-angler award of $70,000. The boater and co-angler champions will also advance to the $2 million Forrest Wood Cup in Columbia, S.C., Aug. 14-17, where the boater will compete with top anglers from the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, Wal-Mart FLW Series, Stren Series and The Bass Federation for as much as $1 million - the sport's biggest award. The entire field competes Thursday and Friday for an accumulated two-day weight. The top-10 boaters and co-anglers advance to Saturday, and the winners are determined by the heaviest three-day weight. Action continues at today's final weigh-in, scheduled to take place at 4 p.m. (Central Time) at Summit Arena located at 134 Convention Blvd. in Hot Springs. Wednesday's conditions: Sunrise: 6:30 a.m. Temperature at takeoff: 72 degrees Expected high temperature: 88 degrees Water temperature: 72 degrees Wind: from the SW 8 mph Humidity: 44 percent Day's outlook: Sunny

Tags: morning-story  david-a-brown 

/news/2015-08-27-top-5-patterns-from-lake-erie-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Erie Day 1

Taking off this morning, the FLW Tour pro from Erie, Pa., knew the day’s north wind would keep him from making a long run to a big-fish spot close to his home. However, keeping it local and fishing a little past Pelee Island to the west delivered a solid second-place catch. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-rhode-cracks-23-10-for-erie-lead

Rhode Cracks 23-10 for Erie Lead

Jared Rhode played his cards and the gamble paid off better than expected, as the pro from Port Clinton, Ohio, took the day-one lead at the Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie with a limit catch weighing 23 pounds, 10 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-27-hunting-erie-s-brown-fish

Hunting Erie’s Brown Fish

It’s going to be an Easter egg hunt on Lake Erie, but at least the great lake will behave a little better during the final Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division event than it did during practice. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-26-smallmouth-slugfest-on-tap-at-erie-

Smallmouth Slugfest on Tap at Erie

Florida pro Glenn Browne leads the race with 492 points, largely due to his win at the previous divisional event on Lake Champlain. Following well within striking distance are Canadian pro Cory Johnston (484 points) and Louisianan Gerald Spohrer (483), who found his way into the Northern Division quite incidentally. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-20-2015-forrest-wood-cup-off-and-running

2015 Forrest Wood Cup Off and Running

If the fishing matches the weather on the opening day of the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita, there will be plenty of limit stringers brought to the scales in Hot Springs’ Bank of the Ozarks Arena when the weigh-in commences at 5 p.m. Up until a couple of weather forecasts ago, anglers were anticipating hot, miserable weather during all four days of this, the crowning event of the Walmart FLW Tour season, which is hosted by Visit Hot Springs and the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. Passing thunderstorms Tuesday afternoon brought a pleasant respite to the sultry heat, however, and now Cup contenders only have sulking bass to contend with as they vie for tournament fishing’s richest prize: a winner’s purse of $500,000. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-17-top-10-patterns-from-lake-dardanelle

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Dardanelle

Jason Lieblong, who won the Rayovac FLW Series Central Division event on Lake Dardanelle, devoted most of his time to fishing reed lines with a mix of chatterbaits, frogs and Texas-rigged worms. He also caught fish by dragging a Texas-rigged 10-inch worm past brush piles in 6-8 feet. Lieblong amassed a three-day total of 46 pound, 3 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-15-lieblong-dominates-dardanelle-rayovac

Lieblong Dominates Dardanelle Rayovac

Having lead the event for two days, the pro from Conway, Ark., carried a 14-ounce lead into the final round. After weighing a limit of 12 pounds, 2 ounces on day three, Lieblong closed the door with a tournament total of 46-3 and a 2-pound, 2-ounce margin of victory. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-15-smith-takes-co-angler-title-at-dardanelle

Smith Takes Co-Angler Title At Dardanelle

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/news/2015-08-15-dardanelle-midday-update-day-3

Dardanelle Midday Update Day 3

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/news/2015-08-14-lieblong-holds-on-to-lead-at-dardanelle

Lieblong Holds On To Lead At Dardanelle

Current events proved perplexing for Jason Lieblong, even though he retained his lead at the Rayovac FLW Series Central Division event on Lake Dardanelle. The pro from Conway, Ark., topped the day-one leaderboard with 19 pounds, 10 ounces, but saw his second day’s productivity slip to 14-7 for a total weight of 34-1 and a 14-ounce lead going into the final round. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-14-top-5-patterns-from-lake-dardanelle-day-2

Top 5 Patterns From Lake Dardanelle Day 2

Arkansas pro Jason Lieblong held on to the top spot in Rayovac FLW Series Central Division action on Lake Dardanelle with 34 pounds, 1 ounce. Flipping plastics and a jig produced all of his fish. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-14-dardanelle-midday-update-day-2

DARDANELLE MIDDAY UPDATE DAY 2

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/news/2015-08-13-lieblong-leads-on-dardanelle-with-19-10

Lieblong Leads on Dardanelle with 19-10

Rising water brought increased current to Lake Dardanelle, and Jason Lieblong leveraged this dynamic to take the lead on day one of Rayovac FLW Series Central Division action on this Arkansas River impoundment. He brought in a limit that weighed 19 pounds, 10 ounces. In the early hours of his day the pro from Conway, Ark., alternated between backwaters and main-lake banks in an effort to determine where the fish were most active. Once the sun gained altitude and harsh light had pushed the fish tight to cover, he committed to the bank. “I just put the trolling motor down and went fishing and found some fish on your obvious stuff like laydowns and grass. I even caught some in open water with no structure whatsoever,” Lieblong says. “I found a little current, and that’s key.” READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-13-top-5-patterns-from-lake-dardanelle-day-1

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Dardanelle Day 1

Arkansas pro Jason Lieblong took the day-one lead in Rayovac FLW Series Central Division action on Lake Dardanelle with 19 pounds, 10 ounces. Flipping plastics produced all of his fish. Here are the details of the rest of the top five. READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-13-dardanelle-midday-update-day-1

Dardanelle Midday Update Day 1

The warm, sunny conditions that greeted Rayovac FLW Series Central Division anglers at the morning takeoff on Lake Dardanelle will continue through the afternoon. The light early breeze has increased to a 5-10 mph wind - a welcome factor as daytime temperatures approach 90 degrees READ MORE »

/news/2015-08-13-up-and-down-on-dardanelle

Up and Down on Dardanelle

Tournament fishing inherently has its ups and downs, but Rayovac FLW Series Central Division anglers are getting a concentrated dose of this angling truism on Lake Dardanelle. An Army Corps of Engineers impoundment of the Arkansas River, Dardanelle has seen its water level fluctuate with recent rains and the Corps’ efforts to moderate this flow. Dam releases have pulled the lake down enough to reposition fish. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-08-05-competition-fuels-reyes

Competition Fuels Reyes

Case in point: Jason Reyes, the Walmart FLW Tour pro from Huffman, Texas, who’ll make his second Forrest Wood Cup appearance next month on Lake Ouachita. Finishing 23rd in the points, Reyes posted his best season in nine years of Tour competition, but his description of meaningful moments goes beyond high finishes and a championship berth. READ MORE »

/news/2015-07-30-north-or-south-on-champlain-

North or South on Champlain?

With waves 1 to 3 feet and thunderstorms in the offing as day one of the Rayovac FLW Series event presented by Plano gets under way on Lake Champlain, the anglers will have a tall task no matter which direction they run. READ MORE »

/news/2015-06-25-a-capital-challenge

A Capital Challenge

Rivers can be rollercoasters, and the Potomac River might be about to give the anglers fishing the Walmart FLW Tour finale a tough ride. Two nasty storm systems have blown through in the last few days. According to FLW Tour pro and local Michael Hall, those could have been the two worst things to happen leading up to the tournament. “After 30 years of fishing here, I know storms impact the bass on this river,” says Hall. “Those storms have certainly done that. The wind alone would have done it this week.” READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-22-thrift-flirting-with-second-aoy-title

Thrift Flirting with Second AOY Title

Bryan Thrift can’t say for certain what baits will sit on his front deck during the final Walmart FLW Tour event of 2015 on the Potomac River, which is set to kick off this Thursday, but he’s quick to say what will not join him – the memory of his 2010 Angler of the Year title. READ MORE »