UPCOMING EVENT: Rayovac FLW Series - 2015 - Lake Champlain

Rollercoaster Ride

Dave Lefebre

Editor's Note: The writer's opinions and observations expressed here are his own, and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views, policies or positions of FLW. Professional tournament fishing is normally a rollercoaster ride with plenty of ups and downs, but this season so far is nothing but downs. I've never experienced anything quite like this before in my 12 years on the Walmart FLW Tour. It all started on the first tournament day of the year on Okeechobee with a mechanical breakdown, and it has snowballed from there. Now here I sit, with two events remaining, officially out of the Forrest Wood Cup for the first time in my career. It feels really bad, but I'm confident something great is about to happen, or at least something good will come out of this mess. Speaking of mess, my performance at Beaver Lake this past week was pitiful. On the last day of practice, I found a point up the river that was loaded with spots of a better-than-average size. My game plan going in was to stay close to takeoff; what I was even doing up the river doesn't cease to amaze me even now. Regardless, this find tainted my plan of attack, and I made a last-minute decision on Thursday morning to start on that point upriver. Dave Lefebre I was the first boat there despite being boat No. 82. I spent about 30 minutes trying to get a bite and then left, but instead of heading back toward Prairie Creek, I started running around in that area. I finally came to my senses, and once I got back close to takeoff I started catching some fish. Unfortunately, I lost a 4-pound largemouth with about 10 minutes left in the day, which turned out to be my kiss of death for this tournament. About three years ago at Beaver Lake I lost a bunch of huge fish on a crankbait, and I've never forgotten that. I should have weighed about 22 pounds, but only took about 10 to the scales that awful day. So, remembering that, my plan this year was to fish a Terminator swim jig and try to figure out how to get the fish to bite it in place of the crankbait. In practice it worked out great; my first bite on the perch-colored swim jig was a 4 1/2-pound pig. In three days of practice, without even fishing a lot and leaving all the key areas alone, I had 17, 14, and 17 pounds again. It was so good that I actually told a friend at registration I thought I was going to win, lol. It's been awhile since I felt this good going into an event. After screwing up day one with only 7 1/2 pounds, I put aside my crankbait concerns, picked up a Storm Wiggle Wart and headed back into Prairie Creek and stayed there the entire day. I never put it down and could basically follow anyone fishing a worm and catch fish. I caught more than 20 keepers, but none of them was much help. I only weighed 9 1/2 pounds with four largemouths and one smallie. I climbed from 103rd to 82nd in the standings after day two, tying Andrew Upshaw for the very last $4,000 check ... whew, that was close! My Wiggle Wart was a new model, despite my having thousands of dollars of vintage ones ... don't buy the hype. My swim-jig trailer was a green pumpkin purple copper Yamamoto Fat Baby Craw. We hit Beaver Lake at a perfect time: prespawn and warming. The weather was unstable and different every day, causing us to have to adapt all the time to get bites. Actually, the conditions and situation were perfect for me, so it stings to leave there with a bomb. The guys who capitalized are the ones who went on to fish the weekend. I noticed some talk among the guys with better bags about getting five to seven bites per day. I also noticed that the leaders were fishing the same type areas and baits that I was. I think transitions in rock, bluff ends and points were the main deal for most, or just getting into a creek, putting the trolling motor down, and simply fishing everything, is a plan that always works on this lake. Our next and final two events are all about the Tennessee River, and obviously I like that. I've had several top-10 finishes at Pickwick and won the last time we fished Kentucky Lake. I've also got another derby on Chickamauga in the mix. I'm looking forward to nothing but another win soon! Next up, Pickwick Lake. Anne and the kids are coming to that one, and we always look forward to heading down to McFarland Park in Florence, Ala. Maybe I'll see you there. Hear more from Dave Lefebre by following him on Twitter at @DaveLefebre or liking him on Facebook at facebook.com/DaveLefebre.

Tags: blog  dave-lefebre 

/tips/2015-07-22-never-miss-a-bass-again

Never Miss a Bass Again

Do you ever listen at the weigh-in at how many guys talk about all the fish they missed? I can’t accept that it’s part of the job at hand. It’s one of my pet peeves. Most of us would do much better if we would just ask the simple question “why?” In prefishing we have already done most of the hard work. During the tournament, a missed fish can’t be accepted. I consider it a good tournament when I come back to the ramp with no missed fish, regardless of my finish. How does that happen? It starts way before the tournament. READ MORE »

/news/2015-07-21-rayovac-flw-series-northern-division-event-set-for-lake-champlain-

Rayovac FLW Series Northern Division Event Set For Lake Champlain

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (July 21, 2015) – The Rayovac FLW Series is headed to Lake Champlain July 30- Aug. 1 for a tournament presented by Plano when as many as 300 pros and co-anglers will take to the water for the second stop of 2015 in the Northern Division... READ MORE »

/tips/2015-07-08-a-bass-is-a-bass-but-not-always

A Bass is a Bass, But Not Always

Amigos, as you may remember, we left the past blog with a big question mark on the well-known saying, “A bass is a bass, no matter what.” Well, it’s time to give you a different point of view. A lot of you, while reading these lines, might start questioning my ideas. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-07-06-from-kayak-to-bass-boat

From Kayak to Bass Boat

Like many anglers, I am a fanatic about my equipment for the things I do. For example, I’m a four-time world champion whitewater kayaker and have won three of them in a boat of my design. I started Jackson Kayak to take kayak design to the next level and to do things that the bigger company I was working for wasn’t willing to do. I am also a long-time bass fisherman, which led me to fishing 2015 Walmart FLW Tour as a co-angler. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-07-06-more-than-a-fisherman

More Than a Fisherman

The competitive fishing world is a small one, and when narrowed down to the competitive bass fishing world, it is even smaller in the grand scheme of things. This, of course, isn’t to say that this small group doesn’t have an absolutely huge impact. It does. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-07-01-the-no-excuse-guide-

The "No Excuse" Guide

Chatter can be dock talk, personal abusive talk, hater talk, fan talk and everything in between. The list goes on. I truly believe tournament fishing is all a mental game. I feel that the most successful anglers know how to tune it all out and fish in the zone. It is crucial to know how to tune out all the chatter and shut up and fish. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-30-missed-chances-at-the-finale

Missed Chances at the Finale

The final Walmart FLW Tour event on the Potomac River was a tough event for me. After one of the strongest practices I’ve ever had there, or anywhere, really, I drove home scratching my head. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-16-my-lost-fish-troubles-continue

My Lost-Fish Troubles Continue

Lake Chickamauga is loaded with big bass, and for the first time in three previous visits I felt really good after the practice period was over. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out for me, and I ended the event after day two by missing the top-20 cut by a mere 4 ounces. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-06-04-blaukat-on-climate-change

Blaukat on Climate Change

As many of you know, for years I’ve been an outspoken voice on environmental issues. As a result, I’ve been celebrated by some and ostracized by others. But what some think of me being the messenger is irrelevant. It’s not about the messenger – as much as detractors try to make it out to be – it’s about getting the message out. I want to start by saying that the debate of whether or not climate change is man-made is over. It’s real, and it’s right here in our faces. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-28-running-a-college-club

Running a College Club

The sport of college bass fishing is growing at an incredible pace. During my freshman year (2011-2012), tournament fields were limited to 50 anglers, and boats were supplied by Rayovac FLW Series volunteer competitors. During the end of my senior year this season, field sizes grew larger at every tournament, and we saw more colleges providing boats for student anglers – signs of growth for sure. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-28-blog-i-m-hooked-

Blog: I’m Hooked

When I was 10 years old I could only dream about being a professional fisherman. I would spend all my time outdoors playing sports, hunting and fishing. Then, in high school, I competed in my first bass tournament and I was hooked. From that moment, my goal was to become a professional angler some day. Now, almost three decades later, after much hard work and dedication I’m competing in the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour. And I’m more excited than ever. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-26-blog-the-first-time

Blog: The First Time

This begins a series of blogs by Walmart FLW Tour co-angler Jaime Luengo of Mexico City. He joined the circuit in 2005 and has three top-10 finishes to his credit. Luengo is the author of La Magia de la Lobina Tecnicas Avanzadas, a book on bass fishing techniques, and is host and producer of Nuestra Pesca, a television series available on all cable stations in Mexico. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-19-missed-opportunities-at-beaver-lake

Missed Opportunities at Beaver Lake

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/tips/2015-05-19-blog-what-might-have-been-at-eufaula

Blog: What Might Have Been at Eufaula

Lake Eufaula is in the books, but ever since the tournament I haven’t slept very well. If you know me, you know I just “love” losing fish, but I think this latest event was the worst of my career. I finished 12th, which isn’t so bad, but the “what could have beens” got me again. On the last day of practice, I caught nearly 30 pounds, including one around 10 pounds and a 7 1/2-pounder, making it a day I’ll never forget. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-12-blog-frogging-of-a-different-kind

Blog: Frogging of a Different Kind

As a bass fisherman, I have a special feeling for that time of year when I can start fishing a frog again. I’m not sure if the rush of adrenaline I feel is from that first explosion when a bass crashes the frog, or the anticipation of it. Whatever it is, I love it! READ MORE »

/tips/2015-05-06-blog-make-a-plan-and-work-the-plan-

Blog: Make a Plan and Work the Plan

I’m not going to sugarcoat it: I’m bombarded with an array of emotions and a new to-do list every day. I’m not good enough. I don’t have the money. Make a Facebook post. Call mom. I don’t have enough time. I’m too tired. I’ll be treated poorly. Rig rods. Do sponsor work. People won’t like me. My son will miss me. I’ll miss my family. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-04-24-blog-east-vs-west

Blog: East vs. West

I’m not going to say the West is better than the East, or vice-versa. However, I am going to say that where fishing is concerned, there are some distinct differences between the two. The list is long and I’m sure that you can think of many additional differences, but here are a few things I have found that separates the two locales. For the purposes of this blog, let’s make the dividing line the Mississippi River although I think we should include Texas with the East. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-04-21-blog-the-bucket-list

Blog: The Bucket List

I lived my first 25 years in the Midwest, and I used to get horrible cabin fever this time of year. Sitting in front of a television and watching Jimmy, Hank, Roland and Bill catch monster bass on a spinnerbait on every single cast only made it worse. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-04-14-blog-back-in-the-groove

Blog: Back in the Groove

It feels good to be in full swing of the tournament season again. We just finished the second stop of the Walmart FLW Tour on Lewis Smith Lake, and it was an excellent event. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-04-14-5-pivotal-moments-in-my-career

5 Pivotal Moments in my Career

The FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake marked the beginning of my senior campaign. While it was great to get on some open water for the first time in months (though we didn’t finish very well), it also had me looking back at five events that, more than any others, led me to this point. READ MORE »