Live now : TOYOTA SERIES 2020 Pickwick

Rattle battle

Rattle battle
John Tanner’s rattling lipless baits: Excalibur Xr-50 (top left), Excalibur Xr-75 (bottom right), Strike King Sexy Shad (bottom left) and a Rapala Fat Rap.

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. - If you were to stick a microphone under the surface of Lake Guntersville this week during the Walmart FLW Tour Chevy Open it would probably sound like the lake had been invaded by a band of maraca players.

That's because hundreds of rattling lipless crankbaits were being ripped through Guntersville's thick grass beds to get big bass to react on them in attack mode.

And the rattling ploy worked. At the day three takeoff of the Chevy Open this morning, nearly every top-10 qualifier had a bevy of rattling baits strapped to their decks.

Rarely is a single lure such a dominant player in a professional bass tournament, but that has certainly been the case this week.

No one brand, size or color stood out as a clear favorite among the top-10's rattle battle. Some pros had one particular rattler they favored; other pros had a variety of rattlers they relied on.

Tenth place qualifier John Tanner of Quitman, Texas was the first to show off a handful of rattlers that proved productive for him this week. His list included Excalibur's Xr-50 and Xr-75, a Strike King Redeye Shad and a Rapala Fat Rap, which is actually a crankbait.

In Scott Canterbury's boat, a large variety of rattlers decorated his deck. Canterbury noted that each different lure was designated for a certain depth. His Jackall TN-70's and Excalibur Xr-75's were for deep grass while his Strike King Redeye Shads and Cordell Spot were for shallow grass.

BP pro David Walker's lipless list included two 5/8-ounce Yozuri Rattlin Vibes and a big 3/4 Redeye Shad.

As for National Guard pro Ramie Colson, well he was sticking with the old original Bill Lewis Rat-L-Trap.

"The funny thing is I spent a fortune on new rattling baits on the way down here," Colson said. "And then I end up catching everything on an original Rat-L-Trap that I've had in my box for years. I probably bought that lure for two bucks back in the mid 90's and it works great."

Chances are the top-10 pros are going to have another rattling slugfest today as pre-frontal fog, mist and clouds have settled into Northern Alabama this morning. This afternoon's weigh-in should be quite big fish show.

Day three weigh-in

Remember the day-three and day-four weigh-ins (Saturday and Sunday) of the FLW Tour Chevy Open will be held in Huntsville at the Von Braun Center located at 700 Monroe St. in Huntsville, Ala., beginning at 4 p.m. Ramie Colson is sticking to an original Bill Lewis Rat-L-Trap.

In conjunction with the weigh-ins on Saturday and Sunday, FLW Outdoors will host a free Family Fun Zone and outdoor show at the Von Braun Center from noon to 6 p.m. each day. The Family Fun Zone offers fans a chance to meet their Fantasy Fishing team anglers face-to-face and review the latest products from Berkley, Lowrance, Ranger, Evinrude, Yamaha and other sponsors while children are treated to giveaways, fishing themed games and rides like the Ranger Boat simulator.

Children 14 and under visiting the Family Fun Zone on Sunday will receive a free rod and reel combo while supplies last. One lucky member of the audience will even win a new Ranger boat during the final 4 p.m. weigh-in Sunday, Feb. 15. Admission is free, and you must be present to win.


Saturday's conditions

Sunrise: 6:31 a.m.
Temperature at takeoff: 52 degrees
Expected high temperature: 62 degrees
Water temperature: 42-52 degrees
Wind: WNW 5 to 10 mph
Day's outlook: foggy and humid

Tags: rob-newell  morning-story  2009-02-12-lake-guntersville 

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