UPCOMING EVENT: YETI College Fishing - 2019 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir


Colson cruises to 7-pound lead

Pro leader Ramie Colson Jr. holds up part of his 21-pound, 6-ounce day-two stringer.

GILBERTSVILLE, Ky. - While both are considered awesome bass fisheries, Barkley Lake has always taken a back seat to Kentucky Lake. But that could finally be changing - at least for pro Ramie Colson Jr. The Cadiz, Ky., native is out to prove his home lake holds tournament-winning fish. Thus far, with a two-day total of 44 pounds, 11 ounces, he's done exactly that.

Colson once again started the day fishing creek channel ledges in the mid-lake region of Barkley. By 8:15 a.m. he had a limit that weighed approximately 11 pounds. Colson then ran farther south and fished a few flats located in the backs of creeks. That didn't work and by 11:30 he was back fishing deep.

"Then I went to a spot I didn't fish the first day and caught a 5-pounder and then the 6-10 on back-to-back casts," he said
That 6-10 was the Snickers Big Bass of the day in the Pro Division and anchored his 21-pound, 6-ounce sack.

Even when he's ledge fishing he's working the bait in 8 to 10 feet of water while the boat sits in approximately 15 feet. That's significantly shallower than the ledges on Kentucky Lake. And it doesn't matter if he's fishing deep or shallow, Colson is always targeting homemade brush piles.

He makes two or three casts at them with a homemade Arkie-style jig with a Zoom Super Chunk trailer. Today he opted for a 3/4-ounce jig in the windy weather while on day one he used a 1/2-ounce. When he's fishing ledges, he also mixes in a plum-colored Zoom Ol' Monster worm. The shallow-water spot sounds unconventional, but Colson is convinced it can produce kickers.

"Believe me, you'd be surprised what's back there in 2 to 3 feet of water when you put (brush) out. You can catch a 20-pound bag easily doing that. I've done it several times when everybody's fishing drops and catching little fish."

Colson has won an FLW Series event, but a Tour win still eludes him. With a 7-pound lead at the halfway point in the tournament, he's in prime position.

"Before this tournament started I said I'd be happy with 20 pounds a day. I've done that and anything else is just a bonus. I'm just going to take it a day at a time."

While everything is going great for Colson, there is a 100-boat local tournament launching out of Barkley tomorrow.

With some help from his daughter Rachel and his son Caleb, second-place pro Glenn Chappelear holds up his day-two catch. Chappelear falls to second

Both Blake Nick and Glenn Chappelear finished the opening round with 37 pounds, 14 ounces. But Chappelear technically holds the tiebreaker with the heaviest single-day stringer.

The Acworth, Ga., pro had difficulty getting his primary school of fish ignited, but it eventually happened. He spent an hour and a half at his primary creek channel ledge, and then ran around near the Paris bridge. With two hours left in the day, he turned to his primary spot and culled every fish he had in the livewell. The end result was a five-bass stringer weighing 14 pounds, 9 ounces.

"They wouldn't bite until the shad came up on top of the ledge," Chappelear said. "When I came back and saw them on top I knew I was going to bust them. When they're feeding on shad, the dominant lure has been the 5 1/2-inch Sexy Spoon in sexy shad color. I make a cast, let it hit the bottom and then lift the bait 3 feet.

Chappelear's primary area is located on the north end of the lake in 15 to 18 feet of water.

"I'm not worried about there being enough fish in the school. It is just loaded. But I just couldn't get a 5-pounder today and I'll need 5-pounders to win this tournament."

Nick third

Blake Nick sits in third place in the Pro Division with a two-day total of 37 pounds, 14 ounces.Nick is fishing sloping ledges off the main river channel. On day one, he used a jig and a spoon until a late crankbait bite greatly improved his catch. Today, he used nothing but a big worm after he saw how effective his day-one co-angler was with it. His five-bass limit weighed 16 pounds, 6 ounces, pushing his total weight to 37-14.

"If the sun comes out, you can whack them on the crank," he said. "But those conditions didn't happen today."

The Adger, Ala., pro is fishing near the Paris Bridge. He has a couple different areas within a 1-mile stretch. And within those areas, the fish move around - up to 50 yards in a day.

"The fish are there; it's just a matter of timing."

Interestingly, Nick is working with his co-anglers instead of being defensive about his water. Once he catches one, he's worried the school will stop feeding if his co-angler doesn't immediately throw back. In other words, he'd rather have both anglers catch fish than no one catch fish.

"My co-anglers have had big bags both days, but they've also helped keep the school fired up."

Pro Kevin Snider rallied to fourth on the strength of a 22-pound, 2-ounce stringer.Snider up to fourth

Elizabethtown, Ky., native Kevin Snider caught a five-bass limit Friday weighing 22 pounds, 2 ounces and rose from 31st to fourth. His two-day total sits at 37 pounds, 13 ounces. For a summertime tournament, Snider is fishing fast - sampling approximately 20 spots in a day. He'll make five casts on the sweet spot and if he doesn't get bit, he's gone.

"The late bite has been a lot better for me," Snider said. "They've been real lethargic in the morning so I start with a worm or a jig. At about noon, I start cranking and that's been the best bait for me."

Snider fishes fast because he's convinced the biggest females are the most apt to bite first. He also thinks the truly big fish run in small schools of two or three.

"Three fish is the most I've caught on one spot. The big fish are going to bite first if they're going to bite."

Snider is staying on the north end of the lake up around the dam. He's pleased with his comeback today, but felt he let an opportunity slip away on day one.

"I lost an absolute monster yesterday. It had to weigh 8 or 9 pounds."

Rose falls to fifth

National Guard pro Mark Rose sits in fifth place at the halfway point in the tournament.On the way down to New Johnsonville, Tenn., Mark Rose stopped on a hot school and caught a fish on every cast. The problem was, they were small and he left with only four keepers. When he completed the 75-mile trek, he found another hot school, filled out his limit and culled several times. But he never found the big fish and finished the day with 14 pounds, 12 ounces for an opening round total of 36-8.

"I've got a few things I like to do to get the big females to bite, but it's not working," said the Marion, Ark., pro. "I'm real confused right now and it's driving me crazy."

Despite catching lots of little fish, Rose remains convinced that the big ones live with the little ones.

"I don't want to fish conservatively like this. I've really got to figure something out to have a chance to win this tournament."

Rose said most of his weight today came on a 3/4-ounce football-head jig with Rage Tail Craw trailer and a 6XD crankbait.

Rest of the best

Rounding out the top 10 pros at the FLW Tour event on Kentucky and Barkley lakes after day two:

6th: Jay Yelas of Corvallis, Ore., 35-5
7th: Chad Grigsby of Maple Grove, Min., 34-5
8th: David Kromm of Kennewick, Wash., 34-2
9th: Cody Bird of Granbury, Texas, 34-1
10th: Richard Lowitzki of St. Charles, Ill., 33-15

Peek ascends to the top

Alabama angler Richard Peek has been on quite a roll lately. He's fresh off a victory at the EverStart Series Southeast Division event on Pickwick Lake. But his streak of strong finishes predates that. Richard Peek leads the Co-angler Division with a two-day total of 35 pounds, 10 ounces.The week prior to Pickwick, he took ninth at the FLW Tour Open on the Potomac River. Before that, he took 14th at the FLW Tour Red River Major. Prior to that, he took second at the EverStart Southeast event on Lake Eufaula. And before that, he took third at the FLW Tour Lake Hartwell Major. Clearly, Peek is on a roll.

"It's been a good run; I've been on the road for like six weeks straight," said Peek, who also fishes the National Guard FLW College Fishing circuit for Auburn University. "I'm sure when I get home I'll be exhausted. But I'm fired up right now."

After catching 14-15 the first day, Peek sacked 20 pounds, 11 ounces today to bring him to the top of the leaderboard with a total weight of 35 pounds, 10 ounces.

"I absolutely love this type of fishing. I grew up 30 minutes from Lake Guntersville so I love fishing the ledges. This is the Tennessee River; they eat the same things here that they do back home."

Partnered with pro JT Kenney today, Peek said the two anglers essentially worked the same 200-yard stretch all day. His two key baits were a jig and a worm.

Although he's fresh off a win, an FLW Tour victory tomorrow would mean a lot.

"Winning a Tour would be so much better than an EverStart. I love that circuit, but this is the highest level in bass fishing."

Dumitras down to second

Co-angler Tony Dumitras sits in second place with a two-day total of 35 pounds, 3 ounces.Winston, Ga., co-angler Tony Dumitras fell to second place after catching a five-bass limit Friday weighing 14 pounds, 12 ounces. He finished the opening round with a two-day weight of 35 pounds, 3 ounces.

"I had to change to a heavier jig because of the wind," said Dumitras. "I went from a 1/2-ounce football-head jig to a 3/4-ounce. The bigger jig got to the bottom faster and that was the difference."

In total, the day-one leader caught seven keepers. He fishes the football-head jig with a somewhat unorthodox 10-inch worm.

"I'm not thinking about winning. I just really wanted to accomplish this. This is my first top 10 and it means a lot to me."

Rest of the best

Mike Helton of Jeffersonville, Ind., rose to third place with a 13-pound, 15-ounce stringer Friday. After catching 15-9 yesterday, Helton's opening-round total is 29 pounds, 8 ounces.

Frank Divis Sr. of Fayetteville, Ark., rose to fourth place after catching a 15-pound, 6-ounce limit. Divis caught his biggest bass of the day, a 6-pounder, as he was putting his lifejacket on to head in. His total weight stands at 29 pounds, 4 ounces.

Maurice Cobb of Kuttawa, Ky., rounds out the top five co-anglers with a two-day total of 28 pounds, 15 ounces.

Rounding out the top 10 co-anglers at the FLW Tour event on Kentucky and Barkley lakes after day two:

6th: Spiro Agouros of Peterborough, Ontario, 28-9
7th: Rob Hicks of Lula, Ga., 28-2
8th: Dakota Lucy of Hot Springs, Ark., 27-7
9th: Matt Hults of Gautier, Miss., 26-11
10th: Patrick Bone of Cleveland, Ga., 26-5

The Co-angler Division Snickers Big Bass was caught by Scott Gibson and weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce.

Day three of the FLW Tour event on Kentucky and Barkley lakes will begin Saturday at 6 a.m. at the Ken-Lake State Park Marina located at 542 Ken-Lake Rd. in Hardin, Ky.

Tags: brett-carlson  headline-story  2011-06-16-kentucky-lake 


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