UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Grand Lake

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Traffic jam downriver from Bismarck

Traffic jam downriver from Bismarck
And they are off: Boats speed toward the navigable channels of the Missouri River from the takeoff site about 30 miles southeast of Bismarck, N.D.

BISMARCK, N.D. - The day-one weigh-in of the 2011 National Guard FLW Walleye Tour Championship revealed it: There's a hot spot on the Missouri about 25 miles downriver from the takeoff site at Hazelton Access Point. At least the top seven pros fished there for all or part of the day Thursday, and early reports indicated that probably half of the 40-boat field was trying to mine the same 30-yard stretch again Friday.

Taking control of the big vertical jigging bite in that same area on day one was pro Keith Kavajecz of Kaukauna, Wis., who weighed a five-walleye limit for 26 pounds, 12 ounces, giving him a near 5 1/2-pound lead to begin the second day of championship action today. Interestingly, second-place pro Chris Gilman of Chisago City, Minn., last year's championship winner, caught one big one from the same deep-cut area yesterday before making a long run upriver to fill out his limit.
2010 FLW Walleye Tour Championship winner Chris Gilman speeds downriver, likely toward a community hole, in his OFF!-wrapped Ranger boat.
Not everyone fishing there is dropping jigs either, or at least not at all times. Some pros are handlining to attract a bottom bite and some are trolling. Yet others are pulling live-bait rigs with bottom bouncers, though this pattern may be more widely used by the half of the field not fishing in the same crowded area, which was described by Kavajecz as an underwater steep drop from about 10 to 30 feet - possibly a submerged cut bank.

One thing is certain: With up to $70,000 in first-place prize money and championship bragging rights at stake, each of the 40 pros fishing this week has his sights set on the winner's circle, regardless of where he is fishing. The same number of co-anglers are fishing for a top award of up to $12,000 plus the honor of a National Guard FLW Walleye Tour Championship trophy. The field will be cut to the top 20 pros and 20 co-anglers after today's weigh-in, and the winning co-angler will be crowned following Saturday's competition. Only the top 10 pros will fish the final day Sunday to determine the 2011 champion.

On-the-water updates, other website features

Keep up with the action as it is unfolding with FLWOutdoors.com's on-the-water-updates, sponsored by Chevy and provided by Walleye Magazine staffers.

For those who cannot make it to the weigh-in, which begins at 5 p.m. Central today at the Bismarck Civic Center, tune in online via FLW Live. And check out the stable of FLW Walleye Tour video - including interviews, weigh-in footage, TV shows and more - available this week during the championship.
Anglers, including those in the National Guard-wrapped tourney boat, stand at attention for the singing of the national anthem before takeoff on day two.

Tournament logistics

Anglers will take off from Hazelton Camp Ground and Access Area located 31 miles southeast of Bismarck on Highway 1804 in Bismarck at 8 each morning. Weigh-ins will be held daily at the Bismarck Civic Center located at 315 S. 5th St. in Bismarck beginning at 5 p.m.

Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Bismarck Civic Center on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 24 and 25, from 1 to 5 p.m. prior to weigh-ins. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, free seminars, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. The first 300 kids 14 and under on Sunday will receive a free Zebco rod and reel combo compliments of 103.3 US Country. All activities are free and open to the public.

In conjunction with the FLW Walleye Tour Championship a National Guard FLW Soldier Appreciation Tournament will be held on Sat., Sept. 24. Members of the North Dakota National Guard, most of who have had at least one tour of duty in Iraq or Afghanistan, are invited to participate. FLW Tour pro anglers will take teams of two National Guard members fishing to compete amongst their peers. Each team is allowed to bring in three walleyes. Weigh-in for the Soldier Appreciation Tournament will be held at 4 p.m. at the Bismarck Civic Center just prior to the final Championship weigh-in. FLW Outdoors along with the National Guard is operating this tournament to show appreciation to our service members of the National Guard.
A crowd gathers for the Folgers Morning Takeoff at the Hazelton Access area on the Missouri River on day two of the 2011 National Guard FLW Walleye Tour Championship.
On TV

Coverage of the FLW Walleye Tour Championship will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on VERSUS. "FLW Outdoors" and will air Nov. 13 from 1 to 2 p.m. Eastern. "FLW Outdoors," hosted by Chip Leer, is broadcast to more than 500 million households worldwide.

Friday's conditions

Sunrise: 7:29 a.m.
Temperature at takeoff: 44 degrees
Expected high temperature: 80 degrees
Water temperature at the ramp: 56 degrees
Wind: SSE at 8 mph
Maximum humidity: 80 percent
Day's outlook: some clouds this morning will give way to generally sunny skies for the afternoon; warm; winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph; 10-percent chance of rain

Tags: patrick-baker  morning-story  2011-09-22-missouri-river 

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 1

Lake of the Ozarks Midday Update – Day 1

All the talk leading up the final leg of the Costa FLW Series Central Division presented by Evinrude on Lake of the Ozarks was about the weather. And Mother Nature did not disappoint. READ MORE »

Stormy Start at Lake of the Ozarks

Stormy Start at Lake of the Ozarks

The final leg of the Costa FLW Series Central Division presented by Evinrude on Lake of the Ozarks will launch right as a massive cold front arrives. How massive? The forecast has been calling for heavy rain and a high of 74 today, and so far hasn’t been wrong. A major thunderstorm greeted anglers this morning and delayed takeoff by an hour and fifteen minutes thanks to abundant lightning. Tomorrow? A high in the mid 40s. READ MORE »

Grand Lake Midday Update – Day 3

Grand Lake Midday Update – Day 3

Typically, the first day or two following a cold front put bass in a bad mood, and today, Grand Lake’s fish are following the script. This has created a challenging scenario for the top-10 finalists in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine. READ MORE »

Grand Lake Midday Update – Day 2

Grand Lake Midday Update – Day 2

You know fishing’s tough when the most common greeting we receive is the goose egg hand signal. No question, day two of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine, had a lot of anglers scratching for bites and scratching their heads. READ MORE »

Changes Afoot at Grand Lake

Changes Afoot at Grand Lake

Fall is a time of change and movement; two notions bound to impact the outcome of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine, on Oklahoma’s Grand Lake. Typical fall migrations are underway, but an approaching cold front will likely complicate the already challenging nature of autumn’s transition. READ MORE »

Underway on the Delta

Underway on the Delta

No matter the weather, no matter the environmental concerns, no matter the fishing pressure, the California Delta remains one of the nation’s most diverse and fertile freshwater fisheries — a truth that should play out in dramatic form during the Costa FLW Series Western Division event. READ MORE »

St. Lawrence Midday Update – Day 3

St. Lawrence Midday Update – Day 3

Weights were already tight going into the final day of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division finale on the St. Lawrence River, which is presented by Gajo Baits. Little more than a pound separated leader Jonathan Kelley from Casey Smith in fifth place. READ MORE »

St. Lawrence Midday Update – Day 2

St. Lawrence Midday Update – Day 2

With slightly warmer weather and similar sun and wind conditions, day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the St. Lawrence River should’ve presented optimal conditions for smallmouth. Instead, nearly every angler our on-the-water crew encountered today said the same thing: It’s tougher. READ MORE »

To Run or Not to Run

To Run or Not to Run

The final leg of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division on the St. Lawrence River, presented by Gajo Baits, is primed to be a smallmouth smashfest, as usual. That said, this year’s event, which is presented by Realtree Fishing, will launch out of Massena, N.Y., instead of the usual Clayton. So, what was once a 15-or-so-mile run to the mouth of the lake from takeoff – and roughly 30-plus miles to Gallo Island or Main Duck – will now be about a 95-mile run just to get to the lake. READ MORE »

Underway on the Potomac

Underway on the Potomac

For the tournament, the wind isn’t forecast to be too strong any day, and the tides will be fairly standard, but not ideal from a timing standpoint. Today, low tide was at 6:15 a.m., and low tide on Saturday will be at 8:15. That means that pros will mostly be fishing a rising tide through the tournament, with the best windows likely coming early on Friday and Saturday. READ MORE »

Go-Time Again on Champlain

Go-Time Again on Champlain

Each of the last three years have seen the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits kick off on Champlain. This tournament, which is presented by Polaris, should offer great fishing like usual, but the dominant pattern certainly won’t be spawning smallmouths. Instead, it could be a largemouth slugfest, as the fishing has continued to prove strong on the south end of the lake. READ MORE »

Let the Rayburn Catchfest Begin

Let the Rayburn Catchfest Begin

We’re five months later into the year now, and while the water level at Rayburn has fluctuated in the months since the Tour event, it’s still about 4 1/2 feet above full pool as anglers take to Big Sam for the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury. READ MORE »

National Championship Gets Going

National Championship Gets Going

Bright and early this morning, 148 teams of the best college bass anglers in the country rolled out for day one of the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship presented by Lowrance on the Potomac River. The 10th annual National Championship is the culmination of the 2018 season, and the winning duo qualifies for the 2019 FLW Cup and earns a new Ranger boat for its club.  READ MORE »

All-American Underway on the Potomac

All-American Underway on the Potomac

Winning the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American is a lifetime accomplishment, and this week, 49 boaters and co-anglers will have the chance to do it on the Potomac River. Presented by General Tire, the crowning event of the BFL season runs May 30 through June 1, and the winner on the boater side will walk away with $120,000 and a trip to the FLW Cup. READ MORE »

Big Bags Coming on Rainy Clear Lake

Big Bags Coming on Rainy Clear Lake

One of the gems of California bass fishing might have its luster muted by the week’s weather, but Clear Lake will likely still provide plenty of opportunity for anglers competing in this week’s Costa FLW Series Western Division event, which is presented by Ranger Boats and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina.  READ MORE »

Everything on the Table at Table Rock

Everything on the Table at Table Rock

Stop No. 2 of the Costa FLW Series Central Division, which is presented by Power-Pole and hosted by Explore Branson, is primed to be an all-out show. It seems like the lake’s entire population of bass is rushing to the bank to spawn, with all three species willing to eat a vast array of offerings. The only question: Will Mother Nature play nice? READ MORE »

Tougher but Still Santee Cooper

Tougher but Still Santee Cooper

The Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division finale began this morning at Santee Cooper, where even though fishing has been tough, everyone expects to see mega-bags brought to weigh-in. The bass are nearly done spawning, but a strong shad spawn in the mornings offers real potential. READ MORE »

Everything’s in Play on Kentucky Lake

Everything’s in Play on Kentucky Lake

A squad of 147 boaters and their co-anglers partners enjoyed a pleasant spring morning in western Kentucky for the start of the Costa FLW Series Central Division tournament presented by Lowrance on Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. READ MORE »

Big Bags on Horizon at Chickamauga

Big Bags on Horizon at Chickamauga

Day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event presented by T-H Marine is underway, and by all indications, the fishery is set up to churn out some mega-bags throughout the event. Even during practice, with the water falling well below normal levels, 7-, 8- and 9-pounders weren’t uncommon. Now, with the best anglers in the southeast hard at it, you can expect fireworks. READ MORE »

College Open Weigh-in to Start at Noon

College Open Weigh-in to Start at Noon

Day one of the YETI FLW College Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake was phenomenal in terms of the fishing, and while that may be the case for day two, strong winds forced FLW officials to cut the tournament short by a few hours. READ MORE »