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

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Fog Delays Grand Lake Start

Nearly 200 pros found themselves socked in by fog. Tournament directors delayed the start of takeoff for safety reasons.

It’s no secret that the first Rayovac FLW Series Central Division event of the year on Grand Lake has collided perfectly with the spawn. Nearly every shallow pocket on the lake holds dozens upon dozens of bass that are eager to do their deed. The 197 pros making up a record-setting Central Division field could hardly contain themselves to get on the water this morning. The only issue was fog – and lots of it.

With a 7 a.m. CT takeoff planned, a heavy blanket of fog delayed the start of the tournament, which is presented by Power-Pole, until 8:30, when the fog lifted enough for safe travel but was still hanging around just enough to be a hindrance to those looking to sight-fish.

A stacked field of big names from across the professional fishing world is present on Grand Lake this week, and you know things are hot when nearly every one of them says he’s shocked at the number of bass on beds.

Noted sight-fisherman and Quaker State pro Matt Arey was blown away with just how many fish he saw up shallow in practice.

“I knew this lake had a lot of fish in it, but I never would have guessed I’d see so many good ones [3- to 5-pounders],” says Arey. “It’s unbelievable. You can go in just about any pocket you want, even the ones that look horrible, and see half a dozen fish in it.”

While numbers of bass might not be hard to come across, it is the angling pressure that these fish have been dealing with that could make things interesting this week.

“I have seen a lot of bucks locked on the bed, and you can catch them, but you can definitely tell they have seen some pressure lately,” Arey explains. “I prefer fishing in the clearer water, and I have found more than 100 fish that I’d like to catch, but you just don’t know how they’ll act. A lot of the field and local anglers have been in those same areas, so we’ll see how the day plays out.”

Arey rigs up a bed-fishing bait to tackle Grand's spawning largemouths, which are flooding the banks like crazy right now.

From the Sailboat Bridge down to the dam is where a lot of the anglers will spend time due to the cleaner water found there, yet that doesn’t mean the dirty water won’t play. In fact, bigger fish can be found spawning in some of the stained areas, and those areas should receive less pressure, so the field will have options on Grand.

If the weather cooperates – meaning clouds, wind and rain hold off over the next few days – there is no doubt that this event can be won solely by sight-fishing. But if weather does make the sight-fishing tough, several anglers noted that new fish are still coming up to bed with each day, so a prespawn or postspawn pattern could also emerge.

Oklahoma standout and Walmart FLW Tour rookie Zack Birge believes that a prespawn pattern could contend, although he’ll be spending his time looking at them.

“I caught a few on a crankbait, but they weren’t anything special,” says Birge. “I’ve seen new fish pull up over the course of practice, so that tells me there are still fish out staging. I might look into that pattern after the first day because I think a lot of the areas I want to fish could get hit hard. I’m going to basically split the lake up into two halves and fish one half the first day and the other half on day two. You need to run new water this time of year.”

Finding new water will help a pro stay on unpressured fish, which could be the key to reaching the 60-pound mark – the consensus opinion of what it’ll take to win this one. In fact, several anglers talked about not even bothering with 3-pound fish because there are so many of them on beds that catching a limit if 3s won’t be enough to separate an angler from the pack.

Ask just about anyone in the tournament and he’ll tell you: Grand Lake is going to show itself in a big way this week.

 

Conditions

Sunrise: 6:45 a.m.

Water temperature: 58 to 61 degrees

Air temperature at launch: 54 degrees

Forecast high: 81 degrees

Weather Forecast: partly cloudy with light winds

 

Details

Format:

All boaters and co-anglers will compete for two days. The top 10 boaters and co-anglers based on cumulative weight after two days of competition will advance to the third and final round, with the winner determined by the heaviest cumulative three-day weight.

Presenting sponsor: Power-Pole

Host: Grand Lake Association

Takeoff time: 7 a.m. CT

Takeoff location: Wolf Creek Park, 963 N 16th Street, Grove, OK

Weigh-in time:

Days 1 and 2: 3:00 p.m.

Day 3: 4 p.m.

Weigh-in location:

Days 1 and 2: Wolf Creek Park

Day 3: Walmart, 2115 S Main St., Grove, OK

More information

For complete details and updated information, visit the Rayovac FLW Series tournament page. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Rayovac FLW Series on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.

Tags: grand-lake  flw-series  sight-fishing  kyle-wood  morning-story  2015-04-16-grand-lake 

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