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


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.



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




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 


Costa FLW Series Western Division Opener

The recent government shutdown put the Costa FLW Series Western Division opener on Lake Mead in a holding pattern, but FLW has received clearance to proceed with the event as planned, regardless of the current or future status of government operations. READ MORE »


Burghoff Checks Out Toho on Day 2

FLW Tour rookie Miles “Sonar” Burghoff kicked off his freshman season with a strong performance on Sam Rayburn, where he just missed fishing the final day with a 12th-place finish. Now, the Tour is on a system he is more than familiar with, having spent countless hours on Lakes Toho and Kissimmee while attending college at the University of Central Florida. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Okeechobee

Whether it was a canal or small sections of the lake, each pro in the top chose to hunker down in an area and milk it for all it was worth in the season opener of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division presented by Power-Pole. Here’s a look at how the action unfolded. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Okeechobee

Lake Okeechobee wasn’t her normal self in the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division opener presented by Power-Pole. Bites were few and far between, but the top-10 pros dialed it in and got it done. Winner Nick Thliveros relied heavily on a crankbait and so did others, but Florida faithful’s like swim jigs, soft plastics and topwaters also fared well. READ MORE »


Niles Rallies for Co-angler Title

The Southeastern Division event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole was a grind no matter if you were in the front of the boat or back. Bites were few and far between, and as a co-angler just catching a keeper or two kept you in the hunt. Niles started strong with an opening-day limit worth 18-9 to have him in the lead. On day two, he cooled off and brought a goose egg to the stage. Still, his day-one weight carried him to the final round where he started the day in fourth. Paired with Brett Preuett, Niles got to work Saturday. READ MORE »


Thliveros Brings it Home

Nick Thliveros led after day two on Okeechobee and after weighing his lowest weight of the week, he was able to seal the deal for his first Costa FLW Series win as a pro. READ MORE »


Okeechobee Midday Update – Day 3

The third and final day of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole has the weather anglers have been hoping for since they started practice. A light breeze, plenty of sun and temperatures near 80 degrees have the top 10 pros and co-anglers licking their chops for a chance at the biggest bag of the tournament. READ MORE »


Nick Thliveros Wins Costa FLW Series on Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole

CLEWISTON, Fla. (Feb. 2, 2019) – Florida boater Nick Thliveros of Saint Augustine, Florida, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 10 pounds, 15 ounces – enough to win the 2019 Costa FLW Series at Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole. Thliveros, son of legendary bass angler Peter Thliveros, weighed in 15 bass over three days of competition totaling 46 pounds, 1... READ MORE »


Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 2

Fishing as a whole is still tough on the Big O, but there was definitely an improvement today – especially for the guys at the top of the leaderboard. READ MORE »


Thliveros in Charge on Okeechobee

Nick Thliveros is one day away from taking the title in the Costa FLW Series event on Lake Okeechobee. READ MORE »


Okeechobee Midday Update – Day 2

Every ounce counts in a tournament, and that will certainly ring true today. The second day of Costa FLW Series competition on Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole may be off to a better start, but big bites are still few and far between. READ MORE »


Top 5 Patterns from Okeechobee – Day 1

Things are tough on Okeechobee, but these pros cracked some of the code to wrangle solid catches. READ MORE »


Roder Out Front on Big O

Okeechobee is normally the place of dreams. This week, however, it isn’t quite living up to its reputation. Day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event on the Big O saw plenty of fish, though the quality bites were hard to come by. Troy Roder of Brookeland, Texas, set the pace early with a 19-pound, 15-ounce limit to grab the lead in the season opener – presented by Power-Pole – with a lead of over 4 pounds heading into Friday. READ MORE »


Okeechobee Midday Update – Day 1

Power fishing and flipping lead the charge for the first few hours of fishing on Lake Okeechobee. READ MORE »


A Different Okeechobee

Cold fronts, dirty water and lower water levels make for an interesting start to the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division season. READ MORE »


Spawn on the Horizon at Okeechobee

Florida is a familiar place for FLW competition, and Lake Okeechobee is probably the best-known fishery the Sunshine State has to offer. So there shouldn’t be many surprises when the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division kicks off the season Jan. 31–Feb. 2 on the Big O with an event presented by Power-Pole. READ MORE »


How to Bass Fish High Water in Winter

High water isn’t unusual in the spring or summer, but dealing with rising water this early in the year was somewhat of a new experience for many of the pros – as it is for the weekend warrior. Therefore, the Rayburn Tour event is a case study on how to handle this situation and still put loads of bass in the boat. READ MORE »


Clewiston Readies for Costa FLW Series at Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole

CLEWISTON, Fla. – The 2019 Costa Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) Series Southeastern division is set to open next week at Lake Okeechobee, Jan. 31- Feb. 2, with the Costa FLW Series at Lake Okeechobee presented by Power-Pole. Hosted by Roland & Mary Ann Martin’s Marina & Resort and the Hendry County Tourism Development Council, the three-day tournament will... READ MORE »


Hanselman Wins Costa FLW Series Season Opener on Lake Amistad Presented by Ranger Boats

DEL RIO, Texas – Local pro Ray Hanselman of Del Rio, brought five bass weighing 12 pounds, 1 ounce, to the scale Saturday to win the 2019 season-opening Costa FLW Series at Lake Amistad presented by Ranger Boats. The tournament was shortened from three days to two after... READ MORE »


Perfect Weather Now on Tap in Texas

Amistad is one of south Texas’ most famous reservoirs – the other being Falcon. Though it’s not the juggernaut that it was in the not too distant past, Amistad is still an incredible tournament fishery, with room to spread out and plenty of grass and rocky structure to target for big giant wintertime bass. READ MORE »