UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Lake Wylie

Texoma Tough, but Stabilizing

Texoma Tough, but Stabilizing
Jim Tutt preps his tackle before day one on Texoma.

As of press time, we were unable to confirm whether or not Troy Broussard has ever suffered a barnyard assault by any beast of burden. Nevertheless, his colorful metaphor bespeaks a challenging scenario facing the Rayovac FLW Series Texas Division field on Lake Texoma for this week’s finale, which is presented by Evinrude.

From Broussard’s facebook page: “Well, after three full days [of practice] on Lake Texoma, I can honestly say that I compare this to getting kicked in the face by a mule. It’s brutal.”

Allusions aside, the big Ouachita River reservoir straddling the Texas-Oklahoma border has indeed shown its persnickety side of late. Blame Mother Nature for that.

As Texas Division points leader Ray Hanselman explains, recent heavy rains jacked up the lake level, muddied the creeks and rattled the fish. With many of the Texoma bass in or near their spawning cycle, the fluctuations have interfered with their reproductive plans.

“Fishing for me has been very tough,” adds Walmart FLW Tour pro Jim Tutt. “I haven’t been getting many bites, and the ones I got were scattered. The lake got lots of rain, and that brought a lot of muddy water. The water rose about 2 to 3 feet in the last two weeks.”

As of Wednesday night, the lake was slightly less than 2 feet above normal conservation pool.

On the upside, Tutt says the lake level has stabilized and the water clarity is improving. He’s hopeful that this, plus the approaching full moon (Sunday), will accelerate the bed-fishing opportunities.

“It should be a good tournament,” he says. “I will probably ‘look’ all day.”

The week’s forecast for sunny conditions will certainly bode well for the sight-fishing game, but pro Russell Cecil points out that clear skies will close as many doors as they open.

“Fishing is better under the clouds, but the sun is moving fish up,” he observes.

Russell Cecil will start his day with a topwater.

Cecil points out that sight-fishing rarely holds up for an entire multi-day event, as fish get pressured and become profoundly uncooperative by the event’s final day. On the flipside, today’s forecast for sunny, calm conditions probably makes sight-fishing the better call.

“Today’s a great day for sight-fishing, and I’ll probably try it more today because it doesn’t look like a good overall fishing day,” he observes. “Since it has cleared up recently, when you get one of these sunny, high-pressure clear days, the fish are not nearly as likely to cooperate.

“When that sun started shining yesterday, I started seeing a lot of fry,” he adds. “When it was cloudy and windy, maybe I couldn’t see them, but also I think that fry get high in the water when that sun’s out. There are some males guarding fry.”

Cecil believes that a successful Texoma campaign will require a mix of tactics – some sight-fishing and postspawn/fry-guarding patterns. His day-one bait selection will include topwaters, flipping baits and shallow crankbaits.

Randy Sitz, who finished ninth at the last divisional event on Rayburn, says he’ll sight-fish with a Missile Baits D Bomb for most of day one, but he’s planning on moving to a postspawn pattern by the second day.

“I’ve found sight fish both up the Ouachita and down south, but what stage those fish are in will be key,” he says. “Are they just getting there, or are they done? Some of these fish are really obvious. During practice, I saw a lot of guys looking for bed fish. I’m sure a lot of these fish have already been identified, and a lot of them will be caught this morning, so sight-fishing on days two and three is going to be a challenge.”

A Missile Baits D-Bomb will be the main tool for Randy Sitz.

Once his bed-fishing game is done, Sitz says he’ll flip light Texas rigs for postspawners that suspend off the ends of deep docks and around aquatic vegetation like dollar lillies. Best bait here, he says, is a watermelon red or watermelon candy lizard with tails dipped in chartreuse.

“If you find some key areas next to the spawning coves with that type of cover, I think you can get on a good secondary pattern,” he says.

Hanselman says he’ll completely forego the bedding fish in favor of what he considers more dependable patterns.

“There are a lot of fish up, but I think there are other ways to catch them, too,” Hanselman says. “I’m going to target postspawn largemouths and maybe some smallmouths. I’ll be covering water with frogs and spinnerbaits and then some shaky heads and swimbaits on the rocks.”

Coming off back-to-back divisional victories at Lake Amistad and Sam Rayburn, Hanselman says that while Texoma’s temperamental mood certainly presents significant challenges, it also opens up the possibilities for an interesting weigh-in.

“I’m fortunate that I won the last two, but I don’t have much of a cushion for Angler of the Year points,” he says. “It’s anybody’s game. This lake is fishing tough, but it’s clearing up and it could turn on like nothing ever happened.”

 

Conditions

Sunrise: 6:40 a.m

Water temperature: 60 to 62 degrees

Air temperature at launch: 54 degrees

Forecast high: 77 degrees

Wind: NW at 5 mph

Weather: mostly sunny

 

Tournament 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: Evinrude

Host: Denison Area Chamber of Commerce

Takeoff time: 6:30 a.m. CT

Takeoff location: Highport Marina, 120 Texoma Harbor Drive, Pottsboro, Texas

Weigh-in time:

Days 1 and 2: 2:30 p.m.

Day 3: 3:30 p.m.

Weigh-in location:

Days 1 and 2: Highport Marina

Day 3: Walmart, 401 N US Highway 75, Denison, Texas

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: flw-series  lake-texoma  david-a-brown  morning-story  2015-04-30-lake-texoma 

Two Species Spawning at Havasu 

Two Species Spawning at Havasu 

The weatherman did it again. About two weeks prior to today’s kickoff for the Toyota Series Western Division season at Lake Havasu, the forecast called for highs in the mid-80s and sunshine for three straight days during the tournament. Instead, practice was rainy, and the current forecast calls for precipitation for at least the first two days and highs that likely won’t top 70 degrees.  READ MORE »

Game Day on Okeechobee

Game Day on Okeechobee

The second stop of the Toyota Series Southern Division is hitting Lake Okeechobee later in the year than usual for FLW. Typically, big, multi-day FLW events on the Big O go down in January and February, but this one runs March 12-14 and should offer a different look at the familiar and ever-changing body of water. READ MORE »

It’s Anyone’s Game on Overfull Hartwell

It’s Anyone’s Game on Overfull Hartwell

South Carolina’s Lake Hartwell kicks off the 2020 Toyota Series Eastern Division season this week with a three-day, mid-week showdown of the area’s best bass anglers, hosted by Visit Oconee South Carolina. Hartwell definitely has the potential to produce 20-plus-pound bags, but Mother Nature has decided to create some havoc with lake levels this winter, and it’s anyone’s guess as to how well the fishery shows out. READ MORE »

Despite Cold, Expect Mega-Bags at Chick

Despite Cold, Expect Mega-Bags at Chick

Freezing temperatures greeted anglers for the 2020 Toyota Series Central Division tournament on Lake Chickamauga this morning. As usual on Lake Chickamauga this time of year, every angler is hoping for a 30-pound-plus bag of bass during the Feb. 27-29 tournament. READ MORE »

College Championship Kicks Off on Harris

College Championship Kicks Off on Harris

Championship week for any sport is as exciting as it gets and it’s no different for the Abu Garcia College Fishing presented by YETI National Championship presented by Lowrance this week on the Harris Chain. Competing for a $30,000 prize package, including a new Phoenix 518 Pro bass boat with a 115-horsepower outboard, 162 college bass fishing clubs will have free range of the chain to vie for the title. READ MORE »

Warmer Weather Good Sign at St. Johns

Warmer Weather Good Sign at St. Johns

The cold front that moved through northeast Florida last week shut down the fishing on the St. Johns River in a big way, just as bass were starting to move up to the banks to begin spawning. With the weather that came through, many of those fish pulled back off the bank to wait for more stable conditions. Fortunately, stability arrived this week in the form of warmer weather, but it remains to be seen if those three or four days of warm, stable conditions are going to be enough to get fish back up on beds. For now, it’s safe to assume anglers are going to have to be adaptable over the next few days in the Toyota Series Southern Division opener. READ MORE »

Feast or Famine at Toledo Bend

Feast or Famine at Toledo Bend

It’s been nearly six years since the Toyota Series has been to Toledo Bend, but this week the Sabine River impoundment takes center stage to kick off the Southwestern Division season. READ MORE »

Toyota Announces Sponsorship of FLW and MLF

Toyota Announces Sponsorship of FLW and MLF

PLANO, Texas (January 29, 2020) – Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) announced today a formal sponsorship of Major League Fishing (MLF), professional bass fishing’s newest premier tournament organization, and home to Team Toyota professional anglers Mike Iaconelli, Terry Scroggins, Kevin VanDam, and Jacob Wheeler. The partnership includes Fishing... READ MORE »

FLW Series Championship Returns to Lake Cumberland in 2020

FLW Series Championship Returns to Lake Cumberland in 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: BURNSIDE, Ky. – FLW (Fishing League Worldwide), in conjunction with the Somerset Tourist & Convention Commission and the Burnside Tourism Commission, announced today that the 2020 FLW Series Championship will be held at Lake Cumberland in Burnside and... READ MORE »

FLW Series Tournament Registration Off To An Impressive Start

FLW Series Tournament Registration Off To An Impressive Start

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: BENTON, Ky. - FLW (Fishing League Worldwide) announced today that entries into the FLW Series have increased over last year, and nearly one-third of those competitors are new to the Series. In the first 43 days of tournament registration, the number of entrants into... READ MORE »

Oklahoma's Upshaw Wins Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

Oklahoma's Upshaw Wins Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

BURNSIDE, Ky. – Strike King pro Andrew Upshaw of Tulsa, Oklahoma, brought a five-bass limit to the stage weighing 12 pounds, 15 ounces, Saturday to claim the title of 2019 FLW Series Champion at the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland. Upshaw, with a three-day total of 15 bass for 42 pounds, 15 ounces, won by a 1-pound, 10-ounce margin over second... READ MORE »

Upshaw Leads at Day Two of Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

Upshaw Leads at Day Two of Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

BURNSIDE, Ky. – Strike King pro Andrew Upshaw of Tulsa, Oklahoma, crossed the stage Friday with a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 1 ounce, for a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 30 pounds even, to lead after Day Two of the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland. Upshaw now holds a 1-pound, 13-ounce lead over pro Rob Burns of Plano, Texas, who weighed... READ MORE »

Zimbabwe Angler Cousens Leads Day One of Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

Zimbabwe Angler Cousens Leads Day One of Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

BURNSIDE, Ky. – A tournament field of 193 boats – each featuring a pro and a co-angler – began their three-day competition for a top cash award of $100,000 at the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland, in Burnside, Kentucky, Thursday. The no-entry fee bass-fishing championship, hosted by the Somerset Tourist & Convention Commission and the Burnside... READ MORE »

Major League Fishing and FLW Announce Expanded 2020 FLW Series and T-H Marine BFL Details, Schedules, Entry Dates, and Advancement Opportunities

Major League Fishing and FLW Announce Expanded 2020 FLW Series and T-H Marine BFL Details, Schedules, Entry Dates, and Advancement Opportunities

TULSA, Okla. – Major League Fishing (MLF) and Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) announced today the expanded 2020 FLW Series and T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) details, schedules, rules, entry fees and payouts, highlighted by lower entry fees in both circuits and an expanded FLW Series schedule, along with upping the championship payout to $200,000 for first... READ MORE »

More Than 400 Anglers to Visit Somerset and Burnside for Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

More Than 400 Anglers to Visit Somerset and Burnside for Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland

BURNSIDE, Ky. (Oct. 17, 2019) – The Costa FLW Series will close out the 2019 season next week, Oct. 31-Nov. 2, in Burnside, Kentucky, at the Costa FLW Series Championship on Lake Cumberland. The no-entry fee bass-fishing championship, hosted by the Somerset Tourist & Convention Commission and the Burnside Tourism Commission, will feature more than 400 of the best regional... READ MORE »

Arkansas' Dylan Hays Wins Costa FLW Series Tournament at Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude

Arkansas' Dylan Hays Wins Costa FLW Series Tournament at Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude

OSAGE BEACH, Mo. – Beginning the day in fourth place, Nitro Boats pro Dylan Hays of El Dorado, Arkansas, caught a five-bass limit Saturday weighing 14 pounds, 6 ounces, to jump to the top of the leaderboard and win the three-day Costa FLW Series at Lake of the Ozarks presented by Evinrude... READ MORE »

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 »

Newberry Wins Southwestern Division AOY

Newberry Wins Southwestern Division AOY

It was sweet redemption in many ways for the Texas legend who still owns and operates his Houston-based HVAC company despite spending so much time on the tournament-fishing circuit. Redemption for missing out on the FLW Cup in his first season. Redemption for what Grand did to him earlier this year on Tour (dropping from sixth to 41st with only one fish on day two). And, in a way, validation for a career filled with big accomplishments. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Grand Lake

Top 10 Patterns from Grand Lake

Curt Warren knew what he wanted to do, and it had nothing to do with weeding through a bunch of small fish up shallow. Rather, he focused his attention on deeper Grand Lake spots with chunk rock and brush and amassed a three-day total of 46 pounds, 7 ounces to win the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale, presented by T-H Marine. Here’s how the rest of the top 10 caught their fish and earned their checks on Grand. READ MORE »