UPCOMING EVENT: T-H Marine BFL - 2019 - Potomac River

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Lake Travis Top 10 Patterns

Lake Travis Top 10 Patterns
Bryan Thrift

While the ongoing duel between FLW Tour titans Mark Rose and Bryan Thrift has certainly stolen the show at the first two FLW Tour events of 2017, there were other interesting story lines worth noting from the FLW Tour event on Lake Travis presented by Quaker State.

Rose won the event fishing out on big main-lake points, focusing on the steeper, deeper breaks off those points. But others in the top 10 fished a host of patterns and lures.

The myriad techniques covered everything from targeting deep breaks to fishing marinas to cranking shallow to slow-rolling spinnerbaits to working floating worms to flipping bushes. In addition, the daily weights at Travis were very inconsistent. A pattern that brought a big bag one day would result in a donut the next.

Here’s how the rest of the top 10 pros navigated Travis’ inconsistency for their top finishes.

Rose’s winning pattern

Complete results

Top 10 baits photo gallery

 

Bryan Thrift

2. Thrift finishes second … again

For the second time in three weeks, Bryan Thrift of Shelby, N.C., finished second to winner Mark Rose, missing the win by less than a pound and finishing runner-up with a total of 58-6.

Thrift weighed in the heaviest bag of the week on day one when he took a big early lead with 24-12. Much of that weight came on a shaky head fished offshore and rigged with a Damiki Finesse Miki 6.5 on 8-pound-test P-Line.

After that big catch, however, Thrift couldn’t quite get in the rhythm he wanted for the win.

“The second day, so much of the lake was covered up in boats that I just hunkered down in a few offshore areas and ground it out,” says Thrift, who weighed only 9-6 on day two. “On the third day, with just 20 boats, I started running new stuff to see if I could find something else developing on the lake, and I just never found something else strong enough to get it going.”

A lot of Thrift’s running and gunning included fishing docks, bushes and shallow pockets. Docks accounted for three of his biggest fish during the week. Thrift did his dock work with his tried-and-true 1/2-ounce jig with a variety of chunks.

 

Dylan Hays

3. Running far pays off for Hays

Rookie pro Dylan Hays of Sheridan, Ark., checked in the most consistent weights, varying between 13 and 15 pounds each day, to climb to third place with a total of 54 pounds.

Hays won the unofficial Long Distance Award for putting the most miles on his boat during the four-day event. He ran some 50 miles each day all the way to the next dam on the Colorado River. Some of his catches in the river came from fishing current breaks when the water was running and pitching to a variety of bushes, rocks and bank debris that blocked the current.

Farther down the river, Hays also discovered a hot spot located on a big flat point in a river bend. A big school was staged up on bushes and rocks.

“The fish in that current up by the dam were not real reliable,” Hays says. “They would bite one day, but not the next. So those fish on that big point really helped me stay consistent. If the current fish didn’t bite, I had that point to fall back on.”

When pitching to current breaks, Hays used a Zoom Super Hog and a YUM Bad Mamma on a 1/4-ounce weight. When fishing the school on the point, he favored a Texas-rigged 6-inch green pumpkin lizard on a 1/4-ounce weight. All of his baits were tied to 20-pound-test HI-SEAS fluorocarbon.

 

Clark Reehm

4. Reehm blades his way to fourth

Clark Reehm of Huntington, Texas, caught a big limit on day two (21-11) to make the top-10 cut, and then closed the event with a strong day four effort of 15-13 to finish fourth with a total of 53-3.

Reehm’s technique helped prove just how diverse the lure selection was on Travis. He did a lot of his damage slow-rolling a spinnerbait.

“I was fishing a big main bar way up the river, and it had a lot of those really big shad on it, so I went with a 3/4-ounce War Eagle spinnerbait with double willow blades to try and mimic that forage,” Reehm says. “I’d count it down to about 10 to 15 feet and then just sort of roll it over those bushes at that depth.”

Reehm also used a Carolina-rigged watermelon Zoom Fluke, and on the final day also added a Keitech 4.8 swimbait on a 1/2-ounce Revenge Swimbait Hedz to his arsenal.

 

Clark Wendlandt

5. Wendlandt brings fifth place home

Hometown favorite Clark Wendlandt of Leander, Texas, did not disappoint his fans at Lake Travis, making a fifth-place showing in his backyard with a total of 52 pounds, 12 ounces.

Wendlandt wowed the home team on day two with the biggest bass of the tournament – an 8-6 – which rocketed him into the top 10.

During the mornings Wendlandt dragged offshore points and humps with a 3/4-ounce Strike King Tour Grade Football Jig teamed with a Strike King Baby Rage Craw and a Carolina-rigged Strike King Rage Hawg creature bait. His big bass was caught on the Carolina rig.

In the afternoons Wendlandt moved shallower to try and intercept any waves of fish that might be moving up. To do this he cranked stair-step rocks, fished timber and flipped bushes in the cuts and pockets.

His primary flipping lures included a 1/2-ounce Strike King Hack Attack Jig and a Texas-rigged Strike King Rage Menace on a 3/8-ounce tungsten weight.

 

Anthony Gagliardi

6. Gagliardi rallies to sixth

Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., scratched and clawed his way into the top-10 cut and then rallied on the final day with his best bag of the week – 16-9 – to finish the event in sixth place with 51-12.

For the first three days of the event, Gagliardi mostly targeted staging fish in the mouths of spawning pockets up the river. Most of those fish came on a 3/16-ounce Buckeye Lures Spot Remover shaky head and a drop-shot.

With nothing to lose and everything to gain on the last day, Gagliardi moved up shallow to see if the warm weather had drawn any fish toward the bedding areas, and his timing was perfect as he intercepted a few big fish moving in to spawn.

“Late in the third day I pulled into a pocket and had a big fish follow my [Little Creeper All American] Trash Fish swimbait to the boat,” Gagliardi says. “So I went straight to that spot first thing on the last day, pitched a jig in there and caught a big one.”

That was the cue he needed to keep “teasing” with the Trash Fish – using it as a search bait to get fish to show themselves – and then following up with a jig or floating worm to get the fish to eat.

His follow-up jig was a 1/2-ounce Buckeye Lures Mini Mop Jig with a chunk, and the floating worm was a merthiolate Zoom Trick Worm.

 

Clayton Batts

7. Batts stays deep for seventh

Clayton Batts of Macon, Ga., planted himself on one river bar far up the Colorado to catch consistent limits in the 9- to 14-pound range for a total of 48-1.

Batts says his best area was an old river bar littered with bushes that topped out at 7 feet. The bar featured two sets of breaks: one in the 9- to 10-foot range and the other in the 20- to 25-foot range. Batts found a line of timber on the deeper break.

Batts thinks the bass were ultimately headed to the top bushes to spawn, but were staged up feeding on the treeline break off the bar. The tops of the trees came up to within 10 feet of the surface, so Batts needed baits that would tickle the tops of those trees. He accomplished that with a Strike King Series 5 crankbait on 12-pound-test fluorocarbon and a Strikezone CB Sling Blade, a unique swim jig featuring a blade off the chin, which he fished on 16-pound-test fluorocarbon. When he saw fish on his electronics out on the deeper breaks he targeted them with a 3/4-ounce Strikezone football jig or a drop-shot, which produced several of his fish.

 

Troy Morrow

8. Morrow cranks for eighth

As another example of the wide variety of ways to catch bass at Travis, Troy Morrow of Eastanollee, Ga., cranked his way into the top 10. Morrow’s weights were consistently in the 10- to 14-pound range as he tried to pick on the first wave of bass moving into the pockets. 

Most of Morrow’s fish came by cranking a SPRO Little John MD on 12-pound-test Sunline in little cuts, pockets and indentions in Travis’ steep banks. The cuts were often lined down the sides with bushes, and making perfect casts down the middle of the lanes required patience.

“There was so much scum and algae on the bushes that if I hit one, it scummed up the bait immediately,” Morrow says. “So there were a lot of wasted casts. I usually had to make multiple attempts before I could find a clean cast, and when I did I would sort of give the bait a stop-and-go action to make it look like it was deflecting off the bushes.”

 

Jeremy Lawyer

9. Marina madness puts Lawyer in ninth

Jeremy Lawyer of Sarcoxie, Mo., experienced Lake Travis’ fickleness at its finest when he blasted 19 pounds, 7 ounces fishing marina docks on day two but was never able to duplicate the marina pattern anywhere else on the lake.

“Marinas will often have that one magic boat slip where all the fish group up,” Lawyer says. “I know from my experience on Table Rock that it usually takes a long time to find that one magical slip out of a hundred. Somehow I stumbled across one of those slips on day two.”

Lawyer was pumped about his discovery and started running marinas the rest of days two and three, but couldn’t repeat the magic.

He used two lures to fish the marinas. The first was a 3/4-ounce Jakked jig teamed with a Zoom Ultra Vibe Speed Craw and fished on 25-pound-test Lew’s APT line. The second was a 1-ounce homemade spoon.

 

Stephen Patek

10. Patek routes roadbed for 10th

Stephen Patek of Garland, Texas, led the tournament on day two after crushing opening limits of 20-5 and 14-1. But then Patek’s well went dry, leaving him in 10th place with a total of 39 pounds.

“I just ran out of fish,” Patek says. “I only found a couple of areas that had staging fish in them, and they never reloaded.”

Patek caught the majority of his weigh fish off an old roadbed that crossed the mouth of a spawning pocket, creating an 18-foot-deep saddle across the middle where staging fish stopped. His best gig on the roadbed was dragging a Carolina-rigged Zoom Ultra Vibe Speed Craw in green pumpkin.

Tags: flw-tour  lake-travis  mark-rose  top-10-patterns  rob-newell  post-tournament  2017-02-16-lake-travis 

Cox Joins the Outdoor Connection with Jerry Kripp

Cox Joins the Outdoor Connection with Jerry Kripp

FLW Tour pro John Cox of DeBary, Florida, joined the Outdoor Connection with Jerry Kripp, this past Sunday, May 19, to walk listeners through his win at the... READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Clear Lake

Top 10 Patterns from Clear Lake

An unwavering commitment to one fish-laden area enabled Kyle Grover to earn his first Costa FLW Series win with a three-day total of 66 pounds, 13 ounces at the Western Division event at Clear Lake. The tournament was presented by Ranger Boaters and hosted by Konocti Vista Casino Resort & Marina. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Clear Lake

Top 10 Baits from Clear Lake

Even though cold, windy and rainy conditions challenged the field throughout the event, Clear Lake still showed the caliber of fish that swim in it during the second stop of the Costa FLW Series Western Division season, which was presented by Ranger Boats.   READ MORE »

Upshaw Breaks Down Cherokee Lake on Bass Edge Radio

Upshaw Breaks Down Cherokee Lake on Bass Edge Radio

FLW Tour pro Andrew Upshaw of Tulsa, Oklahoma, appeared on the latest Bass Edge Radio podcast to discuss his recent win at the FLW Tour on Cherokee Lake... READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns From Table Rock

Top 10 Patterns From Table Rock

Fishing at Table Rock during the Costa FLW Series Central Division event, presented by Power-Pole, was pretty remarkable, at least until it wasn’t. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Table Rock

Top 10 Baits from Table Rock

It really didn’t matter what pros threw at Table Rock. The fish were probably going to eat it. Yet, despite a banner practice, things certainly got tougher throughout the Costa FLW Series Central Division event, which was presented by Power-Pole. Thus, pros needed to continually adapt to the conditions with their offerings.Here’s a look at the lures that helped the top 10 anglers.  READ MORE »

Latimer, Upshaw to Discuss Wins with Radio Host Jerry Kripp

Latimer, Upshaw to Discuss Wins with Radio Host Jerry Kripp

FLW Tour pros Brian Latimer of Belton, South Carolina, and Andrew Upshaw, of Tulsa, Oklahoma, are set to appear on the Outdoor Connection with Jerry Kripp, the evening of Sunday, May 12, to,,, READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Chickamauga

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Chickamauga

The timing of the FLW Tour event at Lake Chickamauga was both a curse and a blessing for the top 10 finishers. There were plenty of fish to be had – and on a multitude of patterns – but the big double-digit females Chick is known for were hard to track down. READ MORE »

ROY Update: Lake Chickamauga

ROY Update: Lake Chickamauga

We didn’t bother with an update on the Polaris FLW Tour Rookie of the Year race after the fifth stop of the FLW Tour season at Cherokee Lake. At that point, Miles Burghoff had the overall lead in the AOY standings and a 108-point lead for ROY. It looked like it was locked up. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Lake Chickamauga

Top 10 Baits from Lake Chickamauga

Most people probably don’t equate Lake Chickamauga to spinning rods and finesse techniques, but both were prevalent during the FLW Tour event presented by Evinrude on Chick. Plenty of pros threw swimbaits, jigs and crankbaits, but the common thread among most of the top 10 is the use of a stick bait (usually wacky- or Texas-rigged) to target bedding or postspawn fish still hanging in the shallows.  READ MORE »

John Cox Wins FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

John Cox Wins FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

DAYTON, Tenn. – Berkley pro John Cox of DeBary, Florida, won $100,000 at the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude Sunday with a four-day total of 83 pounds, 9 ounces. The victory was the fourth FLW Tour win of Cox’s career – moving him to a tie at No. 7 for the most Tour wins all-time... READ MORE »

Michigan's Nelson Moves Into Lead at FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

Michigan's Nelson Moves Into Lead at FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

DAYTON, Tenn. – FLW Tour rookie Ron Nelson of Berrien Springs, Michigan, caught four big largemouth late in the day Saturday to anchor his 25-pound, 15-ounce limit and jump to the top of the leaderboard after Day Three of the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude in Dayton, Tennessee. Nelson’s five-bass limit was one of just four brought to the scale Saturday... READ MORE »

Florida's Greenblatt Takes Lead on Day Two of FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

Florida's Greenblatt Takes Lead on Day Two of FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

DAYTON, Tenn. – Yamamoto Baits pro Matt Greenblatt of Port St. Lucie, Florida, brought a five-bass limit of largemouth to the Dayton Boat Dock scale Friday weighing 19 pounds, 13 ounces, to vault into the lead after Day Two of the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude in Dayton, Tennessee. Greenblatt’s two-day total of 10 bass weighing 43 pounds, 2 ounces gives... READ MORE »

Cox Grabs Lead at Day One of FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

Cox Grabs Lead at Day One of FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude

DAYTON, Tenn. – A field of 165 of the best bass-fishing professionals in the world began their four-day competition for a top award of $125,000 at the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude Thursday in Dayton, Tennessee... READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Santee Cooper

Top 10 Patterns from Santee Cooper

Santee Cooper is full of 30-pound stringers. It’s also been known as a lake that will humble an angler quick. Bradford Beavers had experienced that before, having twice before weighed in 30-plus-pound stringers in tournaments on his home lake only to bomb the next day. Well, third time was the charm. After weighing in 31-02 on day one of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division event presented by Power-Pole, he managed to back it up on day two by fishing both lakes for his first signature victory. Of course, he had to hold off some hard charges from some veteran locals to do it. Here’s how they and the other top pros managed to carve out their own patterns and stay consistent on Santee. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Santee Cooper

Top 10 Baits from Santee Cooper

There were three predominant patterns at Santee Cooper: Pitching wacky rigs to cypress trees, sight-fishing and the shad spawn. Yet, they weren’t the only patterns, as a couple locals managed to do plenty of damage with some locals-only offshore patterns at the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division season finale presented by Power-Pole. READ MORE »

FLW Tour Rookie Ryan Salzman Featured on latest episode of Anglers Channel Rookie Podcast

FLW Tour Rookie Ryan Salzman Featured on latest episode of Anglers Channel Rookie Podcast

FLW Tour Rookie Ryan Salzman is the featured guest on this week's episode of the Anglers Channel Rookie podcast. Salzman talks about his career from College Fishing to being a full time guide on the TN River to now a FLW Tour Rookie trying to qualify for the 2019 FLW Cup... READ MORE »

The Miles Burghoff Master Plan

The Miles Burghoff Master Plan

Miles Burghoff is in a rare position. He’s a rookie on the FLW Tour, and he’s leading the 2019 Angler of the Year race with two tournaments left to fish. Traditionally, the AOY frontrunners are veteran pros in the prime of their careers, not rookies who are often still trying to learn their way around a full season of Tour competition. Burghoff, however, isn’t your traditional rookie. READ MORE »

FLW Tour Set to Visit Lake Chickamauga for Sixth Event of Season

FLW Tour Set to Visit Lake Chickamauga for Sixth Event of Season

DAYTON, Tenn. – Fishing League Worldwide (FLW), the world’s largest tournament fishing organization, is set to continue the 2019 FLW Tour season – the 24th season of the competitive Tour – next week, May 2-5, with the FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Evinrude. Hosted by Fish Dayton and the Rhea Economic Tourism Council, the tournament will feature 168... READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Cherokee Lake

Top 10 Patterns from Cherokee Lake

Targeting spawning smallmouth bass was by far the dominant pattern when the FLW Tour visited Cherokee Lake in east Tennessee in April. With a few exceptions, the top 10 pros targeted various combinations of rock and gravel banks where the fish were bedding. Finesse baits such as shaky heads, Ned rigs and small swimbaits saw the most work. READ MORE »