UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - Santee Cooper

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Still Time to Sign up for College Fishing Open

Still Time to Sign up for College Fishing Open
YETI FLW College Fishing Open

On March 6-7 the YETI FLW College Fishing open will set out on Kentucky Lake for the fourth year in a row. Teams from across the country will compete in a no-entry-fee event to try and lock down a spot in the 2019 YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship. The top 20 teams earn bids to the championship next season, and the winners will claim a Ranger Z175 boat with a 115-hp Evinrude outboard.

If you haven’t registered to fish the event, no sweat. There’s still time. Remember, it costs nothing to enter, and it’s a great opportunity to punch your ticket early to the 2019 championship. If you’d like to sign up, simply click here to do so before 5:30 p.m. CT March 5.

 

What to expect

The fishing should be pretty solid despite the conditions. Torrential rains have swept across the region, causing Kentucky Lake to swell up and get muddy. It’s expected to rise several more feet over the weekend. Water levels and current flow will be major determining factors in the predominant tactics.

“Right now we’re facing higher water than normal,” says Terry Bolton, Kentucky Lake local and FLW Tour pro. “Because of all the rain the lake is dirtier than I’ve seen it in a long, long time. Despite that, the lake has been fishing really good over the last couple of weeks, and it should still be good for the Open.

“If the water continues to rise during the tournament it could push the gizzard shad to the backs of the creeks and make for some of the best spinnerbait fishing you’ve ever seen,” continues Bolton. “I’ve seen that happen before, and it is awesome. Of course, you can catch fish on crankbaits like you normally would this time of year, but you’ll have to adjust to deeper-diving baits to fish the same points you’d normally target because of the higher water.”

Bolton notes that high, rising water will lead to some good bags of fish caught, but may not lead to as many fish caught because the fish will have more places to hide. Still, any brush or riprap close to spawning pockets will be money.

“Now, if the water is starting to fall early next week then I think the fishing will be really good. It will concentrate the fish a little more and make the lake fish more like a river system, where you are looking for current seams and eddies,” Bolton adds. “You might also see swimbaits and jigs play a little more, too.”

Launching at the north end, anglers will have easy access to Lake Barkley, which connects to Kentucky by a canal. Yet Bolton doesn’t think the smaller sister lake will be a major factor.

“Barkley is usually a few weeks behind Kentucky Lake, but with the water temperatures already in the mid-50s I think the fish will be up. Typically, when the water is high I favor Kentucky Lake because Barkley has so many more bushes and places fish can hide in high water that it is like finding a needle in a haystack. Kentucky just doesn’t have as many areas like that, so it concentrates the fish a little more.”

Bolton says a few recent local tournaments on the lake have been won with bags in the 24- to 28-pound range. He thinks it’ll take between 40 and 42 pounds to win the Open if the water is still rising. If the lake begins to drop, he thinks it could take closer to 50 pounds over two days. Add in the fact that the tournament is being held during the week, so there should be less local traffic, and this could be one heck of a derby.

 

Detail changes

The tournament was originally schedule to launch out of Moor’s Resort and Marina, however, the conditions forced tournament officials to move takeoff to Kentucky Dam State Park. Takeoff time was also pushed back to 7:30 to ensure safe light as anglers launch and prepare for takeoff.

Click here for complete details.

Tags: kyle-wood  pre-tournament  2018-03-06-kentucky-barkley-lakes 

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