UPCOMING EVENT: YETI FLW COLLEGE FISHING - 2019 - Lake Erie

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River
Scott Martin

Prior to practice, Scott Martin had no idea that the far upper end of Lake Hamilton, where the cold waters from the bottom of Lake Ouachita flow in through Blakely Mountain Dam, was such a drastically different mini-fishery within the reservoir. Then he started scouting it in practice and realized there was potential to win the tournament in the tailrace in areas where the water temperature was below 60 degrees.

In fact, the tailrace held enough quality bass that Martin and Dakota Ebare were able to share water and still finish in the top five. Martin weighed in daily limits of 11-9, 11-1 and 8-8 for a three-day, fifth-place total weight of 31-2.

“My vision of winning this tournament was being patient, and just being calm, and one-two punching it all day long,” says Martin. “I felt like I was going to have five opportunities every day to put me in a chance to win. That’s basically what happened.

“Patience was the key because these fish didn’t bite all day long. There were several factors up that river. One is the current didn’t start rolling until about 10 o’clock. Two, when the current didn’t roll, the current went the other way and it was hot. Then, when the current would turn on, the water temperature dropped to 58 degrees. These fish were going through these crazy temperature swings and two different currents. There were little windows of opportunity to really take advantage of.”

Scott Martin

The one-two punch that Martin referred to was combining finesse worms with glide baits to pick apart high-percentage target areas.

“I had a spinning rod in my hand all week, skipping a Googan Baits Slim Shake on a weightless hook,” says Martin. “I would mix it up a little bit. When the current would get strong I’d put a little weighted wacky on as well. It was kind of the same thing as Dakota was fishing – little current breaks and seams.”

Martin also threw a Googan Baits Lunker Log. His primary finesse setup was a 10-pound-test P-Line Tactical Fluorocarbon leader connected to 15-pound-test yellow P-Line XTCB 8 Braid, which he fished on a 7-foot, 2-inch Favorite Jack Hammer spinning rod.

The key was skipping the bait far up under docks or into laydowns where the bass were holed up to get out of the current during the heaviest flow periods.

“Those fish would be way up under those docks where you wouldn’t think one would be, and your line would go tight,” says Martin. “Several of those fish I caught on 10-pound P-Line, I mean, I was worried that I wasn’t going to be able to get them out, but I could get them out through all those trees and the docks.”

Martin’s glide bait pattern was primarily focused on floating docks and on targeting wolf packs of bass. He says it was important to rotate baits each day because once the fish saw one glide bait, they weren’t as likely to react to it again. Martin used a Duel Hardcore Twitch’n Ninja Glider and River2Sea S-Waver 168, along with a custom bait he borrowed from Andrew Upshaw.

“They were staging under floating docks – certain ones, but not all of them – and I’d let the bait get down to about 2 feet, just out of sight a little bit,” Martin says. “Speed and cadence were important; finding the right cadence to get those fish to react. Otherwise, they’d just follow your bait the whole time. Also, playing the current. In certain places it’d be really, really strong. In other places there’d be little eddies or current breaks where the current wasn’t as strong. But for the most part what I was fishing was current breaks, inside grass lines, docks, wood.”

The only time Martin strayed from the tailrace was the morning on day two, when he spent about an hour throwing a buzzbait around docks. Otherwise, dialing in on a unique area of the lake worked.

Scott Martin

What’s interesting about the tailrace is that the fish weren’t hard to find. The water is clear enough that they could be easily seen. Some anglers wrote off that water from the start because they assumed there wouldn’t be quality bass hanging out in that cold, flowing water. Martin and Ebare were the exceptions. They realized the potential living in that coontail-infested, bluegill-rich water.

Getting the fish to bite meant not applying typical summertime tactics, but instead treating it almost like springtime.

“The water, for the most part, in a certain section up there pretty much stays 58 degrees all year long,” Martin says. “They would react to glide baits. They would react to finesse tackle and swimbaits and clear-water kinds of baits; not prespawn, but what you’d use a different time of year.

“If you come down the lake where it’s 90-degree water, they’re not going to touch a glide bait. You go up there throwing a prop bait and buzzbait, you don’t catch them. I think that’s why a lot of guys didn’t figure it out.”


Thrift's winning pattern 

Walters' second-place pattern 

Ebare's third-place pattern 

Lawyer's fourth-place pattern 

Felix's sixth-place pattern 

Webster's seventh-place pattern 

Salzman's eighth-place pattern 

Douglas's ninth-place pattern 

Osborne's tenth-place pattern 

Complete results

Tags: lake-hamilton  -flw-cup  -scott-martin  -glide-bait  -tailrace  curtis-niedermier  post-tournament  2019-08-09-flw-cup-lake-hamilton 

Top 10 Baits from the Potomac River

Top 10 Baits from the Potomac River

Late summer on the Potomac is often tough fishing, so the contenders in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event had to pull out all the stops. Fishing everything from grass to docks and rocks, the anglers mixed up all sorts of power and finesse presentations to get the job done in the second stop of the season presented by Lowrance. READ MORE »

Curveballs at the Cup

Curveballs at the Cup

When the field of 52 anglers arrived in Hot Springs, Ark., for the official practice period for the 2019 FLW Cup, they were greeted with sunshine, humidity and brutal daytime temperatures in the upper 90s. Early in the week, there was little mention of anything other than the same – a typical Arkansas summer forecast of sunny and hot. READ MORE »

Slow Down in Brush for More Success

Slow Down in Brush for More Success

Many times, hitting as many brush piles as possible is the key to success, with Bryan Thrift’s 2015 FLW Tour win on Lake Eufaula serving as a prime example of that strategy. However, with the fishing pretty tough on Lake Hamilton, both Wade Strelic and Joel Willert turned to more methodical approaches to generate bites. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Osborne Fished Finesse

Cup Top 10: Osborne Fished Finesse

Osborne spent the early visit graphing for brush in Hamilton’s lower end. In practice, it was more of the same, as Osborne spent only a couple of hours beating the bank. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Douglas Fished Brush and a Buzzbait

Cup Top 10: Douglas Fished Brush and a Buzzbait

Minnesota pro Josh Douglas is regarded as an electronics expert. But while he put his Lowrance units to the test at the FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton to find offshore brush piles, even Douglas couldn’t resist spending some time in the mornings hunting shallow bass. READ MORE »

Thrift and Kripp to discuss FLW Cup

Thrift and Kripp to discuss FLW Cup

FLW Tour pro Bryan Thrift, of Shelby, North Carolina, the newest FLW Cup champion, will break down his career-defining week... READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Salzman Went Shallow to Deep

Cup Top 10: Salzman Went Shallow to Deep

Ryan Salzman earned an eighth-place finish at the FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton with a well-executed two-part strategy. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Webster Wormed Brush

Cup Top 10: Webster Wormed Brush

Among the FLW Cup pros that committed the entire tournament to one pattern was Joseph Webster, who weighed in a three-day total of 28 pounds, 2 ounces at Lake Hamilton. He finished seventh. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Felix Keyed on Clear Water

Cup Top 10: Felix Keyed on Clear Water

Eden Prairie, Minn., pro Austin Felix finished sixth in this year’s FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton, but he’s convinced that if the engineers operating Blakely Mountain Dam had released water on a more consistent schedule, the results might have been even better for him. Felix spent most of the tournament keying on the clear waters of Hamilton’s upper end. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River

Cup Top 10: Martin went up the River

Prior to practice, Scott Martin had no idea that the far upper end of Lake Hamilton, where the cold waters from the bottom of Lake Ouachita flow in through Blakely Mountain Dam, was such a drastically different mini-fishery within the reservoir. Then he started scouting it in practice and realized there was potential to win the tournament in the tailrace in areas where the water temperature was below 60 degrees. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Lawyer Mixes it Up for Fourth

Cup Top 10: Lawyer Mixes it Up for Fourth

Fourth-place pro Jeremy Lawyer was the highest finisher to utilize the shallow-early, brush-later strategy. Lawyer stacked together limits of 12 pounds, 1 ounce and 12-5 on the first two days to go into the final day in fourth place. He weighed in just 7 pounds on Sunday. READ MORE »

Green Has Experience of Lifetime at Cup

Green Has Experience of Lifetime at Cup

Winning $2,500 might be the highlight of a trip for a lot of people, but for Leroy Green, winner of the FLW Tour Marshal program at the 2019 FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton, the cash prize was secondary to the relationships he forged out on the water. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Ebare Fished the Tailrace

Cup Top 10: Ebare Fished the Tailrace

Most of the time, fishing Southern impoundments in August is all about slowly dragging worms through brush piles. That’s what Dakota Ebare planned to do at the FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton. How he wound up catching enough fish to finish in third place felt more like Southern stream fishing. Ebare spent three days fishing the tailrace below Blakely Mountain Dam where the cold, clear waters drained through from the bottom of Lake Ouachita. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from the Cup at Hamilton

Top 10 Baits from the Cup at Hamilton

While there weren’t too many patterns in play at the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Ark., the nature of an August tournament in the South forced most of the top finishers to mix in a bunch of baits to catch their fish. Here’s what the top 10 used to catch schoolers and ply brush, docks and various types of shallow grass. READ MORE »

Cup Top 10: Walters Committed to Brush

Cup Top 10: Walters Committed to Brush

Coming into the FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton, Florida pro Kyle Walters figured the only chance he had to win was to stay away from the bank, where competing with the best in the sport was a tall order, and commit to finding as many brush piles as he could. READ MORE »

Thrift Goes Wire-to-Wire, Wins Professional Bass Fishing’s 2019 FLW Cup

Thrift Goes Wire-to-Wire, Wins Professional Bass Fishing’s 2019 FLW Cup

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Pro Bryan Thrift of Shelby, North Carolina, brought a five-bass limit to the stage weighing 10 pounds, 13 ounces, Sunday to claim the title of FLW Cup Champion at the FLW Cup on Lake Hamilton. Thrift, with a three-day total of 15 bass for 38 pounds, 7 ounces, won... READ MORE »

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Everyone knew it was only a matter of time, and that time is finally now. Bryan Thrift is an FLW Cup champion. READ MORE »

Lake Hamilton Day 3 Coverage

Lake Hamilton Day 3 Coverage

Bryan Thrift has the lead with one day left to fish in the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton. But to make it happen, he needs to hold off Kyle Walters, who's had a magical week so far, along with Scott Martin and a crew of other hammers. READ MORE »

What Happened to LeBrun?

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Nick LeBrun cracked 15 pounds on day one of the FLW Cup by throwing a Whopper Plopper around docks and seawalls. Then he caught only two bass on day two. The Louisiana pro says he refused to change his approach on day two because he wanted to fish for the win. Though he failed, he says he wouldn't change a thing. READ MORE »

Thrift Extends Lead at Day Two of Professional Bass Fishing’s FLW Cup

Thrift Extends Lead at Day Two of Professional Bass Fishing’s FLW Cup

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (Aug. 10, 2019) – Pro Bryan Thrift of Shelby, North Carolina, crossed the stage with a five-bass limit weighing 12 pounds, 7 ounces, for a two-day total... READ MORE »