UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir

Lake Chickamauga Midday Update Day 2

Lake Chickamauga Midday Update Day 2
Paul Gettys

Temperatures in the 50s, sporadic drizzling rain and a stiff south wind made for some challenging conditions for anglers at the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division finale on Lake Chickamauga presented by Lowrance. Thursday afternoon and evening saw as much as 2 inches of rainfall in the area.

Today was the first day of competition after Thursday fishing was cancelled due to predicted high winds. With one day of the event cancelled there will not be a cut to the top 10 for the final day. The full field of 394 pros and co-anglers is fishing today and tomorrow.

Five-fish limits were rare as camera boats cruised Lake Chickamauga before Noon, although several good bags of fish were reported. Around 10 a.m., Bryan Thrift, the current points leader on the FLW Tour, reported four fish in the livewell.

"There's going to be a lot of fish weighed in, but it's awful hard to fish because of the conditions," says Mark Morgan, father of FLW pro Andy Morgan and one of the media crew’s camera boat drivers. "With the wind, the current and the mud, it's not the best of conditions. But the fish should hit because they live here."

Many anglers reported most fish caught on "an early bite." Juan Ruiz, ranked 20th in points in the Southeastern Division coming into the Chickamauga finale, had 12 to 13 pounds in the livewell just before Noon.

"I've caught great fish in practice, a couple of 7-pounders, but I haven't found them today," he says. This is Ruiz’s first tournament on Chickamauga. "It's a great lake. You can fish just about any way you want to here.”

Some anglers fought the wind and waves, working mid-channel humps. However, many anglers were spread out into shallower coves and pockets.

"Everybody is kind of hid," adds Mark. "There's a lot of backwater they're fishing in right now. We haven't seen as many boats as I would have suspected."

The afternoon's first weigh-in of this abbreviated tournament will prove interesting as pros and co-anglers strive to make it into the top 40 in the division’s year-end standings to advance to fish the 2017 Costa FLW Series Championship (provided they fished all three qualifiers in a division).

Weigh-in will air live on FLWFishing.com beginning at 3 p.m. ET.

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