Lakecaster Online

Tournament Pathfinder
by John Presley

The Citgo BASSMASTER TOURNAMENT TRAIL held the 2001 Oklahoma Central Open on October 11-13 at Lake Fort Gibson in Wagoner, Oklahoma. This was one of the toughest tournaments that most of us had ever been in. The lake was only 19,000 surface acres at normal pool with 225 miles of shoreline. The lake fished very small because of it's size and over 300 fisherman hit it hard during practice. When you found a good spot to fish or holding fish it seemed 10 other boats found it too. It was hit hard by the largemouth bass virus last year and the keeper fish of 14 inches were hard to come by during this tournament. The practice days started off with hard south winds of 25 mph with heavy rains and thunderstorms and lighting. I don't know what you would call a good practice during this tournament I was getting a few bites a day and catching 3 to 10 short fish in different spots during practice . The keepers just seemed few and far between for myself and a lot of the other anglers I spoke with. It was just a tournament were you fished hard and maybe with a little luck someone found 1 or 2 keepers now and then. The fish that I caught were right on the bank in less than a foot of water. The few fish that I caught during practice I caught on crankbaits, buzzbaits, Senko's and Gambler Swacky worms fished wacky style. The first tournament day started of with heavy rains and thunderstorms all day long . I went to my fish first and my partner caught a 3 pounder after about 15 minutes, but all I caught was a few short fish and no keepers. Homer Humphreys, JR of Minden La. was the first day leader with 5 fish that weighed 11-6. This was the only 5 fish limit weighed that day. In second place was Charles Campbell of Forsyth Mo. with 3 fish weighing 9-9, and in third place was local area lakes fisherman David Truax of Beaumont Tx. with 4 fish that weighed 8-13. It took only 3-6 pounds to be in 55 place the last money cut after day one. There were over 180 people who zeroed and did not weigh a fish the first day Big Bass on day one was taken by Dustin Wilks of Raleigh Nc. a 5-13 good for a $1000. On day two we had clear skies and bright sunshine I drew a local from Oklahoma and we caught a lot of fish on Senko's and Swacky worms but couldn't find a keeper. After two days Homer Humphreys, JR of Minden La. was still in first place with a total weight of 9 fish that weighed 18-6, Russ Moran of Murfreesboro Tn. caught the only limit on day two and was in second place with a total of 6 fish weighing 11-11 and in third place was Rick Morris of Virginia Beach Va. with a total of 5 fish weighing 9-13. The last money place of 55th place was only 4-6 after two days. The second day there were only 132 fish caught by over 310 fisherman. The big bass was a 5-13 on the second day taken by Peter Wenners of Galena Mo and good for $1,000. The third and final day my partner was right on the money cut and needed one fish to stay in the money. We ran up the river to his fish but we were unable to capture a 14 inch keeper we caught only small fish on ¼ ounce Jigs on shallow laydowns. I used ¼ ounce black blue Falcon Jig made by Falcon Lures to catch my fish and a Senko on the last day. The last day there were only two limits caught and 141 fish weighed by over 310 fisherman. Homer Humphreys, JR of Minden La won first place and his first ever Bass Tournament with a three day total of 22-3 good for $51,000. He fished a 150 yard stretch of shoreline that had a lot of big rocks and a ledge with a 10 ft drop . He used a Diving Ace Crankbait that he designed himself. It was Louisiana Shad in color. He also used a Norman Middle N in firetiger and gold in color to catch his fish . Congratulations to Homer on his first BASS victory he has been fishing a long time and deserved to win one. Second Place was Jim Carnell of Muskogee, Ok. good for $37,000. Third place was Monty Fralick of Martin, S.D. good for $35,000. Fourth Place was Rick Morris of Virginia Beach, Va. good for $17,500. Fifth place was Kurt Johnson of Cedar Rapids, Iowa good for $9,750. 55th place was last place to receive money and it only took 6-13.

By the way, when I am not fishing tournaments I am a full-time fishing guide on Lake Sam Rayburn. If you would like to book a trip please call me at 409-698-9713 or Ann's Tackle Shop at 409-384-7685. Or e-mail me at JOHN@SAMRAYBURNFISHING.COM. or check out my website at SAMRAYBURNFISHING.COM.

Good Luck and Good Fishing.

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