August 27, 2005
I fished a local derby this weekend with Darren & my wife, Christiane. We had great expectations on winning as I was targeting numbers of huge smallmouth on a nearby lake. The first day dealt us incredible heat of over 90 degrees and mirror calm conditions. Not what I wanted! These fish were roaming shallow waters and were quite spooky once the sun got high. We must have seen over 100 fish throughout the day from 3 pounds to over 5 pounds but they just wouldn’t feed. Our three biggest fish were caught in the first hour and we weren’t able to catch anything larger for the rest of the day. By 6:00 PM we were ready to call it quits and head to the scales to weigh our one fish each. These fish were from 3.68 to 4.08 pounds. Not what I was expecting to weigh in based on what was swimming around us all day! Day two threw us a curve ball as we drove to the lake in heavy rains. Fortunately, by the time we arrived at the water, it had stopped! The winds were blowing from the S/SW at 5 to 10 MPH and increased within the first hour. The air temps were humid and in the 70’s early and eventually went into the low 80’s by afternoon. Water temps were still around 75 degrees and the fish still had lockjaw! We managed to catch a few fish that were from 3.85 to 4 pounds, but nothing bigger. Plenty of strikes and some hookups, but no big ones were caught. By 10:00 I decided to take a chance and jump to another lake close by. Once again, fish were seen and caught, but nothing big enough to qualify for a winner. We managed to catch fish in water as shallow as 4 feet to as deep as 35 feet. We had to leave by 2:30 in order to make the 4:00 deadline for the weigh in and decided to pack it in. Once again, all fish in the 3.85 to 4 pound range! It turns out that a smallmouth of 5.3 pounds won the event with second being 5.15 pounds. It wasn’t for lack of trying that we were only able to weigh in the fish that we did on this tournament weekend! Better luck next year, I hope!