This past weekend, February 28th, was the first stop of the Alabama Bass Trail on Lake Guntersville. It was a very eventful weekend to say the least. The first of the week brought our area 8-12 inches of snow, with some of the competitors even practicing in it. I was unable to make it from my house to Guntersville safely on Thursday, which cost me and my partner Brian a valuable day of practice
So, when we finally got to the lake on Friday, the first boat ramp we came to, Goose Pond, was frozen and there was absolutely no way to get a boat in the water. So we traveled to the next boat ramp we could find that wasn’t frozen and backed into the water to start our day. We fished lots of humps and ditches with the only action being a few nibbles and swings at our baits. We had one fish on and lost it. So after a disappointing morning, we decided to load the boat and drive to a ramp on the south end of the lake, which is an area we were both more confident in. We fished deep grass lines near areas that the fish spawned last year. We had a lot more bites, which we weren’t setting the hook on, and then a fish bit that I couldn’t keep from eating my lure. An eight pounder crushed my rattletrap and took me on a ride. It is the biggest bass I have ever caught, and man did it turn our crappy day around. So with that fish, we decided we would make the drive from Goose Pond to the south end of the lake the next day; tournament day.
That morning we launched around 7:15 from Goose Pond and made our long, frigid 30 minute drive south. Once we arrived, we went right to the spot where the eight pounder came from the day before. With fish, grass, and baitfish all over our Lowrance’s, we had a great feeling about the day ahead however, HAD was the key word. We fished that area and all the areas like it absolutely dry. Nothing. Nothing at all. It was the most disheartening I have felt while fishing. Knowing the fish were there and knowing that everything I tried wasn’t working hurt, but we didn’t let it get to us. We let this big old, goose egg of a day make us more motivated to try harder; to study harder than previously, and to work hard to get ready for our next ABT tournament on Lake Neely-Henry. So, for all those Coosa River bass, let it be known that we are motivated and coming for you.
It’s my wish, to every angler who fishes tournaments, or to anglers who don’t, to always learn from a bad day fishing. Don’t let it bring out the worst in you, but make that day a lesson to remember; the next time your studying hard for a tournament and it isn’t coming together, study harder, even if it is the same info over and over again. Master what you have in front of you and find other clues as you go. Let bad fishing motivate you and make you a better angler, and a better person!
Safe Boating and Tight Lines!