Lake O The Pines Report
Tournament is over and it's time to give up a report. Prefishing was tough and many anglers headed home skipping tournament day to think about next month's tournament.
Richard James and I stuck it out fishing through the toughest tourney conditions with eleven other die hard crappie teams. Conditions were a cold, wet and high water.
We scanned the south end of the lake early Friday morning knowing this was where we would focus. We did not fish much as the fish were scattered as expected. One fish was caught on the south end.
We then decided to trailer to the north end and wet a line in the creek there. Focusing on the creek channel proved to be a good idea but again the bite was non existent. We caught one crappie there as well. I noticed a school of fish relating to structure which was the top of the creek channel. They were tight to the bottom. We dropped Slim Sticks on them and the fight was on. We slayed 14 to 15" white bass for 15 minutes then left them biting. That was a blast.
We called it a day and headed in to get ready for the next days tournament. As we talked to others we realized the concerns we'd had were verified. All other teams struggled as well to find a pattern. We all laughed, shared stories and decided to let the cards fall where they may.
Richie and I headed to our room early to discuss a plan of action as a team. We'd decide long ago to keep our heads down and elbows up no matter what, to try and defeat every lake thrown at us. This advice was given by George Scott Nelon and was the best thing we learned in 2015.
I'd been very stubborn 2015 sitting on big fish that wouldn't cooperate during a tournament. That was a mistake and habit I had to break. So I listened to my partner and we focused on getting seven fish first and foremost.
Tournament morning we fished the south end of the lake in 30' of water near cover but most importantly near the shoreline drop offs. Fish were feeding and pushing bait to the shore. We picked up four good fish with this pattern.
We then tried the creek channel in 45' of water but those fish which were there won that stare down contest. I sure wanted to catch some of those toads but I did not let the temptation ruin our day.
Next was timber. Fish were in the tree line 20 to 25' down on the tree tops in 40' of water. They were not stacked but they were there. No matter the location fish were spread out and not stacked. We culled some fish there and had a decent stringer considering the conditions.
We caught fish with 3" Slim Sticks and Stump Bugs. Slim Sticks worked best in timber and Stump Bugs were best for the early morning feeding fish.
Weigh in proved it was tough for all. We were the first to lose bringing home second place. Richie was a blast to fish with and we are already looking forward to the next tournament on Lake Lavon.