After such a poor showing at the Potomac River, I desperately wanted to end the season on a high note, and I believed the Upper Mississippi could make that happen. I really like the waters there.
The Elite Series event on the Potomac River is starting soon and I am excited to get on the water. I have been there three times and each time the swim jig played a big role. The river really sets up perfectly for a swim jig. It is a great way to quickly cover water to find concentrations of fish and then once you find them, it's easy to slow down and pitch Senkos.
Being a part of the first Bassmaster Classic Bracket on the Niagara River was a pretty neat deal. It was cool to be a part of something that was sort of unfolding right before our eyes every day. The unique elements of a limited practice, a small field of eight pros, real-time scoring, having a scoring official in our boats and having our rounds streamed live to the internet were all part of an intense new format, never before seen on the Elites Series.
Whenever B.A.S.S. schedules an event in New York, I feel my chances for success are strong. The Empire State has always been good to me, and I expected this event would deliver more of the same.
Part of the Finger Lakes, Cayuga is nearly 40 miles long and 400 feet deep. Formed by glaciers thousands of years ago, it has evolved into prime habitat for both smallmouth and largemouth. And because spring came late to the region, I felt both species might come into play.
Prior to the Lake Texoma event, Oklahoma experienced weeks of heavy rainfall — swelling its streams and rivers to record highs.
By the time we arrived, the Texas-Oklahoma impoundment was more than 10 feet above normal pool, and most of the lake’s parks and ramps were closed as a result. The only dependable access was the ramp next to Dennison Dam, on the lake’s southern end.
As we made the long drive north for our final stop of the 2016 FLW Tour season on Lake Champlain, Jimmy spotted a BBQ place so of course we had to eat there. At this point in the season, I’m pretty sure I've eaten so much BBQ that if you cut me I’d bleed sauce.
On Friday night we arrived at the Shamrock Motel in tiny Peru, NY settled into our room. Early the next morning we did a chapter 11 reorganization: we removed everything from the back of the truck (guess who got to climb into the back to do that?). Thank goodness for the BedRug that Jimmy got from Top This at the beginning of the year - it was a life-saver on my knees.