Monday, February 11, 2013

1st Kayak Tournament.... Win Number 1

My first kayak fishing tournament is in the books, I am proud to say that I was able to pull a win from the event. The kayak division for the tournament was not as large as some of the other tournaments that I have seen being held, but I do leave that to being this was the first tournament that Hilljack has put on that included kayaks. I expect by the end of the season that the kayak participation will be BIG.

That being said, Shane Smith and Hilljack Catfishing put on quite a show at Lake Eufaula this past weekend. My fishing tournament expedition started with making the two hour drive, I got off work and left the house around 1 am. That put me at the ramp around 2:45-3:00am range. Getting there just in time to eat a quick bite and crashing in the truck. The morning started about 5:45 when I woke up to see I had been surrounded with boats and fishermen getting their gear ready for a day on the water. These guys really surprised me. They are some catfishing machines.

I had made my plan a few nights before and stuck to it once we hit the water, Eufaula is a very wide lake and from the boat ramp the general idea was to get from one side to the other as fast as possible without being a speed bump for a hundred horse outboard. The reason for going straight across the lake was the lakes main channel ran almost up against the far bank, leaving me close to the bank and still having the ability to fish deep water. After making it across the lake we found water that we wanted to fish and began to get our bait to the bottom and try to maintain some tight lines. This was a little difficult with the passing boats and we were almost on the bank but still fishing 30-60 foot water. After a bit Squirt and I made our way into a cove where the water was still in the 25 ft range but well protected from wind and passing boats.
This is where I manged to land the fish that would end up winning the tournament. They weren't large blue cats like the boat division but turned out to be enough to put me in the number 1 spot.

Watching the boaters weigh in was really good, these folks know how to land some big cats. The big fish for the event was right at 30 pounds and the winning sack was over 50. It took 40 pounds of fish to get in the money and it was well earned. After the weigh in there were some sweet prizes to be raffled off from some nice sponsors including Monster Rod Holders, Yeti, and Frabill. 

We also met some other kayaking fellas that were a pleasure to fish with, "Sarge" who is the tournament director from Georgia Kayak Fishing was in attendance, he also fishes bass tournaments with Southern Kayak Anglers. Pat was with Sarge and he also fishes with the GKF. They were some really nice guys and I look forward to fishing with them again soon.

I really encourage anyone who can make it to come to the next tournament at Lake Martin, March 3rd. I hope to see a lot more kayaks on the water.

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