|Representin' in the River|
|Written by Clark Allen - Educated Angler Field Staff|
|Monday, 30 April 2007 18:03|
BFG and Duckdude Representin’ EducatedAngler.com
I have fished a bunch of tournaments over the last ten years, both for walleye and salmon, with minimal success save a First Place finish with Trollinator at the May Wisconsin Salmon Unlimited tournament a couple years back out of Racine. Living where I do, and fishing the Maumee River walleye run every year, I am often inclined to enter the Maumee Tackle Tournament. This tournament is for “river rats” only, as two-man teams compete in a one-day event, fishing only the river. The tournament date for this year was set for April 22nd, and I was scrambling to find a partner. Fortunately, I have recently made a quick fishing friend in Chris (aka Duckdude) who shares many of the same passions (especially walleye fishing in the river) as myself. I contacted Chris shortly after Easter, and he quickly agreed that we needed to fish this tourney together. The cool down over the week of Easter had extended the run this year, keeping the water temps down and the fish in the river. 46 teams were registered for the tourney, which was by far the largest number of teams in the 17 year history of the tournament.
The tournament format is as follows:
We would fish out of my 14’er, which would make for a very comfortable day. I met Chris at Maumee Tackle at 5:30 AM, at which time the owner inspected the boat, and we were off to launch. I wanted to get in the river as quickly as possible, to secure a good position in the river, knowing that we would likely have to sit in the dark for up to an hour prior to fishing time. With the fantastic, nearly perfect weather forecast, I knew it would be an absolute zoo (big crowds) down there. We launched at a private campground at 6:00 AM, and were somewhat (but not totally) surprised to see 7 other boats already sitting in the river. Thankfully, each of them were sitting downstream of our desired spot. As I dropped the anchor, a very good feeling came over me….something that told me this day was going to be a good one. Chris looked at me and said, “I think we are going to hammer the fish today.” I agreed, and that level of confidence was just what I was looking for in a teammate. The river had dropped significantly over the previous few days, and we knew the fish would be holding in the deeper holes, one of which was directly in front of us.
Kudos to the winners, as they had 16#+ for their catch, and also to the 2nd place team, which had 0.18oz more than we were able to manage. In all, it was a great day on the river with Chris. He is an excellent river fisherman, and I was glad to have him on my team. I started off slowly, but as the day wore on, I boated my share of fish, including 2 very nice “upgrades” to our tourney bag. We boated in excess of 50 walleyes, and also at least another 50 “other” fish, which included quillbacks, carp, white bass, shad, and suckers. One of the carp that I caught would barely fit in to the net, as it easily weighed 20#. Chris also managed a very nice smallmouth early in the morning. Although my 14’er is not a big-water boat, it serves the purpose for the river very well. I think the EA.com stickers on the sides added to our luck for the day, as did my EA.com hat. Hopefully Chris will attend the Walleye Smackdown in June so that you all can get a chance to put a face with a name. He is a welcome addition to the EA.com community.
3rd isn’t 2nd nor 1st, but it surely isn’t 4th either…
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