The first annual BlackFish Classic is in the books. It was a perfect day, a hint of a breeze, and calm waters set the mood for the day as the sun rose over Lake Minnetonka. Staff arrived quite early on July 30th to open Lord Fletchers and set up to receive the 68 teams that's signed up for the tournament.
This includes HSM's own Mike Ferrell who fished with bass pro and owner of Rod Armor, Jason Dudek, and Alie Witthans and her co-angler Tanya Mueller.
All the boats were ready to set hooks for the $10,000 grand prize, but priorities were in line. The anthem first, take off followed at 7am. A slow parade thru the Lord Fletchers channel started the tourney off, boats scattered towards Crystal Bay and beyond, while others went out towards Harrison's Bay, maybe to make the trek back to Halsteads Bay.
Minnetonka is an amazing fishery that can host such large tournaments, but certainly not during a weekend when it becomes a haven for party boats, pontoons, and wave runners. This Monday morning, it seemed like we were the only boats out there, which made the fishing that much more enjoyable.
While you can still catch bass in 4' of water, casting towards docks, the big ones were deep looking for cooler temps. We set out to find them in about 10-15 FOW. Blues and dark colors worked well.
While I heard many teams using jig worms, I caught mine on a Texas rig with a Berkley Havoc Craw Fatty, and my co-angler used a custom color JaKKed Chatterbait. Both were very effective.
At 3pm we brought our bag to weigh in. This being Tanya and my first bass tourney, I wanted to bring in a full bag and not come in last. Success on both accounts. We weighed in a 10lb 9.1oz bag, while Mike and Jason brought in 16lb 5.4oz bag.
The winning bag, weighed in at 20lb 6.3oz, came from Brad Leuthner and John Figi. While this was our first bass tournament, it won't be our last. So much more to always learn. Here's to the next cast, may it be the best.