Texas or Bust
Texas or Bust
It's almost November and a chill has set in across the midwest. A thin layer of frost covers the windshield in the morning. The hall tree is adorned with Carhartt jackets and beanies. There is still fish to be caught before the lakes freeze but...I'm thinking about short sleeves and big bass. I'm thinking about a lake where dreams come true, half a day south of here. In fact, half of my attention has been lost in thoughts of the lake. My brain has a special file containing maps, fragments of sentences from long forgotten forum posts and highlighted paragraphs in fishing magazines. Sometimes I find it hard to sit still.
Okay, it is a variety of factors that lead to my dramatized excitement. First, I'm going on a road trip to Texas to kayak fish with my two brothers. Second, Lake Fork produces giant bass and many of them. Thirdly, history is being made across the country with the growing kayak bass fishing scene. There are many great series' to fish across the country. Beau Reed has put together an outstanding event for the best anglers to compete in and a noteworthy check for the winner. Anglers from everywhere get to meet in person and talk as fisherpeople do and along with the camaraderie, fierce competition for a coveted title.
My brother and I attended Beau's first 'Tournament of Champions' last year. It was a typical fishing trip environment. The hotel room was a tornadic scene of fishing gear, water bottles and granola bar wrappers. Prefishing had its ups and downs. I managed to land a 23" bass but we struggled to find many big fish. This changed in the last 15 minutes of the tournament when I stumbled on a school of nice fish. I didn't have time left to take full advantage of the situation. However, it left a burning desire in me to return and capitalize on my opportunities. Lake Fork is like many large bass reservoirs. The fish are big and plentiful but spend their time in 10% of the lake. You must find specific areas and figure out how to catch them once you find them. Still, your chances are as good as anywhere at hooking into a double digit toad.
I'm taking an extra risk this year because I'm not pre qualified. I must compete in a qualifier the day before the tournament. I will be fishing the 'Presidential Access Division' which was created specifically for tournament directors to fish since we are directing tournaments instead of trying to qualify in them. I have confidence in doing well but if I fail to qualify then I'll be cheering on Josh and Caleb and doing some fun fishing. You must finish in the top 5 overall of your regional circuit to qualify for the TOC. The winner will be crowned "Kayak Bass Fishing World Champion".
We will be leaving in just a few days and will keep everyone updated on the trip progress. Amongst the three of us, we'll be representing the Hobie Fishing Team, Select Sail & Sports, Cabela's, Werner Paddles, PowerTeam Lures and the Corn Coast Kayak Anglers as well as our friends at Pig Patrol. We hope at least one of us will make a good showing for Nebraska, we also will have Marty Hughes to bring some fishing magic from the Cornhusker state. For now, it's Texas or bust!