There’s not much going on in the Lane world this week. I spent most of my time with the family, working around the house and getting some of my equipment ready for Douglas Lake. It’s been rest and relaxation all the way. And I have to say that’s been pretty nice. It’s been a wild ride since February when I won the Classic. A little rest won’t hurt me at all.
By the time you’re reading this, however, that’ll be in the past. I’ll be fishing my tail off trying to put together something for this week. This one’s important to me. I make no bones about that. If I get going, I’ll be in pretty good shape for the rest of the season. If I don’t, things could get rough before it’s over.
I’ll tell you what, though, it’s harder to practice for one of these things than a lot of people think. I know a little something about the lake but that doesn’t make it any easier, or at least it doesn’t seem any easier to me. Practice isn’t about running all over the lake looking for fish. It’s about finding the right fish, and then expanding on your knowledge so you can keep catching them for four days and under changing weather conditions. The details matter.
Say you find a spot. OK, now you have to look for similar spots all over the lake so that you’ll be able to weigh the right kind of sack on Thursday and Friday, and hopefully again on Saturday and Sunday. That’s a lot of fish. Even if you find that many you have to find others so that if the weather changes or the fish move you’ll have someplace to go.
While you’re doing this the other guys are doing the same thing, and believe me when I tell you they know how to do it. If I come up short they’ll make up the difference, no doubt about that. Bull Shoals will tell you everything you need to know about that concept.
I’m not complaining, though, just throwing out some food for thought and maybe getting myself psyched up for the tournament. I wouldn’t do anything different with my life even if I could. I mean what else could I do that I love and get paid for it? I look forward to getting up in the mornings and going to work. Really, I do. How many guys can say that?
No, it’s not about complaining. It’s about telling the truth. Practice means long days on the water, some of which go your way and others go the way of the fish. That’s what we do, though. We look for fish and when we find them we try to make them bite, and then we look some more. If everything goes our way we do it better than the other guy for a day, or two, or sometimes three or four.
It’s a heck of a good life, you know.