2012 Elite Series - All-Star Semi-final Lake Shelbyville - Decatur, IL, Sep 20 - 21, 2012

Patterning Shelbyville with BassGold

About the author

Jay Kumar

Jay Kumar

Jay Kumar is the founder of BassGold.com and produces the daily BassBlaster email. He also founded BassFan.com, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer, and co-hosted the ESPN show Loudmouth Bass with Mark Zona.

Soon 12 lucky Elite Series pros will arrive at Illinois' Lake Shelbyville for Toyota Trucks All-Star week. From a patterning standpoint, the lake isn't well known because it hasn't hosted top level tournaments. In other words, it doesn't have a national reputation for fishing "this way" or "that way." But it is a heavily fished tournament lake, and luckily some of the local and regional trails that fish it have reported their pattern information.

It's definitely possible to pattern Shelbyville with BassGold by looking at data from lakes of the same water type – in this case what BassGold calls a "lowland reservoir." That would give us a lot of good info. But because of that reported pattern information, we recently boiled down and input 90-plus Shelbyville patterns to the BassGold.com database. This allows us to take a little closer look at what seems to be an interesting lake.

Macro Factors

On a BassGold Pattern Report for summer and early fall, the Macro Factors (generally where on a lake) bar graph shows what appears to be an even split between "shoreline" and "main lake offshore structure." But when you add in "main lake points," deeper areas of the lake get the nod.

When you surf the winning and placing (second-fifth) pattern details in BassGold, you can see that deeper patterns have been winning more of late. On the other hand, predominant local patterns don't seem to hold a lot of weight when it comes to winning Elite level tournaments.

Bass Fishing Hall of Famer and pattern guru Ken Cook said, "From a competitive standpoint this is great because it gives competitors the opportunity to compete in their own style in their choice of pattern locations. It looks like either [deep or shallow] could produce a winning catch."