For nearly an hour, Federation Nation contender John Diaco worked at getting a 3-pounder on a Red River bed to bite on Day Two of the Bassmaster Classic. Steve Kennedy spent time looking at a 6-pounder, and Ott DeFoe worked on a 4-pounder. None were successful, but all were somewhat surprised at seeing bedding bass.
Bobby Lane did manage to snag a 3-pounder off of a bed, but said for the most part the fish that are moving toward the beds are fickle.
“The one I caught swirled on my bait, then took it but not after I fished for her for 17 minutes,” Lane said. “I found a 6 pounder, too, so you know I’m going to check that tomorrow.”
The weather played a large part of this shift toward the beds. Day 2 was 180 degrees different than Day 1. Rather than a constant 10 mile-per-hour wind, calm and blue skies prevailed. This warmed the water quickly, and some anglers saw water temperatures in the low 60s, the ideal temperature for bass to think about spawning.
Areas such as McDade, at the south end of Pool 5, have been pummeled for the past two days. Anglers fishing there weren’t optimistic about the area holding up to a third day of abuse, though boat traffic will be lessened tomorrow. However, DeFoe, Diaco and Kennedy were all in McDade and all thought it worth their while to pursue spawners. With the stumps and flats thoroughly worked over, spawners may be the only option to McDade anglers tomorrow, but it could be a good one.
McDade isn’t the only area that has spawners, though. The smaller areas that many anglers used to catch a fish or two may refill tomorrow as spawners refill areas that may have otherwise remained dry tomorrow.
The bottom line is this: Anglers will have to think on their feet and will probably have to take into account bedding bass. Day 1 was windy, cold and overcast. Day 2 was clear, calm and warmer, and Day 3 may be a spawn fishing bonanza. Those who adapt the quickest will fare the best and earn a $500,000 payday.