The lack of current is killing Thompson's bite, early at least. He's made the same pass now twice with only one keeper. Fishing down main river jetties with an umbrella rig, Thompson says the current is critical to keep the fish pushed up against the bank. Right now he's hearing a few bust the surface but they're at random to say the least and typically out of reach. He's hoping a few folks fire up the electric heat pumps this morning so he can get on a hot streak of his own. If they don't start generating some power soon ...
After some early equipment trouble, I'm back on the water. The first boat I spotted was the Southern Division representatives, Ben Stone of South Carolina and Clayton Childs of Georgia. Childs just put a small keeper in the boat. It's the second keeper for their boat this morning, but it's the only fish in the well. Stone caught a small spotted bass and elected to release it because "it started acting funny" when he put it in the box.
Doug Thompson put his first keeper in the boat a few minutes ago. A chunky spot. Not what he's looking for, but it's a start on a day that he's predicting will be a grind.
Just caught up with Day 2 leader and Arkansas native, Doug Thompson. He had a limit by now yesterday. Today: 0. That's no real cause of concern in and of itself, considering he blasted off at 7:15 a.m. and then ran 30 minutes. But the reason he hasn't had any bites is what worries him. "They're not running any water," Doug said as he unhooked a striped bass from his umbrella rig and tossed it back. "That's not good."
Go on the water with Nation junior competitors as they face a challenging Pool 9 on the Arkansas River!
JWC contenders can't rely on patterns established by B.A.S.S. Nation competitors on the other side of the dam.
See how B.A.S.S. Nation anglers fared on Lake Dardanelle!
Doug Thompson, who leads the 2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Championship on Lake Dardanelle on Day Two, knows exactly what he wants.
Nation anglers take to the water for the second day of the B.A.S.S. Nation Championship.
I followed the Northern Division crew several miles farther downstream to the Petit Jean River, the only major tributary on this Arkansas River pool.