If you've ever heard the 1960s hit song "Wipeout" by The Surfaris, you might recall the maniacal laugh that proceeds the word "wipeout," the only lyric in the drum solo of a song. Well, James Overstreet and I feel like we're surrounded by birds belting out that maniacal laugh. "I don't recall the birds being this (expletive deleted) loud," Overstreet said.
Jeff Kriet is sticking with the swim jig mostly. He's caught a couple more keepers and culled up to around 8 lbs. No more rain but a persistent 8 to 10 mph breeze. Kriet has drifted about a half mile of the east side of this pass, still concentrating on the inside edge of lilly pad fields.
A slow hour for Jeff Kriet. Five fish and only 5 1/2 pounds. Zona says that, much like yesterday, it will be a matter of wait until noon for the "female fun fest."
Chris Lane just landed his second fish of the day. It appeared to be about like the first one -- in the neighborhood of the 3 pounds. "You've got to start somewhere," Lane said. The mid-day and early afternoon bite has been a dominant theme in this tournament, so any weight compiled this morning works as a confidence-builder.
Chris Lane started throwing one of his favorite topwater baits this morning, a Gambler Toad, and had a couple of blowups on it. "It's too pretty a day not to throw it," he said of the overcast morning. Then he put it down and went to work with the jig that has produced almost all his weight this week. Five minutes later he put his first bass in the boat, a 3-pounder. "That's a good start," Lane said.
Scott Rook is loving the cloud cover today. He is fishing the same area he has the first three days, but today they are busting on his topwater. He has three fish in the box early and has had another five or six wack at his bait.
Photographer James Overstreet and I caught up with Chris Lane at 8:30 this morning, right where we left him yesterday afternoon at 1:30. But we weren't there five minutes before Lane made a short run to the north end of Observation Shoal, not far from Bird Island. Speaking of birds, it sounds like you're in the heart of the Amazon when Lake Okeechobee's birds are going through their early morning greetings.
Four fish now for 4.3 lbs in Jeff Kriet's livewell. Not much weight but it's happening faster for him than it did yesterday.
We've been watching Jeff Kriet for forty minutes and he's moved all of 200 yards. Our boat driver Bobby Adams says he's going slower than yesterday. I look down the line and he's only got about 5 more miles of bullrush walls with submerged veg. out front. This place is so vast but the good stuff so compact, it seems. Another pound or so bass just got caught. Zona says a 4-5 pounder just rolled on the swim jig but no bite. All in all more aggressive fish than yesterday.
8:00 comes and still no keepers. Wind is up from some weather passing north and west--spitting rain. Water temp 75. Now comes two small keepers about a pound each. From Mark Zona: both fish came on the swim jig inside line of the pads.