Edwin Evers just threw us a major curveball. He decided to make a 12-mile run up the Tallapoosa River, which is uncharted territory for Darren Jacobson and me. Even our boat driver, Pike Road's very own Matt Chambliss, isn't exactly sure where we are. We crossed underneath the Highway 231 bridge and settled on a spot about three miles upriver near a big sandbar. There are a couple of sunbathers out, probably wondering what we're doing out here. Following the Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year points leader, that's all.
I drove to the Jordan Dam to see if I could catch a glimpse of Steve Kennedy. From my perspective, sadly, no. I can see what I believe is Seigo Saito in a camera boat, so I know I'm close.
Brent Chapman came straight to the mouth of Corn Creek after coming back through the shoals.
The Elite Series angler-less duo here in Corn Creek ain't happy. Overstreet is trying to take a nap, but I'm playing "The Heist" by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis as loud as I can get it on my iPhone. I noticed a big thrift shop in Wetumpka yesterday. If it's open on Sundays, I might show up at the weigh-in in a come-up. Hold on — Chapman is back, and we're back to work.
And then another for Edwin Evers. As soon as I hit send on my last post, the Oklahoman boated a 2 1/2-pounder on a crankbait. It wasn't really big, but it was heavy enough for him to be able to cull. Every ounce is going to count, it appears, with Brent Chapman, Steve Kennedy and John Murray making moves themselves. The Alabama River Charge is on, ladies and gentlemen!
The great thing about BassTrakk is you can sort of track these anglers. I've been on the phone with Hank Weldon, who is running that system today. He tells me Brent Chapman got almost to me, then turned around. Meanwhile, I was sitting here at the ready waiting for him to appear. It will be interesting from here on out on whether that turn back and Kennedy forging ahead will be the difference.
As we thought he would, Edwin Evers picked up from his last spot and has moved three more times since my last blog. He's running about a quarter-mile each time, looking for pockets with current. He just had a big fish on, it appears, but lost it. He's still changing baits frequently -- spinnerbaits, crankbaits, even a jig at one point. No keepers yet, though. Of course, as I type, he just lit into what appears to be a 4-pounder. He worked the fish around the back of the boat, and finally, reaching into the water, grabbed the toad.
So Kennedy is now at the dam. Luckily if anything happens there, photographers Seigo Saito and Gary Tramontina are there to capture it. If you've been paying attention to this event, then you know what I'm speaking of. If not, check the last two days' photo galleries of whitewater bassin' and then watch the video. Kennedy is taking the gamble the whole distance.
David Walker just came back up to Corn Creek Shoals, where he got stuck on a boulder earlier this morning. He fished right through that area without any luck, other than not getting stuck. Now Walker has moved up the Coosa River out of our sight. And once again, James Overstreet and I are angler-less. Why I didn't bring that box of red worms and a fishing pole I'll never know. We're seeing fish jumping all around us here in the mouth of Corn Creek.
Do you believe in miracles — and, in particular, bass tournament miracles? I do. I've seen them happen … or watched them on TV or read about them in magazines. When Rick Clunn came from 14th place and more than nine pounds behind to win the 1990 Bassmaster Classic on the James River it was a miracle — nothing less. But miracles don't happen very often, and expecting a miracle is a good way to wind up disappointed.