Since the marshals and others are covering things from the water, I’m going to take this opportunity to talk about the Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year race, how it’s shaping up and what to look for at this tournament on the Alabama River. I’ve isolated five keys to winning the AOY race, and while I’ll be using examples from the Elite Series, they’ll mostly work for your club AOY race, too.
Get in the boat! Chad Pipkens knows how to handle them. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Gerome Burrell.
Mike McClelland upgrading his limit. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Tim Patterson
We turned around and moved about a quarter mile down the same canal and found Edwin Evers and Randy Howell fishing opposite sides of the canal. Evers just boated what looked to be a 2 1/2 half to 3-pounder. Into the live well it goes. Howell says he has a limit, with the biggest being a 3-pounder, but he doesn't have much size after that. Howell just had a nice fish that he's working hard to get in the boat. And he does. Looks to be another 3-pounder. "Good job man," Evers calls from across the water.
Takahiro Omori going to work. Photo by Bassmaster Marshal Jimmy Murphy.
Josh Bertrand's Marshal Kenny Yarnell sent along these pictures showing the start of Josh's day on the Alabama River.
The water levels on this entire river system are extremely high -- about 10 feet higher than usual, by most estimates. That's creating a lot of current which most anglers said they were looking for in this tournament. The lower limbs of trees along the riverbanks are dangling in the water and the Elites along the ride here were fishing those areas hard. Our boat driver said the high water makes the bank ledges fish from 8 to 18 feet deep. The weather is warming quickly and is expected to be in the low 80s by noon.
2012 AOY Brent Chapman with a nice 2.5 lb Coosa Spot below the Jordan Dam- Marshal Jace Hilton.
Mike McClelland boats his limit with a beautiful Alabama river spot.