Skeet already has 20 pounds

Yes, BASSTrakk shows that Skeet Reese has "only" 18-4. You can bet the house that he's already topped 20 pounds. Reese, like many of the Elite Series pros, consistently slightly, sometimes not so slightly, underestimates his fish before they go on the weigh-in scales for the official number.

As Bassmaster LIVE came on at 8 a.m., Reese put on a show by catching his big fish of the day so far, a 5-plus-pounder, on a swimbait. He's throwing a variety of baits, but he got a new clue with that swimbait bite.

"That kind of changes my game plan, as far as the swimbait on this stuff," Reese said. "My goal today was 20 pounds. I'd like to catch more, but 20 should keep me in contention."

Right now, he's more than in contention. BASSTrakk shows him with an 8-pound lead.

Check out the morning photos here

Zaldain fishing for five bites

Chris Zaldain didn't want to reveal much about his method in catching the Day 1 big bag of 24 pounds, 3 ounces. But he did make it clear that he's targeting big bass exclusively. It doesn't appear to be a numbers game for anyone here this week, whether they want it to be or not, but Zaldain is strictly trophy hunting. A practice day keyed him in, when he caught an estimated 30-pound bag.
"I practiced to win this tournament," Zaldain said. "It's typical pre-spawn type fishing. I'm just looking for a few bites. That's all I'm doing."
Because he, like everyone else, is concerned about consistency, Zaldain didn't worry about saving anything in his primary spot yesterday.
"I wanted to bank as much weight as possible," he said. "I decided I'd better burn that spot to the ground."
Zaldain has more spots that have the distinct combination of depth, etc., that are his key to success.

"I've got waypoints up and down this lake that I didn't even touch (Friday)," he said. "Of about a dozen areas, I only touched three of them."

Now that's a quick limit

Bobby Lane has caught a limit about as quickly as possible. With a 6 a.m. takeoff time, Lane put his fifth bass in the boat at 6:35. And he was in Flight 2, boat number 38.

Granted, his 4-pounder at 6:35 is the only one he'd like to have at the end of the day, but all these guys will tell you how much easier it is to fish with a limit in the livewell.

Comparing Grand and Kentucky lakes

With two Elite Series events on back-to-back weeks at two of the best bass fishing lakes in the country, it might be interesting to compare snapshots of each. It isn’t intended to indicate that one lake is better than the other. It’s done more in the interest of trivia than anything else. This will be updated as the 2018 Berkley Bassmaster Elite at Kentucky Lake presented by Abu Garcia progresses through Monday.

 Grand Lake Kentucky Lake
  Day 1  Day 1
Bass weighed-in  531    493
Ave. weight 3.15 lbs.       3.22 lbs.
Limits     102    82
Big bass   7-3  7-7 (2)
Big bag     23-12    24-3
25th place17-1218-6
50th place     15-1115-8









Weights aren’t telling the story

David Walker had a good day on Kentucky Lake yesterday, but it was unlike any day he’s experienced over several decades of bass fishing on this 160,000-acre Tennessee River impoundment.

“The weights aren’t telling the story,” said the Sevierville, Tenn., pro who will be 53 on May 14. “I’m stunned by how good the weights are.”...continue reading

Keep an eye on the zeroes

A few minutes ago, rookie Kyle Monti was one of a dozen anglers who had zero fish catches on BASSTrakk today. Then Monti zoomed from last to 30th in an instant. The remaining zeroes are probably, not definitely, but probably the result of BASSTrakk phones being out of cellphone coverage. That was the case with Monti, whose fish catches from the morning all came in at once.

Among those still stuck on zero are Edwin Evers and Brett Hite. Evers won here in 2015 and was second at Kentucky Lake in 2010. Evers is consistently good everywhere the Elite Series goes. It's highly unlikely he's fish-less at Kentucky Lake. The same goes for Hite, who finished third here in 2015

Skeet scores a big cull

It hasn't shown up on BASSTrakk yet because of cell phone service issues, but Skeet Reese may be leading this tournament now. Gettys Brannon reports that Reese just landed a 5-pounder, which should put him well over 21 pounds.

Reese pre-fishing for Day 2?

B.A.S.S. junior correspondent Gettys Brannon recently caught up with Skeet Reese, who is running-and-gunning Kentucky Lake this morning. Reese has already had a stellar day. BASSTrakk shows him with 19-11, which in English translates to 21-pounds-plus. 

While Reese isn't satisfied with his excellent morning and will continue to try to add to it, he's also exploring new options for the pattern that has worked so well today. Reese might be one of the anglers who has figured out a method for intercepting bass as they transition from spawning shallows to summertime depths.