Livesay with about 12 pounds

Not long after we arrived, Lee Livesay decided to go try another spot nearby. He was kind enough to pause for a quick video interview before heading on.

Like so many of the new Elite anglers, he is extremely accommodating. He told us he has about 12 pounds this morning. He is fishing near Luke Palmer, and Livesay says Palmer has even more.

Cut is top 35 after Day 2

In past with a 110-angler field, the Day 2 cut was the top 50. But in this new 75-man field, only the top 35 will qualify to fish on Day 3. So what is the top 35 cut weight likely to be today?

Quentin Cappo and Shane Lineberger tied for 34th and 35th place yesterday with 13-7. If you double that, we're looking at 26-14. That's as good a guess as any as to what the cut weight will be today.

Livesay found

We have left Morgenthaler and rounded a bend to find Lee Livesay working a similar patch of reads. He is the leader according to the real-time leaderboard with 31-4.

He had been moving along steadily about trolling motor, but just now he had a bite. He missed the fish and now has stopped moving and is working the same spot, apparently for a bedding fish.

Slow going for Crews

John Crews has been sight-fishing most of the morning, but not bedded fish as one might assume. He’s finding what appear to be prespawn buck bass that are in process of establishing a nest site.

More or less, the fish are quite territorial and chasing bream and shiners if they get too close to where the nest might eventually be. He said he’s not seeing many bass on beds in his areas just yet, but with each consecutive passing day with hot sun and warming waters, it’s only a matter of time.

He’s staging up on every fish he sees and works it cast after cast after cast. Eventually he wins and puts hooks into one, but it’s time consuming and requires patience and accuracy.

He’s only got two in the box for a little over 4 pounds.

A change of scenery

For a change of scenery, we have moved to the outflow from Lake George, where we found Chad Morgenthaler weaving his way through tall weeds. He just now caught a keeper but we could not see whether it helped him cull.

A local angler was working in the same area and asked Morgenthaler how he was doing. Morgenthaler said he had a limit but nothing over 3 pounds.

The local volunteered, “I will leave this spot to you.“ Morgenthaler thanked him as the boater drove away. It is not expected that recreational anglers give up their fishing spots for one of the elite pros, but of course it is much appreciated.

Cory Johnston's game plan

This morning Cory Johnston shared his game plan with me. It would begin with catching what he called “filler” fish in the morning, which obviously meant a limit of smaller fish. Then later in the afternoon he would be in the hunt for big bass, namely big females moving up to spawn. So far so good. BASSTrakk shows him in the lead with 1 limit weighing 18-3.

Whatley heating up

Brad Whatley has moved into second place in BASSTrakk after catching a 4-2 and a 3-13. When you add in his first small keeper that gives him three bass for 9-1. His total for the tournament so far is 32-5. Whatley is not catching numbers, but his two bigger fish are keeping him in the top five. 

Better than watching paint dry

If you’re not a bass fisherman, watching these guys fish is about as exciting as watching paint dry, pardon the cliché.

All of the anglers in this area have their Power-Poles or talon shallow water anchors stuck into the bottom. They are methodically casting to the same spot over and over, obviously to big fsh they can see.

Brandon Lester has camped on the same spot for the better part of an hour. It must be a really nice fish that he’s watching and trying to aggravate into biting.

We have seen several small fish being caught, obviously males inhabiting the spawning beds. But no big females have taken the bait while we’ve been watching.

Happy birthday, Hank Cherry!

Day 2 of the Power-Pole Bassmaster Elite is also Hank Cherry’s birthday.

Hank finished Day 1 in 64th place with three fish for 7-13. We’re hoping the birthday boy has better luck today. This is his 7th year on the Elite Series. He has a wonderful family with wife Jaclyn and kids Bella Grace and Christian.

Cherry won the 2013 Elite Series Rookie of the Year award. He has competed in four Bassmaster Classics and narrowly lost in 2013. He has two wins to his credit, an Open at Smith Lake and the All-Star event in 2013.

Please join us in wishing Hank a happy birthday!

Modern technology!

From where I sit, I can see Brandon Cobb’s marshal interviewing him through Skype, apparently on Bassmaster LIVE. Modern technology has truly made it possible for fans to follow the fishing action as it happens. It’s almost as good as being where I am, within sight of all these anglers.

Cobb is one of the newcomers to the Elite Series this year but he is already an accomplished fisherman. He qualified for four FLW Cups and finished in the top 10 in all four.