Lake Fork kayak retrospect: Practice couldn’t hurt

The saying is “practice makes perfect,” and that’s not really true of practicing by pre-fishing before a tournament. Everyone can’t be perfect in a fishing tournament, no mater how much they practice. “Practice can make better” is a truer statement.

Interviewing the top three finishers of the Lake Fork Huk B.A.S.S. Nation Kayak Series powered by TourneyX presented by Abu Garcia really made it apparent how important it was to effectively find fish while pre-fishing.

This is beyond obvious to you guys who have done well in tournaments and who regularly show up a few days before a contest — or at least make it to the lake on weekends leading up to the tournament.

In the first two B.A.S.S. Nation Kayak Series tournaments, Alabama’s Logan Martin on March 5 and Texas’ Lake Fork on Saturday, I didn’t plan enough days for pre-fishing. Work, in the form of article deadlines, got in the way of heading south out of Michigan to pre-fish a couple of days. The result: I finished 112th in both of them. Kind of embarrassing, but at least embarrassing in a unique way.

I’m not saying that I could have done a whole lot better with a few days on the water before competition day, but some days of practice could have at least made my tackle leaner and meaner. Meaning I could have focused on packing the lures that were working and spent less time looking for things to try on tournament day.

The top two anglers, Cody Milton of Searcy, Ark., and Dan Krispinsky of Augusta, Ga., both located bass on beds during their practice days and sight fished for them. Milton caught big females by dropping a Strike King Rage Bug on their heads to accumulate 100.5 inches. Krispinky enticed the big ones to bite with a Chasebaits Mudbug, possibly the most realistic crawfish lure made. He had 97.75 inches. Third place Chad Dagley of Scurry, Texas, fished shallow rocks and rip-rap with a Rat-L-Trap and a bladed jig, likely encountering spawners up shallow. He totaled 95 inches.