Hammer time in McDade

SHREVEPORT-BOSSIER CITY, La. -- McDade, a small backwater at the south end of Pool 5, got hammered on Day One. It was undoubtedly one of the most popular spots on the Red River. According to BASSTrakk, Randy Howell jumped out to a quick lead as he pounded a small culvert in an earthen dam at the south end of McDade. He caught roughly 12 pounds in short order, making it look like McDade would carry the day. It didn’t, but it sure could have.

On the first day of practice, Dustin Wilks had the whole creek to himself for four hours. He was nearly giddy at the thought of having the whole creek to himself for Day One. However, nothing could have been further from the reality come tournament day.

When Wilks pulled in this morning, Howell, Ott DeFoe, Fletcher Shryock, Fred Roumbanis, Andrew Upshaw, Allan Glasgow, Steve Kennedy and Mike Iaconelli were all present and all catching fish. Wilks’ disappointment was nearly palpable.

“It was the best looking water I found,” he said. “I don’t really have a Plan B, either. If it’s getting wrecked tomorrow morning – which it probably will be – I may have to go to Pool 4 and scrape something together.”

Despite sacking up 16 pounds, 9 ounces, Wilks’ disappointment doesn’t lie solely in the fact that McDade will be abused again. Tomorrow’s forecast of calm, clear, high skies should worsen things.

“The wind was the only thing that was keeping the fish from getting spooked today; they weren’t afraid of all the noise,” he said.

There was plenty of noise, too. Along with the anglers, there were roughly 20 spectator boats clanging together and running up on stumps, revving outboards the whole day. Everyone kept a respectful distance, though. Noise couldn’t be avoided given the close proximity. Tomorrow is expected to be worse, since it’s Saturday, more folks are off of work and word about the spot has gotten out.

However, McDade’s forecast isn’t all doom and gloom; it’s full of good cover, good water and more importantly, lots of fish.

“If it’s really sunny tomorrow, that may warm the water up enough to pull a wave of fish up to spawn, so it could be better,” Wilks said. “We’ll see.”

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