Central Open #1 begins

A new season begins as Day 1 of the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Central Opens starts up with the first event for 2016.
Photo: James Overstreet - A new season begins as Day 1 of the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Central Opens starts up with the first event for 2016.
The tournament field of 194 boats, each with a boater and non-boater, will fish on the Arkansas River.
Photo: James Overstreet - The tournament field of 194 boats, each with a boater and non-boater, will fish on the Arkansas River.
The line of boats leads out to the river near Muskogee, Okla. The anglers will compete for the next three days.
Photo: James Overstreet - The line of boats leads out to the river near Muskogee, Okla. The anglers will compete for the next three days.
Ken Iyobe is a Bassmaster Elite Series rookie from Texas who is fishing the Opens this week.
Photo: James Overstreet - Ken Iyobe is a Bassmaster Elite Series rookie from Texas who is fishing the Opens this week.
Today’s forecast calls for scattered showers, overcast skies and light northeast winds. That’s good news since the area has taken on a lot of rainfall. The river is high, muddy the bass a challenge to find.
Photo: James Overstreet - Today’s forecast calls for scattered showers, overcast skies and light northeast winds. That’s good news since the area has taken on a lot of rainfall. The river is high, muddy the bass a challenge to find.
Finding those bass will be easier for Elite Series pro Jason Christie, an Oklahoma native skilled on the ways of river bass in his home state.
Photo: James Overstreet - Finding those bass will be easier for Elite Series pro Jason Christie, an Oklahoma native skilled on the ways of river bass in his home state.
This is the first of three Central Opens. The remaining events are in late September on the Red River and late October on the Atchafalaya Basin.
Photo: James Overstreet - This is the first of three Central Opens. The remaining events are in late September on the Red River and late October on the Atchafalaya Basin.
Fans gather at Three Forks Harbor for the takeoff. The venue is a popular and well-suited location for tournaments. A large boat ramp, activity center and the boat basin are the services available.
Photo: James Overstreet - Fans gather at Three Forks Harbor for the takeoff. The venue is a popular and well-suited location for tournaments. A large boat ramp, activity center and the boat basin are the services available.
A moderate chance of flash floods is in the forecast, too. The high water presents a navigation hazard for the anglers as large floating logs are seen in the river channel.
Photo: James Overstreet - A moderate chance of flash floods is in the forecast, too. The high water presents a navigation hazard for the anglers as large floating logs are seen in the river channel.
Another familiar face here is Tommy Biffle, an Elite Series pro from nearby Wagoner. Biffle knows the river well and his style of shallow flipping and pitching will likely put him in contention to win.
Photo: James Overstreet - Another familiar face here is Tommy Biffle, an Elite Series pro from nearby Wagoner. Biffle knows the river well and his style of shallow flipping and pitching will likely put him in contention to win.
Another Elite Series angler skilled on this river is Mike McClelland. The Arkansan hopes to prove it this week on the river.
Photo: James Overstreet - Another Elite Series angler skilled on this river is Mike McClelland. The Arkansan hopes to prove it this week on the river.
Trait Crist plans a long run to an area showing promise during practice, where she caught the size of bass that everyone is looking for here.
Photo: James Overstreet - Trait Crist plans a long run to an area showing promise during practice, where she caught the size of bass that everyone is looking for here.
Stephen Browning, a self-proclaimed river rat, is an expert on the Arkansas River from end to end. Look for the Arkansan to be a contender for the win this week.
Photo: James Overstreet - Stephen Browning, a self-proclaimed river rat, is an expert on the Arkansas River from end to end. Look for the Arkansan to be a contender for the win this week.
This is a special week for McClelland. Son Justin is fishing his first Opens event. Justin, 26, plans to fish the Central and Northern Opens this season.
Photo: James Overstreet - This is a special week for McClelland. Son Justin is fishing his first Opens event. Justin, 26, plans to fish the Central and Northern Opens this season.
The boats slow under the bridge for a reason. Bridges in Oklahoma are no-wake zones.
Photo: James Overstreet - The boats slow under the bridge for a reason. Bridges in Oklahoma are no-wake zones.
Many of the anglers plan to lock through into the next pool down on the river. That’s a risk-reward scenario since timing is everything. Get stuck below in the lower pool and you risk not getting back on time to the weigh-in.
Photo: James Overstreet - Many of the anglers plan to lock through into the next pool down on the river. That’s a risk-reward scenario since timing is everything. Get stuck below in the lower pool and you risk not getting back on time to the weigh-in.
Rick Clunn is fishing the Central Opens this season. He likes the challenge and is skilled on the river systems coming up on the schedule.
Photo: James Overstreet - Rick Clunn is fishing the Central Opens this season. He likes the challenge and is skilled on the river systems coming up on the schedule.
Clunn is fishing his fourth decade on the B.A.S.S. tour and hope to earn a berth in the 2017 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro.
Photo: James Overstreet - Clunn is fishing his fourth decade on the B.A.S.S. tour and hope to earn a berth in the 2017 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by GoPro.
Another Elite Series pro with lots on the line this week is Fred Roumbanis. He’s another Oklahoman who is taking advantage of a chance to fish his home water.
Photo: James Overstreet - Another Elite Series pro with lots on the line this week is Fred Roumbanis. He’s another Oklahoman who is taking advantage of a chance to fish his home water.