Top lures at Lake Oahe 2022 Posted on August 23, 2022 Written by Craig Lamb The Guaranteed Rate Bassmaster Elite at Lake Oahe returned to the Great Plains fishery for the first time since 2018. Out West, distance is a relative term, and it took making long runs to reach the most productive areas, where the smallmouth staged on offshore points and irregular bottom features between shallow and deeper water. Even in the wide-open spaces, the smallmouth schooled up in specific areas, making vertical presentations a must. As was keeping an eye on forward facing sonar as the bass roamed the water column following schools of baitfish. “I feel like I have an advantage on a smallmouth event over the field, at least most of them,” said winner Austin Felix. “It is my wheelhouse I would like to think. I had never been here before, but when I came here for (pre-practice) it was the most incredible fishing in the world.” The 2020 Bassmaster Rookie of the Year won $100,000 with a total weight of 71 pounds, 9 ounces. Felix’s winning pattern focused main-lake points sharply dropping off into deep water, with rockpiles on the bottom. Other top finishers focused on the same type pattern, using finesse soft plastic rigs you will see in this gallery. Rig up with all the terminal tackle, soft plastics and other gear you need for these presentations at basspro.com. Cody Huff (10th; 54-15) A drop shot did the trick for Cody Huff. He made it with a Missile Baits Bomb Shot, rigged on a No. 2 VMC hook, with a 1/2-ounce tungsten weight. Tyler Rivet (9th; 57-8) A Carolina rig was the main bait used by Tyler Rivet. He made it with an Xcite Baits Raptor Tail Chunk, rigged on a 3/0 Owner Haymaker EWG Worm Hook, with a 3/4-ounce weight. Bryan New (8th; 60-6) Bryan New alternated between a drop shot, Ned rig and Damiki rig. New made the drop shot with a Zoom Z Drop, rigged on a No. 1 Gamakatsu G Finesse Drop Shot Hook. He made the Ned rig with a Zoom Zlinky, rigged on a 1/4-ounce custom Ned head jig. New also made a Damiki rig with a 3/8-ounce Greenfish Tackle Bryan New Bad Little Shad swimbait head, with a fluke-style trailer. Seth Feider (7th; 63-2) Seth Feider rotated through a hair jig, drop shot and Ned rig. A primary finesse bait was a 1/8-ounce Outkast Tackle Feider Fly. Feider made a drop shot with a 4-inch Z-Man StreakZ, rigged on a No. 4 VMC Spinshot Dropshot Hook, with a 3/8-ounce VMC Tungsten Drop Shot Weight. He also used a 4-inch Z-Man StreakZ, rigged on a 3/16-ounce Outkast Tackle Perfect Ned Head. Patrick Walters (6th; 63-8)Patrick Walters alternated between a drop shot and Ned rig. He made the drop shot with a Zoom Super Fluke, rigged on a No. 2 VMC Finesse Neko Hook, with a 1/2-ounce VMC Tungsten Drop Shot Cylinder Weight. Walters made the Ned rig with a Zoom Beatdown, rigged on a 1/8-ounce VMC Ned Rig Jig. Finesse fishing for smallmouth requires matching hooks, weights and jig heads to maximize the strike appeal of soft plastics. Rig up for summertime smallmouth season with all the tackle you need at basspro.com. Matt Robertson (5th; 64-10) Matt Robertson rotated between a drop shot and Ned rig. He made the drop shot with a 4-inch Berkley PowerBait MaxScent The General, rigged on a No. 2 Berkley Fusion19 Hook, with a 3/8-ounce drop-shot weight. For the Ned head, Robertson used a 1/4-ounce Outkast Tackle Perfect Ned Head, with a Berkley PowerBait MaxScent Flatnose Minnow. Marc Frazier (4th; 66-6) Marc Frazier alternated between a drop shot and Ned head rig. He made the drop shot with a SPRO CJ Smasher, rigged on a No. 2 Gamakatsu G-Finesse Drop Shot Hook, with a 3/8-ounce weight. He also used a SPRO Sakura, rigged on a 1/4-ounce Ned head jig. Taku Ito (3rd; 67-13) Takui Ito’s primary bait was a Neko rig. He made it with an ECOGEAR Jukusei Aqua Swim Shrimp, rigged on a 1/0 Ryugi Talisman Hook, with a 3/16-ounce Boreas ANO ST TG Sinker. Ito finally revealed the before-now “secret Taku juice” strike attractants key to his Elite Series win last year, and multiple appearances in Championship Sundays on smallmouth fisheries. Behold the Nories Bite Bath Liquid and Nories Bitepowder EBI, shrimp scent. Chris Johnston (2nd; 68-6) Chris Johnston rotated through a Carolina rig, Ned rig and drop shot. He made the Carolina rig with a Zoom Speed Craw, rigged on a 3/0 Gamakatsu Extra Wide Gap Hook, with a 1-ounce weight. Johnston made the Ned rig with a SPRO Sakura, rigged on a 3/8-ounce WOO! Tungsten Ned Head, featuring a Gamakatsu hook. He made the drop shot with a SPRO CJ Smasher, rigged on a No. 2 Gamakatsu Split Shot/Drop Shot Hook, with a 1/2-ounce weight. Austin Felix (1st; 71-9) Austin Felix rotated through a Ned rig, drop shot and Carolina rig. He made the Ned rig with a Z-Man Big TRD, rigged on 1/4- or 3/8-ounce Swagger Tungsten Ned Heads. Felix made the drop shot with a Berkley PowerBait MaxScent Flatnose Minnow, or The General. He rigged those to a No. 2 Ryugi Talisman Hook, with a 3/4-ounce Swagger Tungsten Drop Shot Weight. Felix made the Carolina rig with a Zoom Speed Craw, rigged on a No. 4 Ryugi worm hook, with a 5/8-ounce weight.