Monday, January 14, 2013

Pre-practice Comes to a Close

Father Time caught up with me and I had to end my pre-practice session for 2013 on Kissimmee Chain of Lakes.  The past two months have been nice, allowing me time to examine the conditions of the lakes and moods of fish at a leisurely pace. Now it’s late January, and my tournament season is fast upon me.  The first event, Bassmaster Weekend Series, is scheduled on the Kissimmee Chain of Lakes in two weeks, immediately followed by the Bassmaster Southern Open event Jan 31-Feb 2.
The Kissimmee lakes are acting very typical, with bass in all three phases of spawning.  Professional anglers like Chris Lane are predicting good weightsWeed control efforts against the overgrowth of nuisance Hydrilla have taken affect.  Some lakes are fishing easy, giving up ten pounds limits within minutes, others were difficult at best.  The new lake maps that Florida's fish & wildlife agency has been placing on the Internet were very helpful to my practice.
Taking advice from Gary Klein I plan on fishing to my strengths.  That is, I plan on keeping a spinnerbait in my hand and slow rolling my bait through the deep, open waters of the chain.  Over the years I have been able to catch many bass six to nine pounds with this technique and for the Southern Opens I know that I have to concentrate on quality fish, not just limits. 

In pre-practice I had to slow down even more and occasionally cast a worm to a submersed plant bed to check if bass were present.  As you see, they were!
Kissimmee Chain of Lakes pre-practice bass, 2013
The upcoming events are going to test my ability to focus on fishing a pattern rather than a spot.  As a local on the Kissimmee Chain, I constantly fight the urge to check on fishing spots where I caught bass in the past.  Bass tournaments are situational events, where every day a different set of circumstances cause bass and prey to act differently.  My past successes provide a clue on how bass will react, but they are never a guarantee that I can catch them in that exact spot again. 
My 2013 strategy will be to fish my strengths and be open-minded to the fishing patterns that I find from practice.  Knowing that I can't fish everything, I figure that by keeping my game plan simple and fishing to my core skill set, I should fair well in the upcoming Bassmaster events and have fun doing so.  It's all about the fun...   

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