The FLW pros are on Lake Eufaula and the B.A.S.S. Southern Open is at our back door on Lake Logan Martin. Both lakes should be back to normal water levels by the beginning of competition, which starts Thursday.
Last week, the B.A.S.S. Elite pros competed on the turbulent Alabama River at Montgomery. Heavy rains and flooding from the previous week caused organizers to move the launch site. Strong currents and changing water levels forced the pros to change tactics each day.
Some anglers made the run of more than 40 minutes up the Coosa River to the tail waters of Jordan Dam. On the first day of competition, Oklahoma pro Tommy Biffle tore loose his lower unit on his outboard. He attempted to cross a waterfall to reach an eddy. Biffle didn’t let it affect his efforts, finishing in the sixth spot.
Another Okie pro, Edwin Evers, came out on top with more than 75 pounds of bass in four days. He used a variety of lures from spinnerbaits to Texas-rigged plastics and crankbaits. Evers had to change his game plan each day with the constantly changing water conditions. He also gained a berth for next year’s Bassmaster Classic on Lake Guntersville.
Alabama pros fared well in this event. Steve Kennedy finished third by making the long run each day to Jordan Dam. Aaron Martens held down the No. 8 spot, while Randy Howell had his best finish of the year at 11th.
Expect to see some of the Elite pros this week on Logan Martin as they fish with other pros from around the South. Southern Open No. 3 begins Thursday with launch out of Pell City Park. Daily launches are at 5:30 a.m., and weigh-ins Thursday and Friday are at same location at 2 p.m. On Saturday, the final weigh-in will be at the Bass Pro Shops in Leeds at 3 p.m.
In the Opens, both pros and co-anglers fish together in the same boat. Each competes in his or her division for cash and prizes. The winner on the pro side will receive a slot in next year’s Bassmaster Classic. A full field of about 150 anglers in each division will compete the first two days. On the final day, only the top 12 pro and co-anglers will fish.
On the south end of the state, the FLW pros and co-anglers will see what Lake Eufaula has to offer. The lake level has been higher than normal because of rains and water flowing down river. With the water temperature in the low 70s and levels stabilizing, expect some big sacks of bass this week.
There should be a field of 150 anglers of pros and co-anglers for this event. Everyone fishes the first two days. Then the top 20 in each category compete Saturday, and the top 10 pros fight it out Sunday. Daily launch is at Lakepoint Resort State Park at 6:30 a.m. with weigh-ins at same spot for Thursday and Friday at 3 p.m. Weigh-ins Saturday and Sunday move to the Eufaula Wal-Mart at 4 p.m.
Charles Johnson is the Star’s outdoor editor. You can reach Charles at ChrJohn7@aol.com.