Ramada All Star Semi Finals Lake Jordan
I had never been to Lake Jordan before this event but I had seen one of the shows from last year. I had an idea that I wanted to fish shallow here. I know that on the Coosa river chain that there are always fish shallow.
Practice: I spent most of my time running the backs of tributaries looking for cooler water. I was able to find 4 or 5 spots like this that had fish in them. I spent some time on the main run as well but never got much going this way.
Day 1: I had one stretch of docks that I had a couple of bites on that I decided to start on. About 30 minutes into the day I caught my first one flipping, it was about 4 ½ pounds! This is a big fish for this time of year on this body of water. Catching a big one of the bat took some of pressure off. I knew I just needed to finish my limit out and I would have a good bag. This was easier said than done! About 9:30 I still had only the one real good one. I pulled into an area that I had caught one decent keeper out of in practice. It was an area that had a creek coming in and had a lot of shallow stumps. The water was off colored and cooler here as well. I caught 2 keepers in here, one on a chatterbait and one on a spinnerbait. These were both solid fish about 2 pounds each. I hit a few other spots that were unproductive before catching any more fish. Finally in the afternoon I went into a creek that was up the lake that had some moving water in it. On the way in I caught a nice spot flipping a creature bait along a bluff bank. I missed a few more bites and caught some little ones the rest of the way in. I was working my way out along the same bank and caught my 5thkeeper, another solid spot. I knew I had a decent bag at this point so I decided to not go to any more places that I had caught fish in practice and just go fish the rest of the day. I also checked in early to spend some time out of the heat! I had the biggest bag of the day at 12-13! Eighth place was about 7 pounds so I still had to catch some fish the next day but I was looking good to make the cut here.
Day 2: I started in the same area but I never caught anything out of here. I hit a few other places and still haven’t had any luck. I stop on an island that had some fish schooling in practice and I caught a couple here on a shaky head as well. I catch one small keeper on a shaky head with a Berkley Havoc Bottom Hopper on it. Shortly after that I caught a decent keeper a little over 2 pounds on a soft jerkbait. Then I missed a good one on the jerkbait and missed a big one on topwater! This was aggravating because both of these were real good fish and I would have been in the cut right then if I had caught them. After this I went to the back of the creek that was good to me the first day. I had fished nearly as far back as I could before I got my first bite. I caught this fish on a buzzbait and it was a solid 2 pounds. On the way out Mark Zona got in the boat and rode with me for a little bit. I turned around to go back through this area with a homemade crankbait that I call “Butch”. I caught a fish about 2 ½ pounds right off the bat, then went about 100’ and caught another one this size. This gave me 5 and a decent bag. I fished on back then turned around and came out. When I got to the log that I caught the 2nd fish off of I threw by it and missed one. I threw by it and missed him again! I moved the boat a little, changed my casting angle and caught the fish the 3rd time it bit. This was another solid fish over 2 pounds. I knew I was in the cut now and was very excited, it was about 11:00 and I had done all I needed to do. I did go to a creek that I fished the day before and saw some fish in but didn’t catch any and culled twice here with nice fish. This was around 12:30. After this I didn’t fish very hard and waited on 4:00! Again I checked in early and hung out in the shade. I had 12-10 and finished 2nd overall. This put me in the bracket against Ike for the first round on the Alabama River.
Added edge: My homemade crankbait the Butch! This is a bait I have made and used for about 6 or 7 years now. It only runs about 18” deep and comes through brush like a four wheel drive truck. It is very different than most shallow crankbaits though. The action of the bait is not your normal shallow crankbait. It has a lot tighter wiggle than comparable baits. This was the right bait for the job and it worked great here!