Ehrler’s Edge: Beaver Lake Ups and Downs

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EhrlerBlogPre-fishing was tough. On the first day of practice we had crazy weather. It was overacast and raining, but still like 70 degrees and they were biting good. I didn’t get a whole lot of bites in the morning, but in the afternoon they started biting like crazy. I ran around and caught quite a few. I was throwing a Lucky Craft 2.5 DD and just running the bank. I ended up with about 12 pounds in a little over 45 minutes.

Then I switched to my signature series Phenix Casting jig. Beaver Lake fish like finesse jigs so I trimmed it up a little and used a Yamamoto Flappin’ hog for a trailer. I casted that around and got quite a few bites. I started to think this was going to be a fun tournament. I had at least 15 bites that day and things were looking up.

The next day it was really windy and raining in the morning and then it cleared up. I kid you not, I didn’t have a single bite until about 1:00 and then I caught a short fish. I went until about 5:30 PM before I caught a keeper. Which changed my thinking to “this is going to be a bad one.”

On day three, I went out and fished all day and caught just 1 keeper. My practice was a real struggle. I threw the Slender Pointer 112, the Pointer 100 DD and the Pointer 78. I caught quite a few fish, but they were all small. It was not easy and left me feeling I only had a couple areas where I could catch fish.

On day one I ran to an area where I thought I could catch fish with the crankbait. That wasn’t working, so I switched to a fish head spin with a Yamamoto grub. I was able to catch two, a three-pound smallmouth and a pound and a half spotted bass. I had four good opportunities to catch fish and I was only able to put two in the boat. After day one I sat in 85th place with about four and a half pounds.

I fished a lot smarter on day two. On day one I didn’t fish smart, I wasn’t focused on how and where I was just going through the motions and not thinking about what I really needed to do to catch fish. I figured out on day 2 that I needed to fish a lot faster, which is not typical for this time of year there. I covered a lot more water and I bounced around a ton. I threw the same baits, a grub on a fish head spin.

Right off the bat, I caught a three-pound largemouth. Then I started getting bites and I’d miss them. I had a shakey head with a Yamamoto 4” Senko tied on. When I’d miss a fish or I’d see one come out of the deep trees and boil on the fish head, I was able to throw back on it with the shakey head and they’d bite it on the sink.

I weighed eleven and change on day two jumped up a little over forty places to get a check. I really put myself in a hole the first day, with the bites I had I should have been up at least another fifteen to twenty places from where I finished. You never know and I just didn’t give myself very many opportunities.

The next event is Lake Hartwell in South Carolina. It looks like we are going to time it perfectly. It should be a “pick your poison” kind of tournament. Meaning, if you want to flip them, you can flip ‘em. If you want to throw a crankbait, you’ll catch ‘em. If you want to skip docks, you’ll catch ‘em. You can do so many different things there, just because of the time of year. The waters starting to warm up and the fish are getting active and I think there will be all kinds of stuff that will be successful.

I’m leaving my boat at a friends house in Atlanta and flying home to be with Kelley. We’ve got a baby appointment and we’ve just reached the half way point, 20 weeks. Then I am flying out to the Cincinatti, Ohio area to work a show for Dixie Marine, a Ranger dealer. If you’re in the area stop by and say hello!