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Nitrofreak

First real tournament against some really good sticks

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I know what to expect as far as tournaments go, this is my first tournament for a measuring stick to see how much I have learned, I have set a couple of goals, primarily to make sure that I have fun and not stress over anything, second goal, to reach the top 25 ( that one is not going to make or break me but it's where I hope to be) there will be some truly great sticks in this tournament on my home lake and if I can break the top 25 I will feel like I have accomplished something and that I am on the right track.

The tournament is an angler appreciation tournament, it's Oct. 30th, I plan on trying to do a little pre fishing before then for ideas of where the fish will hopefully be the day of the tournament, other than that I won't really have much more time for.

Any and all suggestions/advise welcomed and would be appreciated, Thanks all !!!

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Go have fun and don't stress. Fish like you'd normally fish. If you go and try to do something different just because you're fishing against the "good sticks", it's not really a very good measure of how you'd do against them. 

I've gotten the chance to fish against some of the best, it's always a fun experience. 

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19 minutes ago, Bluebasser86 said:

Go have fun and don't stress. Fish like you'd normally fish. If you go and try to do something different just because you're fishing against the "good sticks", it's not really a very good measure of how you'd do against them. 

I've gotten the chance to fish against some of the best, it's always a fun experience. 

Thanks BB, it's much appreciated man !!

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You got it bud. Its your home lake and I know we both have been down similar paths trying to learn to follow the bass throughout the year. Idk if you remember answering a lot of questions for me about a year ago but it showed that you had truly spent time on the water. Don't second guess yourself and have fun. Good luck

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Sonny, I know of nobody with better attitude and temperament for this opportunity.  You've worked hard on getting better and I don't ever see you yielding to 'pressure' of a tournament.  You'll do well, I'm positive.

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28 minutes ago, riverbasser said:

You got it bud. Its your home lake and I know we both have been down similar paths trying to learn to follow the bass throughout the year. Idk if you remember answering a lot of questions for me about a year ago but it showed that you had truly spent time on the water. Don't second guess yourself and have fun. Good luck

I do remember, my only hope is that I helped without confusing you, it's time to put some of this stuff to the test but at least it's on a body of water I have studied the last two years in intimate detail in hopes that I can go somewhere else and have some success as well, Va seems to be a finesse anglers dream come true, a lot of hard work has gone into my presentations, bait selections, tackle choices in general.

This past week was one of the toughest weeks I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with, it taught me a lot about patience, timing, attention to details we just don't use in everyday angling but must stay familiar with.

Thank you my friend, it means a bunch !!!

27 minutes ago, Choporoz said:

Sonny, I know of nobody with better attitude and temperament for this opportunity.  You've worked hard on getting better and I don't ever see you yielding to 'pressure' of a tournament.  You'll do well, I'm positive.

Thanks Dave, I'm excited to get this done and under my belt, nervous a bit, yes, one could say that, it's a good feeling to have the support of friends and one that I will carry with me for sure !!!

Thanks buddy !!!

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My tournament strategy was to stay put , dont run around the lake , catch a limit then go big . Weighing in fish put me in the money and eventually a big win . It was only 1 win in  a large  event but several top 5 to go with it .

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K.I.S.S. ;)

Do Not...try fishing again the other anglers!

It's you against the lake!

Fish your strengths!

Follow your gut instincts!

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The level of your competition doesn't change anything. You still need to catch the fish. It's you against the fish, just like any other normal day on the water. 

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Already said .... Just fish ... let everything else take care of itself.  The only thing you can control out there is your presentation and your attitude.  The rest ... .don't worry bout it. :)

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10 hours ago, scaleface said:

My tournament strategy was to stay put , dont run around the lake , catch a limit then go big . Weighing in fish put me in the money and eventually a big win . It was only 1 win in  a large  event but several top 5 to go with it .

Makes sense, that just may be the ticket too the way this past tournament went, thanks, it's much appreciated !!!

10 hours ago, Catt said:

K.I.S.S. ;)

Do Not...try fishing again the other anglers!

It's you against the lake!

Fish your strengths!

Follow your gut instincts!

OK ! OK ! Stop hollaring at me LOL !!

Thanks big guy !!!

9 hours ago, fishballer06 said:

The level of your competition doesn't change anything. You still need to catch the fish. It's you against the fish, just like any other normal day on the water. 

Your right, it doesn't and certainly makes plenty of sense, thank you !!!

9 hours ago, Felix77 said:

Already said .... Just fish ... let everything else take care of itself.  The only thing you can control out there is your presentation and your attitude.  The rest ... .don't worry bout it. :)

Got it, shut up and fish!!! LOL !!

I want to say thanks all for the truly great advise, I'm looking forward to finally getting started on this journey and I will take every bit of this with me and put it to good use, I am not expecting anything but to be confident in the fact that I will give 100 percent, if I come back with an empty well, it won't be from the lack of effort, it will only mean that I have learned a new lesson to put to use for the next time.

From the heart, Thanx everyone !!!

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Not the time to "learn", or to fish someone else's fish, tactics, areas etc:. Do "your" thing, relax and have a good time fishing your strengths. You can do this,... its easy to get distracted, anxious, and even overwhelmed. But if you just realize these "big sticks" are just regular guys, that need to catch fish too, you've already got half of them beat.

 I use to utilize a tactic I would employ when I was dart player, while tourney fishing. As I climbed the ladder to a "super a" dart teams status, I would get nervous, as these are the guys that used to kick my butt.

 But in reality? They are just people,.. alot of them would get uptight,.. and try to psych others out. Which in turn, I learned meant they were intimidated, scared, worried that they were about to fail miserably. They lost the fun of it all, playing darts was now "above" their enjoyment of the game, commraderie of good friends, and meeting new people. 

 So, I would just play my game and have fun, and it worked wonders, I was now kicking their butts. Just the mere thought that these "super a" "icons" really were just scared, lost shells of their former selves. Trying everything they could to hold on to their fame/status. Made me stand back and take a good look at what I used to allow above me, were actually miles below. Their antics forced me to "not" become one of them, and be a better me, having fun, and really enjoy the game and all the positive it had to offer. I was never better at the game after that sunk in. The team I was on became state champs shortly after.

 I offer you this as I can see how a sponsored pro with all the trimmings, wrapped matching truck and boat. sponsored by the top tackle manufacturers with patches all over their shirts, stating they found good fish during prefish, at the ramp before take-off, can be quite intimidating. And throw anyone off their game, and it mostly does. 

 So, when your at the ramp, and you see these "big sticks" cutting it up, or worse yet and I hope not, looking down their nose. Just smirk, and go have fun, doing what you do with your mind on "your" game and not theirs. You will perform much better and most important ,.,... you'll have fun

 If you already knew this? ,...awesome!  If not? here's a little "present" for ya. Now go young skywalker, may the force be with you!,...lol ,...and by the way,...stay up wind,..jabba farts!! ,..lmao

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OMG YOUR HILARIOUS MAN !!!!

Thanks for all that, I started working on reminders last night from all of you guys of the things I will take with me on my first outing, a lot of this is going to stick with me for a very long time and I for one am going to enjoy having all of you there with me, well, not physically because my boat just ain't big enough, I'm pumped, ready to go, one big deep breath at launch and I will turn my focus to what I do and do it to the best of my abilities for that day.

Thanks big guy !!!!!

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There's lots of good advice on here already.  The biggest part is to make it simple.  Make sure everything is prepped and ready to roll when you need it to make the day smoother.  This includes a good night's rest and a thermos full of coffee for the water if you need it.  You know that lake well, and have caught fish there before, so you have no reason to not be confident.  Fish your style and remember that it's the lake you're fishing against and not so much the other guys.  If you're having a tough day, remember, most of them will be, too.  Similarly, if you're crushing it, keep that in mind and realize you probably won't be the only one on good fish and use it as motivation to keep pushing to upgrade your limit.  Lastly, enjoy the competition and have fun.  Good luck!

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1 hour ago, Turkey sandwich said:

There's lots of good advice on here already.  The biggest part is to make it simple.  Make sure everything is prepped and ready to roll when you need it to make the day smoother.  This includes a good night's rest and a thermos full of coffee for the water if you need it.  You know that lake well, and have caught fish there before, so you have no reason to not be confident.  Fish your style and remember that it's the lake you're fishing against and not so much the other guys.  If you're having a tough day, remember, most of them will be, too.  Similarly, if you're crushing it, keep that in mind and realize you probably won't be the only one on good fish and use it as motivation to keep pushing to upgrade your limit.  Lastly, enjoy the competition and have fun.  Good luck!

Sound advise man, Thanx !!!

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The tourney I'm most proud of , I was not on fish . I stayed on this fifty yard section of steep bank all day long , just going back and forth fishing aT-rigged lizard . I caught the final keeper with about thirty minutes remaining and finished second  just two ounces away from first .If I was running all over the place I probably dont cash a check .

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22 hours ago, Nitrofreak said:

OMG YOUR HILARIOUS MAN !!!!

Thanks for all that, I started working on reminders last night from all of you guys of the things I will take with me on my first outing, a lot of this is going to stick with me for a very long time and I for one am going to enjoy having all of you there with me, well, not physically because my boat just ain't big enough, I'm pumped, ready to go, one big deep breath at launch and I will turn my focus to what I do and do it to the best of my abilities for that day.

Thanks big guy !!!!!

You are most welcome, and even more? deserving,... Nitrofreak. give'em heck, but most important, have fun doing it

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8 hours ago, Keith "Hamma" Hatch said:

You are most welcome, and even more? deserving,... Nitrofreak. give'em heck, but most important, have fun doing it

Will do man !!!

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Hate to say it but you would do better if you didn't sell the nitro.

 

Lol jk man

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22 hours ago, riverbasser said:

Hate to say it but you would do better if you didn't sell the nitro.

 

Lol jk man

Too late for that man !! LOL !!

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Well, I learned a lot, does that count ??? LOL!

WOW !!! What an experience that was, 150 boats, 300 anglers, on a 9600 acre impoundment, pretty big event for my home lake, in hind site I let the emotions get to me, I got flustered and lost sight of the big picture, started the morning boat 69, first stop, fishing a large flat, noted a lot of bait in the area but not much in the way of activity, first indication of life came about 15 minutes into the event, water conditions, stained, surface temp. 65, worked my way off of an old concrete bridge piling to an old boat ramp with lots of chunk rock, made a handful of casts before an angler pulled in beside of me and started fishing ahead of me, not upset but meh, ok, first experience with this sort of thing, first fish came from an area they had just passed, just barely legal but a keeper non the less, little boost of confidence that we were on the right track, the little guy came from a spinner bait slow rolled over some old road bed gravel, then, nothing, hit a couple of areas in that large flat that had some bird activity but nothing, moved to an area that had a little bit clearer water but couldn't find any activity, this area had a high concentration of anglers in it already, well, I decided to hit a couple of areas that I had known of and again came up empty handed, probably should have fished behind some of these guys and tried my luck anyway, I didn't even think about already following up with one angler, anyway, to make a long story short, I finished up with 2 little fish that weighed 1.8 pounds, combined, winning weight was just over 12 pounds, actually 12.55 won the event, seems as though I fished behind someone all day long and in hind site I probably could have / should have fished some areas that I know better but didn't even try.

It was a lot of fun having you guys along, I did pay attention, I kept it simple, I fished my strengths , didn't let the ones who cut in front of me have too much of the pie so to speak, I weighed in when a lot of others didn't, not much but meh, a little success is always a good thing, in my case, very little LOL !!  I wish to thank all of you for the advise it means a lot !!!

The experience was great, I ended up with a few offers from some pretty good guys to go out with on the water, and I even met one of our members here who loaned me a measuring stick, didn't know who he was until about an hour ago LOL !!  Thanks FishnFritz !!!

There is always the next time, next year, who knows what the future holds but I am looking forward to future endeavors on the water, continuing and learning as much as I can from you guys and gals and putting what I learn into experience, hopefully someday passing some of that experience along to others.

Guys and Gals, thank you very much !!!

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Wow That's a lot of boats for that lake. Well congrats, you got one down. I don't have experience in this but I bet they get easier from here.

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1 hour ago, riverbasser said:

Wow That's a lot of boats for that lake. Well congrats, you got one down. I don't have experience in this but I bet they get easier from here.

Thanks man !! I don't know if they get any easier either my friend, guess I'll find out next year hopefully, it's a lot of fun and I hope you get to experience it if that's one of your goals.

God bless and thanks a bunch !!!

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As long as you gave 100% thats all you can do. Experience in such situations will provide you with all the insight you need for future refference. Hind sight after any tourney, will bring up alot of could of/should of's, but, dont let them hinder your thoughts. Instead,.. use them as a learning tool, work on eliminating them, and future tournies will not only go smoother, but with better results as well.

 You weighed in some fish when others didnt?,... ^5,... at least you didnt come in skunked, or worse, allowed pressure to get in the way resulting in a skunking. Having fun,.. meeting new people, and gaining some experience. Is what I'd call a win anyday, maybe without a paycheck, but can one really put a price on that?

 Good job Nitro!

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I wanted to fish that one too, but too many schedule conflicts :(.

Anna can get really small with that many boats and the cutoffs can get frustrating...For some reason that kind of stuff happens more frequently on Anna, which sucks.  Shouldn't have to deal with that kind of stuff, but it's part of fishing there in bigger tournaments unfortunately.  

You'll get em in the next event :).  

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