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sean0920

friday night tourney miseries.

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well, first i need to introduce myself. i have been posting for about two weeks now and havent really said anything about myself. i live in southeastern wv, monroe county with my wife and two children.  been fishing all my life, mostly smallies on the river and trout, but also some largemouth. grew up boating on the big lakes around, dad would take us skiing but he wasnt into the big boat fishing scene.  fast forward to about 10 years ago and my good buddy who owns a bass boat. we started going out and fishing for smallies, spots and stripers. fell in love with the big lake fishing and purchased a used skeeter this year. the lakes i fish are mountaiin lakes, claytor and moomaw mostly. they are each about 5000 and 2500 acres. they are deep, with rocky bluffs, long coves, and some flats, but not much grass.  moomaw actually has no development, no docks, not many blowdowns, but a ton of underwater structure, humps and such.

i decided to fish some sunday tourneys this spring and fell in love with the whole tourney thing. i dont know if thats bad or good but it sure gets expensive!! i have done really well so far with a couple second place finishes.  the friday night tourneys have now started which run from 6-midnight. man these things are un nerving me.  the night bite hasnt been good for the last couple years so i have heard, so i figure strategy would be catch the fish before dark. thing is so much lake and so little time! the day tourneys run 10 hours so i have had time to scout around and find fish. but i have had a hard time deciding on just how to attack the 6-9 oclock window. the lake is 65% smallies and they are nomadic so its just been hard to focus with so much water.

how do you all attack these type of situations?

thanks for reading and the warm welcome so far

sean

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There's a good broad question, and my response may seem similar. Yes, the smallies are going to seem more nomadic, and indeed they probably are, than the largemouth on the same lake. Thing is though, they aren't really moving that far, say, 100 yards during a day? They have somewhere to rest during the day, and somewhere to feed when they choose to do so, generally dawn and dusk. Sometimes the spots are one in the same. The fish tends to minimize the distance it must cover soas to conserve energy. This is why during the day we start looking deep, because the fish aren't expending energy to feed and are resting. I know here in Michigan its light until around 10:30, so until then, and for a little after, I'll go active, looking shallow and covered for feeding fish. There won't be much lure selection that needs to take place if you find them, because they'll hit most anything. Later though, after dark, it may be advantageous to look for resting spots, deeper. If its warming up into the night, my favorite tactic is topwater, even out in the middle of the lake you can draw them up on an Xrap or  Original rap from 6 feet under in those conditions.

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