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Okieracer

First tourney advice

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I've read up on the columns about co-angling and tournament tips.  I'm fishing my first bass tourney on the 25th as a co-angler.  I'm going to be bringing my large tackle bag, 3 rods, and a snack and drink.  Its only a one day tourney and runs from safe light til 1pm.  My poles are 2 baitcasters one with 14lb floro for cranks and one with 14lb mono for spinnerbaits and Carolina rigging and a spinning for weightless worms.  My tourney partner said hes more into a stay and play approach than the run and gun style.  So we'll probably scout out a few 3 or 4 spots and fish them most of the day.  I'm just looking for anything else I may need to know or should do.  I'm splitting the entry and gonna give him gas money. Any advice is appreciated.  Thx in advance.  

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good luck, its addicting

fish against the fish, not the other anglers:  relax

fish your strength and try not to scramble with 100 lures

fish slow--you don't need to copy the angler unless he's catching lots of fish

watch what hes doing and where hes casting and improve on his technique, fish the spots hes not hitting

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Is it a team format, or are non boaters competing against eachother?  How many fish are weighed in?

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This is the best advise ever!! DO NOT eat greasy food the night before please believe me :o!! You are gonna have alot of fun take your time have fun and throw what you know.

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Join the Immodium Pro Staffers  ;D

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I agree 100% with fishizzle.

I also have to add that you are riding in someone elses high priced bass rig. Keep your stuff organized! Don't leave garbage in his boat. When your done with your drink bottle put it into your bag.

Keep your gear ready to stow at a moments notice. When the owner is ready to hit a new spot, he'll start strapping down his rods and by the time he has, you should be about ready to go. Basically don't make him wait for you.

I find it best to take out the lure I want and then place the box back into my bag. That way you don't create clutter.

Don't cast over the center line unless they say it's ok. Kind of like in Ultimate match fishing.

Make sure you have rain gear. If you can't get goretex, get something cheap untill you can get goretex. If your riding in a boat with a motor bigger than 150 HP and your wearing plastic raingear, it's gonna rip right off your body.

When I fish a tournament here is what I take......

fishing bag with 5-8 boxes

5-9 rods rigged and ready to go. Rig them at the ramp if need be.

duffle bag with rain gear, snacks and a sandwich along with a couple drinks or more depending on the temp.

I usually buy more snacks than I eat on the water, that way I have some grub for the way home.

You might be wise to take a pair of sandles too.

You say he like to sit and soak. Make sure you have some finesse lures. Stuff like tubes, worms, etc.... If I was you, I'd start off throwing search baits.  Then once the bite slows or you dont catch any, switch to worms, tubes, and similar plastics.

Post where you'll be fishing....maybe someone can give you some good lure colors to use.

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good luck, its addicting

fish against the fish, not the other anglers: relax

fish your strength and try not to scramble with 100 luresfish slow--you don't need to copy the angler unless he's catching lots of fish

watch what hes doing and where hes casting and improve on his technique, fish the spots hes not hitting

I struggled for 1.5 years with this one.  Fish what you fish best.  Tournament time isn't the time to test new lures.  Except on occasion when you need to tweak certain things, but that will come in time.

Good luck and keep us posted on how you do!

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Its a team format and 5 fish limit. But it is paying for 2 big bass and 1 out of every 7 boats.
Try to carpool with your boater, and discuss places and tactics.  Work as a team.  We always keep all our fish, and only cull after we both limit.  Check your rules on that last one.  Most importantly, have fun, and if you bet back boated, just remind your boater that you're a team.

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I talked to him about car pooling but its opening day of muzzle loader season so he's headed to the lodge after weigh-in.  We met on a local fishing forum and he seems to be an established member of the local fishing circuit.  Also he seemed very personable from our conversations over the phone.  The tourney is on Ft. Gibson lake in Okla.  

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Sounds like you'll have fun.  Ask him what he'd like you to throw and where.  I'll bet he's more interested in catching fish, and the more the merrier.  If he's really working some shoreline structure or a dock, and you can't get in there, just keep a jig or t-rig worm and work the deeper water.  That way, you'll be complimenting his approach.  If you have to fish "used" water, try something a bit smaller, subtle in those spots.

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Don't do what I did.......

Fish your strengths. I let others talk me into baits and techniques that I was not comfortable with. After that, I was fishing the way others do, not the way I knew how to. I caught one fish. Take what others say as advice, but make your fishing decisions based on what you know you do well. Have faith in yourself, and never let your baits get dry!!! The more casts you make to the right areas, the more chances you have to put fish in the boat.

Good luck!

ajr

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I was just in my first tournament and all I can say is you will learn so much and have a completely different mindset going into the second one. I was fishing with somone who knew the lake and exactly what techniques to use. Me, as a noob, of course fished exactly what he did; he was pretty much telling me what to do which didn't bother me one bit. I was made a fool with my 1 to his second place 13 bass(5 fish limit of 12lbs) finish. With the experience I have with bass fishing this completely embarrassed me. Looking back on it I realize that it was nothing like I expected and nothing I could have prepared better for since it was the first one. With that being said I have come to grips with my results and realize that being the first tournament I should not have had high expectations like I did. I think if I had of gone into it as a learning experience and not an all out BASH to keep up with my co-angler I would have honestly done better than I did.

Cliff notes: Dont have high expectations and think of it as a learning experience for future tournaments. This will feel very different than leisure fishing (at least to me it did)

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I don't really expect to go out and win it.  Although it would be nice lol.  I just wanna have a good day out on the water and learn a few things.  My opinion has always been "actually doing something is the best way to learn".  Watch others, imitate, adapt it to suit me.  

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Pick his brain for every piece of info you can get. If he gets tired he will let you know. Learn as much as you can, enjoy, and remember you have rights also. Don't let him front you all day. Stand your ground if need be.

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I caught our big bass (4lbs) on my second cast of the day with a buzzbait. We caught our limit 2hrs into it and only culled two fish after that. It was good enough for a second place (15.20bs total) finish. I had a blast, my partner was great, and we both took home $426 each. I learned a bit and had a great day. There were over 70 boats in the tourney. :)

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Congratulation's!! Thats a great finish being its your first tourney!! One thing though if you do go into fishing more tourney's. Do not let that second place finish go to your head and that all tourneys will finish like that. I have broken in new partners in the past and have had decent finishes on there first tourneys only to want to throw them off the boat into the water on the second tournament because they are frusterated that they havient caught a fish all day. The main thing is just to have fun, catching them or not and gaining as much knowledge from your boaters as possible. Im also assuming you took my advise and stayed away from greasy food the nite before!?! ;D

Again congratulations!!

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I work in a casino dealing poker for a living.  I see people get lucky and win and then turn around and lose the next time everyday.  I understand we got extremely luck to do as well as we did.  I try not to let experiences like this give me a big head.  It was a blast tho but way more exhausting than I thought it would be.  I learned quite a bit and can't wait to fish another.  I don't think there are any losers in a fishing tournament.  A bad day fishing beats a good day of work anytime. ;) ;) ;)  

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nice job, thats alot of anglers to beat

always great to pull your weight from the back of the boat

My best finish is fifth as a team out of 45 boats

haven't seen any money yet

maybe next year

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