I had a tournament today on Lake Istokpoga. I didn't do that well, but I didn't do well either. I love fishing this lake because it has some monster bass in it. You have a realistic chance of catching the fish of a lifetime every cast. The lake has a three fish limit (imposed by Florida Fish and Wildlife) for maintenance as a trophy bass lake. I ended up catching a limit weighing 6.78 pounds and the winner had just over nine pounds, which is pretty low for this lake.
The day started off slow, we decided to fish shallow first thing and that didn't really pan out as expected. When I saw shallow, that's two feet deep or less. Deep on this lake is anything over three feet. It's basically a shallow bowl filled with lily pads, reeds and various other vegetation and the main attraction hydrilla. Anywhere you find hydrilla, you are close to bass.
Skinny Dipper, a Death Shimmer Spinnerbait, a Stanley Ribbit, a Fluke, basically everything. Then it occurred to me, "throw a Speedworm", what was I thinking not using one. First cast and I had a fish in the boat. I caught a few more and then the wind picked up and it was Death Shimmer time. I caught a few bass (as well as a few Pickerel) on an all white Death Shimmer 2 with a gold Colorado blade. It was back and forth with the spinnerbait and Speedworm, culling every hour or so.
A funny thing happened to me today. As I was culling my fish, one jumped out of the livewell and into the lake, culling float and all. The fish was gone and never came back to the surface. I've never had that happen, and was panicking until I realized it was the smallest one and would have gone anyways.
I spent the last hour or so punching thick hydrilla mats with a 1.5 ounce Eco Pro Tungsten Flipping Weight and a Sweet Beaver. That has got to be one of the most fun ways to catch a bass. You never know how big it is when it's wrapped in all that grass.
I can't wait to go back there again and fish for that bass of a lifetime.