This year was the 4th Annual Long Lake Classic that is put on by my bass club, the Spokane Bass Club. Each year I have fished this event with Wes Henry and we have had two pretty good events with a 4th and 5th place and a really bad one last year. We really wanted a win this year and put in a bunch of time on the lake and even split up and both took our own boats to cover more water in practice.
Our plan going into the event was to target largemouth as this is what won last year and there are some giants in there. We had a few good areas with big largemouth and spent much of the first day trying to make it happen.
We ended up being dead last in the takeoff order. 29th out of 29 boats, but somehow nobody was where we wanted to go first. Wes caught a 4.5lb largemouth within the first 5 pitches to logs with a Sweet Beaver and we thought it was on! We didn't catch any more largemouth and instead caught tons of small smallmouth on a Strike King 1.5 squarebill, Senko and Eco Pro Tungsten jig. We knew we had a light bag and were mad at ourselves for the last few hours of the day. Luckily the high winds and recent fishing pressure helped us as our 12.20lb bag had us in 5th place after the first day.
|Wes with part of our Day 1 bag|
With the confidence that we were still in it, we decided to fish the exact same way on the second day trying for largemouth in shallow areas we found on our Navionics Plus cards with heavy line and big rods. It didn't work very well and we "just went fishing". After we switched to smallmouth fishing, I caught a 3.5lb largemouth on a drop-shot...go figure. At around 11:00 we had a two fish for less than five pounds and were running out of time. Our second day weigh-in was at 2:00, but we rallied! I caught a 4lb smallmouth on an Aaron's Magic Roboworm, then ten minutes later Wes got a 4lb smallmouth on a senko, then I added another 4lber ten minutes later. In about 30-45 minutes we went from 5lbs to 17lbs!
The fish were shallow around docks and no doubt spawning. We started seeing fish on beds and added a few two pound class fish to cull up a few times. Then Wes broke off a 3lb+ smallmouth that was on a bed. I made two casts there and got it to bite again and we culled for the final time to get over 19lbs. We weighed 19.46 and moved up to 3rd.
|Our Day 2 catch|
Overall it was a good event and we can't complain about our finish. The winners had a two day total of 37lbs, so it was nearly impossible for us to catch them after just getting 12lbs on the first day. We had a chance at 2nd, but another team jumped past us with a 22lb bag of largemouth.
|3rd place finish|
I'll take a check, trophy and 3rd place anytime..but really want to win this event next year.