Good week at the St. Lawrence

Going into last week’s Bassmaster Elite Series event on the St. Lawrence River, I was feeling quite a bit of pressure to have a good tournament.
I was sitting in 46th place in the 75 angler field through six tournaments of the 10-event season.
We get points based on where we finish in each event and at the end of the season the top 40 anglers qualify for the Bassmaster Classic tournament, which is the goal for most of the anglers fishing the circuit.
Since I was on the outside looking in, it was important to have a good tournament, especially since we were visiting a high quality smallmouth fishery where I should have a little bit of an advantage over a lot of the southern anglers that I fish against who have less experience fishing for smallmouths.
After a good practice before the tournament I was excited heading into the event.
The first day did not go as well as I would have liked and I brought in a limit weighing 18 pounds, 2 ounces.
My goal each day was to catch 20 pounds so I was a little light and ended the day in 43rd place.
Day two was a grind again, much different than my prefishing and I ended up sacking up 19 pounds, 3 ounces to move up to 32nd place.
This was good because I made the top 35 cut to fish the third day.
Heading into day three I was still optimistic that I could have a better day because I knew there were big fish in the area I was fishing.
I pulled up to my first spot and within the first couple minutes of fishing I caught a smallmouth over five pounds, my biggest of the week.
Within the first hour I had over 20 pounds in my livewell which felt pretty good because I knew I was going to move up at least a few spots.
I ended up having a great day of fishing and upgraded my catch several times throughout the afternoon, finally ending up with a limit weighing 23 pounds, 13 ounces, one of the largest catches of the tournament.
I ended up landing in 12th spot, which was good but somewhat disappointing because I missed the top 10 cut to fish the final day by only a few ounces.
Still, it was a good way to end the week.
After the tournament I moved into 36th place in the points race so I’m back inside the cut to make the Classic. Hopefully, I can finish strong the rest of the season and end the year on a good note.
We’re back at it again this week at Cayuga Lake in New York. It’s about a three-hour drive south of the St. Lawrence River where we fished last week and has a reputation for being a good largemouth fishery.
I have not fished it before but look forward to visiting a new body of water. Sometimes fishing these lakes without any prior knowledge is good because you don’t have any old history to waste time on.
Usually any spots or fish catching patterns we can find will stay relevant through the three day practice period and into the tournament.
You can follow the results at Cayuga Lake this week, starting Thursday, on
After the tournament I’m headed home to enjoy the last couple weeks of summer in Sunset Country.
We have the Bassin’ For Bucks tournament coming up in a couple of weeks in Sioux Narrows so I’m looking forward to that.
My pal, Mike Reid, and I have fished the tournament since it started back in 1996 so it’s always a fun one for us.
We were 13 years old the first year we fished and had a cooler for a livewell in a 14-foot Lund with a 30 horsepower motor.
We’ve come a long way since then! We still caught a bunch of fish and had fun. The boat doesn’t catch the fish!