As if I had any doubts, Hotlanta is living up to its reputation.
I just got off the waters of Lake Lanier after spending most of the day taking photos and providing on-the-water updates of the first day of the 2010 Forrest Wood Cup. I smell like SPF-50 sunscreen, the top of my head has a pinkish hue, and I’m doing my best to turn my hotel room into something a penguin could call home. Basically, it was an awesome, albeit hot first day. The weather people are saying it was 95 degrees, with the heat index of a blow torch. Luckily, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be thanks to a lot of chasing pros and a whisper of wind.
It’s not hard to figure out, though, that the heat is making for some tough conditions for both the anglers and the fish. We saw maybe a dozen fish caught and heard of few stellar days for the pros by the time we got off the water around 1 p.m. So it’s shaping up to be a grind of a championship, which should make things very entertaining in a couple days.
However, there were a couple noteworthy things we did notice out on the water. In no particular order:
Drop-shots, drop-shots and more drop-shots
Lanier is best known for its spotted bass, and spots are known for loving drop-shots. Sure enough, there wasn’t a single pro we watched today who didn’t utilize the finesse tactic. Some guys casted them, but most vertically held them over brush piles.
However, while almost all were using the technique, we did notice a pattern on who caught fish and who didn’t. I don’t want to give it away yet, but I promise to elaborate in my blogs over the next few days.
We reported in FLW Outdoor Magazine’s championship preview that shoal bass could play a role. Sure enough, pro Ott Defoe of Knoxville, Tenn., ditched his bass boat for an aluminum johnboat to try and head way up the river and have an entire population of bass all to himself. We’ll have to wait and see if the move paid off today, but if it did, he should be in contention. The problem will be that he won’t be able to use his aluminum boat the final day if he makes it that far.
It didn’t take Living the Dream pro Jay Keith long to catch our attention. This is his first FLW Tour-level event, so we stopped to get some photos. The new boat was nice, but what we noticed was his topwater setup: He was throwing a pair of poppers at the same time. I’d heard of anglers doing this before, but I had never seen it until now. Let me tell you, it looks awesome! Rest assured, we will be doing a write-up on the technique in an upcoming issue of FLW Outdoors Magazine.
Slam the hooks!