Lake Travis Day 1 Coverage - Major League Fishing

Lake Travis Day 1 Coverage

We’re headed to weigh-in
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Justin Atkins Photo by Chris Burgan. Angler: Justin Atkins.
February 16, 2017 • MLF • Archives

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Tournament details

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FLW Podcast with Clark Wendlandt


2:15 We’re headed to weigh-in

Bad news for Andy Morgan – the Goat only has three, two Guadalupe bass and a largemouth. Chris Brasher has a limit for about 13 pounds and Brandon Cobb now has a limit, but he says he wants to cull all of them.

Weigh-in starts at 3 p.m. CT, and there are a lot of mysteries left to be solved. We haven’t found Clark Wendlandt yet, and he’s the odds-on favorite for this deal. So, be sure to come on down to Jones Brothers Park or tune in to FLW Live to see how day one shakes out on the scale.

Tournament Details

Weigh-in: Thursday and Friday at 3 p.m. CT at Jones Brothers Park and 4 p.m. CT Saturday and Sunday at Jones Brothers Park.


1:57 A limit for Arey and more

Matt Arey just caught is fifth, but he had to measure it before tossing it in the livewell. Joe Holland doesn’t have any keepers yet. Scott Ashmore has four in the box, but none of them are big.

Also, we do have an Andy Morgan sighting, but we haven’t actually caught up to him to see how he’s doing yet. 


1:35 Huff has three, Scanlon has a limit

Rex Huff is BOMBING a crankbait and has three in the boat. He says his bite turned off when the weather cleared.

Casey Scanlon has a limit including a 6-pounder, but he still thinks it’s a little light to be good.

On the Canadian side of things, Cory Johnston added his third keeper and Jeff Gustafson has a limit for about 9 pounds now. 


Carl Jocumsen

1:20 It’s moving time

Right now Travis is a blur of bass boats running around. It seems like everyone is running around looking for another fish or two this afternoon.

Of note, Cory Johnston has checked in with only two keepers. Also, Carl Jocumsen has four keepers for about 9 pounds. 


12:55 Limits and not limits

Lake Travis has been fishing pretty good today, but not everyone is on ‘em. Shawn Murphy has a decent limit for about 10 pounds caught off rock and laydowns, but Ramie Colson still doesn’t have a keeper in the boat well into the afternoon. 


12:50 Davis, Moulton and Adams

Alex Davis has three keepers for six pounds. Fishing in Sandy Creek, Tracy Adams also has three small keepers.

Doing better, Jim Moulton recently culled up with a decent 2.5-pounder that he swapped out a line-burner for. 


Anthony Gagliardi

12:35 Gags and Atkins

Antony Gagliardi just filled out his limit for more than 15 pounds. It seems like 15+ is going to be the mark for doing well today, with a few pros busting over 20 pounds by the end of the day.

Also at about 15 pounds, Justin Atkins landed a 2.6-pounder a moment ago and had to throw it back after weighing it. It’s nice when a legit 2-pounder doesn’t help. 


Stephen Patek

12:30 Carolina rigs

In addition to finesse tactics, a lot of fish have been caught on the ol’ ball and chain today. Carolina rigs are something of a finesse Texas rig when you think about it. The separation between the bait and the weight gives the bait a more subtle action and it floats the bait up a little. For some reason they really catch ‘em offshore in Texas and there has been a pile of money won on them in the Lone Star State. There’s a decent chance they make someone a lot more money this week. 


12:20 Bryan and JTK

Keith Bryan has one keeper so far and it isn’t big. On the other hand, JT Kenney has three keepers and one of them is pretty big. Either way, there is plenty of time left for both of them. 


Justin Atkins

12:10 Atkins is still going well

Justin Atkins impressed at Guntersville and he’s rolling again at Travis. With a limit in the boat, he’s already got about 15 pounds.

Contrary to our earlier report, Anthony Gagliardi doesn’t have a limit. But, he does have three fish in the livewell (he just landed a 3-pounder), and two of them are pretty big. Also of note, Jim Moulton has a limit now, but it’s not for much weight. 


12:05 Slow going for Bird

Cody Bird only has one in the boat at the moment. He caught a little keeper about 10 minutes ago and hasn’t landed anything but dinks since. 


Stephen Patek

11:51 Patek has a hawg

Stephen Patek is making a name for himself. He just boated a 7- or 8-pounder and cruised into the unofficial lead with more than 20 pounds. Day one on Travis is starting to get fun! 


11:48 Scott Martin is struggling

Fishing right near Thrift, Scott Martin literally has zero bass in the livewell. He’s pretty good, so he’ll likely catch some, but man it’s been a rough start to the season for Martin. 

Otherwise, John Cox and Jason Meninger each have three small ones in the boat and Gary Yamamoto has two small ones. 


11:40 Smallmouth?!

Jamey Caldwell has one in the boat, and he says it’s a keeper smallmouth. The lake record smallie is just 4.5 pounds and was caught in 1992, so that’s a pretty rare catch.

Elsewhere, Matt Arey has four for about 6 pounds, Bill Day has one 4-pounder, Brandon Mosley has one decent one and Jeff Sprague has two babies. Sprague says the lake is fishing smaller than he expected and that he’s about to head out deep. 


Grae Buck

11:30 Buck is broken down

Grae Buck is broken down, but he’s got four decent fish in the boat. He’ll need to get a ride back to weigh-in from someone else in the field, which shouldn’t be too much of a problem. Regardless, salvaging a breakdown with at least four fish is a good day, something a rookie like Buck should be proud of. 


Bryan Thrift

11:25 Thrift is outfishing everyone

Bryan Thrift and Scott Martin are sharing water, but Thrift is the only one catching fish. He’s working mostly with a spinning rod on a little spot off the bank and just walloping numbers. He’s really smiley today – it probably feels extra special to be whacking them when the competition can’t. 


11:15 Rose with two keepers

Mark Rose has a pretty good history in Texas and is a threat anytime there are deep bass to be caught. Working with some momentum from his win on Guntersville, Rose has two small keepers in the livewell this morning. 


11:09 Real Deal is doing well

Michael “Real Deal” Neal is off to a good start. He’s got three on the boat including a 6-pounder. 


Bryan Thrift

11:02 Thrift upgrades again

Bryan Thrift just upgraded again, and we got a look at all his fish in the process. The smallest looks to be about 2.5 pounds and he definitely has more than 17 pounds in the livewell. So, you might say he’s having a good day.

On spot No. 2 of 20, Capt. Blake Smith has one 5-pounder in the boat so far. 


Tom Redington

10:59 Redington finishes a limit

Tom Redington just finished out his limit for about 9 pounds. Evan Barnes only has one, but it’s a solid 3-pounder.  So far Barry Wilson only has one small keeper in the boat. 


Michael McCoy

10:52 Gussy has a limit, McCoy adds a kicker

Jeff “Gussy” Gustafson has a limit for about 8 pounds. He says he broke off a big one earlier this morning. Michael McCoy is also doing pretty well. He had two keepers in the 'well a moment ago and just caught a 3-pounder up the Pedernales. 


10:50 Bryan Thrift, again

Bryan Thrift has a limit worth 15 pounds that includes a “biggun.” He just landed a 2-pounder a moment ago and seems to be sitting pretty good on day one. Any lake that is a pattern lake sets up well for Thrift (actually, make that any lake that’s anything), and it looks like another week of Thrift excellence is in store. 


10:45 Weather update

It’s getting really nice out on Lake Travis. The day may have started pretty frigid, but it’s time to begin shedding layers. There’s a good breeze in places, but because Travis is so windy it isn’t everywhere. 


10:25 Brooks has a big one, Gagliardi has a limit

Chase Brooks says he basically lived at Travis this winter trying to prepare for this event. He caught a 5- or 6-pounder on his first cast of the day and has added a couple of small keepers since.

With a limit, Anthony Gagliardi has about 11 pounds. That’s not huge, but now he can go hunting for a kicker or two if he so desires.

Jimmy Houston also has one in the boat, and Bryan Thrift just landed about a 4-pounder. Thrift is fishing right next to Scott Martin, so we ought to be able to get estimates on both of them in a little bit. 


10:15 Batts has a whale

Clayton Batts is purposefully staying away from catching numbers, and to this point it’s working pretty well for him. He’s only got one keeper in the boat, but it’s a 6.5-pounder. 


Stephen Patek

9:55 Patek has the lead

It’s almost 10 o’clock in the morning and Stephen Patek is the leader in the house so far. Fishing pretty well up the river, Patek just checked in with a limit worth 15 pounds. Patek is native to California, but he moved to Texas for fishing, and it might be paying off. He’s for sure off to a good start to his season. 


9:45 Moulton has three

Jim Moulton is a rookie from California and so far he’s got the most keepers of anyone we’ve found. Fishing a drop-shot, Moulton has boxed up three small ones so far. He says the lack of wind is hurting him, but he’s not doing so bad without it. 


Bill McDonald

9:35 A handful of updates

Jason Lambert, Billy McDonald and Shin Fukae all have one keeper now. Buddy Gross started his day flipping and caught two keepers, but he’s now out deep dragging a Carolina rig waiting for his bushes to reload. 


Greg Bohannan

9:30 The floating worm

Known as “Butch” in east Tennessee, a pink floating worm is a spawn-time standby. The first we’ve seen throwing one today is Greg Bohannan (you can read more on how he throws it here), and the more we see of it the more likely it is that pros are really seeing some bass move up. As of now, Bohannan hasn't caught anything, but if things keep warming up, his time may be here soon. 


9:20 Caldwell with zero

Jamie Caldwell is still working in his first fish. He says the water temperature in his areas dropped 4 to 5 degrees and has moved his fish from where they were in practice. Now it’s time for him to find them again. 


Todd Hollowell

9:14 Hollowell is blank so far

Though he’s caught a few shorts, Todd “Tomato Dude” Hollowell has yet to box a keeper. He says things should be better once it warms up. Chris McCall is also working with a donut at the moment. 


Bryan Thrift

9:00 Technique notes

So far this morning we’re seeing a lot of prespawn technique in action. There are a lot of spinning rods in use, but plenty of pros are slinging a Carolina rig as well. There is also a decent group flipping, some jerkbaiting action and at least Jason Lambert is throwing a crankbait. As the sun gets up higher and higher, we may see some pros transition toward bedded fish they have marked. 


8:57 Gussy is fishless

Jeff Gustafson intimated that he was on something in practice, but he’s fishless so far. He and Wesley Strader are sharing the same cove, so odds are that it’s a good one. 


Austin Terry

8:37 Terry with two

Austin Terry is on the board with a pair of keepers to start. He’s fishing pretty far up the Colorado River with a spinning rod and they’re both pretty decent. Looks like the Texas product might be headed toward a good day!

Meanwhile, Jason Lambert is cranking ledges up the river. Almost like he’s on Kentucky Lake or something. 


Pete Ponds

8:25 More morning updates

It’s still a little slow out there, but there is plenty to report. Bryan Thrift and Cody Meyer don’t have anything in the box yet. Pete Ponds is fishing close to Jimmy Brewer and he’s got one keeper so far. Luke Dunkin has himself two keepers already. Jamie Horton is off to the best start so far – he’s already got a 4-pounder in the boat. 


7:47 Cobb is on the board

Fishing lower in the lake, Brandon Cobb is the first pro we’ve got on the board, with one small keeper. Fishing near takeoff, Daryl Biron also has a small keeper to start. 


7:40 Waiting on the fish

It might take just a bit to get the updates rolling in today. Our reports from the water say the fog is pretty thick in some places, despite not being too bad at takeoff. That could make it a little slower for anglers getting to their spots and harder for our reporters to find them. In fact, the first group of boats running way up the lake just now made it to Gloster Bend. Nonetheless, Travis has a pile of fish in it. We expect some pretty fast action soon. 


7:20 It’s game day at Travis

Day one of the FLW Tour presented by Quaker State is underway on Lake Travis. There’s some weather on the way for the weekend, but today, the conditions for the second FLW Tour event of the season could hardly be better. Though it’s chilly and a little foggy to start, the weather should be lovely by weigh-in. Tucked in the Texas hill country outside of Austin, Lake Travis is a unique place to hold a tournament. Something of a cross between an Ozark lake, Amistad and its own thing, Travis was about 50 feet low just a few years ago. Now, the lake is full (and loaded with new cover) and brimming with small fish. Of course, because it’s Texas, there are some giants to be had as well.

This week is going to be interesting. Not only do we have FLW Live to look forward to on the weekend, but there’s a real chance that we all learn a new technique or two. Most pros agree that the bass are solidly prespawn at Travis, but some have already spawned and the water is ticking into the low 60s. There’s potential for almost anything to happen and Travis is a good playing field for diversity. Though there isn’t really any grass in the lake, Travis has everything else, from miles of bluffs and rock to docks, long points and plenty of brush.

In short, seeing who catches them and how they do it ought to be fascinating. On top of that, it’s time to get the Angler of the Year race rolling. There are some of the usual suspects in the mix after Guntersville, but there are also some newbies up top. Can Justin Atkins and Bradley Dortch keep making waves, or will someone like Andy Morgan or Bryan Thrift bank another top 10 and start building a lead?




Temperature at takeoff: 33 degrees

Forecast high: 69 degrees

Sky: mostly clear

Precipitation: no rain in the forecast

Wind: SW at 5 mph


Tournament Details

Folgers Morning Takeoff: 7 a.m. CT at Jones Brothers Park, 10301 Lakeside Drive, Jonestown, Texas

Weigh-in: Thursday and Friday at 3 p.m. CT at Jones Brothers Park and 4 p.m. CT Saturday and Sunday at Jones Brothers Park.

FLW Expo: 12 to 4 p.m. CT Saturday and Sunday at Jones Brothers Park

FLW Live: Saturday and Sunday from 8:30 a.m. CT to 12:30 p.m. CT