Dobson Takes Slim Lead on Erie - Major League Fishing

Dobson Takes Slim Lead on Erie

Run to St. Clair produces for Michigan smallmouth guru
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Scott Dobson Photo by Cobi Pellerito.
July 9, 2020 • Jody White • Toyota Series

The weights on day one of the Toyota Series Northern Division event on Lake Erie were about what folks expected: plenty of quality fish, but a lack of the plump 4- and 5-pounders that Erie is so known for. Weighing one of only two bags over 20 pounds, Scott Dobson put 20-12 on the scale after a day of fishing that took him as far from Sandusky as the mouth of the St. Clair River.

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Top five patterns 

Using all his significant wiles, Dobson took advantage of very smooth conditions to catch fish in St. Clair, at the mouth of the St. Clair River, in the Detroit River and Lake Erie. Though his best work happened in St. Clair, he wouldn’t have had 20 pounds without a 4-pounder from Erie at the end of the day.

“I started on a relatively shallow spot and I caught a good one and a decent one on a swimbait,” says Dobson. “Then they kinda stopped biting. There was a massive mayfly hatch; it was like the locust invasion. They were everywhere. We were covered in bugs and fish were coming up slurping, but they’re super hard to catch when they’re slurping in deeper water.

“So, I ran to a mayfly break and I caught another one and had one follow my jerkbait. Then I went to a current spot and I caught two good ones and a couple more mediocre ones. Then I went to the big ones, off the Mile Roads, and they weren’t biting. We fished around, and Gary finally caught a limit, but I didn’t know how rough it was going to be, so we ran and got gas at about 11:45.”

After getting gas, Dobson stopped and fished in the Detroit River some and then ran to the islands in Erie for his final quality fish to end a somewhat lackluster day.

“It was very uneventful,” says Dobson. “I hadn’t been up to St. Clair since Friday, but my team partner had been out and said they were snapping. Well, they weren’t snapping today.”

Still, a swimbait, jerkbait and drop-shot put 20 pounds in the boat, and Dobson plans on making the big run again if he can.

“If it’s calm, I’m going to go. If I make it back, I make it back,” he says. “I don’t think I can catch more than 15 pounds out here. It’s tough, and it’s painful. You have to throw a Ned rig next to a boulder and just park it there.”


Top 10 pros

1. Scott Dobson – Clarkston, Mich. – 20-12 (5)

2. Buck Mallory – Lawton, Mich. – 20-6 (5)

3. Josh Kolodzaike – Toledo, Ohio – 19-13 (5)

4. Dick Parker – Lorain, Ohio – 19-5 (5)

5. Drew Sanford – Springfield, Mo. – 19-2 (5)

6. Neal Ramsey – Harrison, Ohio – 18-15 (5)

7. AJ Slegona – Pine Bush, N.Y. – 18-6 (5)

8. Chad Brousseau – Colchester, Vt. – 18-5 (5)

9. Troy Stokes – Brownstown, Mich. – 18-4 (5)

10. Matt Becker – Finleyville, Penn. – 18-2 (5)

Complete results