I have been on Table Rock for about 9 days straight since the 23rd of Feb fishing Webb's Elite Solo Feb 25/26 and then the Bassmaster Central Open and I will be quite honest I struggled to put the winning pattern together in either one. I'm not a grub fishing dude I have never gotten that down (BUT I KNOW THAT IS WHAT YOU NEED TO DO) to catch them this time of year if the A-Rig isn't in play and love to fish a crankbait this time of year. After my solo tournament and finishing mid pack with the crankbait and Jerkbait I realized I needed to go to the clear water and try the Grub thing. After a couple of days of riding around all the boats from KC to Long Creek bridge and catching some quality I wasn't satisfied with my practice and ran back to my Crankbait & Jerkbait fish and started catching numbers with some quality mixed in & with out the boat pressure I was seeing down the lake. I made the decision to make a long run to above Eagle rock for the Open and knew I wouldn't have the pressure as I would down the lake and If I could get lucky I could end up with a good kicker up there on the crank/JB. Day 1 after arriving to my first spot and then second spot with out a keeper and very few shorts. I rotated back through and began catching quality on a Gizit, I was always told by my Dad to never leave fish to find fish. These fish where not going to be moving a along way (they can not go that far up there) so I had to adjust my bait and presentation and Boom a limit, but without a kicker. This was my short day and I had to leave early to make the run back and try some clear water spots (just shorts), ended up in 50th place after day 1. Day 2 dawned still cold and bundled up for that long run again, but this day was my long day and I could stay until 3:15 before I had to make the run back. I never finished out my limit even after resorting to the Ned I could only manage shorts, but I had the kicker a 4.5-5 lbr that helped boost me up to 36th and a nice check to help pay for my trip.
I found water temps during these 9 days from 48 to even 60 on one of those shorts and flip flop afternoons. I never caught anything from the green algea/snot in the clear water and never caught anything from the 60 degree stained water either. I caught fish where shad was to places I didn't even graph a bait ball much less see any. Lures ranged from a Crankbait (WW/RC), Jerkbait, Gizit, Shaky head, Swing head, and yes the NED. Practice was more running and gunning, but on one of my best days of catching before the Solo I did have 27 fish with 7 of those keepers mostly the swing head and 2 custom Rock crawlers did the damage. The shorts also where not those little dinks most where just shy of the 15 inch mark. A good number of just sub legal fish where caught. During the rest of practice I didn't do a lot of catching just looking. The clear water fish I did catch were of good quality I just couldn't duplicate those in areas I thought I should have. I'm never a fishing in a crowd type of guy so I opted to go to the river and I avoided the crowds and actual had fishing areas to my self up there and I learned more about those fish and what they do and where they go up there.
Thanks again to all you guys and gals I really enjoy these highland lakes and trying to figure them out. If you see me out there on the water please come by and say hey. I run a Basscat and it always has Purple in it.