BRIAN JOHNSON ON OUTDOORS — Lessons shared from first tourney attempt

Published 12:04 am Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Hopefully you have been waiting on the edge of your seat for these great tournament fishing tips that I learned by trial and error a few weeks ago. Here they are:

  1. Limit the amount of time that you spend in an unproductive spot. My suggestion is that if you haven’t caught a fish, you must leave within an hour or less and go somewhere else. One of the great things about having an electronic fish finder is that you can see the fish on the screen. In this particular tournament, we had piles of fish located so it didn’t make much sense to leave fish to go find more fish. The problem is that the fish on my screen simply weren’t biting. Had we not wasted half of our day there hoping for a few big fish, we would have likely done better.
  1. Try different baits and techniques once you locate the fish. I am not sure why I didn’t do this, but the truth is that I didn’t. I had caught fish the day before on a crankbait and a chatterbait so that is mainly what we continued to throw. When we were on the deep-water fish, we should have thrown everything in the tackle box in order to get a strike. The fish were there and we failed to adjust by giving them what they wanted.
  2. Have multiple spots to choose from. Although we had located both shallow- and deep-water fish, they were pretty much in the same end of the lake. While we were sleeping, storms rolled in with heavy rain that muddied up the north part of the lake where we planned to fish. The south end was not nearly as affected. Had I located a few spots on both ends of the lake prior to the tournament, I could have easily adjusted and would have likely been more successful.

Obviously these tips aren’t fool proof because fish, being fish, can change their patterns or quit biting altogether. However, after my recent lack of tournament success, these are the changes I am going to implement. If we try this and don’t catch fish, I’m still going to thank Jesus for the chance to be fishing!

Brian Johnson, originally of Port Neches, is pastor of First Baptist Church of Winnie, owner of and outdoors writer for The News.

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