Fish Change Patterns at FLW as Water Drops
While yesterday was foggy at take-off, the sun was shining bright at the second morning of the FLW Walleye Championship at Bismarck, ND. Keith Kavajecz is leading the pack with a day one weight of 26lbs 12oz. Right behind him is Chris Gilman with 21lbs 6oz.
Rounding out the top three is Dan Stier who had his GPS go out a mile and half from ramp yesterday in the fog. As a result he was the last boat to get to his spot, which is in the same area that several of the other leaders are fishing.
Depending on the wind, he is jigging 1/8th to 3/8th oz jigs. “I just can’t afford to miss any fish today,” he said. “The thing about this system is that you have to be versatile. If this spot fails I have a lead core spot and live bait rigging bite going. The fish are constantly moving. You have to be versatile and find them.
Perry Good is sitting in fourth place. “We are fishing the pack by Beaver Bridge. I was first there yesterday and got big one right away, which was a nice way to start the day,” he said. Good and partner Dave Barrett caught a total of seven walleyes yesterday. “They come through in waves. One guy catches one and you see two or three others catching.” Good has been jigging Trigger X most of the time, although he also caught some on jigging spoons. The break he is fishing is primarily 15-25 feet deep. Earlier in the day the fish were on bottom, while later he was catching them suspended.
Currently tied for seventh place with Dean Arnoldussen is Bill Shimota. Shimota is fishing near a pack of boats, but running a different line than the rest. He has three different areas he is concentrating on, which are sand bars on river bends with current washing over them. He is hoping for at least 15lbs today to stay in the top ten. “Nothing under 19 inches is going in,” said Shimota. While is on numbers and solid fish, he has yet to catch one over 22 inches. “I’m due to get one of those.”
Tom Kemos is running upstream and hitting a milk run of spots. With the water dropping, he didn’t catch them yesterday in the same places that he caught them prefishing, although the fish are still in the general area. “The current seams are changing and the places the fish are holding are changing rapidly. You have to spend more time on each spot than you would like to in order to find them.” Kemos is in eleventh place after day one and will try to vertical jig for 16lbs today.
Mark Courts is flirting with the magic cutoff mark of 20 boats after today by being in 18th place after day one. “I just need to do what I’ve been doing all week. Just go out and catch fish. Yesterday it changed a little bit, but I think we have things figured out for today,” said Courts. “One of the things happening out there is the river was dropping up until yesterday. Now it is supposed to be stable and that should help me where I’m fishing. I’m actually fishing north and hoping that the pack of boats down south depletes those fish. It’s not a big area and there are lots of boats in there. I’m going to do my thing up north. I think I can legitimately pull 17lbs and maybe more with a couple right bites.”
Join us for continued coverage today on Walleye Central to see who earns a spot in the top 20 and continues fishing tomorrow.
The weigh-in begins at the Bismarck Civic Center at 5pm CST.