MWC Kicks off Season with 25th Annual Spring Valley Tournament
This weekend marks the 25th Anniversary of what is considered the annual kickoff to the walleye tournament season with the Cabela's Masters Walleye Circuit Spring Valley, IL tournament.The event takes place on a 28 mile stretch of the Illinois River, from the Starved Rock Dam at Utica to the Henry Bridge. The river is regarded as an excellent sauger fishery, which will represent almost all of the fish brought to the scales this weekend. However, from time to time you will also see a walleye as part of a basket. I spent last Saturday on the river with my dad. Lots of fish were being caught by jiggers, trollers with three-ways and handliners. The water levels were near normal with a surface temp of 48 degrees. While the past 25 years has brought a variety of weather conditions, from high winds, sleet, and snow to t-shirt weather, the forecast for this weekend appears to be fairly pleasant with temperatures hovering around 40 for a high.
There are 123 teams registered for the tournament, with first flight taking off at 7am Saturday morning from Barto Landing in Spring Valley and returning at 3pm. Second flight will leave at 7:30am and return at 3:30pm. There is a 14" minimum on the fish. Each team is allowed to weigh five fish per day. Culling is legal with a limit of 10 fish in the livewell. Bob Kaczkowski, who served as tournament director from 1984 until his retirement in 2004 will serve as the emcee for the event. The MWC and NPAA will present a Youth & Family Fishing Clinic immediately after Saturday's weigh-in. The first 50 youths will receive rods and reels, and tackle packages courtesy of Northland Fishing Tackle. Join us here at Walleye Central for Live Tournament Coverage, including daily morning and afternoon pictures, articles, and up to the minute results as the teams cross the weigh in stage. Results will be located at www.liveleaderboard.com
For more information about the MWC, please visit their website at www.masterswalleyecircuit.com