Updated: Sep 14
Sunrise on Tournament Day 1
After the getting the Kayak Tournament Fishing Bug from fishing the B.A.S.S. Western Regional Tournament, I scoured the Kayak Bass Fishing (KBF) and the TourneyX web site to see if there were any local tournaments I could fish. After burning my eyes out on the web for a couple of hours, I came across the KBF Regional Challenge Section and found a Western Regional Tournament called "Back To Schooling Regional Challenge". The format is a 3 day tournament where your best five fish count. You can fish your home waters and compete against other anglers throughout the West using the Tourney X App. What a cool concept!! KBF in conjunction with TourneyX have created an amazing system.
After day one I was in second place, with by biggest fish being only 17" and my smallest being 15.5" I caught a lot of fish, and lost one big one, but most everything I caught was in the 14 - 16" range.
I could not fish on Saturday, so Sunday was my last opportunity. My goal was to replace all the 16" fish on my board with bigger fish. I started off catching fish right away, but again everything was in the 14 - 16" range - then things started to change.
I came across a small pocket where I landed a nice 17.75" fish. This fish moved me up a couple of inches, but I was still a few inches out of first place.
After measuring and submitting the fish, I went back to the same spot and pulled an 18.25" fish out on my next cast. Now I was getting closer.
I fished for another few hours but did not catch anything over 16". It was getting late so I decided to make one last run to a point that I knew held fish at certain times. I knew that I did not have much more time to fish, and thats when the magic happened.
Last fish of the day was the best fish of the tournament!
I cast my Ned rig across the point and my line immediately took off. I set the hook and knew it was a nice fish. As I got the fish close to the net, I could clearly see another big smallmouth trying to steal the bait out of the mouth of the one I had hooked. Luckily I was able to get the fish into the net before the other fish caused any trouble. It was a 20" Columbia River Beauty, just the kicker fish I was hoping to catch! I took a picture, submitted the catch and released the beautiful fish back into the river.
It was now time to pack it ups and head back to shore. I had upgraded all my 16" fish except one, and I was worried that that would not be enough to win. All I could do was watch and wait until the tournament was officially over.
Standing for the KBF Western Region Back to Schooling Challenge
Turns out that even though I did not upgrade my 16.75" fish, 89.75 total inches was enough for the win. To make it even sweeter, I believe it qualifies me to fish the Challenge Series Championship in Alabama the first week of October.
It was another amazing day on the water, and one I will never forget.
Thanks for reading,