The EverStart Series is headed to Kerr Lake June 14-16 when as many as 300 pros and co-anglers take to the water for the first of four stops in the Northern Division. Anglers are competing for top awards up to $35,000 plus a Ranger boat with an Evinrude or Mercury outboard for the pro and a Ranger boat with an Evinrude or Mercury outboard plus $5,000 for the co-angler.
“I have been fishing Kerr Lake since the 90s,” said FLW Tour pro David Wolak of Wake Forest, N.C. “The fishing was really good in the 90s and then the lake got hit with a virus, and fishing hasn’t been quite the same since, but the lake is on a comeback. I have seen some really big rogue fish being caught which is a good sign that the lake is recovering.
“Look for the topwater bite on flats to be a predominant pattern, especially if the weather continues to warm up,” Wolak continued. “Crankbaits mid-range and flipping shallow bushes in the creeks will also be effective. Anglers flipping in the creeks will catch a lot of fish, but I don’t think that will be the winning pattern, the quality fish just won’t hold up for three days.”
Wolak said that 12- to 14-pound sacks were pretty average for the lake right now. However, he did say that if anglers found the right schooling bass they could nail a 21-pound sack, but it would be really tough to consistently catch that for three days. “Overall I think it is going to take 14 to 15 pounds per day to make the cut and 40 to 45 pounds to win.
“Kerr Lake is the craziest lake with the water dropping and rising the way it does,” Wolak went on to say. “Anglers are really going to have to be on top of water movement and be ready to adapt to conditions because they change quickly. The person that can adapt on the fly is the one in my mind that is going to have the most success.”
Anglers will take off from Nutbush Park North located at 115 Jack Wade Farm Road in Henderson, N.C., at 6 a.m. daily. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will be held at the marina beginning at 2 p.m. Saturday’s final weigh-in will be held at Walmart located at 200 North Cooper Road in Henderson starting at 3 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.
Pros will fish for a top award of $35,000 plus a 198VX Ranger boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard if Ranger Cup guidelines are met. Co-anglers will cast for a top award consisting of a Ranger 177TR with 90-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and $5,000 if Ranger Cup guidelines are met.
The EverStart Series consists of five divisions – Central, Northern, Southeast, Texas and Western. Each division consists of four tournaments and competitors will be vying for valuable points in each division that could earn them the Strike King Angler of the Year title along with $5,000 for the pro and $2,000 for the co-angler. The top 40 pros and co-anglers from each respective division will qualify for the EverStart Series Championship that will be held on the Ouachita River in Monroe, La., Nov. 1-4.
The EverStart Series tournament on Kerr Lake is being hosted by Vance County Tourism Department.