The Walmart Bass Fishing League is headed to Lake Barkley Oct. 11-13 for one of six regional championships. This three-day tournament features the top 40 boaters and 40 co-anglers from each of the Buckeye, Great Lakes, Michigan and Ozark divisions.
Anglers will be competing for a Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard and a Chevy 1500 Silverado in the Boater Division and a new Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard in the Co-angler division. Anglers in both divisions are also competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy.
“The lake is fishing pretty good this year,” said Kettle Brand chips pro Dan Morehead of Paducah, Ky., who has career earnings of more than $1.3 million with FLW. “I have never seen a lake have such a quick turn around with the grass. It’s been bad the past few years, but this year there is a lot of grass. The lake is cooling down too, and that’s really going to help the bite.”
Morehead said that the water temperatures are in the lower-70 degree range right now and falling. Once temperatures fall to the mid to lower 60-degree range the bite should get better.
“The fish have already begun their fall migrations,” Morehead continued. “They’re real spread out, and you can still find them out in the main lake and shallow in the bays. If I were fishing this event, I’d be fishing shallow and targeting the grass.”
Morehead said he would be targeting the bass using powerbaits – buzzbaits, topwater baits, spinnerbaits and chatterbaits.
“I would estimate that it’s going to take 18 pounds a day to win this thing,” Morehead went on to say. “I think the winning angler will probably have 54 to 56 pounds. The cold fronts can affect the fishing a little more this time of year than spring. There will still be plenty of big fish caught though, and it’s going to be an interesting tournament.”
Anglers will take off from the Kuttawa/Lyon County Boat Ramp located at 1061 Kentucky 295 South in Kuttawa, Ky., at 7 a.m. daily. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will be also be held at the Old Kuttawa Recreation Area beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday’s final weigh-in will be held at the Walmart located at 1500 U.S. Highway 62 W., in Princeton, Ky. beginning at 4 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.
The BFL Regional Championship event is being hosted by the Lake Barkley Tourism Commission.
The BFL is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 120 tournaments throughout the season, five in each division. The top 40 boaters and co-anglers from each division qualify for a regional tournament and are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the Walmart BFL All-American presented by Chevy. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the EverStart Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
Image courtesy FLW Outdoors