The EverStart Series is headed to Lake Oroville Jan. 17-19 when as many as 300 pros and co-anglers take to the water for the first of four stops in the Western Division.

“Two things are going to play a giant role there. One thing is the umbrella rig and the other is the drop-shot (rig),” said Mercury pro Brent Ehrler of Redlands, Calif. “Umbrella rigs with ¼- to ½-ounce jig heads and Yamamoto swimbaits are good combinations, and I really think the tournament will be won on some type of umbrella rig like that. The backup pattern is going to be the drop-shot (rig). Any standard drop-shot rig consisting of a ¼- to 3/8-ounce weight and a 4-inch finesse worm should work just fine.”

“It has been a fairly cool winter here so far with a decent amount of rain already,” Ehrler continued. “In those lakes like Oroville and Shasta, there really is no cover on the water. If the water fluctuates a few feet, it is not going to make a difference. Those fish are still going to be deeper, but it just repositions the fish on those points and rocky bluffs.”

“As a general rule on these spotted bass lakes, if you can catch at least 10 pounds a day, you’re going to be in the hunt,” Ehrler added.

Anglers will take off from the Spillway Launch at the north end of the Oroville Dam in Oroville, Calif., at 7:30 a.m. each day. Daily weigh-ins will be held at the Spillway Launch beginning at 3:00 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.

Pros will fish for a top award of $40,000 plus a Ranger Z518 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 Z117 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, which allows them to fish the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup.

The EverStart Series tournament on Lake Oroville is being hosted by the City of Oroville.

Image courtesy FLW Outdoors

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