The 2014 Walmart BFL season continues with five tournaments on Saturday, March 1. The Bama division is set to fish Lake Eufaula, the Gator division will go to Lake Okeechobee, the LBL division will take on Kentucky and Barkley lakes, the Cowboy division will return to Sam Rayburn Reservoir and the Ozark division will start their season on Table Rock Lake. Up to 400 boaters and co-anglers will be competing in each event for top awards up to $8,000 and $3,000 respectively.
WHEN: Saturday, March 1, 2014
Lakepoint Resort State Park
104 Lakepoint Drive
NOTES: The bass fishing on Lake Eufaula is reported to be fairly slow as the water temperature is in the mid-40s and the lake is fairly muddy. Nonetheless, fish will still be caught, especially if a warming trend moves in the week of the tournament. Pre-spawn and winter patterns should dominate. Jigs and spinnerbaits fished slowly around cover, umbrella rigs and jerkbaits fished for suspending fish and even jigging spoons fished on the main channel all figure to be productive. The winner of this event will likely bring in about 20 pounds.
Roland & Mary Ann Martin’s Marina & Resort
920 East Del Monte Ave.
NOTES: The bass fishing on Lake Okeechobee should be excellent. Some fish will be caught spawning, but most of the action is likely to center around flipping heavy cover and covering water with a variety of moving baits, similar to the strategy that Brett Hite used in the Walmart FLW Tour win a few weeks ago. ChatterBaits, swimjigs, swimbaits, buzz frogs, punching rigs, jigs and topwater frogs should all prove productive. It is expected to take a five-bass limit of about 25 pounds to win this event.
Kentucky Dam Marina
446 Marina Drive
NOTES: The bass fishing on Kentucky Lake is expected to be good. Though ice forced rescheduling of an earlier BFL, the fish should be ready to eat by March. Most of the action will likely occur on the main lake and Shad Raps, umbrella rigs, jigs, square-bills and lipless crankbaits will be big players in anglers’ arsenals. Fish figure to be caught deep and shallow up and down the entire lake. The wining weight should be around 25 pounds.
Sam Rayburn Reservoir
The Umphrey Family Pavilion
5438 RR 255 West
NOTES: The bass fishing on Sam Rayburn should be excellent. Longer days and warming water should have the fish ready to eat. As is usual this time of year, Rat-L-Traps and other types of lipless crankbaits should be major players, but square-bill crankbaits, jigs and umbrella rigs could catch fish as well. Most anglers will target drains and ditches on flats with hyrdilla looking to intercept the bass on their way in to spawning areas. This tournament will likely take a five-bass limit in excess of 24 pounds to win.
Table Rock Lake
Port of Kimberling Marina
72 Marina Way
Kimberling City, Mo.
NOTES: Fishing on Table Rock should be good. The water will still be cold from the harsh winter and typical wintertime Ozark patters are likely to prevail. Umbrella rigs, Wiggle Warts, jigs, suspending jerkbaits and shaky-head rigs portend to be particularly important. Anglers will probably focus their efforts around main-lake structure, channel swings, points and chunk-rock banks. Despite the cold water, good fish could still be caught and the winner is projected to bring more than 20 pounds to the scales.
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. The 2014 BFL All-American is being held June 5-7 on Wilson Lake in Florence, Ala. Top winners in the BFL can move up to the Rayovac FLW Series or even the Walmart FLW Tour.
Logo courtesy FLW Outdoor