Monday, January 19, 2015

Team Extreme Ice Fishing Tournament #2

The actual sunrise on Sunday morning, no editing at all
This past Sunday was the second event in the 2015 ice fishing tournament series for Team Extreme.  This group, which originates in Minnesota travels to Iowa, Wisconsin and of course Minnesota running tournaments for ice anglers.  The second event took my partner Mark Anderson and I to Big Creek Lake near Des Moines.  This is a lake that Mark has frequented many times and for the past few years we have always teamed up or an event here each winter.  The past two years we have found ourselves in the top five and we were hoping to do the same in this event.

We both hit the lake on Saturday to search out the crappies and the bluegills.  We both worked hard, drilled a lot of holes and had very little success.  Mark did have some confidence in one area and that was the area that ended up putting many fish in our bucket on tournament day.  After the dismal day of fishing, backed up by everyone else saying the same thing we decided to make a game plan based on Saturday's work and our successes from the past tournaments.

Sunday morning brought a beautiful sunrise on the lake, which gave us some hope that the weather would turn the fishing around.  The weather did change, it was colder and the wind was out of the west, temperatures were in the high 30's all day and reaching into the 40's at weigh-in time.  Mark and I fished countless areas, trying every place that gave us success in the past, brushpiles in forty feet of water, brushpiles in fifteen feet of water and anywhere in between, dropoffs, humps and points.  We put our augers to the test and checked near 100 holes with our Vexilar FLX-28's.  A few yielded some bluegills and crappies.  Most of our fish came before noon, making the last two hours of the tournament a mental drag.  I did manage a bluegill in the last hour that lifted our spirits, we ended the day having 2 bluegills and 8 crappies to weigh in. (8 crappies and 8 bluegills are the tournament limits)

We really had no idea where we would end up in the standings, but a few quick conversations with some of the areas top anglers had us thinking good thoughts.  Their days had them questioning the lake even more than we were.  Mark and I worked hard for this one, and we ended up in 2nd place.  We earned some cash, $200 in Striker Ice merchandise and 99 valuable Team of the Year Points.  We currently hold the lead but only by 3 points, a narrow lead that we will have to work to keep up.

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