Twelve hours or so after leaving home dark and early this morning, I arrived in Shreveport, got checked into my hotel and looked around just a bit to see where thing are. All that's left to do now is to find a bite to eat and get some good rest. Forrest Wood Cup starts tomorrow morning, and I get to go out in a photo boat, so I need to be at the marina well before first light.
I'm looking forward to the morning. I've never been on the Red River, but I've read (and written, based on others' reports) quite a bit about it and it's an important bass destinations, so I'm excited to see it for myself. My plan is to look for multiple competitors' on the water in order to get photos and see first-hand how they are fishing and what the fish are doing. Assuming there's at least some cell signal on the water, I'll be blogging during the day and posting on my facebook fishing page and twitter.
The word I've heard the most from competitors to describe their expectations about this year's Cup has been "grind." Everyone seems to contend that it will be a grind, although I suspect the word grind means different things to different anglers. Some of it, I'm sure, relates to the simple fact that it is going to be hot (albeit not quite as hot as it has been). More so, though, I think it has to do with the fact that bites from quality fish have been hard to find. Pros expect to have to really grind it out and catch as many fish as possible with hopes that their plan brings some quality fish. It may also mean they'll have to work a lot of water to get the fish and that there's not likely to be a magic spot that someone rides. Because the Red is challenging to navigate, getting rom one place you want to fish to the next can be a grind, especially when you are fishing against the clock.
We won't really know much for sure until to tomorrow when they bring fish to the scales, though. Quite understandably, the pros don't tend to reveal their full hand when talking about expectations, so if someone is on a big-fish pattern, we probably wouldn't hear much about it quite yet!