Monday, February 17, 2014

Anticipating Classic Adjustments

How will Guntersville bass adjust to major changes
in the weather? That question certainly weighs heavily
on the minds of Georgia's Patrick Bone and 54 other
Bassmaster Classic competitors.
Bassmaster Classic competitors are off the water today and tomorrow, but you can bet their minds are on the lake and its famous bass. Specifically, most are probably trying to anticipate adjustments they'll need to make based on the big warming trend that's occurring right now and the slight moderation that will take place around game time.

Friday, the first day of practice, was seriously cold, and the general word I heard suggested that while some big bass were caught, the bite was somewhat tough. Saturday was a bit warmer. Yesterday warmed way up, and the fish got more active. The next few days will bring some of the warmest temperatures of this year, with a peak high of 68 on Wednesday. Tournament highs are forecast to be in the low 60s and high 50s with a slight cooling trend through the weekend.

All that amounts to a pretty major shift from one of the coldest winters on record, and consequently fish positioning and behavior are likely to change substantially from what the pros have found already. Wednesday's short practice day will be critical for making adjustments, gauging the effectiveness of those adjustments and creating a tournament plan. Fish found over the weekend might still win the Classic, but they most likely won't be in the same places or eating the same lures next weekend they were a week earlier.

For now, all the pros can do is ponder all this stuff, and all we can do as fans is wait to see who makes the right adjustments.

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