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Detroit River FLW Tour Open

Friday, August 24, 2012

FLW Outdoors/Brett Carlson
Photo: FLW Outdoors/Brett Carlson

> Day 1: 5, 15-05
> Day 2: 5, 16-04
> Total = 10, 31-09 (74th place)

I ran up the St. Clair River on day 1. I'd had one good day of practice there and I saw a lot of good fish, but I had a hard time getting them to bite. I saw four 20-pound stringers, but I couldn't catch them. Today I fished the lake a lot more, but I just didn't catch any quality.

I was just searching the whole time I didn't have a good practice. Catching the 4-pounders here is never very easy for me.

I most threw Z-Man 3.75-inch StreakZ on a dropshot. I caught a lot of fish, but I wasn't in the right areas, in my opinion.

Jay Yelas Competition Wrapup
Friday, August 24, 2012

FLW Outdoors/Gary Mortenson
Photo: FLW Outdoors/Gary Mortenson

> Day 1: 5, 15-10
> Day 2: 5, 17-09
> Total = 10, 33-03 (56th place)

I had a lot of fun this week these smallmouths are so much fun to chase around. I didn't do as well as I thought I could, I thought I could catch 17 to 18 pounds a day or maybe better, but yesterday I fell short. I had several good fish just roll on my spinnerbait, and today I had a knot break and a wire break. I could've had 19 pounds, but I'm still thankful to get out of here with a small check.

I was ripping a big spinnerbait and it's so much fun to watch them hit it and then jump 3 feet in the air. It's one of my Top 5 favorite ways to catch bass and I don't get to do it that much.

I was fishing weed flats and the fish were in the dark patches on the bottom, and my Typhoon sunglasses were the key to spotting those. The fishing was definitely better when the sun got up and you could see the clumps. It wasn't a winning-type pattern, and I knew that, but it was a fun pattern, for sure.

These slugfest tournaments have always been my Achilles' heel, and in these Opens you're up against guys who fish these places all year long. If you know the good spots, the fish are there.

Luke Clausen - Practice Recap
Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I actually did worse on the last day of practice than I did on the first 2 days, so I don't know where I'm going to go or what I'm going to fish. Something could work out and I could catch some 4-pounders and make it look pretty easy, or I could struggle and catch 13 or 14 pounds and get into a huge hole that I'll have to try to dig myself out of.

I'm definitely going up St. Clair way. I've got a couple places I can stop along the way, but I don't know how big the fish will be. I've got other places that I know have bigger fish, but I don't know if they'll bite in the morning.

I'll just head that direction, and then I'll eventually turn around and work my way back.

Jay Yelas - Practice Recap
Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I found some different areas, but nothing any better than what I'd found earlier. I never did catch a fish in practice that was 4 pounds or larger. I feel pretty good that I can catch 17 or 18 pounds, but I don't know what that'll do for me. That's not going to win the tournament, by any means.

I'll go where I caught my best grade of fish and hope to get a couple of 4- and 5-pounders that didn't bite in practice. I'm not going to go hunting new water when I'm catching them decent, anyway. There's got to be some good ones mixed in, or at least that's what I'm hoping.

This is a fantastic place to fish for a week in August and I feel like I'm in for a good tournament. I just don't know how good.

Jay Yelas - Mid-Practice Report
Monday, August 20, 2012

FLW Outdoors/Gary Mortenson
Photo: FLW Outdoors/Gary Mortenson

I've found some awfully good smallmouth fishing. This place blows my mind it's got to be America's best smallmouth fishery. The thing of it is you could catch 3-pounders all day long and it doesn't do you any good. You've got to have the 4-pounders because you need to get up near that 20-pound mark.

This isn't like a lot of the largemouth lakes we go to with a lot of different-sized fish. The margins here are always razor-thin, and that makes it kind of unique in that regard. At the same time, it's a lot of fun. You may not do well in the tournament, but you feel like a champ catching 3 1/2-pounders all day.

I haven't caught a 4-pounder yet. I've been close I've had some 3-13s or 3-14s but I'm not quite on the right grade of fish. I like to weigh them because if you don't, you can feel like you're catching 4s when they're actually like 3-10.

I don't go to Erie anymore, although years ago I did. It might be the place to be this week with all the nice weather, somebody could really do well there. Fishing St. Clair could cost me this time.

Luke Clausen - Mid-Practice Report
Monday, August 20, 2012

Photo: Megabass

I haven't found anything too spectacular, although I've caught quite a few fish. I tried both rivers (the Detroit and the St. Clair) one day and then Lake St. Clair one day, and the quality seemed to be about the same in both places.

I'll probably go back to Lake St. Clair tomorrow either there or Erie. I'd like to find some better quality than what I've found so far. I'm not seeing those 4-pound-plus fish. (Lake) St. Clair has the biggest numbers of fish and it's easy to catch 3-pounders, but that's not what you're looking for.

It's probably going to take at least 18 pounds a day to make the (Top-10) cut, and I definitely haven't found that yet.

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