Missourians begin season at Table Rock
ATHENS, Ala. – The Missouri Division 16 of the American Bass Anglers Weekend Bass Series will open its 2014 tournament season March 8 on Table Rock Lake.
The competitors will launch at Table Rock State Park, located at 5272 State Highway 165 in Branson, Mo. Anglers may begin fishing at safe light. Registration begins at 4 p.m. March 7. To register for this tournament, see www.americanbassanglers.com/proddetail.php?prod=843.
To enter, anglers fishing the Boater Division pay $200 with co-anglers paying $100. In addition, ABA members enjoy these other these other benefits:
- No more dual membership to fish the Weekend Bass Series.
- No more credit card processing fees for tournament entries.
- Liability insurance requirements have been reduced to an acceptable level for weekend anglers.
- Increased payback at divisional events from 20 percent of the field to 25 percent of the field.
Anglers fishing the Boater Division may weigh in up to five bass in any combination of largemouth, smallmouth or Kentucky spotted bass, each at least 15 inches long. Co-anglers may weigh in up to three bass. All anglers must possess a Missouri fishing license. For Missouri fishing license information, see http://mdc.mo.gov/fishing or call 573-751-4115.
In addition to cash prizes for top finishers, boater and co-angler competitors fishing this tournament and WBS events throughout the season may also win hefty bonuses from such sponsors as Triton Boats, Mercury Outboards, Royal Purple, MotorGuide and T-H Marine. See the manufacturer web sites for specific details on how to qualify for these bonuses.
At the end of the season, the best WBS anglers from across the nation will fish the 2014 Ray Scott Championship, slated for Wheeler Lake in Decatur, Ala., from Nov. 15-18. The champion boater will receive $100,000 and possibly up to $50,000 in Triton Gold Bonus money. The co-angler champion will win $50,000 and possibly up to $25,000 in Triton Gold Bonus money.
As a special Ray Scott Championship bonus, the Boater Division and Co-Angler Division champions will each receive entry fees and sponsorship into the one of two professional bass fishing series of the angler’s choice. The sponsorship includes entry fees into three professional events and sponsorship support. This sponsorship will put the champion within striking distance of one of two professional bass fishing championships.
One of the best bass lakes in the nation, Table Rock ranks Number 39 on the 2013 Bassmaster magazine list of the top 100 bass waters in the United States. Deep and clear, Table Rock Lake covers 52,300 acres of the Missouri Ozarks. The lake dates to 1958 when a hydroelectric power generator dam stretched across the White River created the impoundment. The lake offers anglers more than 800 miles of shorelines.
Many anglers look for spawning fish around gravel beds. Others flip the brush and fallen trees near the shorelines. Sometimes, bass stack up on wind-swept secondary points or near rock piles. For those who like to fish deep, the lake offers anglers many humps, ledges and holes that hold fish. Fish vertically around drop-off edges with spoons or drop-shot rigs tipped with French fries, centipedes, grubs or similar baits. In the right deep hole, anglers may land a bunch of bass from one spot without moving.
During a March 24, 2012, tournament on Table Rock Lake, Matthew S. Beckler of Strafford, Mo., won the Boater Division with a five-bass tournament limit weighing 16.47 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 4.90-pounder, the biggest bass caught in the Boater Division. Beckler caught most of his fish on a homemade umbrella rig worked through eight to 10 feet of water.
In the Co-Angler Division during that tournament, Mark E. Landis of Ballwin, Mo., landed a three-fish division limit going 11.08 pounds. He anchored his catch with a 5.85-pounder that set the tournament big bass standard. Landis caught most of his fish on an Alabama rig with three-inch silver Mann minnows.
For more information on this tournament, call Kristin Malott, tournament manager, at 256-771-3709 or call ABA at 256-232-0406. On line, see www.americanbassanglers.com.
About American Bass Anglers: American Bass Anglers is committed to providing low cost, close to home tournaments for the weekend angler and at the same time offer each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression. For more information about American Bass Anglers, the Weekend Bass Series, the American Fishing Tour or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.