Oklahomans to open season at Lake Tenkiller
ATHENS, Ala. – The Oklahoma Division 14 of the American Bass Anglers Weekend Bass Series will open its 2014 tournament season March 29 at Lake Tenkiller near Cookson, Okla.
The competitors will launch at Chicken Creek Landing, located off State Highway 82 in Cookson. Anglers may begin fishing at safe light. Registration begins at 4 p.m. March 28. To register for this tournament, see www.americanbassanglers.com/proddetail.php?prod=830. To enter, anglers fishing the Boater Division pay $200 with co-anglers paying $100. In addition.
Anglers fishing the Boater Division may weigh in up to five bass. Co-anglers may weigh in up to three bass. All anglers will need an Oklahoma fishing license. For Oklahoma fishing license information, see www.wildlifedepartment.com/forget1/OnlineSales.aspx or call 405-521-3852.
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.
Tenkiller Ferry Lake, more commonly called Lake Tenkiller, covers about 12,900 acres of the Cookson Hills, part of the Ozark Mountains in eastern Oklahoma. The lake offers anglers more than 130 miles of shoreline with numerous coves surrounded by rocky bluffs and forests. The lake formed after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built an earthen dam on the Illinois River in 1947 for hydroelectric and flood control purposes.
Anglers pull many big largemouth and smallmouth bass from the deep and crystal-clear waters of Lake Tenkiller. Anglers may want to run deep-running crankbaits, Alabama rigs or spinnerbaits slowly along bottom contours in deep water. For smallmouth, fish the old river channel and Baron Fork Creek. Chicken Creek and Snake Creek can also provide some good catches.
Once bass start moving up into the shallows, many anglers sight-fish in some of the clearest waters in Oklahoma. Some anglers fish the flats around Pettit Bay, Standing Rock and Carters Landing. In the coves, drag Carolina-rigged lizards or cast football jigs around points and work them back down into deeper water. Also fish rocky wind-swept points with lipless rattling baits or spinnerbaits.
During a March 23, 2013, tournament on Lake Tenkiller, Chris B. Haney of Broken Arrow, Okla., won the Boater Division with a five-bass tournament limit weighing 21.52 pounds. He caught most of his fish on a Yumbrella rig. Kirk C. Smith of Edmond, Okla., won the tournament big bass title with a 6.56-pounder that hit an Alabama rig tipped with Storm swimbaits.
In the Co-Angler Division during that tournament, Jason D. Pebworth of Coalgate, Okla., landed a three-fish division limit going 13.97 pounds. He capped his catch with a 6.01-pounder that won the division lunker honors. Pebworth caught most of his fish on an Alabama rig with 4.5-inch white swimbaits on it.
For more information on this tournament, call Porter Trimble, tournament manager, at 318-201-3474 or 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.