South East Texas Division to open on Big Sam
ATHENS, Ala. – The South East Texas Division 10 of the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, will hold its first tournament of the season on March 9, 2013, on Lake Sam Rayburn.
The anglers will launch at Umphrey Pavilion, located on County Road 255 near Jasper. Anglers may begin fishing at safe light. Registration begins at 4 p.m. March 8. Anglers fishing the Boater Division may weigh in up to five bass. Co-anglers may weigh in up to three bass.
The competitors may fish anywhere in the 114,500-acre reservoir on the Angelina River. The largest lake entirely within the state of Texas, “Big Sam” offers anglers more than 750 miles of shoreline. The water depth drops to more than 80 feet deep in places.
Lake Sam Rayburn ranks 19th on the Bassmaster magazine list of the top largemouth destinations. Big Sam harbors many giant bass and gives up many double-digit fish annually. In May 1997, Tommy Shelton set the lake record with a 16.80-pound largemouth bass. The lake produces many largemouth bass in the 4- to 8-pound range with some in the 10- to 12-pound range.
During the March 17, 2012, BWS tournament on Big Sam, Roy Sanford from the town of Sam Rayburn, Texas, won the Boater Division with a five-bass tournament limit weighing 18.03 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 6.72-pounder that won the Boater Division big bass title. He caught most of his bass by fishing slow and shallow with a weightless watermelon lizard. His big bass hit in less than a foot of water.
In the Co-Angler Division during that tournament, Melvin Henslee of Beaumont, Texas, landed a three-fish division daily limit going 15.64 pounds for a 5.21-pound average. He capped his catch with a 7.68-pound bucketmouth that set the tournament lunker standard. Henslee caught his bass early in the morning on a weightless watermelon fluke fished very slowly in water less than two feet deep.
For Texas fishing license information, see www.tpwd.state.tx.us/business/licenses/index.phtml or call 800-792-1112. To register for this tournament, see www.americanbassanglers.com/proddetail.php?prod=666.
At the end of the season, one BWS angler will win the opportunity to compete in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic. For more information on this tournament, call Porter Trimble at 318-201-3474 or ABA at 256-232-0406. On line, see www.americanbassanglers.com.
About American Bass Anglers: The Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series provides weekend anglers a professionally operated competitive tour with a path the world championship of bass fishing the Bassmaster Classic. American Bass Anglers commitment is to provide 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 and the American Fishing Tour, The Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Weekend Series or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.