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East Fork Barberian's Shootout Report


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The crew that met at Nothing But Net at early dark thirty consisted of me, Tom Barbera, his daughter Mallory, and Jeff Ignaszak. Our game plan was simple. We decided to forego the reports of copious but smaller fish to the West and return to the outer edge of the Genesee plume that was dispersing off Wautoma Shoals, where Tommy and I had done a few quality silvers the day before at BFF. We started in 110 fow, trolled North, and only turned when we hit 400+. In fact, that was our mode operandai the whole day. I think we made four turns in total, and we staying off Wautoma trolling North-South right up until the final whistle. 

 

For most of the morning, we didn't have another soul fishing near us. We picked away at majors, with the crew doing a phenomenal job of landing what we were lucky enough to pick up. With the exception of a near triple later in the day (that didn't help our box), I don't think any one fish came within 100 feet of another. We'd hit one at 170, then 290, then 400, just picking away at them. I think that the plume was dispersing, and we did note that the edges were where we were getting bit.

 

We started out with an eight rod set: riggers, double divers, and two deep coppers, but quickly pulled the outer divers when we weren't getting any hits up top. Our best rig was a Pro Troll Fish-n-Chips flasher in straight green with a John King meat head at 85 feet on the rigger. That one setup accounted for our three biggest fish. We also had good luck on a 42nd Spin Doctor later in the day, at 85+ down, and the 400 copper with a 10" Black Green Dot Spin Doctor (thank you, Scotty) carrying meat went a few times as well. Spoons were quiet, with a steelhead and a few skippies. 

 

In total, we boated eight decent kings and lost two, along with a handful of smaller fish. Our box consisted of a pair each of 24 and 20 lbers. I'd heard from friends that most of the crowd wasn't doing so well, but it wasn't until we got to the weigh in that I realized how poor the fishing must have been. This was the fewest folks I've seen there, given the normal size field of ~45 boats. Our traditional place at the SCS is ~13, usually a place or two out of the money, and we've only hit the top ten once. Last year, every team that weighed in had four salmon, and we figured that this would be true this year as well. So, we felt decent about our box being competitive, but never suspected that it would end up eight lbs heavier than the second place finisher. I guess it's better to be lucky than good somedays. 

 

We also didn't get into the Calcutta - I figured why give Brian more money lol - and I'm sure that the other teams appreciated that...but at the end of the day, at least we avoided weighing in a limit of lakers.

 

But who would do that? (Smart play, by the way)

 

Seriously though, this is the best (and only lol) tournament we fish, and you couldn't ask for a better group of guys running things. Shout out to Rob, Brian, and Tim for all their hard work.  It's just a smooth operations all around, with the classiest and best looking fishermen on the lake competing in what we originally envisioned to be a working man / small boat tournament. Given the variation in rigs and the breadth of the field, from captains to weekend warriors, I'd say Mission Accomplished. 

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Congrats guys!! Very impressive box on an unbelievable tough day of fishing! Couldn't have happened for a better group of guys AND Girl!!

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The crew that met at Nothing But Net at early dark thirty consisted of me, Tom Barbera, his daughter Mallory, and Jeff Ignaszak. Our game plan was simple. We decided to forego the reports of copious but smaller fish to the West and return to the outer edge of the Genesee plume that was dispersing off Wautoma Shoals, where Tommy and I had done a few quality silvers the day before at BFF. We started in 110 fow, trolled North, and only turned when we hit 400+. In fact, that was our mode operandai the whole day. I think we made four turns in total, and we staying off Wautoma trolling North-South right up until the final whistle. 
 
For most of the morning, we didn't have another soul fishing near us. We picked away at majors, with the crew doing a phenomenal job of landing what we were lucky enough to pick up. With the exception of a near triple later in the day (that didn't help our box), I don't think any one fish came within 100 feet of another. We'd hit one at 170, then 290, then 400, just picking away at them. I think that the plume was dispersing, and we did note that the edges were where we were getting bit.
 
We started out with an eight rod set: riggers, double divers, and two deep coppers, but quickly pulled the outer divers when we weren't getting any hits up top. Our best rig was a Pro Troll Fish-n-Chips flasher in straight green with a John King meat head at 85 feet on the rigger. That one setup accounted for our three biggest fish. We also had good luck on a 42nd Spin Doctor later in the day, at 85+ down, and the 400 copper with a 10" Black Green Dot Spin Doctor (thank you, Scotty) carrying meat went a few times as well. Spoons were quiet, with a steelhead and a few skippies. 
 
In total, we boated eight decent kings and lost two, along with a handful of smaller fish. Our box consisted of a pair each of 24 and 20 lbers. I'd heard from friends that most of the crowd wasn't doing so well, but it wasn't until we got to the weigh in that I realized how poor the fishing must have been. This was the fewest folks I've seen there, given the normal size field of ~45 boats. Our traditional place at the SCS is ~13, usually a place or two out of the money, and we've only hit the top ten once. Last year, every team that weighed in had four salmon, and we figured that this would be true this year as well. So, we felt decent about our box being competitive, but never suspected that it would end up eight lbs heavier than the second place finisher. I guess it's better to be lucky than good somedays. 
 
We also didn't get into the Calcutta - I figured why give Brian more money lol - and I'm sure that the other teams appreciated that...but at the end of the day, at least we avoided weighing in a limit of lakers.
 
But who would do that? (Smart play, by the way)
 
Seriously though, this is the best (and only lol) tournament we fish, and you couldn't ask for a better group of guys running things. Shout out to Rob, Brian, and Tim for all their hard work.  It's just a smooth operations all around, with the classiest and best looking fishermen on the lake competing in what we originally envisioned to be a working man / small boat tournament. Given the variation in rigs and the breadth of the field, from captains to weekend warriors, I'd say Mission Accomplished. 

Great report Gator, it was like I was there while I read it!!!! Pretty simple a great FUN day fishing with a great group of guys and a Girl... Shout out to Brian, Rob , and Tim .. for hosting this event. Tight lines Tommy B IMG_7928.JPGIMG_7927.JPGIMG_7929.JPG


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Thanks for the comments! East Fork is truly a special place. A little bit more water would be nice lol. But that's true everywhere this year. 

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