Lake Istokpoga is well known as a large bass fishery. This held true last weekend during our annual kickoff tournament. Every year we start on Lake Istokpoga out of Henderson's fish camp. This is a two day tournament and many anglers go down a couple of days in advance to see what changes the lake has gone thru. The water level was up a little from the year before so things were a bit different. Locals told us that the lake has been drawn down over the last month about eight inches so I can't imagine what it was like at its highest levels. The days leading up to the tournament were your typical lake conditions, windy and a heavy chop on the water. One would get quite a beating running across the lake.
On the first day of the tournament the big fish was a 8.71 pound bass caught flipping. The second day a 9.62 monster was the big fish caught by Gary Thompson on his favorite bait, we can't tell you what it was because then he wants to keep it a secret. The second day also had four of five others over eight pounds and eleven over the 22 inch mark. The big sack of the tournament was 32.63 pounds caught on the second day by last years club champions Larry Maltby and Larry Petty. Their total for the two days was 52.05 pounds inching out second place that had a respectable 50.55 pounds. To get a feel for the size of the fish fifth place was over forty pounds. For the two days there was 207 fish weighed in for a total weight of 645.59 pounds this is over a three pound average fish. The one bad thing was there were 17 dead fish this is way beyond the norm. Not a bad tournament for the twenty two teams that showed up.
As usual there were some boat problems, mostly battery issues. After this tournament there will be a few guys out buying new batteries so that they won't have these problems next month. Our next tournament is on the St Johns river out of Lake Monroe park, see you on the water.