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WELCOME TO THE BASS HOG'S BLOG.  PROFESSIONAL BASS FISHING CO-ANGLER AND OUTDOOR LEGEND.  GET THE LATEST AND GREATEST NEWS AND UPDATES ABOUT FISHING.  PLEASE SUBSCRIBE TO THE BLOG USING THE RSS FEED LINK IN THE BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER OF THIS PAGE.  ADD THE FOLLOWING URL TO YOUR RSS FEED  http://apps.thebasshog.com/Blog/Rss FOR YAHOO, OUTLOOK, AOL, GOOGLE, HOTMAIL OR OTHER EMAIL ACCOUNT OR TABLET. YOU CAN ALSO FOLLOW VIA http://thebasshog.com/news.html. THANK YOU.

Posted By The Bass Hog

LUFKIN, Texas —Sam Rayburn Reservoir is on a very short list of the all-time best fisheries to host a major bass tournament. Not surprisingly, more professional Bassmaster tournaments have been held on the 111,400-acre impoundment in east Texas — 31 — than on any other fishery in the United States.

Beginning with the 1968 All-American won by Bill Dance and continuing through more recent victories by current stars like Rick Clunn, Kevin VanDam, Edwin Evers and Shaw Grigsby, the events have thrilled and entertained fishing fans for nearly five decades.

But none, it is safe to say, have offered bass fishing fans the wealth of things to see and do and experience that will be available at the upcoming Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest benefiting Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), to be held May 17-21.

That’s not surprising, since Texas Fest is the result of a merger of the fan-friendly Bassmaster BASSfest Elite Series tournaments of recent years and the uniquely formatted Toyota Texas Bass Classic (TTBC), conducted on Texas lakes for the past 10 years.

“We’re excited to develop Texas Fest into one of the biggest events in competitive fishing while featuring the great work Texas Parks & Wildlife Department does to ensure the quality of outdoor recreation for the future,” said Brent Hillyer, vice president/Marketing for Gulf States Toyota, which created and sponsored TTBC from the beginning.

“Toyota Bassmaster Texas Fest will combine the best features of the Toyota Texas Bass Classic and our own BASSfest tournament — both of which had become immensely popular among anglers and fishing fans,” said B.A.S.S. CEO Bruce Akin. “Texas Fest will host a special Fan Appreciation Day offering anglers and their families opportunities to meet, greet and learn from the world’s best professional anglers.”

And, borrowing a page from TTBC, the event will feature a catch-weigh-release format. Anglers’ catches will be weighed on identical scales by judges assigned to each boat. Immediately after being weighed, the fish will be released back into the lake. The Top 5 weights will be counted in each competitor’s daily catch, and the pros will bring in their largest bass, if 21 inches or longer, to the weigh-in stage at the George H. Henderson Jr. Expo Center in Lufkin each afternoon.

With a $1 million payout available to the 109 Bassmaster Elite Series pros, including $100,000 to the winner and a $50,000 Toyota Tundra truck to the angler who catches the heaviest bass of the week — along with an automatic entry into the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods — competition can be expected to be fierce.

In addition to its CastingKids course, Toyota is offering an experience geared to adults: the Toyota Ride and Drive obstacle course, open to qualified drivers 18 and over. Fishing families in the market for a new bass rig can take part in demo boat rides provided by Skeeter, Yamaha, Nitro, Triton and Mercury at Cassels-Boykin Park. Free shuttle transportation is provided between the Expo Center and the park.

Also on Saturday of Texas Fest, the most exclusive high school bass tournament will be held on a nearby body of water. To qualify, students have to be named one of the 12 members of the 2017 Bassmaster High School All-American Fishing Team presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods. In addition to being honored as one of the most outstanding student anglers in the nation, the All-Americans will get to participate in a one-day fun-fishing tournament as the teammate of one of the Elite anglers.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

RIDGELAND, Miss.--Due to unsafe weather conditions, the final round of the 2017 Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Elite at Ross Barnett has been postponed until Monday, May 1.

Trip Weldon, B.A.S.S. tournament director, announced the decision after extended communication with the National Weather Service of Jackson, Miss.

“After discussing the threat of severe weather with the National Weather Service, and with the safety of our anglers as our top concern, we felt postponing the final day was the best decision,” Weldon said. “These storms contain significant lightning among other severe weather factors, and it's not worth the risk.”

According to the National Weather Service, the storms are predicted to arrive by 9 a.m. and continue through the afternoon. They currently contain significant lightning, also “damaging wind gusts, hail and a few tornadoes will be possible.”

Dustin Connell of Alabama owns a comfortable lead of 5 pounds, 6 ounces over his nearest competitor, Keith Poche, also of Alabama. The event began Thursday with 109 Elite anglers, but only the Top 12 compete in the championship round.

Those 12 anglers will resume competition on Monday, May 1, at 6 a.m. CT, and will launch from Madison Landing. The weigh-in will begin at 2 p.m. CT at Old Trace Park.

The tournament is hosted by the Ridgeland Tourism Commission.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.


 
Posted By The Bass Hog

RIDGELAND, Miss.--For the second day in a row, Alabama native Dustin Connell is leading the fourth Bassmaster Elite Series event of his life. The 26-year-old rookie is closing in on his first victory and the $100,000 first-place prize at the Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Elite at Ross Barnett.

The weather forecast for Ridgeland, Miss., is predicting strong thunderstorms and heavy rain for Championship Sunday, which could impact whether the tournament concludes on schedule or gets postponed until Monday.

Connell’s pattern produced 15 pounds, 7 ounces of largemouth bass for a three-day total of 51-14, which is just over 6 pounds ahead of second place.

“I’m fishing up in the Pearl River,” Connell said. “And if we get heavy rain, the potential flood waters could wash out my spots. If that happens, I may have to revert to plan B and pick up a frog. I’m hoping we’ll dodge a bullet and be able to fish on Sunday.”

Connell mentioned that he’s so confident in his fishing spots that if the weather holds off, he believes he can win.

“I’m trying to not focus on the what if’s right now, rather I’m focusing on what I need to do tomorrow to win, provided we get to fish,” he said. “I have been flipping 35 to 40 spots with lots of vegetation this week. The water in that part of the river is starting to stabilize, and fishing seems to be getting better. If we can avoid the rain, I think I could catch the biggest limit of my week.”

The young angler said he caught 12 or 13 fish during the day, and he missed several big bites that could have added to his lead.

“I’m happy to have a 6-pound lead, which on this lake will go a long way,” he said. “If the weather does hit, a 6-pound cushion will play to my advantage. At the very least, it’ll help me sleep tonight.”

Another Alabamian is also in contention for the win. Keith Poche caught 15-6 on Saturday’s semi-final round, pushing his total to 46-8.

“I really don’t know how this is going to end up,” Poche said. “The forecasted weather is a huge variable. I know I’m around some big fish, maybe even the winning fish, but several inches of rain will definitely change things — and if it does I will be starting over.”

Rounding out the Top 12: Kevin VanDam (46-6), Jonathon VanDam (45-15), Brent Chapman (44-13), Mark Menendez (44-13), Fred Roumbanis (44-12), Matt Herren (44-4), Ish Monroe (44-2), Dave Lefebre (44-1), Bobby Lane (43-10) and Skeet Reese (42-11).

Lester remains in the lead for the Phoenix Boats Big Bass Award thanks to the 7-2 largemouth bass he caught during Thursday’s opening round.

Due to impending weather conditions for Ridgeland, Miss., Bassmaster tournament officials are in regular communication with the National Weather Service. They will make a decision about the final round of competition Saturday evening or early Sunday morning.

According to Bassmaster Elite Series rules, if Championship Sunday is canceled, the tournament will resume on Monday with a projected 6 a.m. CT takeoff and a final weigh-in at 2 p.m.

Connell won the Livingston Lures Day 2 Leader Award of $500 for leading the tournament on Friday’s second day of competition.

The event is hosted by the Ridgeland Tourism Commission.

Courtesy of BASS Communications.