Wednesday, February 19, 2014

2014 Bassmaster Classic Coverage: How to Fish Lake Guntersville Now!

An in-depth interview with Elite angler and FLW CUP Champ Kevin Hawk on fishing the Classic Waters.

By Luigi De Rose

IBASSIN wanted to give greater understanding on how the pros will fish Lake Guntersville, the host of the 2014 Bassmaster Classic. This famed reservoir on the Tennessee River has a long history with BASS. Numerous events have been held on Guntersville, even Rick Clunn’s first Classic win in 1976. Almost all past tournaments occurred in late spring or autumn not the frigid late winter period greeting the Classic contestants this year.  With 69 000 acres of fishable waters and 71 miles long it is clearly Alabama’s largest water body.  There are no shortage of choices for the Classic anglers.

Photo: Jim Leary/ Kevin Hawk.
We contacted BASS Elite angler and 2010 FLW Cup Champ Kevin Hawk for his knowledge and insight on this week’s Classic. A resident of Guntersville, Kevin has guided on the lake for 3 years and provides great perspective.
What are the traditional patterns for Guntersville at this time of year?

Moving baits are the key. Lipless crankbaits and slowly worked jerkbaits are best. It is all weather dependent. Many are familiar with all the grass that canopies in the summer on this lake. This time of year, it is still a factor but the weeds have died off.  Anglers will be looking for grass, even brown grass, in the 4 to 7 foot depth range.  Single swimbaits might produce very well but the water needs to warm up. Jigs will also account for fish but moving baits will be the way to go.

Is there a magic temperature that will ignite the bite?

There is no magic temperature that will make them bite. Bass bite all the time here. Sometimes they bite best when the weather is poor and cold. Water temperature alone will not make them bite but a series of factors. Today was beautiful and it got warm. A warming trend where the nights remain warm will cause the bass to think about spawning and should move them shallower than most anglers think.  Sun is important but so are stable water levels.  Having the water levels consistent will help make the bite even better. 

Will the Classic be won in a specific locations like Kevin Van Dam’s victory in Beewax creek of Lay Lake or a more run and gun approach?

From my experiences the lower section of the lake will produce better. The middle and upper ends have more numbers but the quality of bass is superior in the lower end. Places such as Seibold and Alred’s should be productive areas.

Tomorrow Kevin Hawk will predict the winning weight, tournament strategies and his top 3 picks to win!

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