Dad and I departed from Ramsey last Tuesday to start pre-fishing for the MTT Lake of the Woods tournament. The ride up there is always one filled with anticipation, as we know what kind of fish that Lake can turn out if conditions are right.
We arrived at Wheelers Point Resort in plenty of time for dinner, good conversation and a pre-game bump. As always, Wheelers did not disappoint. Good service, good food, and accommodations that are second to none.
As always, I spent a good amount of time on Contour Elite preparing for our pre-fishing. On a body of water this big it is almost an essential tool to properly prepare yourself. We hit the water on Wednesday morning and headed West from the river to our favorite reefs. This time of year guys are primarily pulling blades, jigging with frozen shiners, or starting in with some crankbaits. Our primary plan was to find numbers and check some of our big fish spots that have produced for us in the past. The first three spots kicked out over 30 fish in three short hours. I was super excited because the reef we fished was absolutely loaded with eyes. It literally was lighting up my graph like I can’t even explain. Although we could have sat there all day, we used our best judgement and went in search of other active fish.
The plan was to fish the tournament with my brother-in-law Brent who arrived in time to join us for dinner on Wednesday. Prior to dinner we put together a 3rd smooth moves suspension for my Crestliner. My boat fishes three comfortably, but this lake can really beat you up if you do not have the seat suspensions. We decided to head north on Thursday for our second day of fun. We put on lots and lots of miles in search of a back up plan in the event that our spot to the West did not pan out. He was smiling ear to ear to join us in riding in comfort.
We didn’t find the fish schooled as thick as we did out west, but we found quality fish. We caught one over 28 and several 18-19 inch fish to go with it. In fact, our basket on Thursday would have won the tournament on Friday and had us in 2nd or 3rd on Saturday. We closed out pre-fishing content and confident. If you are headed up there soon, do yourself a favor and visit Tom’s tackle.
Their JB strobes are essentially all we use for jigging up there. Pretty tough to beat a strobe on a Tooth Tamer Rod. The color schemes on their blades are also perfect for LOTW.
Our luck changed on the first day of the tournament as mother nature greeted us with nasty thunderstorms. We sat in wind, thunder, lightning, and rain essentially all day. The pre-fishing was all but useless, as the fish were essentially off of that reef. I adamantly believe the lightning quickly drove them off the reef. We scratched together a basket that afforded us a 12th place finish.
The second day of the tournament offered better weather but we didn’t find the right size fish. We brought our four allowed to the scale, but unfortunately they were not the right four for us to do any good.
A big thanks to dad and Brent for a great time. Next stop – Winnie!