...To improve skills as bass anglers through a fellowship of friendly exchange of bass catching techniques and to preserve the future of Bass Fishing through conservation, youth and public awareness.

Day - Night Hopatcong Venture no problem for Billy Bass

       An extraordinary amount of boat traffic greeted the Bergen Bassmasters as they ran their 5th point’s tournament of 2008. The 4PM to 1AM day-night schedule was a first for Bergen and the bassin’ results proved to be quite tough for most participants. For shallow water anglers, churned up water created terrible fishing conditions during the day. During the night, sawbellies (alewife) never did show up and with a steady south breeze, the jitterbug bite never panned out. For the most part, top finishers managed to bag a few keepers during the day off docks followed by one or two bass during the night on spinnerbaits.

         Bill Vella, who pre-fished twice, was lucky to nail two keepers during the day in some back slop area on a rat. To my knowledge, Billy was the only top finisher to catch anything in the slop. To cull out a limit, he then pounded the shore all night with spinnerbaits. With his 1st Place finish totaling 10-11, Billy moved up in the standings and is an excellent position to garnish his 2nd Angler of the Year title. As an added bonus, he also won lunker with a 3-10 LMB. Nice going!

         Club veteran and excellent back of the boat angler, Frank Freguletti, fishing with John Hayden (who pre-fished many times), methodically picked off an excellent limit totaling 10-02. For his 2nd Place award, Frank used senkos around docks and shallow water structure. He nailed 3 during the day and 2 at night.

         Except for an hour before the tournament (when he caught a 5 pounder), Richie Kalanz did not pre-fish, but still managed to find five keepers for 3rd Place. Like most successful anglers, he nailed a few bass on senkos during the day and tagged a few at night with spinnerbaits. Special K’s limit totaled 9-09. Richie also caught the most number of smallies (4). Too bad he didn’t catch the big bass during the tournament.

         Bergen’s excellent young Bassmaster, Andy Karcich, takes home another check with his 4th place bag totaling 9-07. Once again, the pattern was senkos worked along and under docks and weedlines followed by spinnerbait activity after nightfall. Andy caught over 8 keepers.

         Rounding out the top five was club treasurer, John Giordano. Writing himself his own check, Johnny G bagged four chunky bass at 8-09. Once again, the pattern was to use senkos around docks and shallow water structure. Nice going Johnny!

         Bergen normally runs one all-nighter per year and the 4PM to 1AM schedule was a new experience. Although shaking up the usual routine is good thing, tournament director Jason Mordhorst is looking to return to the usual all-nighter in 09 (perhaps on Candlewood?).

         Next up – Twin Lakes CT September 20 - 6:30 to 2:30, leave Montvale at 4AM.