Escaping Minnesota

Round two has passed and Lake Guntersville is starting to become a body of water that is feeling more familiar with every visit. My good friend, Parker Knudsen, and I loaded up our gear and headed down to Alabama to get our second crack at the phenomenal fishery. With optimism of potentially catching our personal best, we were excited as ever to kick off the season.

We split the drive into a two day endeavor by spending the night in southern Illinois. You better believe we woke up at 4 am the next day to get to Guntersville and spend an extra half day on the water.

Not too long into one of our first spots, I hooked into a fish that stopped me in my path. After my rod keeled over for a solid few seconds, the fish came off. This haunted me the most because if that was a bass, it just might have been my biggest I had ever caught. Having to move on from that right off the bat was a little hard to swallow, but it gave high hopes to a bright week of fishing ahead. Well, that didn’t end up being the case because the next few days were a GRIND.

Each day was not what we were expecting. Averaging around 6 fish a day made for long days on the water, not to mention no fish over 3.5 pounds! We were struggling mentally to get us some big bass in the boat fast! With only a couple of days left on the prestigious reservoir, we were ready to put the pedal to the metal and get some redemption.

Our last day finally started working out for us. We started flipping some fallen timber on steep contour banks leading into major spawning areas. The only presentation we seemed to be able to get bites on was a Texas-rigged beaver on a 3/8 oz tungsten bullet weight. They didn’t want a bigger jig profile and also insinuated a want for a slower fall. We also were working it very slow just dragging it over any cover we came across.

But yet again, things were just not going my way for getting the big ones in the boat. I lost a solid 6-7 pound fish right at the boat at the start of the day and another 5 pounder not too long after. Feeling flustered, I switched out my hook from a EWG to a straight shank flipping hook and my fish landing ratio went up immensely for the rest the fish I boated. Unfortunately they were not like the big fish I had on before, I just didn’t come across another big bite. On the flip side, Parker stuck a solid 5-pound Guntersville bass to cap off the day.

Lake Guntersville had us feeling a sting in the wound as we left there for the second time. Two years in a row, same lake, same time of year – we left without success. We hope to make it back next time at a different time of year to have our crack at it again. We love Guntersville and it almost is starting to feel like our home away from home.

On the way to our checkpoint in southern Illinois, we opted to stop and watch the FLW College Fishing Open event on Kentucky Lake to see some of our MN hometown friends compete at a shot to fish in the National Championship. It was good to see our fellow anglers along with watching 203 different teams weigh-in at our first attendance to a college fishing tournament!

Excited to get back on the road again, which will be my first Bassmaster Northern Open of the year on Lake Oneida, NY! Lets get it on!!

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