For the second bass tournament in a row Joseph Sharpe and I finished in the money. And yet again, it was my partner who caught the fish that got us paid. Sitting in 69th place after day one of the two-day cumulative total event, we moved up to 28th place on day two with a 14.38 pound limit to go with our 11.52 pound limit from day one. I caught the bigger fish this time, but again Joseph caught the one that put us in the money when he landed a 2.5 pounder late in the day that gave us almost a 1 pound cull. That one fish made the difference in making a check or not. One big cull would have put us way up in the money, so it really hurt to break off what felt like a big fish at 2:30. I’d hooked and landed a couple of four pounders earlier in the day and this one felt even bigger. From the looks of the line it appeared that the big fish sawed thru the line with its rough teeth after I set the hook.

The team of Scott Hamrick and Roger Hoover brought in 10 bass over 2 days weighing 33.35 lbs. to take the first place trophy and the winners check for $10,000. They also took home side pots and the Triton Boats owners incentive for a total haul of $25,000 plus other prizes. More than 180 teams were all trying hard to take home that purse, but 182 went home with less, and 153 went home empty-handed like Joseph and I usually have since we started fishing team tournaments together about 5 years ago. I’m looking forward to our next events and bringing home even more money next year.

Area fishing reports and tournament information / updates - Stripers are being landed near the mouth of Eastland Creek and off Henderson Point. Be sure and review the summer striper creel regulations that are intended to provide an opportunity for anglers to take home some fish for the table and reducing the mortality rates of stripers landed during the heat of summer.

Topwater bass action is starting up and will be getting better over the next few weeks. Fish a Zara Spook or other topwater stick bait with a “walk the dog” retrieve on long points. Watch for diving birds early in the mornings and sometimes all day.

My oldest daughter Claire and I took my grandsons John, 9, and Vincent, 3, fishing on the lake Friday using red wiggler bait worms dyed lime green with an additive designed to make them change colors. We also had a few bites on minnows. John caught a nice largemouth bass on his first cast of the day with a Rapala DT-10 crankbait.

The CATT Kerr Trail 2018 Season Final tournament will be held next Saturday, June 16 out of the Occoneechee launch in Clarksville. Friday night we enjoyed a family pack of delicious BBQ from Nunnery Freeman’s BBQ on Norlina Road.

Next week’s report - Report from the Frazier family reunion being held Saturday at Camp Kerr Lake. All three of our children will be there this year and we’re looking forward to spending time with people we don’t get to see much of.

Tip of the week – Re-tie your hook or lure frequently, especially when fishing around rocks, to avoid the disappointment of losing a big fish when you finally hook one.

Contact the writer by email at waltbowen@yahoo.com