Arkansas pro Mike Wurm is enjoying his time on Lake Dardanelle and thinks the fishing is only going to improve.
"Fishing has been fairly good in practice," Wurm said. "Yesterday I had a really good day. We had a little cold front come through today and that kind of messed them up, but it's really been pretty good. You can catch all kinds of small fish. I caught a bunch of 12-14-inchers, but with a 15-inch limit, that's not going to help you out much."
Fellow Arkansan Larry Nixon is not in the same boat. In fact, to hear him describe it, Nixon may not be on the same lake.
"I've only fished three times here and it's pretty tough to get around," Nixon said. "I think we could get hurt really bad by the wind. The fishing is decent, but I hope it doesn't start fishing small. Even with the smaller field, this place could get really small.
"It's fishing just like a river. You always fish shallow in the rivers, though. The fish are going to be shallow and they are going to be spawning, so you can look for the beds and find the fish."
Wurm doesn't think that the anglers will have much trouble finding fish, either, and he should know. This isn't his first time on the lake.
"I've fished here many times," Wurm added. "I used to fish local tournaments down here years ago, but I probably have not been on the lake for five or six years. I still know where I'm going and I know where they're going to be. I might know a few short cuts and get a few places a little quicker. I think it will take about 25-30 pounds to make the top 12, but with the 15-inch limit, it might be less. I think it will be 25 pounds at least."
Both anglers agreed that preparation for the event is a little different from a Tour stop, in part because of the competition's 10 a.m. launch time and 7 p.m. weigh-ins.
"I'm getting out later in the morning," Wurm said. "I'm actually trying to stay out later, too. That's what's really going to be interesting is that we're so late checking in. Other than that, I'm not preparing any differently, though."
The first event of the Bassmaster Elite 50 series on Lake Dardanelle starts Wednesday, April 14. Daily weigh-ins will begin at 7:00 p.m. at Lake Dardanelle State Park and are free to the public.
Fans can catch the first event of the new Bassmaster Elite 50 series on Arkansas' Lake Dardanelle, Saturday, April 24 at 10:30 a.m. ET/9:30 a.m. CT on ESPN2
Following the Lake Dardanelle event, the four-event Bassmaster Elite 50 series travels the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway in Columbus, Miss., May 19-22, to Prattville, Ala., on the Alabama River, June 2-5, and concludes on the Ohio and Cumberland Rivers in Paducah, Ken. June 16-19.
BASS is the world's largest fishing organization, sanctioning more than 20,000 tournaments worldwide through its Federation. The CITGO Bassmaster Tournament Trail presented by Busch Beer is the oldest and most prestigious pro bass-fishing tournament circuit and continues to set the standard for credibility, professionalism and sportsmanship as it has since 1968.
Sponsors of the CITGO Bassmaster Tournament Trail presented by Busch Beer include CITGO Petroleum Corp., Busch Beer, Purolator, Triton Boats, Skeeter Boats, Mercury Marine, Yamaha Outboards, Berkley, Abu Garcia, Lowrance Electronics, Flowmaster Exhaust Systems, MotorGuide, Bass Pro Shops, and BankOne.
Associate Sponsors include G3 Boats.
Local Sponsors include Russellville Advertising and Promotion Commission.
For more information, contact BASS Communications at (334) 551-2375 or visit www.bassmaster.com.