Future Pro Tour anglers size up Oroville

Sep 18 Oroville

For those anglers familiar with Lake Oroville, the abundance of forage, structure, and most importantly bass, is nothing new. This sprawling Gold Country impoundment is famous throughout the west – and now nationwide, (thanks to the B.A.S.S Western Opens) for the tremendous numbers, and sometimes size of the spotted bass it can produce on a regular basis. As it is with most of northern California’s impoundments, the early fall draw-down of water now occurring on Oroville, presents a challenge for Future Pro Tour anglers and will force many to carefully evaluate their game day strategies on how to catch spotted bass during falling water conditions. For J.R. Wright of Truckee, who moved on to pro-level competition after successfully fishing the Future Pro Tour’s 2003 season, the falling-water conditions present great opportunities for those willing to put in the time to figure out a viable pattern. “With the water levels being the way they are anglers should be looking for schooling bass on points, J.R. commented, Topwater first thing in the morning is your best bet for getting a big fish, but as the day progresses you should change to darterheads and dropshotting”, he added further. J.R. currently sits just a few points off the lead in the Angler’s of the Year race in the Angler’s Choice Gold City division - an All-Oroville region for that circuit. We want to wish J.R. the best of luck in his efforts and let him know that his Future Pro Tour undergraduate friends are pullin’ for him!

After last week’s Tour event on the California delta, the Future Pro Tour’s Angler’s of the Year race was shaken up quite a bit. Harvey Pulliman and Mark Daniels who held a commanding lead going in to last week’s event, fell from grace and managed only a small limit, dropping down to fifth place. “Were not done yet”! said Mark who appeared not too rattled with their sub-par delta performance. This is a 7-event tour and it aint over till it’s over!” he added with dogged determination. George and Joe Gomes of Hayward, who turned in a strong performance in last month’s event, took over the lead and have high hopes for winning the coveted amateur title. Along with the AOY braggin’ rights, are paid entry fees into next year’s tour, and 3 limited sponsorships from major tackle manufacturers such as Lucky Craft, Reaction Innovations, Lamaglas Rods.

For those that are not in the running for the AOY titles, there is another reason to do well in this upcoming Oroville event: one of 60 qualifying spots in the year-end championship called the Future Pro Tour Classic. The Future Pro Tour Classic – presented by People’s Folsom Lake/Stockton Chrysler-Jeep-Nissan-Isuzu-Hyundai dealerships, will be held Nov 6/5 on both Folsom Lake and the California delta. This split-venue event will present a challenge plus an even playing field for both shallow water (delta) and deep structure (lake) anglers. The winning team will receive a $15,000 voucher towards a new vehicle – of their choice – from the People’s Folsom Lake/Stockton dealerships.

As always, there will be an optional pre-registration seminar held the evening before the event featuring one of the west’s top bass professionals – Dave Rush. Dave, a four-time Angler of the Year title holder in multiple major circuits, has several TOC championships under his belt, and has posted two top-ten finishes in B.A.S.S competitions on Lake Oroville. In fact, in the 2001 B.A.S.S Western Open, Dave won a boat for his 3rd place finish in the B.A.S.S Western Open on Lake Oroville. Dave is recognized by most, as one of the best fishermen on Oroville Lake, and the information he will have to share regarding how to pattern these early fall bass will be extremely valuable, so you don’t want to miss out!

The pre-registration seminar will be held inside the Gold Country Casino – 4020 Olive Highway (800) 334-9400, from 500 to 700pm. Everyone is invited to come out to the seminar – even if you don’t fish the event. If you cannot make the seminar, you can still sign up the morning of the event, at the Spillway ramp from 4am-6:00am.

The host hotel for this event will be the Best Value Inn, 580 Oro Dam Blvd, (530) 533-7070. They have very nice rooms with boat hook-ups, and will be offering special discounts to all Future Pro Tour anglers. Make your reservations early, as available rooms will go quickly!

See you all at Oroville!

Vince Harris Director, Future Pro Tour