John Cordell wins SoCal Kayak Anglers at Lower Otay

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John Cordell wins SoCal Kayak Anglers at Lower Otay

Post by basstrophy »


Lower Otay Lake was tough for SoCal Kayak Anglers, only three anglers caught a 5 fish limit. When the lines were out, and the judging was concluded, John Cordell won the SoCal Kayak Anglers season opener at Lower Otay Lake with 76.25”. Cordell located spawning bass in 1 to 3 feet of water. The weather was a perfect blend for the first wave of spawning fish, the air temperature was 50 to 60 degrees with warming nights, and the water temperature was 55 to 63 degrees. He used a Tokyo rig paired with a white Googan’s creature bait to entice the spawning bass. Cordell would swim the Googan’s bait past the fish a few times and then he would stop the bait on the bed. He would then hop the bait on the bed teasing the fish to attack his lure. He found this magical spot while fishing, he saw something wake the water deep inside of the tulles. Cordell said, “It took me about a half hour to dredged through the dead floating tulles.” This is where he found the spawning bass stacked up in that area. “It took me about two hours to fish that one area”, Cordell stated. He focused on the southern area of Harvey’s Arm. Once back behind the tulles, he found the bass spawning on big rocks in that area. The key to his success was the dead tulles held the spawning bass compared to the green tulles. Cordell said, “I didn’t practice fish for this event. I went with past experience from last year's event.” This proved to be the right combination for his win. Cordell thanked his sponsor American Tackle for all their amazing rods and reels. Also, he thanked SoCal Kayak Anglers for putting on such great events and his wife for putting up with his passion – fishing.

Johnny Bayard placed second with 74.00”. Bayard fished the Otay Arm in 13 feet of water just outside of the tulles. He focused on a small area between two spawning coves. He figured that this location was a perfect staging area for fish to gather before going back to spawn. Bayard said, “This location had a nice flat that the fish used to feed.” Bayard used a custom-made shad bait and caught his first fish on the third cast. After a while without a bite, he switched up to a drop shot paired with a Robo Worm MM III in the 6” size. Bayard stated, “I have two Garmin Panoptix, one with forward facing, and the second with the perspective view, this helped me locate my fish I caught.” Bayard thanked SoCal Kayak Anglers for putting on such a great event.

Steve Buechner placed third with 72.25”. Buechner didn’t have a bite until 12:20 PM. Buechner moved to the back of a pocket inside of the tulles that proved to be the right decision. “I was spinning out, so I went super shallow, Buechner said.” After his move to the back of the pocket, he found spawning fish. Buechner noticed that the bass didn’t have a defined bed but would keep returning to the same location. Buechner expressed, “I was using a Texas rigged Z-Man craw with a 3/8-ounce weight in 1to 3 feet of water.” Buechner thanked his sponsors Hobie Fishing Team, Fast Lane Kayaks, and Heck Solar and Electric. He said, “I want to thank my wife and family for all their support. Also, Tim O’Conner for rolling to all the tournaments and practice fishing with him.”

Top Ten:

1. John Cordell 76.25”

2. Johnny Bayard 74.00”

3. Steve Buechner 72.25”

4. Frank Arce 57.25”

5. Chris Harris 55.25”

6. Dax Davis 54.75”

7. Jay Bro 54.00”

8. Kou Yang 53.75”

9. Russell Peltier 48.75”

10.Steve Norby 46.75”

Big Fish:

Steve Norby 19.25”
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