Tournament Research

This was my first year of actually fishing a complete tournament trail to make a run for a championship. With having a toddler already and a second one coming I knew this was going to be my last year to be able to do this for awhile. I decided to fish the River Bassin Trail since the championship was actually in my own back yard in Wrightsville, PA.
We were required to fish 3 tournaments in our region and had a bonus online tournament to make up for a bad performance at any of the three live tournaments. I teamed up with a local angler I fished well within the past and the research for the season began. One of the things I learned the most about this season was we spent way more time doing research than we did actually fishing in the tournaments.

One of the biggest tools we used for the research was Google Maps. I spent more time looking at maps this season than I care to admit. Some of the things we looked for was access points, fishable water, portages, and any obstacles we might come across fishing water we have never been in before.

Not only did we look at maps but we also used a lot of other resources to our advantage as well. Another method we used was due to my partner Brian working for the PA Fish and Boat Commission. He would email biologists in other states for any intel they could provide us. Sometimes they had good information with fish counts and personal experience for us and some was not so good but we took it all into consideration.

One of the last methods we used was local intel. Once we would get into a town we would find any locals and tackle shops that were willing to talk to us. A few people we would talk to would all say the same information as the next person but every so often we would luck out with some usable information that would put us on fish .
Combined with all of this intel is how we would pick our spots for the season. Did it work for us? Well I would like to think it did as we finished with a 2nd place team in the championship. I may be sitting out next year for the River Bassin Trail but I do plan to come back and get the 1st place finish in the future.

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