Missouri Division Opens On Lake Of The Ozarks

Missouri Division Opens On Lake Of The Ozarks
Missouri Division Opens On Lake Of The Ozarks
The Missouri Division 16 of the Toyota Bassmaster Weekend Series, operated by American Bass Anglers, opens its 2013 season May 18 on scenic Lake of the Ozarks.The competitors will launch at PB2 Landing, located at 711 Public Beach Road in Osage Beach, Mo. Anglers may begin fishing at safe light. Registration begins at 4 p.m. May 17 at the Grand Glaize Meeting Room, located at 5142 Highway 54 in Osage Beach.Anglers fishing the Boater Division may weigh in up to five bass in any combination of largemouth, Kentucky spotted bass or smallmouth bass. Each bass weighed must measure at least 15 inches long. Co-anglers may weigh in up to three bass.One of the best bass lakes in the nation, Lake of the Ozarks ranks Number 31 on the 2013 Bassmaster magazine list of the top 100 bass waters in the United States. It can hold big bass and delivers good catches of largemouth and smallmouth bass each year.Lake of the Ozarks spreads across more than 55,000 acres of central Missouri. The largest non-flood control reservoir in the nation began in 1929 with construction of a hydroelectric dam across the Osage River. The lake measures more than 90 miles long, offering anglers more than 1,300 miles of shoreline. Several tributaries including the Niangua River, Grand Glaize Creek and Gravois Creek flow into the system. The Little Niangua River feeds into the big Niangua River. Numerous springs also feed the system.With the water temperatures in the 60s, anglers may find many bass holding on the beds in shallow flats. Docks dot much of the shoreline, particularly around Osage Beach, and can provide good places to tempt bass. Toss crankbaits, shaky heads, spinnerbaits or Texas-rigged soft plastics under docks and around pilings. Many dock owners build brush piles near their piers, which can also hold good bass. Drag jigs near these piles or run rattling crankbaits over the brush tops.The huge, sprawling lake offers anglers many points to fish. Drag Carolina- or Texas-rigged lizards off points with access to both shallow and deep water. Early in the morning, throw topwaters in the back of coves. Also try jerkbaits danced along rocky shorelines in about four to five feet of water.During the May 19, 2012, BWS tournament on Lake of the Ozarks, William P. Fortel of Chesterfield, Mo., won the Boater Division with a five-bass tournament limit weighing 19.34 pounds. He anchored his bag with a 4.10-pound kicker.Fortel caught most of his fish by flipping 10-inch Berkley Power Worms and 5/8-ounce football jigs around bluffs. Brett Govreau of House Springs, Mo., earned Boater Division lunker honors with a 4.93-pound bucketmouth.In the Co-Angler Division during that tournament, Brian E. Sarson of Ava, Mo., won with a three-fish division daily limit going 11.03 pounds. He topped his bag with a 5.46-pounder that earned the tournament big bass title. Sarson caught his fish on a brush hog or a 10- to 12-inch watermelon red worm fished around docks and points in about 15 to 18 feet of water.The next divisional tournament will be held June 8, 2013, out of Long Shoal Marina near Warsaw to fish Truman Lake. At the end of the season, one BWS angler will win the opportunity to compete in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic.For more information on this tournament, call Evan Boutwell, tournament manager, at 256-230-5633 or call ABA at 256-232-0406. Online, see www.americanbassanglers.com.

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