I just got back from the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit Tournament on Cass Lake which was held this past Friday and Saturday. The bite is on! We put good numbers in the boat both days, but unfortunately, finished just out of the money as we were unable to get a fish over 20″ on day 1. I teamed up with Nate Gilkey (Grainbelteyes) for this one and our two day total was 20.07 pounds which put us in 26th place out of 82 teams.
This event was alot of fun as we could weigh a daily 5 fish bag with two over 20 inches and cull as well. We had good slot fish in the 18-20 inch range each day. Most of our fish came from a few spots we had going in Pike Bay as we made the treacherous commute through the extremely shallow, hazard infested channel connecting Pike from Cass each morning. There are spots in the channel a foot deep with wood chips covering the bottom that were responsible for many plugged motors. We used the electric bow mount the entire way which I think was a good decision. On day 2 after we had 5 slots in the well, we decided to try a little deeper for a big one and it paid off as we got a 23 incher in 46 feet of water.
As for tactics, we stuck to what we knew best and that was back trolling Jolly Roger Spinners via 2 oz bottom bouncers up and down the break lines, much like we do on the mudflats on Mille Lacs. I tried to get the Redtail rigging bite that Cass is famous for to go, but never was able to get that dialed in. We deployed a smorgasbord of bait as I used air injected crawlers 100% and Nate switched up between leeches and minnows on his spinner. Overall we caught close to the same numbers of fish, but some baits out produced at times. The best colors were Firebelly, Seyka Perch, Sunrise Craw and Baby Walleye.
This tournament had some very tough competition as the field consisted of many Top Pro’s, Local Guides, Local Cass Experts and the regular field of touring MWC teams which are some of the best walleye fisherman in the country. The winning team of Trevor Diegel and Paul Steffen won the tournament for the 2nd year in a row with a monster two day total of 10 fish for 32.88 pounds. The MWC is a fantastic circuit and the city of Cass Lake and Stony Point Resort really roll out the red carpet for everyone involved. We’ll be back again next year for another crack at it if they return. Here is a link to the results:
I’d like to congratulate Jolly Roger Pro Team members Scott Keeley and Dave Pinney who got enough points at the Cass event to earn them a coveted spot in the 2013 World Walleye Championship on Bays De Noc in Escanaba, Michigan set for October 17-19, 2013. Over 500 teams fished the MWC this year and the duo of Keeley and Pinney were among the top 45 to score a Championship invitation. Great season guys!
Best of Fishing,
Jolly Roger Tackle