Practice is over. The hype is gone. Finding and figuring out fish has been the goal all week. The fish have been feeling the pressure from tourney fishermen and locals alike. But today the “tap” is for real.
It’s time for 57 teams of crappie fishermen to get their game faces (or is that fish faces?) on. Today is Crappie Masters day — the one-day pro tournament on Lake D’Arbonne, Caney and Lake Claiborne. Thousands of dollars in prizes are at stake and for those on the pro tour, important points toward end of the year awards.
We will publish the winners for you Saturday evening at the conclusion of the tournament.
Friday night, all the teams met at the Ruston Library to pre-register for the event and picked up final instructions at the mandatory angler’s meeting. They came from Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama, Missouri and Arkansas and from parishes around the lakes in Louisiana, too, of course. Locals win more than half of the Crappie Masters tournaments nationally.
As a special treat associated with the tournament, a KIDS FISHING RODEO will be held Saturday, April 18, at Lake D’Arbonne State Park (3628 Evergeen Rd, Farmerville). The tournament is for fisherboys and fishergirls ages 15 and under. Bring your own poles and baits. Prizes will be awarded. Registration: 8-9:00am, Fishing: 9-10:30am.
The Crappie Masters All American Tournament Trail event here is sponsored by Bass Pro Shops, Tracker Marine and Nitro Boats, Humminbird, Minn Kota, and Ruston Lincoln Parish CVB, Union Parish, Claiborne Parish, Jackson Parish, Comfort Inn, Days Inn, Lester’s On The Lake, Z 107.5, ESPN 97.7, The Peach 99.3, and Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott. The tournament will qualify anglers for the 2015 National Championship to be held on Kentucky Lake, Paris, Tennessee.
Weigh in will be at North Louisiana Fairgrounds 165 Fairground Rd, Ruston, LA 71270. Anglers will fish from 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM and must be in line by 4:30 PM. The weigh in is open to the public. Ya’ll come!
National Sponsors include: Bass Pro Shops, Tracker Boats, Nitro Boats, Minn Kota, Humminbird, Mercury Motors, Missouri Corn Growers Association, American Ethanol, Ozark Rods, Martin Metal, Johnson Fishing, Road Runner by Blakemore, Power-Pole, Tite-lok Rod Holders, Bobby Garland Crappie Baits, Rockport Rattler, Midsouth Tackle, Grizzly Jig Company, Spike-It, Stren, Lake Fork Trophy Lures, The Original Rod Sox, B’n’M Poles, Slider, Crappie Now, Bug Band, Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits, KeepAlive, Wild River, Crappieholic, Valley Fashions, Ziptailz, Off Shore Tackle, Navionics, Zeko Shoes, Southern Tackleworks, Fizards, Silent Stalker, Rod Safe, Timbuktu Outdoors, Gator Guards, Hook Line & Threader, Skinzit, Crazy Angler, Stump Jumper Series, Rig Rap, American Angler, Fish Balls, Monster Crappie Media and Huffman Publishing, and KMMO Brad & Brian in the Outdoors.