J.B. Webb — Bassmaster Classic will be one to remember

Herald Democrat

This weekend will see the Bassmaster Classic come to Lake Ray Roberts. You can watch the boats go out return to the Texas State Park at Pilot Point. That’s about all you will see as the rest is at the Fort Worth Stockyards.

This is the Classic and while you might have seen a couple of major tournaments on Texoma, you are in for a surprise in Fort Worth. Some of you might have gone to the Classic in Tulsa some years back. It was my first and I worked it for TFO Rods and Blakemore Road Runner.

Tulsa was where I met Gerry Loomis and we became friends before it was over. That Tulsa show also was where I met Bill Dance on a break. He had been at another show that we both were working. We were in the Tulsa break room, he kept looking at me and then said: "I know you but what’s your name?"

After two shows we worked together, Jimmy Houston became a friend. He had been cold toward me at the other shows but after he saw that I was also serious about my work we became friends. Ray Scott was another friend I made at that Oklahoma City Tackle Show.

At another show later I was working with Billy Murrey, Ray came up behind me and got me in a headlock, don’t know why but they were all laughing. It helped to know them all when I was into serious fishing.

Fast forward until this weekend. You just can’t believe what you will see and can do. If you go with your family make sure your boy or girl has a new cap. They might get some famous fishing names on it. Friday will also be Military Appreciation Day. Saturday is First Responder Appreciation Day. There will be a load of things to do at the Outdoors Expo at the Will Rogers Memorial Center.

Friday from 4-10 p.m. will see the kickoff party. It starts with the Cattle Drive. Live music at 6 p.m. will include country star Jimmie Allen before he goes to play at Billy Bob's. The Squeeze Box Bandits will take over the rest of the time.

Tournament weigh-in each day will be at Dickies Arena. There is a slew of great restaurants there also. Most of the entertainment is free.

Wednesday saw Charlie finally come out of hiding and we went fishing. Texoma continues to look like a bass fisherman’s dream. We were in Charlie's boat so I got to sit in the back and let him run the boat. After fishing our cove with no results, I had him head for the boathouses.

Using the new Booyah Convert Series Spinnerbait I had talked about last week, I made a cast across the end of a boathouse and had the rod nearly jerked out of my hand as a hefty bass clobbered it. I put it in the boat; Charlie said I could count it.

Not long after, Charlie was throwing one of the older Booyah Spinnerbaits but lost a fish. We went to the back of Little Mineral; we fished a long stretch of good-looking water and at one point I caught a nice bass on my Spinnerbait. While fishing was slow, the buck brush was biting as we had to go into it several times to get our lures back.

Moving over to another bank, Charlie's rod bent double — it was a big striper; didn’t count. Moved on up to another cove. We were fishing along and Charlie caught and lost another fish. Later he caught and got in another fish. It was silver; didn’t count.

Giving my Booyah Convert Series Spinnerbait a rest, I tossed a YUM Breaking Shad Jerk Bait and was working it over a big limb in the water when a nice Kentucky crashed it. We heard a splashing and back down the bank a big school of stripers or sandbass were working over a school of shad.

By the time we decided to go back and try them they were gone. I got one more bass on the YUM Breaking Shad. It was getting hot so we decided to go in. I like to catch at least five fish before I write about them. I had to count Charlie's two to get to five.

I’m at logger’s end trying to figure out where the bass are. My most consistent bass structure continues to be boathouses with the new Booyah Spinnerbait. Crappie are slow and when I catch one it is in deeper water in or around brush. Even people fishing with minnows aren’t catching very many. Catfish will be spawning now and the lake has a lot of jug lines floating everywhere.

The rocks and black holes down toward Eisenhower Marina close to the bank are good places to look for the kitties. Look where you are running — if you wrap one off those jug lines around your prop get it off quick as you can. Don’t and it can melt your prop seal and possibly cost you a lower unit.

Stripers and sandbass are definitely your best bet for catching now. Live bait seems to be best now but some lures are also getting limits. Finding a place to park at our ramp is getting hard to do. Highport is running some people off with their new launch system and they are coming over here only to find no place to park.

Your best bets for finding launch parking will likely be the Lighthouse or Little Mineral Marina.

Have a great weekend and a trip to Fort Worth would be fun.