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Thursday, February 10, 2011
WON BASS Pro Event - Lake Roosevelt, Arizona

Lake Shasta 2011 WON BASS ProAm Coverage
Darrin Bishop of Paso Robles made his move on the final day of the tournament and went from 5th place to take the win from day-one local angler leader Mike Menne of Cottonwood.

Bishop brought the largest bag to the scales on day-two with 10.46-lbs and edged out Menne, the day-one leader by .03 pounds!  Menne certainly battled hard to hang on to his lead with the third largest bag on day-two weighing 9.03 pounds, but fell just short. A classic fight to the finish between two great competitors !

Darin Bishop won theWON BASS Lake Shasta ProAm by .03-lbs with the largest day 2 bag of fish, edging Mike Menne of Cottonwood who also had a great second day.

Mike Menne of Cottenwood, Ca. had an incredible tournament, coming in a close second in the bass fishing equivalent of a photo finish.

Anglers that thought the sunshine might bring a better bite were wrong. Random interviews all came up with the same answer, it was tougher today. The fog went away and the temperature warmed up in the afternoon, but it didn’t change the bite. “With the water level fluctuating, high pressure, and cold water temperature it had to be tough today,” said the all time WON BASS money winner Gary Dobyns.

Richard Dobyns held on to big bass honors with his 5.35 spotted bass on day-one. Paul Bailey held on to his second big bass honors, also caught on day-one. There were only 3 bass that weighed in at the 3 pound range and that was it for 3 pounds or better. In the last couple of years, Shasta has kicked out some 6 pounders caught on swim baits. It was all about the finesse bite in this tournament. Senkos, darter head worms, robo worms, and tubes were the baits used to cash checks in this tournament. The bite was in the  0-50 foot range.

Mike Folkestad pictured with his day 2 AAA partner Aaron Leon.  Mike had a great event and finished in 3rd place,  putting him in great position to make yet another run at the WON BASS Angler of the Year title again this year.

Here are the top ten pro standings; Darrin Bishop 21.04, Mike Menne 21.01, Mike Folkestad 19.65, Richard Dobyns 19.06, Sean Stafford 18.94, Taylor Thompson 18.91, Gary Dobyns 17.76, Ricky Shabazz 17.50, Jason Borofka 17.32, and Howard Hughes 17.16.

AAA top ten anglers; Dave Nelson 20.77, Paul Aznarez 20.12, Dink Mendez 17.86, Rick Kendrick 17.63, Lonnie Foster 17.58, Dave Huntze 16.82, Ron Pine 16.76,Jodie White 16.39, Aaron Leon 16.27 and Chris Mason tied for ninth place,

Check later for the WON BASS total standings.   

Sunday 1PM Update
There were many new faces at this years WON BASS Lake Shasta Pro AM, and many of them were not just fishermen.

Larry Viviano, who has been running Pro am's for decades and who recently announced that he was not going forward with his own West Coast Bass tournaments, stepped forward to work the WON BASS Shasta event and ran the scales. He  brought along much of his staff to work the event.

Larry Viviano brought his decades of experience to the WON BASS weigh-in.

Not only did the WON BASS scales have a new celebrity weighmaster, but the  Lake Shasta tournament also had another  star at the microphone. Kent Brown, the well known host of Ultimate Bass radio on KHTK 1140 AM in Sacramento, has kept the fishermen and spectators entertained throughout the Lake Shasta tournament.

Kent Brown interviews last year WON BASS "Angler of the Year" Paul Bailey on day one.

The support of Kent and Larry was greatly appreciated as was  their active participation.

Update 9AM Sunday January 9, 2011
Shasta tournament anglers launched with clear blue skies and a cold 25 degrees, but tournament director Bill Egan warmed em’ up with free, hot, Dills Deli breakfast burritos. The day before the competitors had to wait around in their boats for the cold fog to lift, and Billy wanted to surprise them with some warm food if they had to wait again this morning. The burritos were a big hit with the anglers, but getting out earlier than expected, no fog and a little sunshine was the big news of the day.

TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR—Bill Egan brought breakfast burritos to the blast off on final day of the tournament. Dills Deli made 200 burritos and had them ready before blast off.

With the drastic weather change to sunshine and clear skies you could see some repositioning on the leader board on this final day of the tournament. Anglers practiced in these clear ski conditions and were catching some larger bass as the sun warmed the water during the day.

SNOW CAPPED MOUNTAINS—and blue skies for WON BASS Shasta launch on the final day of the tournament.

At the partner pairings, long time pro and local angler Howard Hughes said, “I have been catching bass consistently up to 3 pounds in practice and this will be a good tournament for me.”

The top 4 leaders are only hundreds of an ounce from each other and legendary anglers like Mike Folkestad sitting in 10th and Gary Dobyns in 11th they could make the charge and move into the lead.

Lake Shasta is a great fishery and is beautiful this time of year with the snow capped mountains and clear blue skies; this is the reason tournament anglers fish Shasta in January.

The complete first day standings for both the Pros and AAA's  can be found on the WONBASS.com website. To get to the listings you can click on the following links:
Shasta 2011 Day One Pro Standings
Shasta 2011 Day One AAA Standings

Saturday -Day One wrap-up by Bill Mays

The sun never came out today and the temperature stayed in the 30’s all day but that didn’t stop pro Mike Menne and AAA angler Dave Nelson from bringing in a solid Lake Shasta bag of 11.97 pounds and jump out in the lead on day one.

Menne was in the last flight, the last boat to weigh to weigh-in, and took the lead from last years Pro WON BASS Angler of the Year Paul Bailey. Bailey also weighed in a solid bag of 11.87 pounds finished in second place and caught his bass on a blue and black jig.

MENNE & NELSON—are leading the tournament with a total weight of 11.97 pounds.

Richard Dobyns captured the big bass of the day honors with a 5.35 pound spotted bass that he caught on a worm and is sitting in the third position with a total weight of 11.78 pounds.

Richard Dobyn's gets the big fish of the day and is in 3rd place after day one of the tournament.

It’s still anybody’s game with no big kickers of 6 pounds or better brought to the scales today. Tomorrows a new day and some of the anglers needed the sunshine added to their pattern to jump up their weights.

Defending WON BASS Angler of the Year Paul Bailey is all smiles and in 2nd place with 11.87-lbs. after the first day Shasta weigh in.

“I was catching my bass in pre-fish with the sun shinning and the sun never shined all day,” said Mike Rychard. Long time pro angler John Morrow said, “Thank God for Lowrance GPS, I haven’t fished this lake very much and I would have been lost in the fog without it.” Eric Parra had a fog story, he thought he was fishing in the Pit Arm of the lake and he was actually in the Squaw arm. Up and coming rookie and first timer on Lake Shasta Klayton Belden said, “There were times I didn’t know where I was fishing, I just know there is fish on every bank of this lake.”

Even though it was cold all day the anglers were in good spirits at the weigh-in line and new to the WON BASS team Kent Brown, kept the anglers laughing with his radio personality and his wit on the microphone.

Later tonight the rest of the standings will be posted on the WON BASS site.

Even with the short day, many anglers were able to find the fish and bring in five alive. Big fish honors for day one go to Richard Dobyns with a respectable 5.35 spot. Now for the unofficial top 5 for day 1.

1 - Mike Menne 11.97 - Last to weigh-in
2 - Paul Bailey 11.87
3 - Richard Dobyns 11.78
4 - Ken Phillips 11.23
5 - Jason Borofka 10.58
5 - Darren Bishop 10.58

We will be posting the day 1 results shortly on our website

January 8, 2011 10 AM update
The WON BASS pro anglers patiently waited for the dense fog to lift and the tournament director Bill Egan to make the safe call at 9:00 am to release the anglers for the day one launch on Lake Shasta. “There hasn’t been fog like this in the last 15 years,” said one of the local anglers while waiting to launch.

Angler at Lake Shasta ProAm on the Saturday morning delayed start.

“I didn’t have one angler complain about the delay due to the dense fog,” said tournament director Bill Eagan. Everyone patiently waited for the fog to lift, anglers laughed and joked while sitting in their boats and some caught a quick snooze, like Bradley Yang. It was cold and breezy and the temperature was in the 30’s, but all the anglers were in good spirits.

Pro Angler Bradley Yang geared up for the cold weather and waiting for the fog to lift

This time of the year on Shasta the latter flights usually catch the bigger bass as the water warms up latter in the day. Even though the anglers got launched later, it probably will not make that much of a difference with their total weight at the end of the day. The 4 flights of anglers are still going to weigh in at their original weigh-in times making it fair for all anglers.

While waiting for the fog to lift, this writer got the opportunity to interview many of the anglers and find out how the fishing has been on the lake this week. It was all the same answer, they were catching a lot of bass and the kicker bass were between 3 and 4 pounds.

Cold foggy weather, but the Pros were nevertheless anxious to get started.

Check back in later tonight after the weigh-in and find out who is on big bass and tournament leader results.

Tournament time has started at Lake Shasta and they're off and running now at the WON BASS Lake Shasta ProAm. At about 9:00AM the fog has cleared enough to get things safely started. More to come throughout the day and the event.

The WON BASS Lake Shasta ProAm is in a holding pattern as of 8:20 AM this morning - January 8, 2011 - as thick fog has blanketed the entire region. According to WON BASS tournament director Billy Egan, his same weather pattern has occcured the last few days, and it is expected to clear up enough to get started soon. More to come...

Friday- January 7, 2011 7Pm
Well it’s cold, but at least it’s not raining or snowing, and for Lake Shasta this time of year that’s a good thing. The past 3 years have been an endurance or survivor tournament for the WON BASS anglers, with extreme rain, wind, and cold temperatures.

Anglers have had cold temperatures while pre-fishing all week, but nothing in the extreme category. There were even anglers at the bar-b-q saying how nice it was on the lake today with the sun shinning.

There were smiles all around at Phil's Propeller's, which is the central hub for bass fishermen coming to Lake Shasta.
PHIL’S PROPELLER crew feeds Chris Ricci and all the WON BASS anglers a tri-tip bar-b-q dinner before the partner pairings.

Phil, of Phil’s Propeller, feed all the WON BASS anglers this evening a delicious bar-b-q tri-tip and baked bean dinner. Phil has donated this dinner for many years to show his support and appreciation to all the bass tournament anglers.

The Tri-Tip steak bbq provided by Phil's Propellers was very much appreciated before the angler pairings

The weather forecast is cold for the entire weekend, but no rain or snow is expected during the tournament. These professional anglers are used to fishing in cold weather conditions and look for some big bags to be weighed in after the 2 day event.

Many anglers said they were catching plenty of bass, but trying to catch the kicker bass will determine the winning bags. Catching the big spotted bass is usually the key to success on this lake this time of year.

Jan 3, 2011 -
Yes it’s that time of year again. The weather is cold and raining, but anglers always enjoy the WON BASS Pro Tour kick off at Shasta Lake. It’s always fun to fish Shasta no matter what time of year and weather is never the issue, it’s all about catching a lot of fish on one of the most beautiful lakes in California.

Many WON BASS anglers have already signed up for the tournament and many more are expected to sign up during the week. The long range weather forecast is calling for slight chance of rain Mon. thru Thursday before the tournament, so hopefully the tournament days will be the same.

Water levels should be high due to all the storms rolling through Northern California for the past couple of weeks. Areas to check during pre fish are creek arms with running water and past winners have had good luck in the McCloud arm, and Main Body of the lake fishing extended points.

Back-to-back winner of the WON BASS Shasta Lake tournament of 2009 & 2010 Nick Wood likes the weather cold, raining, and the nastier the better. Winner Nick Wood caught all of his keeper bass on the swim bait on day two. He fished worms in the morning, just to get a limit and then later in the day he culled them with the Swim Bait. He had one spot that was holding big bass. What made him stick to the Swim bait was he actually saw a 4 pounder eat a trout right in front of the boat.
Quote’s form last year winner Wood after the tournament, “This year was a lot tougher to catch my quality fish, last year was pretty easy and I didn’t have to work and finesse the fish. I didn’t catch my first big bass until late in the afternoon. I left the spot, let it settle down, didn’t go back until an hour later, and then made the same exact cast and took my second big bass of the day.”
Swim baits and Senkos have been the winning go-to-baits on Shasta Lake and remember don’t give up until the last cast of the day. The bigger bass are moving up later in the day as the temperature warms up.

Sign up today and enjoy fishing the WON BASS Lake Shasta Pro/Am the kick off tournament for 2011. To register call Ashley at the WON office at 949-366-0030 ext. 38.

Reader Comments
anyway to post the pairings before the tourney is over for those of us who can't make it
mary Grant
Having lived in Redding for nearly 40 years and fished many of the old Western Bass before retirement in Portland, OR area, I have to say your coverage (and exceptionally fast and detailed) of the Shasta event was the best I have ever seen. The photos were great..and was able to contact many ole' friends who fished WCB in this venue! Keep up the good work! Welcome back Larry V. These Columbia river smallies are great bass but those 7# spots I was lucky enough to catch in past years are the best!
Jim Miller
Just curious, do you list the payouts of the winners? Where can I find the info?
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