H2H Southeast Smackdown II – By Daryl Christensen

April 30, 2022 11:18 am

With our first day of H2H qualifying competition on Lake Geneva (featured only on PHYXTV) only a day or two away, and people asking me how I think we will do against the other competitors

– most of whose skill levels are stratospheric – it seemed reasonable to share my thoughts going into Monday’s fishing.

First of all, water temperatures are unseasonably cold, which could result in a much tougher overall “bite” than anticipated based on pre-fishing. So anglers may have to adjust location, choice of lures and presentation. That said, the fish have had ample time to adjust to fluctuating water temperatures, since ice-out a month ago, even though falling water temps in April is never welcomed by anglers. The fish don’t like it either.

As a result, many of the “hot” presentations that should be working right now are only showing moderate success compared to even a week ago. As an angler, that means I might have to make some minor or perhaps even major adjustments not only on Day One, but each and every tournament day following. Which means the one thing I really hate doing going into a tournament: rigging up additional rods for presentations that aren’t my strong suit, but might be the only way to put fish in the boat.

Lake Geneva is a big lake and with only 16 boats competing, it should fish “big”, right? Ordinarily, yes. But this is no ordinary spring and most of the anglers have years of tournament history on the lake. There are few, if any, “secret” spots to be sure. Some spots are small where groups of fish will congregate, while others are large areas where fish will be scattered. Areas vacant of fish a few days ago, could be stacked with them during the tournament as fish continue to follow pods of forage. Pre-fishing knowledge could go out the window as anglers scramble to find new bunches of fish.

It’s going to be fun to see strategies unfold and evolve during this event. I am excited to be a part of it and look forward to fishing with Dale Helgeson and putting some big fish in the boat!

Cutline for photo: H2H commentator Daryl Christensen with a scorable Lake Geneva largemouth that he hopes will bite again on Monday!