COSTA Series Santee Cooper
So the Costa Series on Santee Cooper was a brutal tournament for me. Learned a lot about what to do and not to do on a lake like Santee. The first day I fished with a local guy that lived on the lake. He had some success on the lake in the past and the first day I got to watch a guy catch 21lbs in 5 fish. He only got those 5 bites and I got 1 bite all day but the predominant pattern was fishing isolated trees on the mainlake. He started the day throwing a spinnerbait on windblown mainlake trees and he quickly caught a 6lber and one about 5lbs. We didn't get another bite till about noon and he ended up flipping up a 5lber off an isolated tree and catching another 4lber off another tree. It was really tough fishing for me the first day. I threw practically everything. The lake is really shallow and most of the fish weighed in were caught off those mainlake trees throughout the tournament. My boater on day one fished a lot of history. He had caught a couple of big bags before in Costa Series tournaments on the lake but it's tough for the locals sometimes because they end up fishing history and not running new water. He ended up weighing 1 fish the second day. I figured unless he had a couple of areas saved from what we fished it was going to be a tough day since we didn't get many bites.
Day two I drew a guy that weighed a little under 7lbs the first day. I had high hopes because they said that they lost a few fish on the first day so I figured if I could just get around some fish I could get back in the game and make the Costa Series Championship. As luck would have it all the fish he had been on in the back of the coves had either wised up with the fishing pressure or they had made their way out to the mainlake trees. I tried to give my boater hints on trying to fish those channel swing mainlake trees but he didn't want to take my advice and we spent the whole day fishing the back ends of flats and coves where a lot of the fish had finished spawning the weekend before the tournament. I really believe if we had moved out to the mainlake we would have caught some big bass but that's how it goes as a coangler sometime. Most of the time if you're in the back of the boat it's hard to make your boater to adjust and get you on the fish. The Costa Series was brutal to me this year. Three out of the 6 boaters I fished with in the three tournaments ended up blanking and I ended up blanking 4 out of the 6 days. I felt like some of the positives were that I learned that about only half the field in these bigger tournaments are even competitive.
If you would have told me at the start of the year that fishing would have been this tough on me I would have laughed at you. I know that I am a great angler and it was a combination of bad timing on the lakes we fished and just having super tough draws. The Southeastern Costa Series is a lot of people's dream fishing schedule. They go to lakes like Chickamauga,Okeechobee, and Santee. I failed to qualify for the Costa Championship so I guess I will be finding something else to fish this fall. It was a good experience and I had to give it a try this year. Don't really have any regrets because anytime you go fishing you either learn what to do or not to do. Most of my fishing wins throughout my career I was only able to accomplish because I had experienced failure before and knew what adjustments to make.