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Top Pros Come out for Pardee -  2nd Annual Media Day (continued)

Meanwhile on the other side of the lake loud laughter could be heard as Cal and Byron pursued bass with a variety of swimbaits. Cal focused on Hudds and Al-e-Baby jointed hardbaits while Byron fished Osprey swimbaits. Unlike many tournament anglers Byron actually counts on swimbaits with money on the line. Well known for his love of big baits he fished Osprey swimbaits all morning and even customized the baits on the deck of the boat.

Byron Velvick shows Cal his new e21 rods

While he was customizing his lures he turned to see Cal fishing a prototype smallmouth bass swimbait from Mattlures. His eyes lit up and he asked “what is that!?”

Skeet with a nice smallie

Cal showed him the intricately painted hard swimbait then tossed it out and started to wind it back slowly. They worked a point and Cal started fishing the Mattlures swimbait slow and snagged it up twenty feet below. “You probably should cut that off,” Byron said with a grin. “I’m not leaving this one,” Cal replied as he shook the rod trying to free the bait. “I know, I was just hoping you would leave it there and I could come back and pick up that bait this afternoon,” Byron joked.

Byron customizes his Osprey swimbait

While the swimbaits drew chasers the bass simply wouldn’t commit to the big baits and by 10:00 am Byron said the bite was probably dying down for the swimbaits. Byron went on to describe how different fishing swimbaits were in a tournament situation versus trophy bass fishing. During a tournament if the bite isn’t hot by 10:00 Byron will switch out to other lures until he boats a few, versus trophy bass hunters who will fish big baits all day, and often consider the early afternoon prime big bait time.

Byron shows Cal his favorite rod in the series

With the swimbait rod retired to the rod locker Byron turned to a Fin-Tech jighead with a Berkley Chigger Craw on an e21 Carrot Stick and started converting strikes into landed fish. Unlike last year when Pardee was yielding smallie after smallie this year there was a pretty even mix of both largemouth and smallmouth being caught.

Byron puts down the swimbaits and fishes a Berkley Chigger Craw

A few fish later, and it was time to head back in for a mid-day angler swap. Zander would fish the rest of the day with Randy McAbee who is well known for his use of crankbaits on the FLW tournament trail, and Cal would fish with our friend and organizer of the event, Kent Brown.

Kent Brown organizes both Pros and Press for the afternoon session

Next Section: Zander and Randy McAbee can't stop the trout










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