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Tourny Ethics?


fishing user avatarslimshad reply : 

So here is my situation.  I have won a few tournaments on a particular lake.  A guy seen where I spend most of my time and brought it up to me.  He said man it is deep where you were fishing.  I said it is pretty deep, how you know.  He said when you left I went and fished it.  Then he said he was going to start there in our next tournament.  I just said find your own fish and it got going from there.  What say you Bass Resource nation?


fishing user avatarLund Explorer reply : 

Just the facts of tournament life.  Every group will have a seagull or two, and there is little you can do about it until he has burned so many bridges that the other members can figure out a way to blackball him.  Until then you've only got a couple of options.

 

1. Pray that you get a lower blast off number.

 

2. Decide to crowd right in on this bozo if he gets there first.

 

3. Find another place that is even better.

 

4. Burn that honey hole the day before the next tournament.  Catch every fish you can and seed a spot that you can fish for retreads the next day.

 

I'm guilty of doing all four, but the best option is #3.  Maybe with a little of #4 thrown in for good measure.  The biggest obstacle is going to keep this idiot from getting you so po'd that he takes you out of the game. 


fishing user avatarZach Dunham reply : 

Not much you can do. If you get there first and he comes in closer than rules allow be sure to record said action with a nice camera phone and have him disqualified at the weigh in. Find some backup spots in case he gets there first. Or do what Lund suggested in #4! haha


fishing user avatarVAHunter reply : 

I've had the same experience before.  Keep in mind that just because he knows where you were fishing doesn't mean he will fish it the right way.  I normally just go somewhere else and fish if someone beats me to a particular area.  Normally you can find other fish in the lake doing the same thing somewhere else.  Keep checking your area throughout the day and get on it when it's open.  It's not worth losing sleep over, that's for sure.


fishing user avatarLogan S reply : 
Do you think he will even be successful if he fishes there?  If he couldn't figure out it was a productive spot on his own, chances are he'll just spin his wheels while fishing it anyway....

 

One mistake I have made is putting too much emphasis on a particular spot in the same situation.  I was so worried about beating someone else to 'my' spot that I didn't pay attention to the fact that it wasn't productive on that particular day....Ended up staying way too long trying to 'defend' it and had to scramble around to get my limit in the last half of the day.  

 

 

 

All the places on our tournament schedule are pretty popular, there are no 'secret' spots.  I think it would be safe to say most waters where tournaments are held in general are at least similar to that.  With GPS, satellite maps, sonar, etc, it's almost impossible to have your own little hidden spots these days.  If someone with the experience and knowledge to recognize a quality area utilizes these resources they will find pretty much all the 'secrets' if given enough time.   

 

It doesn't bother me if someone is fishing an area I want to for the most part, I'll either come in behind them or move on.  What DOES bother me is when someone tries to fish an area specifically because I have/had success there...Similar to what you're describing.  

 

Honestly, there's not much you can do to avoid it...Just have to adapt to it and figure out a way to stay successful.  


fishing user avatarChoporoz reply : 

I've never fished a tournament, but I'm ultra competitive and the idea has always appealed to me greatly.  But, I have to admit that after this and a number of other tournament-related threads on here, I've now got my doubts now that I want to do it.  It just seems as though the competition would suck the fun out of it for me.  I love sharing with other fishermen while out on the water and I don't want to ever think I have to 'claim' any portion of the water.  Racing to a single spot, crowding another angler, and moving fish?????  I am serious about fishing and fish seriously, but I enjoy nearly every single minute of it....this doesn't sound fun....sorry - I know it is silly to pass judgement since I've never even been in a tourny, but I'm a little uneasy


fishing user avatarLogan S reply : 
  On 8/5/2014 at 9:30 PM, Choporoz said:

I've never fished a tournament, but I'm ultra competitive and the idea has always appealed to me greatly.  But, I have to admit that after this and a number of other tournament-related threads on here, I've now got my doubts now that I want to do it.  It just seems as though the competition would suck the fun out of it for me.  I love sharing with other fishermen while out on the water and I don't want to ever think I have to 'claim' any portion of the water.  Racing to a single spot, crowding another angler, and moving fish?????  I am serious about fishing and fish seriously, but I enjoy nearly every single minute of it....this doesn't sound fun....sorry - I know it is silly to pass judgement since I've never even been in a tourny, but I'm a little uneasy

This thread isn't really about laying claim to spots.  It's about an angler putting the time in to figure out a productive area, then having another person blantently copy it after seeing the results.  Not really limited to a tournament.  
 
 
If you want to fish a tournament, do it!  Most people are into sharing as well.  This kind of stuff is so minimal in the big picture, it's just something to talk about :).  

fishing user avatarGlenn reply : 

Classic mind game! LOL!  The guy probably has no intention of fishing it, but he succeeded on getting into your head.

 

That said, there are no "secret" spots anymore.  I'm convinced of that.  Once satellite imagery became widely available, all the "hidden" spots were exposed to everyone.  Many spots that I once knew for sure nobody knew about, are often occupied by one or more boats on any given day now.  And I spent a lot of time finding them on my own before technology made it easy!

 

However, I've now learned that with few exceptions, tournaments can be won in multiple ways on any given body of water on any given day.  If you've found only one spot you can bank on, you haven't fished that water enough.  In many lakes I fish, the problem I have isn't finding and defending a couple of spots, it's figuring out what areas I'm NOT going to fish - simply because there's too many!  In one lake alone, I have over 1,800 waypoints marked - all of them will produce fish at some point. So I have no problem finding an unoccupied spot and catching fish from it - and nobody can get into my head either. :)

 

Now go out and start marking!


fishing user avatarww2farmer reply : 

Try fishing our lakes, no spots are "secret". You get in the merry go round on the good stretches and just fish. The cream rises to the top. I am NEVER the first person to fish ANY of the spots I like to hit, thanks to my slow boat.....yet I find a way to catch fish, cash and win my fair share.


fishing user avatarLund Explorer reply : 

I really don't see this as a "secret spot" issue nearly as much as a competitor that can't find fish and has decided to run over someone else.  While I was tournament fishing, this was a unwritten rule that you didn't burn someone else's fish.  You went out and used your own knowledge to find good fish and then put them in the boat.   This seagull is basically a no talent hack, but it doesn't give him the ethical right to infringe on the efforts of someone else.  If he can't find fish on his own, perhaps he needs to hire a guide! 

 

Also, if I remember correctly, this same thing came up recently on the pro circuit as well where a rookie was questioned about the practice.


fishing user avatarslimshad reply : 
  On 8/6/2014 at 7:57 PM, Lund Explorer said:

I really don't see this as a "secret spot" issue nearly as much as a competitor that can't find fish and has decided to run over someone else.  While I was tournament fishing, this was a unwritten rule that you didn't burn someone else's fish.  You went out and used your own knowledge to find good fish and then put them in the boat.   This seagull is basically a no talent hack, but it doesn't give him the ethical right to infringe on the efforts of someone else.  If he can't find fish on his own, perhaps he needs to hire a guide! 

 

Also, if I remember correctly, this same thing came up recently on the pro circuit as well where a rookie was questioned about the practice.

Well we are going to this lake for sure this weekend.  I approached the guy and he said he would back off.  I am not worried about him catching the bass, because I am doing something way different than most.  I just don't want him getting that close and finding out the strategy also.  I am going to use it as motivation and not let it get me down.  My partner and I have confidence and that is the best bait in the boat. 


fishing user avatarColdSVT reply : 

Get to your spot first, thats all there is to it

Dont be that guy that comes into the spot second and than whines about it or crowds the guy that beat you there out.

I always have plans A, B, C, D and E for tourny days. It is rare that someone is in all of my favored areas

I always leave people alone and try not ti encroach on where they are fishing, but if someone told me to stay out of certain area well guess what? Now im gonna make it point to fish there...mostly to tick them off

Luckily most of the lakes i fish tournys on are so small there are no secrets at all. We all know the spots its just hope for a low flight number and go


fishing user avatarSiebert Outdoors reply : 

From your statement it sounds like he is not known for fishing deep structure.  I wouldn't even worry about it.  I'd fish my spots and catch the fish.  If he isn't good or decent at fishing that type of structure he will probably not catch much or anything and wont stay long.  Follow the rules of the club and fish your waters you like, a shadow deserves to be just a shadow.  This is completely different if someone is just fishing your spot, but this guy singled you out. 

 

This happens a lot on Lake St Clair to me.  Pretty much every day.   You will have boats lined up on the mile roads and once someone starts catching fish the herd is now in pursuit and piles in on that boat.


fishing user avatarJ Francho reply : 

Get a faster boat. Some guys can only figure out the bent rod pattern.


fishing user avatartomustang reply : 

5 to 1 odds say he'll fish it, not catch anything, and give up.


fishing user avatarCatch and Grease reply : 

Slash his tires...

Well, nevermind that's a little over the top


fishing user avatarEmersonFish reply : 
  On 8/5/2014 at 9:30 PM, Choporoz said:

I've never fished a tournament, but I'm ultra competitive and the idea has always appealed to me greatly.  But, I have to admit that after this and a number of other tournament-related threads on here, I've now got my doubts now that I want to do it.  It just seems as though the competition would suck the fun out of it for me.  I love sharing with other fishermen while out on the water and I don't want to ever think I have to 'claim' any portion of the water.  Racing to a single spot, crowding another angler, and moving fish?????  I am serious about fishing and fish seriously, but I enjoy nearly every single minute of it....this doesn't sound fun....sorry - I know it is silly to pass judgement since I've never even been in a tourny, but I'm a little uneasy

Don't let these "threads" discourage you. These are generally discussions regarding the lowest common denominator when it comes to tournament behavior. For the most part, people who fish tournaments do it for the same reason you would; for the enjoyment of a little friendly competition. Most people don't deliberately steal spots, or even worse, advocate for and confess to previously "seeding" (or salting) an area with bass. That's actually grounds for disqualification in many, if not most, events. People want to win for the satisfaction of it. Most tournaments are not about money. Not much satisfaction in winning in a non-sporting way.

There are a few bad apples out there, but they have a way of getting weeded out. You might enjoy club tournaments where everyone knows each other a little better.


fishing user avatarslimshad reply : 
  On 8/6/2014 at 11:01 PM, tomustang said:

5 to 1 odds say he'll fish it, not catch anything, and give up.

 

I say you are right on.  Just ticks me off tho.  Oh well, I will just fish hard and try to win three in a row there! 


fishing user avatarSiebert Outdoors reply : 
  On 8/7/2014 at 1:19 AM, slimshad said:

I say you are right on.  Just ticks me off tho.  Oh well, I will just fish hard and try to win three in a row there! 

 

Good luck and let us know how it goes.


fishing user avatarWIGuide reply : 
  On 8/5/2014 at 9:30 PM, Choporoz said:

I've never fished a tournament, but I'm ultra competitive and the idea has always appealed to me greatly.  But, I have to admit that after this and a number of other tournament-related threads on here, I've now got my doubts now that I want to do it.  It just seems as though the competition would suck the fun out of it for me.  I love sharing with other fishermen while out on the water and I don't want to ever think I have to 'claim' any portion of the water.  Racing to a single spot, crowding another angler, and moving fish?????  I am serious about fishing and fish seriously, but I enjoy nearly every single minute of it....this doesn't sound fun....sorry - I know it is silly to pass judgement since I've never even been in a tourny, but I'm a little uneasy

Don't let this post or any others scare you away from tourney fishing. If you love fishing and competing, there's a pretty good chance you'll love tourney fishing. Give it a shot!!


fishing user avatarJayKumar reply : 

Happens on EVERY level, believe me. Part of it.


fishing user avatarLund Explorer reply : 
  On 8/6/2014 at 8:15 PM, slimshad said:

Well we are going to this lake for sure this weekend.  I approached the guy and he said he would back off.  I am not worried about him catching the bass, because I am doing something way different than most.  I just don't want him getting that close and finding out the strategy also.  I am going to use it as motivation and not let it get me down.  My partner and I have confidence and that is the best bait in the boat. 

 

Congrats, it sounds like you've educated the guy on what it takes to live by those unwritten rules.

 

Good luck this weekend!


fishing user avatarSam reply : 

There are no secrets in bass fishing.

 

Either one cannot keep their mouth closed or one is seen fishing a specific spot.

 

All you can do is grin and bear it.


fishing user avatarjtmavs reply : 

One of two things.... Either this guy is just trying to pull your chain and maybe make you adjust your plans, or he is so stupid, he just told you what he is going to do. If he were really going to fish "your" spot, why wouldn't he just try to beat you to it?


fishing user avatardustin11 reply : 

The way I always look at it when someone is fishing a spot I fish is that they can't catch my fish, and I keep telling myself that and try not to let it get to me.


fishing user avatarBuckMaxx reply : 

I wouldn't worry about it. If a guy sees you catching fish you can plan on it getting beat up the next day or the next tournament. Same thing happened to me about a month ago. I loose hooked a 5 lber under a dock and she came off while prefishing. I went back 3 times the first day the first time a keeper, second time a good keeper third time... I got her to bite. The normal dock chitter chatter was oh we knew you must be on them in there for you to go back there 3 times. Plus it didn't help... Just so happened another "buddy" was idling out 40 feet away when I boated her. The next day he drew a low number and flew right back there and started fishing. Trust... gone!

You learn to keep a mental log of guys that you can talk too then there guys that won't hesitate to dickya.




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