Some of the chatter this week centered on dates in September: the 24th thru the 26th for the Rayovac tour event at Clear Lake and, in my view, the more significant Sept. 14-16 for the U.S. Open at Lake Mead.

And while I totally understand a tour guy’s dilemma over the narrow window between events–that’s just the reality. Getting permits and also finding sufficient time for tournament staffs to get themselves and their gear to each event site is always going to be an organizational problem. Western Outdoors has two big bass events. FLW has a full calendar all around the country.

Yet, realistically, what can we expect (regarding attendance) with the final event on the Rayovac tour? The perceived benefits of a three-tournament circuit are usually associated with lower angler expenses, less required time off and less travel.

But having just three events also cuts the other way. After the first one, most of the competitors sense what their chances are of making the Top 30 and getting to the Rayovac (national) Championship. With the normal fall-off in participation with any tour on the final leg, the realities are even more stark after two of only three events.

LOTS OF CASTS were thrown in preparation...

THE OPEN has a great tradition.

And that is where we stand today. Does a guy (not close to the 30-angler “happy zone”) give it a run to beat the locals at Clear Lake and move up in the points race, or does he say this week: “I can use those resources for the U.S. Open–that I already want to fish.”

Sure, there have been some rumblings of anglers who won’t take on the Open, which I truly understand. Tour success matters. Yet I also know a few who want as many chances to compete as they can and look forward to the challenge of two events in two weeks.

We all have to make choices, and given that more than 160 pros (and maybe even more) wanted into the 2014 Open, I have to believe that the pool of potential Open contestants will be just excited about a trip to the desert this year.

It’s on my calendar. It’s something I’ve planned for, despite the stiff competition. And I can’t deny there’s a tradition on Lake Mead that exceeds all other events in the West.


4 Responses to “That contentious calendar…”

Definitely one of the Majors!

by steve nezzell

Just bought your old Z7 I think it can win

by George Kramer

🙂 🙂 🙂 Hope she gives you as much pleasure as she did for me. It’s a fish catcher!

Always tough to beat/compete with “the locals” at Clear Lake! In my case, its a no-brainer. Lake Mead is a true equalizer, and if you put in the work, you can usually figure out a pattern. Yes, the locals have the advantage at Mead as well, but I’d much rather take my chances against those locals in a “shared weight” format. I have had my share in non-shared weight derbies when I was an excellent guide and put my co-anglers on good fish. Nice for them, not so nice for me!! lol I love when my co-anglers catch’em too during shared weight events. Especially after me putting in the time, effort, sweat and cash during pre-fish. Like I said… a no-brainer… See you there George!