LUFKIN, Texas– The Walmart FLW Tour will wrap up the 2012 season with the Walmart FLW Tour Open on Sam Rayburn Reservoir presented by Mercury Oct. 11-14. Hosted by the Lufkin Convention & Visitors Bureau, the tournament will feature a field of the world’s best bass pros and co-anglers casting for top awards up to $125,000 cash in the Pro Division and up to $25,000 cash in the Co-angler Division.
“When we get there in two weeks, that lake should be on fire,” said Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Treats pro Jim Tutt of Longview, Texas. “I think there will be a lot of limits caught, some really nice stringers brought in, and I think somebody will have a 10-pound fish.”
Tutt indicated that fishing on Rayburn has been tougher than usual “for about the last year” because of lingering low water levels followed by rapidly rising levels that scattered fish. However, Tutt said that within the past few weeks the fishing at Rayburn has returned to what he would call “normal,” the water level has stabilized and hydrilla has emerged. As a result, tournament weights have increased dramatically.
“Last weekend there was a tournament and the first seven places had over 20 pounds, and it took 26 (pounds) to win,” Tutt said. “Before that it was taking 20 pounds to win.”
Tutt said cooler temperatures, a little rain and the hydrilla are the reason for the better fishing Rayburn is experiencing. He predicts over the course of the four-day tournament the winning angler will need about 18 pounds a day, or a total of 75 pounds to walk away with the trophy. The best part of this event, Tutt said, is the myriad techniques available for anglers to fill their limits.
“That’s the coolest thing about this particular time of year,” Tutt said. “You can fish whatever you feel comfortable with. If you want to flip, if you want to crank or throw topwaters, there will be a number of different patterns going on. Brushpiles will even come into play a little bit.”
In FLW Tour Open competition, anglers are also vying for valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup, the world championship of bass fishing. The 2013 Forrest Wood Cup will be in Shreveport, La., Aug. 15-18 on the Red River.
Anglers will take off from Cassels-Boykin County Park located at FM Road 3123 (Off State Hwy 147) in Zavalla, Texas, at 7:30 a.m. daily. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will also be held at Cassels-Boykin County Park beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday’s final weigh-ins will be held at the Walmart located at 2500 Daniel McCall Drive in Lufkin beginning at 4 p.m.
Fans will be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Walmart on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public.
Coverage of the Sam Rayburn Reservoir tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network when “FLW” airs Nov. 18 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. "FLW" is hosted by Jason Harper and is broadcast to more than 559 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWOutdoors.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.
FLW is the industry’s premier tournament-fishing organization, providing unparalleled fishing resources and entertainment to our sponsors, fans and host communities. FLW is offering anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide in 2012 over the course of 191 tournaments across five tournament circuits, each providing an avenue to the sport’s richest payday and most coveted championship trophy – the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW is committed to providing a lifestyle experience that is the “Best in Fishing, On and Off the Water,” through a variety of platforms including tournaments, outdoor expos and the world’s richest fantasy sports game – FLW Fantasy Fishing. For more information about FLW and FLW Fantasy Fishing, visit FLWOutdoors.com or FantasyFishing.com and look for FLW on Twitter and Facebook.