Relatively speaking, the 101 Bass Tournament series had an astounding beginning to its third season Saturday at Nacimiento Lake.
All 28 teams entered caught five-fish limits for 140 spotted bass.
As for relatives (fathers and sons) per se, these combos had an especially outstanding tournament claiming six of the top 15 placings.
In the mix were sons age 10 and 11 who completed in their first major tourney. Frightened they were not.
The championship, however, went to a Tulare duo who has prevailed in three of the past six 101 events. It was their first at Nacimiento, a venue that has denied them in the past.
Darrel Masterson clinched the title with a morning catch with plastics in four feet of water above an underwater island.
Teammate Dean Miller said: “That 3.94-pound fish (the event’s third largest) anchored our 11.29-pound sack. We had a limit by 9:20 and culled four limits, using jigs and spinnerbaits also.”
Miller’s cousin and uncle, Darrin and Del Bishop, placed second and less than a pound back.
“You don’t get many big bites at Nacimiento,” Darrin Bishop said. “I had a big one on, but it came unbuttoned under my boat. I knew it would cost us. My cousin could use the money though as he blew out his transmission two weeks ago en route to the valley after Nacie practice.”
Dusty Kahler, who was partnering with 10-year-old son Brayden, said: “We only had three fish at 12:30 and then things heated up. We caught 25 in the tourney’s last two-and-a-half hours. Brayden was running the trolling motor while I culled and he kept catching one fish after another. He was sure we were going to win.”
The Kahlers finished third with Dusty’s 4.37-pound spot earning first big fish money.
Lockwood’s Shawn Wilson and his 11-year-old son Jess had a promising debut, placing 15th with a 7.25-pound bag.
Efforts to contact the fourth-place father and son team (Mike and Greg Higgins 9.40 pounds) and ninth-place Mike and Erik Hansen (7.86 pounds) were unsuccessful.
The Higginses had the second-heaviest fish, 4.03 pounds, and the Bishops the fourth-heaviest, 3.88 pounds.
Bakersfield tournament veterans, Randy McAbee Sr. and Jr. placed 11th.
101 Bass Top 10 (all 5-fish limits), weight
1. Dean Miller, Darrel Masterson, Tulare, 11.29 pounds; 2. Darrin Bishop, Paso Robles, Del Bishop, Templeton, 10.30 pounds; 3. Dusty & Brayden Kahler, Paso Robles, 10.04 pounds; 4 .Greg & Mike Higgins, Santa Maria, 9.40 pounds; 5. Louis Fernandes, Santa Maria, Patrick Touey, Nipomo, 9.01 pounds; 6. Damon Meeks, Atascadero, Jay Short, Templeton, 8.34 pounds; 7.Sal Rocha, Grover Beach, Dustin Selck, Atascadero, 8.06 pounds; 8. Jim Slusher, Atascadero, Erik Zillig, Paso Robles, 7.93 pounds; 9. Mike & Erik Hansen, Paso Robles, 7.86 pounds; 10. Gene Gray, Atascadero, Tony Pratt, Paso Robles, 7.54 pounds.
1st Big Fish, 4.37 pounds, Kahler & Kahler.
Haas places 10th at Havasu
Morro Bay’s Roger Haas, 55, fishing as a co-angler, placed 10th and in the money at Lake Havasu last week in the
Rayovac FLW tournament that attracted 154 pros and a like number of co-anglers.
The first two days of the event he outperformed his pro two fish to one Thursday, and six to two Friday. Haas was in eighth placing heading into Saturday’s final.
His day three pro partner, Jimmy Reese from Witter Springs was in eighth place. Afterward, he admitted choosing the wrong areas to fish. Haas blanked, while Reese caught two fish to remain eighth.
“I had a fish on Saturday but my line was broken by a Quagga mussel,” Haas said. “Locals told me I was Quaggaled by the mussels that have infested this body of water.”
Haas settled for a $1,250 check.
Whitney Uyeda from Buellton placed 93rd in Havasu’s co-angler division with one fish for 3 pounds, 2 ounces.
Last month at Nacimiento Lake, Haas and former Central Coast resident Jerry Williams won a Bakersfield Golden Valley Club tournament.
Cal Poly team places fifth
A Cal Poly Bass Club team picked up where it left off last fall. John Zeolla and Kyle Greenlaw placed fifth Saturday in the 2014 FLW College Western Conference opener at Lake Havasu, Ariz. The duo finished second in October in a Clear Lake invitational tournament.
Zeolla from Oak Park, and Greenlaw from Magalia, caught only two fish that weighed seven pounds, four ounces.
A small field of only 16 teams competed. Just two teams had limits as winds out of the north made fishing extremely difficult.
Cal Poly’s other entry at Havasu, Jonathan Fagot and Clayton Launchland, were one of the four teams that did not catch a fish.
Nothing is on this week’s schedule as the Patriot is being painted in Ventura. The anticipated schedule for next weekend is crab and Sandab trips from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday and Saturday for $60 for adults and $50 for children 12 and under.
If reservations are sufficient, a whale watch trip from 9 to 11 a.m. is set for Sunday for $35 for adults, $25 for children 12 and under. Call 595-7200 for reservations.
Eleven passengers aboard the Rita G on Sunday on a crab and aanddab trip caught buckets of sanddabs, seven dungeness crabs and two rock crab. A similar trip is planned Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $59.
Whale watching trips are scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $39 for adults and $29 for children 12 and under.
For reservations, call 772-1222.
Morro Bay Landing
Whale watching aboard the 50-foot boat Slayer is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Cost is $40 for adults, $35 for seniors 60 and over and military and $25 for children 12 and under.
Call 781-5500 for reservations. The store at 1213 Embarcadero is a site for purchase of surf perch equipment.
Santa Margarita Lake
A 5-pound catfish was caught Wednesday morning on an anchovy bait by Santa Margarita’s Tom Kohl. The main launch ramp continues to be operational.
The Tri Valley Bass Club has a tournament scheduled on the lake for Saturday.
Mike Palmer, reporting from the marina, says trout are being caught from shore, the F dock and from boats.
Lake San Antonio
Unconfirmed reports are that stripers are being caught by anglers aboard kayaks.
The bass bite has perked up with largemouths being caught drop-shotting and on jigs. Trout fishing continues to be good, flat lining Rapalas, Kastmasters and Flicker Shads from Santa Cruz to Cachuma Point.