By David A. Brown
The Delta and the Dirty 30. Each spring, tournament bags of 30-plus pounds are more assumption than supposition.
This year’s different and DiscountTackle.com Western Bass Shootout competitors will have their work cut out for them.
As Luke Johns reports, California’s massive Central Valley drainage system lacks not in potential — those giant Florida-strain largemouth haven’t gone anywhere. It’s simply a matter of atypical seasonal conditions.
Bass, in general, don’t like cold weather and those with Florida lineage are a particularly sensitive lot. Winter always brings a downturn, but in Johns’ view, the remnants of a particularly harsh cold season seem to be challenging the possibility of weights starting with a 3.
“It was extremely tough before we went off limits, but it has gotten a little bit better,” Johns said. “I wouldn’t say it has gotten ‘good’ yet; it’s still a struggle to catch fish, but you can get into areas where you can catch numbers and hopefully luck into a better fish.
“It’s still a struggle. The whole Delta has not turned on yet.”
Explaining this challenging scenario, Johns said: “It’s 100% being held back by weather conditions. We had a pretty monumental winter from what we normally have out here.
“Normally, you’d see guys weighing in 30 pounds starting in March. There’s a possibility someone weighs in 30 this week, but I’d say it’s going to be pretty tough for that. You’re going to have to have some luck on your side.”
Taking nothing away from the skill and experience emanating from this field of accomplished pros, it appears that good fortune could be their biggest ally.
So, at least for the moment, we’ll replace the Dirty 30 with the “Lucky 30.”
“It’s definitely a lot harder than it normally is this time of year, but somebody could get on the right spot to produce 30 pounds,” Johns said. “Hopefully, it’s me that catches a 30-pound bag.
“I’m not on 30 pounds, but I’ll take a Lucky 30.”