FORT GIBSON LAKE SET FOR COSTA FLW SERIES SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION FINALE PRESENTED BY MERCURY
WAGONER, Okla. (Sept. 25, 2018) – As many as 250 regional boaters and co-anglers are set to fish Fort Gibson Lake Oct. 4-6 for the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division finale at Fort Gibson Lake presented by Mercury. Hosted by the Wagoner Area Chamber of Commerce, the three-day bass-fishing tournament will feature a top prize of up to $85,000, including a brand new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard engine.
“The lake is going to fish differently than it has in previous years because of the amount of rain Oklahoma has received in the past week,” said Gene Larew pro Jeff Sprague of Point, Texas, who finished in eighth place when the FLW Series visited Fort Gibson Lake in September 2016. “The lake is going to be high this week and will eventually be falling. If it stabilizes by the time we get there, the fish will be set up on new stuff.
“There’s also a cold front coming in – the first one of the year – so the fishing is about to change,” continued Sprague. “There’s probably going to be a lot of fish in transition and moving around, and I think that’s going to be a big factor in how well someone does in this event. Trying to find them and stay ahead of them will be the key.”
Sprague said that a lot of Fort Gibson Lake will be in play for this event, and that he expects to see fish caught from one end to the other.
“The thing about Fort Gibson Lake is that they live all the way from the dam to the river,” said Sprague. “I think that guys will be spread out and we’ll see fish come from each end of the lake because the water’s been up and it’s going to pull a lot of the fish from the deeper water to the bank, or just up to feed at shallower rock piles and stuff like that.
“It’s going to come down to whoever finds the right rock pile or stretch of hard bottom where there’s a group of fish feeding and moving back out staging. If the bait’s positioned right, that will be key,” continued Sprague. “Just finding that right little area where the bait has moved in and the fish are keyed in on it. Where the current has positioned some fish due to the amount of high water will be a big deal.”
Sprague said that football-head jigs, spinnerbaits, shaky-head rigs, walking baits and buzzbaits will likely be favored by anglers.
“Gene Larew hard heads have been and always will be a big deal there. You can cover a lot of water with them and they can catch the big ones,” said Sprague. “Competitors are going to be able to catch fish in a lot of different ways.”
The Texas pro said that a three-day total of 51 pounds should be enough to take top honors.
Anglers will take off from Taylor’s Ferry North, located on Dock Road, in Wagoner, at 7:30 a.m. CDT each day. Thursday and Friday’s weigh-ins will also take place at Taylor’s Ferry North, and will begin at 3:30 p.m. each day. Saturday’s final weigh-in will take place at Walmart, located at 410 S. Dewey Ave. in Wagoner and will begin at 4 p.m. All takeoffs and weigh-ins are free to attend and open to the public.
In Costa FLW Series regular-season competition, payouts are based on the number of participants competing in the event. At Fort Gibson Lake, pros will fish for a top prize of up to $85,000, including a brand new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard if Ranger Cup qualified. Co-anglers will cast for a brand new Ranger Z175 boat with a 90-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard, and $5,000 if Ranger Cup qualified.
The Costa FLW Series consists of five U.S. divisions – Central, Northern, Southeastern, Southwestern and Western – along with the International division. Each U.S. division consists of three regular-season tournaments with competitors vying for valuable points that could earn them the opportunity to compete in the season-ending Costa FLW Series Championship. The 2018 Costa FLW Series Championship is being held Nov. 1-3 on Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, Alabama, and is hosted by the Marshall County Convention and Visitors Bureau.
For complete details and updated information visit FLWFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow the Costa FLW Series on FLW’s social media outlets at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.