Lone Productive Wing Dam Yields Big Smallmouth for Duo
“I was worried that we weren’t going to be able to get up to our spot in time to capitalize on that key morning bite,” recounted Felix. “As we drove south from our cabin down to Prairie (Du Chien) there was a barge in the lock and another waiting to lock through.”
A call informed Austin that they should be able to lock up to pool nine around 7:30, but in the end the North American Bass Circuit (NABC) teams heading to the productive pool locked up around 8:00 and this had Felix and Pappa fishing by 9:00 a.m.
Following the first day of the NABC Championship which was launching out of Prairie Du Chien on Pool 10 of the Mississippi River, the longtime NABC team of Austin Felix and Will Pappa were sitting in third place with 15 lb 13 oz, despite a fish care penalty.
“Right away I got bit on Sunday morning on our spot and lost a 4 pound smallie at the boat, I thought our day was toast,” said Austin. “We ran some backup stuff and had three two and half pound bass when we returned to our key wing dam.”
This is when Felix hooked up with the eventually big bass of the event on a jerkbait, a true Mississippi River monster smallmouth bass jumped three times before finding its way into the net where it was barely skin hooked. This 5 lb 8 oz smallie was the difference maker for the team and propelled them into the top spot over Adam Hermsen and TJ Maglio, who were the day one leaders.
“I didn’t think we had enough weight to move into first until I saw what that big one weighed,” chuckled Felix.
The team’s day two bag weighed 16 lb 12 oz, giving them a two-day total of 32 lb 9 oz, giving them a nine ounce win over Hermsen and Maglio. In practice Felix located a lone wing dam that yielded their big smallmouth by fishing Spook’s and Megabass Jerkbaits.
“It was hard to find a consistent main channel bite, but I knew that they had to be out there feeding, it just so happened it was all on one wing dam,” said Austin.
The team relied on making a long run each day and reported that they ran over 258 miles in two days on the Mississippi River.
Felix and Pappa have won NABC events before and even the Team of the Year competition, but the big trophy had eluded them up to this point, “it feels really good to finally get one of these big trophies,” smirked Felix and Pappa.SHARE THIS CONTENT ON: