My thoughts on 2012 Bassmaster Elite Series Schedule

Looks like 8 stops again this year, nice mix of venues.  Although, I have reason to believe some/all pros knew some of these venues ahead of time as several Elite Series pros were sighted fishing in La Crosse a few weeks ago.  Also, nothing about an All-Star week as of now, so maybe details still to come or maybe gone all together.

Also note, several conflicts with FLW Tour, so no chance of full time 2 tour pros in 2012.  But with only 8 event, many pros will have to supplement with PAA, EverStarts or Opens to make a full schedule to support their families and sponsor obligations.

BASSMSTER ELITE #1
Dates: March 15-18
Venue: St. Johns River

Host: Palatka, Fla.
Notes: Back to St. Johns, should be another fun event and sight fishing should play a role again.

BASSMASTER ELITE #2
Dates: March 22-25
Venue: Lake Okeechobee

Host: Okeechobee, Fla.
Size: 470,000 surface acres (about half the size of Rhode Island!)
Impounded: Natural with many levees and dikes
Notes: The Big O is on fire right now, should be an awesome event and expect a century belt or 2 to be handed out here.  Very exciting to have a BASS Tour level event on Okeechobee.

BASSMASTER ELITE #3
Dates: April 19-22
Venue: Bull Shoals Lake

Host: Arkansas
Size: 45,000 surface acres
Impounded: 1951
Been awhile since BASS has been here on a Tour level, but Bull Shoals is a historic fishery and adds a nice flavor to the mix of events for the season.

BASSMASTER ELITE #4
Dates: May 3-6
Venue: Douglas Lake

Host: Dandridge, Tenn.
Size: 30,000 surface acres
Impounded: 1943
Notes: Not much history here, but they did have an Open event last year.  Good to see the best anglers on some new water.  Good lake, but will provide some challenges, not a whack fest by any means.

BASSMASTER ELITE #5
Dates: June 7-10
Venue: Toledo Bend Reservoir

Host: Many, La.
Size: 185,000 surface acres (fifth largest man-made reservoir in the U.S.)
Impounded: 1969
Notes: Toledo Bend has been a very popular stop on the Bassmaster Tournament Trail over the years. Thirteen professional events have been held here, including the 2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Battle on the Bayou won by Arizona’s Dean Rojas with 70-15. Should be a good time to be there, deep bite should be heating up and anglers  should catch some monsters and heavy bags!

BASSMASTER ELITE #6
Dates: June 21-24
Venue: Mississippi River

Host: La Crosse, Wis.
Notes: I think this event will open some eyes, these guys are really going to catch them here.  Expect majority of anglers to weigh limits and lots of 3lb fish to be found, both largemouth and smallmouth.  They will probably launch out of the top of Pool 8, probably an even split of anglers will lock up to Pool 7 or stay in Pool 8.  You will learn about the home of the “Swim Jig”.  This section of river has everything.  Watch out for Frog anglers to potentially dominate here!  Put this on my list to either bring boat down to watch or enter as Marshall.

BASSMASTER ELITE #7
Dates: June 28-July 1
Venue: It’s a secret … for now.

Host: We’re not saying, but they’ll be ready.
Size: Big enough!
Impounded: Some time ago.
Notes: I think it is pretty safe to assume, this event will be a easy day’s drive from La Crosse.  So I predict the western edge of Great Lakes like Sturgeon Bay or Escanaba (most likely destination).  Possibly a few lakes in Minnesota like Mille Lacs, Leech, Vermillion or Minnetonka.  Winneconne/Winnebago in Wisconsin.  Or maybe a swing back through to Missouri.  Either way, I think you can count on another event close to us upper midwest anglers.

BASSMASTER ELITE #8
Dates: Aug. 23-26
Venue: Oneida Lake

Host: Syracuse, N.Y.
Size: 51,072 surface acres
Impounded: Natural
Notes: Frequently referred to as “the thumb” because of its proximity to the New York’s famed “Finger Lakes,” Oneida has been a very popular B.A.S.S. stop in the last decade. In fact, B.A.S.S. has been here 7 times since 2003, including 3 Elite tournaments. Should be exciting as the Bassmaster Angler of the Year award and more than 30 Bassmaster Classic berths are finalized in New York.


What are your thoughts on schedule?  I do like that its a bit more stretched out as well, gives me more time to get my Fantasy Fishing lineups set!




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