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Musky Hunter Magazine writer Jason Jackson wins the 7th Annual Jessie Carper Memorial Tournament

It’s no secret that I love open water formats for tournaments, your allowed to fish multiple body’s of water as long as you stay within the boundaries, the “Carper” is any Wv or Va waters , pick your water pick your spots and get to work . For this past tournament I used this to my advantage I mixed my allowed tournament time between two different bodies of water picking the best spots and times to be on them. I’m a timber guy so that’s where I can usually be found searching for muskies but they just haven’t been there like they should be so I looked at my second cover option and found them. All of the fish I found were in the rocks or related closely to them . Also all but two of the seven fish caught had spawn markings still on them , as many anglers across the state are reporting that the spawn is over , I found several fish that say differently, I also saw two paired up in shallow water on Saturday, so they “ all” are definitely not done going thru the motions just yet . Starting out on a WV lake I found the fish early in the rocks in water 10ft to 6 ft of depth . Water temps on the surface where hanging in around 63 degrees. Every fish I caught came on the same lure , a TRO custom Dyin dawg in the “ice cold perch” pattern . I had very few followers and every fish I contacted either ate or attempted to eat the bait , I used the same slow pumping action to work the lure that I always do and the fish obviously responded well to that cadence . As the sun got high in the sky , with blue sky’s and no clouds I made the move away from the lake and quickly hit the river and it payed off , the river fish stayed active longer throughout the day and they held the same pattern , water 10 ft to 6ft of depth and using the rocks not the timber for cover . With the 2nd day being a shorter time frame I stayed with the river and was able to boat a couple more fish on day two . These fish teach us all something new all the time , I would’ve agreed with anyone that the spawn was over but these fish told me differently. Get out there and get after them.

Gregg Thomas

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