July 18, 2019 by Jody White
Takeoff was a little blustery, but overall, it’s been a perfect start to the Costa FLW Series event on Lake Champlain. The event is the kickoff of the Northern Division, which is presented by Gajo Baits, and the tournament itself is presented by Polaris.
Though it was choppy up north until about 8:30 a.m. or so, the pros running down to Ticonderoga for largemouths didn’t have too hard a time of it. The first few anglers made it past Crown Point at 6:57 a.m., proving that the chop up north wasn’t spread too far down the lake. Up north, it’s been mostly sunny and the wind has been very manageable.
Due to a camera malfunction, we don’t have any updates from the more smallmouth-centric part of the lake, but one of our crew members started down at Ti to keep an eye on the largemouth action. We found Brett Carnright pretty early in the morning and he struck out on his first stop – he says something changed. Knowing his history on this pond, it’s likely he’ll figure it out. Similarly early, Adrian Avena had two in the boat.
Other anglers down south with fish include JT Kenney, who had two for about 5 pounds early, Jim Dillard with three for nearly 8 pounds, Joe Wood with a pair of 3-pounders and Dylan Hays with four for about 11 pounds. From what we saw down south, Bob Behrle is the leader with more than 16 pounds. For techniques, we’ve seen everything you’d expect – flipping, frogging and winding.
Of course, there are still a few hours left for the southern folks, and a lot of time left for the anglers chasing fish up north. However, it does sound like Ti hasn’t exactly lived up to the hype. That may or may not prove true once the day is over, but, if it does, it should open things up for the north end of the lake. It’s hard to overstate how good the weather is up north today – it’s calm enough that anglers can run anywhere, and there’s been enough sun that the smallies should be chomping.
One thing is for sure: There are going to be a ton of fish at weigh-in. If you want to tune in, it starts at 2 p.m. ET live online or in-person at the Plattsburgh City Marina.