By Kelly Bostian - Tulsa World
Ice and 11 degrees at the launch marked Day 1 of the Bassmaster Classic at Lake Hartwell in South Carolina, but the fishermen handled the sub-freezing weather just fine – evidenced by anglers from Arizona and California taking the early lead.
Dean Rojas of Lake Havasu, Arizona, grabbed the lead Friday with five bass weighing 21 pounds 2 ounces. Skeet Reese, the 2009 Bassmaster Classic champion from Auburn, California, is in second place with a bag exactly one pound lighter at 20-2.
Oklahoma pro anglers Jason Christie of Park Hill and Edwin Evers of Talala both said they were relatively comfortable physically, but the day was one of the coldest they'd fished in competition, as their reels and rod guides iced up well into the afternoon.
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As the competitive fishing season moves into its most prestigious tournament this week in the Bassmaster Classic at Lake Hartwell, we wanted to catch up with Jason Christie to see how he was preparing for the big event.
Garmin: What will be the most difficult part about fishing on Lake Hartwell (Georgia/South Carolina) this time of the year?
Jason Christie: It looks like the most difficult part of this years Classic is going to be the weather. There are highs of mid 30s forecast for the next 10 days, mixed in with some high 40s. It makes it challenging to move around during practice and the Tournament. Lake Hartwell is a very big lake and that's awesome after you establish a couple patterns. It can be very intimidating at first because everything looks the same and fishy.
Read More on Garmin's Site.