Byron Kenney caught a 6.75 pound largemouth to take Big Bass honors at the Berry's Trail tournament at Lake Oconee on April 25.

The Berry’s Trail tournament had to cancel an April 4 tournament scheduled for Lake Oconee due to the COVID-19 virus. It was rescheduled and conducted on April 25 at Lake Oconee under strict COVID-19 rules that required six-foot distancing at all times before and after the tournament.

Rescheduling the April 4 tournament to April 25 will require anglers to compete again today (May 2) at Lake Oconee and that tournament will complete the regular tournament season. After today’s tournament, a season-ending two-day classic will be held on May 16 at Lake Oconee and on May 17 at Lake Sinclair with the winning team taking home $5000.

In the just-completed rescheduled tournament on April 25, the husband-wife team of Kim and Debbie Carver from Milledgeville caught a five-fish limit weighing 20.01 pounds to take home a check for $3,300. They caught their largemouth bass on spinnerbaits.

Finishing in a close second were Mark Holloway and Cole Holloway from Madison with 19.23 pounds. They caught their fish using Zoom “Ole Monster” worms and took home $1,650.

Third place with 18.89 pounds went to Byron Kenney from Monticello and Taylor Boswell from Dahlonega. They caught their fish on jigs and spinnerbaits and took home $1,030. Kenney also caught the big bass of the tournament weighing 6.75 pounds and he took home an additional $1,050.

Overall, 105 two-man teams competed and caught 679 pounds of largemouth bass. The top-12 teams in the tournament all caught more than 14 pounds and the finish was very close with four teams catching over 18 pounds.

Due to the COVID-19 virus, many of the results were not compiled and photos were limited but overall, it was an excellent tournament. The same anglers are competing again today May 2 and it will be interesting to see if the same patterns work today and if the leader board changes from last week. 

This will be the first time the Berry’s Trail tournament has had back-to-back tournaments at the same lake only a week apart. The same special COVID-19 rules will continue for today’s tournament. When you get over 200 anglers together for a tournament under normal circumstances there is a lot of talk before and after a tournament. That is difficult to control but the Tournament Director, Bobby Berry has done an outstanding job enforcing the special COVID-19 rules on tournament day.

I know these are difficult times we all are having to deal with to stay safe from the virus. I know I miss seeing friends and most of all seeing and hugging my children and grandchildren. Some of my grandchildren have been born recently and holding them is not possible. Sharing photos, phone calls and texting is just not the same as in-person visits. 

Gardening and fishing are two activities that can be done safely during these times and those have been my only relief from this stinking virus. However, my wife has some gardening chores like weeding the flower beds, moving flowers and planting new flowers, that put my mind to thinking very quickly about fishing. 

Our yard and flower beds look better than they have for some time. But the gardening activities that create that good looking yard can get to me quickly and my only relief from that is to go fishing. 

Fortunately, I have a couple of farm ponds that I can fish and that takes my mind off the virus and the yard and that can be done safely. I went fishing the other morning in one of the ponds as the sun was rising on another beautiful day. I quickly got my mine off my yard and the virus. 

I had not been to the ponds since the invasion of the coronavirus and it was mightily relaxing. I caught a variety of fish as usually occurs when fishing a farm pond. I hope you can get away from the virus and have a place where you can wet-a-hook. Good fishing and see you next week.  

Outdoors columnist Bobby Peoples can be reached at brpeoples995@gmail.com.

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