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This week marks one of the weeks I most look forward to on my fishing calender... Warriors on the Water Military Appreciation Tournament on Jordan Lake.

Wednesday afternoon I left work early and made my way to Sports USA on Ft. Bragg for the Ice breaker. This is the pre tournament meeting where you meet the soldier you will be paired with for the tournament. They also recognize special guests, give away raffle prizes, go over tournament procedures and feed everyone. It is also quite a social event running into alot of friends and soldiers from years past. There was a chorus performance and a ceremony where a table is set for one to honor POWs, each item on the table has a meaning. There was also a video tribute long time WOW guest of honor Rudy Hernandez who passed away several months ago. Rudy earned a medal of honor in the Korean war for holding off enemy forces with just the bayonet on his riffle which bought his platoon enough time to regroup and regain their position. I met my soldier Zack from the Joint Communications Unit, his buddy also sat at our table so naturally alot of (edit)talking and stories were exchanged. We made arrangements as far as where to meet up and what time. I could tell he was itching to go!

Thursday I hit the water to try and get on some fish. With all the recent rains I was counting on the lake being on the rise and getting bit flipping flooded brush, as of 8 AM the corps was showing the water level at 216.70, I figured it would atleast hit 217 by Friday if not more. I spent some time checking some bushes and caught 2 keepers within a few minutes of each other and decided to leave my good bushes alone as they are usually pretty reliable, no need to sore mouth anything the day before. I shifted my focus to looking for some bed fish as that is usually a winning pattern for WOW. I did alot of looking and found 3 or 4 with small fish and one good one that seemed willing to bite. I got off the water about 3 and talked to Wes Lewis (lewisfishing) for a while at the ramp, he said he had a decent day catching 7 or 8 keepers. I left the lake planning to fish the bushes but that big fish on the bed had me debating where to start... run to that big girl first or run to the bushes. A later look at water levels revealed that the rise had peaked mid day and it was starting to fall a little... not good for my plan and left me feeling not so confident for Friday.
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