Critical move helps Edwards claim Day 1 lead in Bassmaster Kayak Series event on Guntersville

During his time fishing the Yamaha Rightwaters Bassmaster Kayak Series scored by TourneyX, Mark Edwards feels there are several tournaments he had a chance to win and didn’t.

After one day of competition at Lake Guntersville, Edwards finds himself in the lead with a five-bass limit measuring 98.75 inches and hopes this time he can seal the deal and hoist a trophy.

“It would be rewarding to win this tournament,” he said. “I felt like there have been a few times I should have one. Times where you have a good practice (and it doesn’t pan out). Hopefully I can finish it off tomorrow. I know I will have to have 95-plus to do it.”

Edwards was one of 22 anglers to catch over 90 inches during a cloudy and soggy day on the Tennessee River impoundment. Despite the rain, over 1,200 bass were caught by the field of 211 anglers. The West Virginia angler leads Alabama’s Garrett Wade by an inch while Florida’s Eric Samuels is third with 97.50”.

Wade also secured the big bass of the day, a 22.25” largemouth.

Edwards has been fishing the Kayak Series since its inception, notching a third-place finish in the Angler of the Year race in 2022. While Bluestone Lake in West Virginia doesn’t have nearly as much grass as Lake Guntersville does, Edwards found himself right at home in northern Alabama. Both lakes are river impoundments and the bass tend to relate to current in similar ways.

Edwards threw a mix of mostly moving baits around offshore grass to achieve his Day 1 limit, anchoring his bag with a 21.75-inch largemouth. That big bass came on a slower presentation. Throughout the day, he caught both prespawn and postspawn bass. To get his bites, he feels he has needed to do something differently than other anglers he has seen.

“It was cloudy today and you could throw moving baits,” Edwards said.

After opening his day in a community area of Lake Guntersville, and finding just three bass, Edwards packed up and headed to what turned out to be his best area. When he arrived, he found the big bass were ready to eat and proceeded to fill out his limit.

“I’m not usually a person who moves ramps during the day,” Edwards said. “But I knew I needed to move, it would be the best thing. (After I moved) it was wild. I had an 18 1/2 on my first cast. Then I threw a non-moving bait up there and caught that 21.75. It was prespawn. She weighed 6 1/4.”

From there, he made several key culls, all within a 150-yard stretch. As the day wore on, Edwards also made adjustments to his bait rotation in hopes of finding some different techniques to try on Championship Sunday. Each of those baits produced a quality bass, though not all of them made his Day 1 limit.

With sunny conditions expected in northern Alabama tomorrow, Edwards isn’t sure what the bass will do. He noted the bass in Guntersville bite based on how fast the current is moving. Regardless, he plans to return tomorrow to his best area and expand.

The full field of anglers will launch from any public boat launch at 4:45 a.m. CT and will begin fishing at 5:15 a.m. Lines out is scheduled for 1:15 p.m. The top finishers will be announced at the City of Scottsboro City Center at 4 p.m.

The Mountain Lakes Chamber of Commerce is hosting the tournament.

Full results from the Yamaha Rightwaters Bassmaster Kayak Series at Lake Guntersville scored by TourneyX can be found here.