Des Moines duo takes top prize at Clear Lake's Walleye Classic

Two fishermen stood alone by winning this weekend's Walleye Classic.

Posted: May 19, 2019 10:50 PM
Updated: May 20, 2019 7:41 AM

CLEAR LAKE, Iowa -- Des Moines natives Jim Thrasher and David Albright were at the top of the 100-team leaderboard Saturday after Day 1 of the Walleye Classic.

When colder weather moved in, they felt pressure Sunday because the bite wasn't nearly as good.

"The cold front that came in certainly slowed down the fishing compared to what it was yesterday," they said. "There was a warm snap that hit midday, that's when the fish got active it was a short feeding window other than that, the bite was pretty much nonexistent"

It meant that good bait was a must. Aaron Peterson and Jason Dick placed second and had some thinking to do.

"I can credit my father-in-law," Peterson said. "He was working in Northern Minnesota this weekend and he was nice enough to find me some jumbo leeches and bring them down for me."

After reeling in five fish weighing more than 11 pounds yesterday, Jim and David stuck to what worked yesterday -- slipping bobbers and jigs for another eight pounds worth today. The pair topped out at just more than 19 pounds for the win.

"Awesome, the good Lord stayed with us," they said. "Patience is a virtue of winning the tournament ... you've got to be patient. Let the fish do what they want to do and don't try to rush them."

After the fish are weighed and measured, they are laced into a holding tank and treated with a four percent salt mixture by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. It's completely harmless, and the fish are returned to the fresh waters of Clear Lake. 

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