This past weekend, the final regular season Elite Series tournament was held on the Mississippi River out of LaCrosse, WI. Our good friend and fellow angler, Seth Feider went into this tournament in 69th place for Angler of the Year standings. In the beginning, he was told that he had a slim to none chance of making it to the last event of the year which is they AOY tournament being held this weekend on Lake Mille Lacs which is about an hour and a half north of Minneapolis. Since he is the only angler from Minnesota fishing the Elites, he would have the ultimate hometown advantage. If he was to going to make it in, he would need to be in the top 50 anglers.
After day 1 on the water in LaCrosse, Seth was sitting in 39th place. The bite seems to have turned around on day 2 because he jumped into 3rd place! Day 3 of the tourney was on Saturday and everyone came out to watch. Josh, and I along with our friends Andy and Chris got down there right in time to watch him pull in and fill his bag. I had never been to a weigh in of that magnitude before and was very impressed with how smoothly everything was ran. The crowd was huge and you could tell that he had a ton of friends and fans come out to watch.
At the end of day 3, he had bumped up to 2nd place! It was pretty decided at that point that everyone would meet out on the water and follow his boat around for support on the final day. LaCrosse is 3 hours away from our house and we needed to head home since initially we didn't know if we'd be coming back and didn't arrange for anyone to watch the pup. So home we hurried back to and were in bed by 11 only to be up again at 3 in hopes we could meet up with him at his first spot of the day.
We drove down with Andy Young and like clockwork, as soon as we had the boat launched and truck parked Seth came zooming by with a small army behind him. It could not have been better timing! We followed them in and hunkered down. I got my camera out hoping to capture any action that happened on the water that day. It wasn't long before he had his first fish. And then he had his second and then his third. This was clearly going to be a good day for him. Bassmaster.com has this thing called Basstracker that allows you to follow up to the minute updates about how many fish an angler has live-welled along with the weight. Using that we were able to track where he was in the standings all day.
Toward the end of the day, I was the last photographer standing and was given the opportunity by BASS to capture any updates of his progress for their website. Thankfully, he made two last minute culls at the end of the day and my pics got posted shortly after!
We headed back to the weigh in for what was sure to be a nail biter. Only the top 12 fished on day 4 and 10 anglers came to the stage before Seth got there setting a scene for a showdown. It was between him and Ott Defoe, who was the only angler left to weigh in. He had a total weight larger than Seth and he ended up taking 2nd place but the kicker is that it was just what he needed to do to qualify for the Angler of the Year tournament next weekend! It was such a fun day and the following is a compilation of photos from the day capturing the behind the scenes moments with his family and friends.
Hey there -
I'm Bri! Lover of food, wine, and photography that is currently traveling with my professional bass fishing husband along with our cantankerous rottie, Kigen. When not traveling you can find me living the lake life off the shores of Lake Mille Lacs in Isle, MN. Pour a drink, pull up a chair and join me as I journey across the country documenting it all along the way!