Like many lakes across the country, our own Richland-Chambers
has gone through a transformation of sorts over the
past several years. Ask any of the folks you know
that might spend time on the lake and I'm sure they
will tell you how different it looks compared to when
it opened to the public.
A great deal of the big timber has fallen down, typical
of new impoundments. Most of the small brush along
the shorelines has been gone for a long time.
After it first opened and for many years following,
R-C was a popular spot for fishermen of all types,
especially bass anglers. With the abundance of cover
for the bass to live in, fishing for bass was generally
a successful venture. In fact, some national bass
fishing circuits came here for tournaments because
the lake and the fishing were so good. Then, things
began to change.
As the brush in the lake began to decay, the fishing
seemed to get tougher and tougher. Bass angler success
rates began to decline and did so for a number of
years. Not only did R-C loose favor with the larger
tournament circuits, even the smaller tournaments
quite coming to the area. This created a negative
impact on our lake area businesses, as well as those
businesses in town, which catered to tournament fishermen.
Our service stations and restaurants, along with motels
felt the pinch most of all. One large tournament,
such as the BASS events that came to R-C in the mid
90's, would impact our local economy as much as $250,000
- $300,000. Even smaller tournaments, whether one
or two day events, would also impact our community
and local businesses by several thousands of dollars.
Again, like many reservoirs in the US, the lake has
changed again. With the appearance of native aquatic
vegetation around the lake, the bass fishing is improving.
As the bass spawn or lay their eggs in the lake, the
small fish now have a place to hide from predators
and grow up the become catch able fish. This is what
the primary problem was for many years. As the brush
and other cover along the shorelines declined, the
small fish were eaten by predators and never allowed
to grow up.
Now that the lake is rebounding with regard to the
bass fishing, we are seeing more and more bass fishing
tournaments return to Richland-Chambers. In fact,
for the next three months, there will be 3 large,
nationally run bass tournaments held at R-C, not to
mention the countless number of smaller tournaments.
The BASS Federation is hosting a tournament the weekend
of March 19th. On April 2-3, FLW Outdoors will host
a Texas Tournament Trail tournament out of Oak Cove
Marina. The Sunday afternoon weigh-in will be at the
Super Walmart parking lot beginning at 4:00pm and
is open to the public. First place at this won could
net the winner as much as $70,000. On May 7, FLW Outdoors
will also host a Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournament
at R-C. See the tournament
page on this web site for more information.
All three of these tournaments are professional level
events. Each tournament will have 400 or more anglers
entered in the event. Although I won't be fishing
two of them, I know that the TTT tournament that I
will be fishing will see 200 pros and many of the
non-boater fishermen spend as much as a full week
here practicing for the tournament
our motels, buying fuel, eating in our restaurants
and shopping at our stores. Anglers from all over
will be here for this tournament. Every dollar these
fishermen and women spend in Corsicana and Navarro
County adds to our sales tax income and supports our
So whether you enjoy fishing, watching the weigh in
or are not interested in fishing at all, everyone
in our community benefits in some way when the fishing
is good at R-C. I for one am glad to see our fishing
improving and our local economy benefiting from it,
Until next time, enjoy the great outdoors.
For more information or to contact Tom, visit him
at Fishing Pro Staff.