Zaldain comes out swinging

Sooner or later it will happen for Chris Zaldain. By that I mean he fishes to win every day. Nothing held back. Swing for the bleachers or strike out.

James Overstreet and I were just talking about Zaldain’s fishing style of holding nothing back. He’s proved it works. And is coming oh so close to hitting the home run. Already two second place finishes this year at Lake Lanier and Lake Guntersville. “He’ll take a bombing to win,” Overstreet said. And we both compared his style to someone else who fishes the same way. His name is Brandon Palaniuk.

This morning Zaldain was a eager to get started. He launched his boat at 7 a.m., even though the launch wasn’t until 9 a.m. The change in the wind direction is the reason why.

“Until yesterday we had winds out of the north and northeast, and that’s not an ideal direction for what I want to do,” he explained.

What Zaldain wants—and got today—is a south-to-southwest wind, which speeds up the wind-driven current coming out of Lake Ontario and into the narrower river. At the funnel point are transitional post-spawn areas where Zaldain is focusing his efforts.

“They just bite better in that wind,” he explained. “When it blows it rips the current and moves the fish into the current breaks.”

He continued, “What’s good about my pattern is that unlike some of the other guys fishing down there, I am not sight fishing. It’s all about the wind.”

What is more, those other areas do not replenish. Neither does Zaldain’s areas, because the fish are on the move back into the lake. That’s just fine with him.

“They are coming off the spawn, which was late here, and I’m trying to intercept them,” he added. “They are the stopping places going back into the lake, and that current forces them to stop in the current breaks.”

Zaldain is fishing what he described as mid depth areas in 18- to 22-feet of water.

“It’s where those shallow fish are coming next,” he said. “They are going only one direction and that is out and back to the deeper water."

Zaldain said his area has the potential to produce a 25-pound limit. Like his angling style, he is oh so close. BASSTrakk shows him in the lead with a limit weighing 21-10 and an overall total of 63-13.