A community of anglers that had existed only in cyberspace became a reality in late March as anglers from 13 states convened on Santee Cooper for the KBF Open, a 2-day bass-fishing event organized by Chad Hoover, the creator of Kayak Bass Fishing.com.

"The Open is actually the first half of a larger event, the KBF Invitational," said Hoover. "The Open is a qualifying event where any angler can earn a spot to compete with kayak anglers who have been selected based on winning prior KBF online events, compatible tournament series, or represent a notable segment of the kayak angling community."

A field of 131 competed to see who could amass the longest aggregate length of two bass for each day of fishing. To document the length of their catch, anglers photograph each fish they enter on a measuring board. A daily "identifier" is used to document the validity of the catch.

"Day One was tough; a cold front came through before the event, and the wind howled," said KayakSC guide Justin Carter, who was in second place after the first day. "But you look at some of the fish these guys caught, in this weather, and from a kayak, not a bass boat, and there's no denying the skill level of anglers here."

With better weather on tap for Day Two, the anglers, who could fish anywhere on the Santee Cooper lakes and their tributaries within 50 miles of Black's Camp, had to ferret out spawning locations as well as prespawn fish in search of big bass, where a 25-inch fish is as cherished a trophy as an 8-pound largemouth in a conventional tournament.

In the attached video, find out how competitors in this event fared, which patterns they found to produce, and which baits they used to land their fish. In the end, a new champion is crowned and along the way, several competitors earned the right to compete in the KBF Invitational, held on the privately owned, well stocked bass lakes that comprise VIP Adventures, a Summerville area series of sandpit lakes filled with trophy bass.

For more information on this annual event or the ongoing series of kayak bass fishing events, visit kayakbassfishing.com