Spartanburg County's Lake Blalock has been raising a few eyebrows lately among local bass fishermen. C.J. Bolton of Duncan, tournament director for the Lake Blalock Open Tournament Series, said that while most area tournament weights typically drop off during the summer months, Blalock anglers have kept posting big numbers.

"We had a Saturday tournament here that took over 21 pounds to win," Bolton said, "and even our nighttime events on Tuesday and Sunday nights are still regularly bringing in 13 pounds or better."

Bolton believes this summer's wet weather may hold the key to the bass bite that's been hanging on, and he said many fishermen have been having better success in areas where fresh water has been entering the lake.

"I would say that it helps a ton to have a feeder creek and a main river feed, for sure, compared to these other areas lakes like Robinson and Cooley that just have small creeks coming in," said Bolton. "The water coming into Buck Creek and in the main Pacolet River has been the key to catching fish for a lot of guys."

The bite has been best close to in the early evening, when fishermen switch from working creature baits around blowdowns and dropoffs and concentrate more on a topwater bite.

"The way our tournaments are set up, it's a bonus if you can catch a couple of decent fish working ledges or deep-water blowdowns with the soft plastic," he said. "The best topwater bite usually cuts on when the sun starts going down, but since we weigh at 9, you've only got an hour to get 'er done."

Bolton said he has been more than impressed with Blalock, indicating the fishery is reaping the rewards of the a higher water level that took place several years back, a move that both produced more water volume and opened up additional shoreline area. Today, Blalock encompasses 1,105 acres and contains approximately 45 miles of shoreline.

"The lake has changed a whole lot since the water district raised the water level back in 2004," he said. "I caught my two biggest fish I've ever had in my life out of Blalock since then. I've got a 10-pound, 11-ounce and an 8-something on the wall that came out of there." 

For more information on the Lake Blalock Open Tournament Series, contact CJ Bolton at (864) 497-7036.