The Alabama Bass Trail Tournament Series returned to Weiss Lake on Saturday bringing 214 boats from nine states to Cherokee County launching out of the Leesburg Landing.
The Alabama Bass Trail is a program of the Mountain Lakes Tourist Association of which Cherokee County is a member. Its goal is to promote the state as a year-round fishing destination, preserve natural resources and encourage conservation among high school and college students. Weiss Lake is one of 13 lakes comprising the trail.
Each tournament features a $10,000 guaranteed first place prize and pays 40 places, totaling more than $47,000. The winning team of the championship walks away with a fully rigged bass boat valued at $45,000, and there’s a $5,000 bonus cash prize for Angler of the Year and $2,500 for runner-up Angler of the Year.
Theresa Hulgan, Executive Director of the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce told us that the local and surrounding area has the potential of seeing a half a million economic impact. The Anglers who had visited over the past few weeks pre-fishing, and returned to fish the ABT tournament this past Saturday contribute greatly to our local economy. They buy gas, food, lodging, supplies and more to help fuel our local economy. It is estimated that the average Angler spends $1,000 in the community he is fishing a tournament in.