UPCOMING EVENT: YETI College Fishing - 2019 - Sam Rayburn Reservoir


Lake Cumberland Top 10 Patterns

Terry Bolton

Despite Lake Cumberland’s overwhelming size and sprawling complexity, those who did well in the FLW Tour presented by T-H Marine actually kept it quite simple for patterns.

Scott Martin won the event throwing a deep-diving suspending jerkbait and a wake bait around a multitude of bush-lined drains and pockets in the lake’s lower end.

Jerkbaits were a big player throughout the top 10, as were spinnerbaits. Some top pros went “old school,” fishing gaudy ½-ounce spinnerbaits in flooded bushes. In general, the smallmouth favored jerkbaits out on the points and the largemouth were more partial to spinnerbaits in the bushes in the backs of the drains.

Martin’s winning pattern

Complete results

Top 10 baits


Barry Wilson

2. Wilson goes largemouth for runner-up

Barry Wilson of Birmingham, Ala., turned in the best performance of his FLW Tour career at Lake Cumberland, finishing second with a total of 58 pounds, 6 ounces.

While others were running far down the lake to fish mixed species water, Wilson made a serious run at the trophy with a largemouth game plan in the back of White Oak Creek near Burnside.

His primary largemouth area was located where the main White Oak creek channel swept hard into a spawning flat. Right where the channel swing cut into the flat was the hot spot. Largemouths were staging on the channel swing bank before moving up into the flat to spawn.

“The spot was loaded with shad, I could see them flicking on the surface across the entire area,” Wilson says. “The more they flickered, the more active the bass became, which usually happened in the warmth of the afternoons.”

Wilson’s best lures for fooling the largemouth included a Booyah squarebill (craw) crankbait and a ½-ounce Z-Man ChatterBait teamed with a YUM Pulse swimbait (both white) and both fished on 15-pound test P-Line Ultimate Fluorocarbon on Lew’s rods and reels.

He used the squarebill to cast up into the flat to fish shallow objects like bushes and grass and then used the ChatterBait to fire out into the main channel and work the ChatterBait up the ledge with a lift and drop retrieve.


Terry Bolton

3. Bolton plays largemouth for third

Terry Bolton of Paducah, Ky. moved up to his best spot of the week to finish in third with a three-day total of 57-5.

Bolton targeted largemouth from the beginning in the Caney Creek area.

“It was a pretty simple week for me, really,” Bolton says. “I just went fishing old-school in flooded bushes with spinnerbaits. I would slow roll the blades so they just ticked the tops of the submerged sycamore trees in 4 to 8 feet of water.”

His choice of spinnerbaits included a ¾-ounce Accent River Special and a ¾-ounce War Eagle, both with willow leaf blades and trailed with a Zoom Split Tail Trailer. He fished the spinnerbaits on 20-pound test Suffix Elite monofilament on a Lew’s Custom Speed Stick Lite 6’-10” spinnerbait rod.


Matt Reed

4. Reed “just fishes” for fourth

After finishing fifth at the FLW Tour stop on the Harris Chain of Lakes last month, Matt Reed of Madisonville, Texas, scored another top five at Cumberland, finishing fourth with a total of 55-15.

Reed says he “just went fishing” all four days with a jerkbait to amass his catch.

“Seldom do I put my trolling motor down and just fish the banks until it’s time to go in,” Reed says. “But that’s pretty much what I did here. I ran to Beaver Creek, picked a different section each day, and just fished what was in front of me until it was time to go in. Some of my better fish came off the standing bushes that were sitting in the middle of the drains.”

Reed’s primary bait of choice was a SPRO McStick jerkbait in a blue bandit color fished on 10-pound test fluorocarbon line. He also caught a couple off of a Profound Azuma Boss Hawg, which runs 8 to 10 feet deep.


Scott Canterbury

5. Canterbury rises to fifth

Scott Canterbury of Springville, Ala., finished the tournament in his best position of the week, fifth with a total of 55-7.

Lake Cumberland’s vastness landed right in Canterbury’s wheelhouse, giving him plenty of room to run and gun, which is his favorite way to fish. He started the event with a jerkbait, but ended it by flipping a jig.

“The first day, with all that weather, I fished the jerkbait all day, but once the sun came out and things got calm later in the week, I think a lot of those fish moved to wood, so I pretty much flipped a jig all day on the last day.”

When jerkbaiting, Canterbury used a chartreuse colored jerkbait in the cloudy, rainy weather and then switched to a shad-colored model when the skies cleared. He fished the jerkbaits on 10-pound test fluorocarbon on a 7’-2” Halo medium action rod with an Ardent reel.

For a jig, Canterbury used his own signature series Dirty Jigs Canterbury Flippin’ Jig in ½- and 5/8-ounce sizes. His preferred jig color was Canterbury craw and he used a NetBait Paca Chunk as a trailer.


Chris McCall

6. McCall goes pink for sixth

Chris McCall of Palmer, Texas finished the event in sixth place with a total of 53 pounds, 10 ounces.

McCall’s lure line-up for the week included suspending jerkbaits and a unique all-pink spinnerbait.

Before the cutoff McCall got a tip that pink spinnerbaits were a thing on Lake Cumberland, so he had Santone Lures make him some pink spinners and sure enough, they worked.

His choice of jerkbaits included a Lucky Craft Slender Pointer 112 and a Megabass Vision 110, both in a blue chartreuse color fished on 12-pound-test fluorocarbon.

“I fished in the Indian Creek area and I used the jerkbait to catch smallmouth out on the points and the pink spinnerbait to catch largemouths out of the bushes in the backs of pockets,” McCall says. “It was a great one-two punch for catching both species.”


Cody Meyer

7. Meyer swims to seventh

While many in the top 10 used jerkbaits and spinnerbaits, Cody Meyer of Auburn, Calif., found success with swimbaits for a seventh place finish with a total of 53-8.

“I used one bait all week,” Meyer says. “A 3.75 Strike King Rage Swimmer (ghost shad) on either a 3/8-ounce or ½-ounce head. I used it to targets points, trees, docks, bridge pilings – really anything vertical in the water.”

Meyer swam the bait down to 7 to 10 feet on 15-pound-test, Seaguar Tatsu line trying to target spotted bass that were suspended around the vertical objects.


8. Scanlon ‘homes in’ on eighth

Casey Scanlon of Lenexa, Kan., was “right at home” on Lake Cumberland, fishing it just like he would Bull Shoals or Table Rock back home. Scanlon reached his highest point in the tournament after day two when he was in second, but eventually fell to eighth with a total of 51-11.

“I had an area down in Indian Creek that reminded me so much of the Ozarks back home,” Scanlon says. “I could catch all three species in the areas I was fishing; it’s not like I was excluding a species with my water selection – I weighed in all three species during the week.”

Scanlon’s lure choices included a Luck-E-Strike RC STX suspending jerkbait in herringbone chartreuse. To get the bait down deeper into the 5- and 6-foot zones he added weight to the belly of the jerkbait and fished it on 10-pound test Maxima fluorocarbon. He fished the jerkbait out on points and down the sides of pockets.

When Scanlon fished into the back of a pocket with bushes, he used a ½-ounce spinnerbait with white and chartreuse blades.

“That was like old school springtime fishing in the Ozarks,” Scanlon says. “I’d roll that spinnerbait through those bushes and the largemouths would clobber it – it was some awesome fishing.”


Clark Wendlandt

9. Wendlandt falls to ninth

One of the complete shockers of the week was when tournament leader Clark Wendlandt of Leander, Texas showed up empty-handed at weigh-in on day four, losing his lead and falling all the way to ninth place.

All week Wendlandt chose to dance with the dicey smallmouth game and he made it work for three days, weighing in mostly hefty smallmouth keepers to lead on days two and three. But on the final day, the keeper smallmouth gave Wendlandt the slip in a big way, refusing to cooperate at all.

“Those reservoir smallmouth are pretty fickle,” Wendlandt says. “The windows for catching them are so short and specific. The first three days I did a pretty good job of keeping up with them. On day three I made an adjustment from a jerkbait to a crankbait that I thought was going to be the winning move for day four and it just didn’t pan out. I never made contact with those bigger smallmouth on the final day. All I can guess is that they finally went on beds and I was fishing over them because I refused to slow down and fish on the bottom.”

During the week Wendlandt did most of his damage with a pair of suspending jerkbaits – one had a deep lip and the other had a shallow lip. He used the deeper-lip model when fishing down the steeper sides of points and the shallower lipped model when fishing bushes in the actual backs of the pockets. He fished both jerkbaits on 10-pound test Sunline Sniper.

On day three, Wendlandt switched to a crankbait (10-foot runner) and paralleled ledge rock on 12-pound test Sunline Sniper to get the bait down to the 9 to 11 foot zone.


Anthony Gagliardi

10. Gagliardi “floats” to tenth

Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., rounded out the top 10 mostly by using a floating worm fished around bushes in the Conley Bottom and Beaver Creek areas of the lake. His worm of choice was a weightless Tightlines UV 6-inch straight-tail worm (merthiolate) tied to 10-pound test fluorocarbon leader and 8-pound test braid.

“I was focusing on the pockets where the bushes were sparsest,” Gagliardi says. “I didn’t much care for those pockets that were so packed with bushes I couldn’t even make a cast to the bank. If a could find a pocket with just a couple of bushes with a run-in in the back, those were the best ones for largemouth.”

Tags: rob-newell  post-tournament  2017-04-06-lake-cumberland 


Top 10 Patterns from Lake Toho

While the Lake Toho FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats fell basically right on top of a wave of spawning bass piling into the shallows, many of the top finishers targeted bass that were staging out or transitioning to or from their beds. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Toho

The second stop of the 2019 FLW Tour landed right on the spawn on Lake Toho and the other lakes on the Kissimmee Chain. Top finishers caught bass in all phases of the spawn. Collectively, they used just about every bait you’ll ever need if you want to catch a bass this time of year in the Sunshine State. READ MORE »


Marshal Program a Big Hit for Hughes

Retired minister Dan Hughes made the most money he’s ever banked in a fishing tournament, and he did it without even picking up a rod. The 70-year-old Fitzgerald, Ga., resident was the winner of FLW’s marshal contest at the Tour’s second stop of the season at Lake Toho, presented by Ranger Boats. Paired with John Cox on day one and Chris Neau on day two, Hughes’ pros combined for 41 pounds, 10 ounces during his two days on the water to take home the $2,500 top prize. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Okeechobee

Whether it was a canal or small sections of the lake, each pro in the top chose to hunker down in an area and milk it for all it was worth in the season opener of the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division presented by Power-Pole. Here’s a look at how the action unfolded. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Okeechobee

Lake Okeechobee wasn’t her normal self in the Costa FLW Series Southeastern Division opener presented by Power-Pole. Bites were few and far between, but the top-10 pros dialed it in and got it done. Winner Nick Thliveros relied heavily on a crankbait and so did others, but Florida faithful’s like swim jigs, soft plastics and topwaters also fared well. READ MORE »


Sam Rayburn on YouTube

With mandatory POV cameras and marshals this year, there's sure to more video footage than ever from the FLW Tour. In addition to simple fish catches like Andy Wicker's 11-pounder and Terry Bolton's 9-pounder, lots of pros are putting together longer videos and giving fans a front-row seat to practice and the tournament via YouTube. Below is the full gamut of videos pros have put out to this point.  READ MORE »


Beight Rings in Marshal Program in Big Way

Timmy Beight won the FLW Tour Sam Rayburn Marshal prize after marshaling for Jordan Osborne and Terry Bolton. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Sam Rayburn

Fishing crankbaits, Carolina rigs and drop-shots around flooded hydrilla for Sam Rayburn Reservoir largemouths dominated the top 10 at the FLW Tour opener. Check out the top 10 patterns feature to learn more about effective patterns for working grass. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Sam Rayburn

Fishing deep-diving crankbait, dragging Carolina rigs and working finesse baits such as drop-shots were the keys to success at the FLW Tour opener at Sam Rayburn. Here are the bass-fishing baits that the top pros used. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Lake Amistad

Wintertime patterns with just a touch of prespawn action dominated the Costa FLW Series opener presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Amistad. Crankbaits, jerkbaits, umbrella rigs, swimbaits and drop-shots were the go-to baits used by the top finishers. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Lake Amistad

Wintertime bass fishing tactics dominated at Lake Amistad in January, as the top finishers relied on jerkbaits, crankbaits, drop-shots, swimbaits and umbrella rigs to get the job done. READ MORE »


Corn Wins Wild Card

Faced with brutal conditions for the final event of the 2018 T-H Marine Bass Fishing League season, everyone who managed to catch anything in the Wild Card on Old Hickory Lake in central Tennessee accomplished something. READ MORE »


ETBU wins on Toledo Bend

The East Texas Baptist University duo of Brett Clark of Center, Texas, and Cody Ross of Livingston, Texas, won the YETI FLW College Fishing event on Toledo Bend presented by Bass Pro Shops Saturday with five bass weighing 19 pounds, 3 ounces. The victory earned the Tiger’s bass club $2,400 and a slot in the 2019 FLW College Fishing National Championship, scheduled for June 4-6, 2019 at the Potomac River in Marbury, Maryland. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Lake Guntersville

You can flip it, frog it, punch it and fish any number of moving baits through it. It’s grass, of course, and Lake Guntersville is full of it. That’s why so many grass-fishing baits were in the mix among the top 10 finishers at the 2018 Costa FLW Series Championship on Guntersville. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Lake Guntersville

Aside from figuring out grass patterns, contestants in the championship had to deal with heavy pressure from another championship derby and major weather swings. Day one was cancelled due to the threat of severe storms, so the entire field fished Friday and Saturday. On day two, windy, overcast conditions forced many anglers to adjust. The wind died and the clouds lingered on Saturday, eventually parting and giving way to a beautiful autumn day on the water. READ MORE »


Feldermann Consistent for Ozark Win

It’s been nearly 20 years since Mike Feldermann of Galena, Ill., has been to the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) All-American. Now, after sacking up 45 pounds, 4 ounces of bass to win the 2018 BFL Regional presented by Mercury on Lake of the Ozarks, he’ll finally make it back to the prestigious championship. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Lake of the Ozarks

It may have felt like fall for the final Costa FLW Series Central Division event of the year on Lake of the Ozarks, but it didn’t exactly fish like it. The tournament, which was presented by Evinrude, saw fish caught from deep to shallow and it was clear that the majority of fish were in transition from their summer haunts to where they’ll feed up for fall. READ MORE »


Top 10 Patterns from Fort Gibson

The Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury on Fort Gibson was one of the more challenging tournaments in recent memory. Consider that with 115 pros fishing over three days, there were only 13 limits caught, and it took just 18 pounds, 2 ounces for two days to make the top-10 cut. READ MORE »


Top 10 Baits from Fort Gibson

The final Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event of the year was a true grinder. In fact, both first and second place only landed 13 keepers all week on Fort Gibson. When it’s that tough, little differences between baits can sometimes make a difference. Below is what the top 10 threw to get it done. READ MORE »


First Top 10 is a Win for Burke

For three years, Johnny Burke, a 63-year-old retired county commissioner from Creek County, Oklahoma, has been fishing the Costa FLW Series as a co-angler just hoping he might score a top 10. Today, Burke not only scored his first top-10 finish, but he took it all the way to the top spot for the win. READ MORE »