UPCOMING EVENT: YETI FLW COLLEGE FISHING - 2019 - Lake Erie

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Smith Lake Day 1 Coverage

Smith Lake Day 1 Coverage
Cody Meyer

Quick Links

Complete details

Tournament flier

Get to know Smith Lake

FLW Live schedule 

Practice stories with Cody Meyer, Zack Birge and Bradley Hallman

 

2:12 That’s a wrap

We’re rolling to weigh-in now, so we’re putting a lid on the blog for the rest of the afternoon. There are plenty of mysteries left to unravel, and lots of stars and local favorites that we haven’t found on the water. With that in mind, weigh-in should be pretty interesting, especially if you like spotted bass. It all starts at 3 p.m. CT, and if you want to come out and watch in-person the weather should actually be pretty nice.

 

2:02 Johnston is on pace

Chris Johnston says he’s got five 2-pounders. That’s pretty par for the course today.  

 

1:50 Hammerbury, weather

Scott Canterbury has about 10 pounds like everyone else. We’re going to see plenty of limits, but the big ones are sure hard to come by today.

Also, it’s clearing up very nicely. So the pros with a late check-in should have lots of sun to fish with.

 

1:45 We’ve got a tentative leader

Matt Arey is having a really good day. He says he’s got 13+, and it’d be no surprise to see him pull up to weigh-in with 15+. It’s been a bit of a slow day by usual Smith standards, so what he’s got may work out very well for him.

 

1:33 The struggle is real

Alex Davis says he was getting 30 bites a day in practice and that he’s had seven bites today. That’s the same problem Dudley has had, so something has definitely changed.

 

1:32 Gross update

Buddy Gross has a small limit.

 

1:25 Davis upgrades

Alex Davis just upgraded his limit to get over the 10-pound mark. He fishes down here a ton in the fall, and really could be a contender this week if things break right for him.

1:15 Billy McDonald has a limit

Billy McDonald has a couple decent ones in the ‘well, but he’s filled out with just dinks. He says he’s trying to “supersize” a few of them before weigh-in.

 

1:00 Reese culls

Jimmy Reese just added about a pound on a California Roll. He actually called his shot on it and swapped from a blade to the worm for his fish.

 

12:47 Reese and Cortiana

Jimmy Reese has a similar limit to Brandon Mosley – one good one and a bunch that he’d be happy to cull. Kyle Cortiana has a 10-pound limit as well.

 

12:37 Latimer and Mosley

We saw Brian Latimer early and watched him box one keeper – no word beyond that though. Brandon Mosley is off to a solid start with a limit for around 11 or 12 pounds.

12:30 The Carolinas

Todd Auten says he’s got four for about 7 pounds and Brandon Cobb has a limit for around 7 pounds.

We had another round of rain roll through, but we’re getting close to it breaking for good.

 

 

 

11:49 Real Deal and Wendlandt are alright

Michael Neal and Clark Wendlandt are both on some good fish today and have filled out limits for about 11 pounds now. Once you extrapolate that out to the end of the day, they should be in pretty good shape.

 

11:40 A limit for Mitchell

Kurt Mitchell started out going for largemouths and struck out. Now he’s boxed up a small limit of spotted bass.

 

11:25 Setzer and Mansfield

Braxton Setzer has a decent limit for 11+ going now. Up in Ryan, Greg Mansfield has filled out his limit for about 8 pounds.

 

11:10 Birge and Cory Johnston

Zack Birge has five, but they’re all small so far. Cory Johnston only has three.

The water in the lake is actually backing up now – you can see it on the pilings of the bridge in Ryan. So, it looks like the lake is definitely rising again.

 

10:59 Poor Dudley

“I have no clue what’s happened, my heart is hurting right now,” says David Dudley, who was getting 50+ bites a day in practice. Word on the street is that water level fluctuations tend to cause lockjaw at Smith, and Dudley may have run right into it. Either way, he’s just got three so far.

 

10:53 Another limit

It seems like most everyone we pull up on now has a limit, or at least most of one. Jason Meninger is one of those folks – he’s got five for around 9 pounds.

 

10:47 Meyer with a big

Cody Meyer just caught a big one. That’ll push him up past the 10-pound mark. It’s awfully early, but considering the lake and the conditions it’ll be a big surprise if he isn’t fishing on the weekend.

 

10:39 McDonald boxes a kicker

Billy McDonald only has four, but his fourth is a dandy. He’s drop-shotting out deep and just pulled up a nice 3+ spotted dog.

 

10:33 Color and techniques

The water color in Ryan and elsewhere in Smith is a little greener than normal, with some stain in some pockets, but by and large it’s in pretty good shape still. According to the gauge, the water level has dropped a little since takeoff, but the incoming water is definitely compensating now. Additionally, the rain has started back up again.

We’ve seen some spinnerbait action out of Andy Morgan, but the majority of anglers are fishing finesse. Shaky heads, drop-shot rigs and little swimbaits seem to be the order of the day.

 

10:30 Jocumsen and Batts

Carl Jocumsen has just two keepers at the moment. Clayton Batts has just one.

Also, it has come to our attention that not nearly enough people know who Roo is. So, be sure to educate yourself if need be and follow her on Instagram.

 

10:23 More updates

Scott Martin has a small limit now for less than 10 pounds. Chris McCall also has a limit and is “more than ok” with Baker Mayfield going to the Browns. Greg Mansfield has three in the box.

 

10:19 Morgan and Dunkin

Andy Morgan and Luke Dunkin both have small limits. Morgan is chunking a blade and seems to be enjoying himself a great deal despite the bad weather. 

 

10:10 Gags and Meyer

Anthony Gagliardi has had a “terrible” morning and has a small limit. Cody Meyer has his limit now as well.

 

10:05 Meyer and Ponds

Pete Ponds has four keepers in the ‘well, but none of them are special. Cody Meyer just boxed up his fourth keeper – a chunky 2-pound spot that he plucked off a bridge piling.

 

10:00 Blaukat with five, Meyer with three

Randy Blaukat has a limit and he say’s “they’re not much.” Also, co-angler Mark Guhne just caught a 4-pounder behind Cody Meyer, who now has three keepers.

 

9:55 Davis and more

Clent “Big Baby” Davis has four now and three are “good ones.” That’s a good start – usually catching limits isn’t the problem on Smith. Two folks with small limits are Jimmy Brewer and Kyle Weisenburger.

 

9:40 JoJo and JJ

Joseph Webster has pretty good morning going – he’s got a limit for about 10 pounds in the boat and one of them is a 4-pounder. Jason Johnson has three small spotted bass.

 

9:30 Davis and Meyer

Darrell Davis has four keepers now and is having some trouble with his bilge pump. Considering the weather, today is not the day for pump issues. Cody Meyer only has one, but he says they’ll start biting soon.

 

9:25 Cifuentes, Colson, Martin

Joey Cifuentes is not sporting his cowboy hat in the rain today, but he does have two keepers. Ramie Colson is also on the board with four fish. Scott Martin has three and they’re all small.

 

9:15 It looks like the rain is clearing

The rain seems to be clearing out west to east now, which is a little earlier than we expected. There should still be some scattered stuff coming, but the bulk of the water has probably fallen now. Interestingly, the water level in the lake is still falling, but it isn’t falling as slowly now.

 

9:00 Sprague and Moynagh

Jeff Sprague boxed up his third keeper a minute ago – no word on the size front from the Texas pro. Jim Moynagh has at least one 2-pounder, but he boxed it and left before we could get a total from him.

 

8:55 It’s a little slow

Jason Abram and James Niggemeyer are both sitting on goose eggs at the moment. Fishing behind Niggemeyer, co-angler Mark Howard has four.

It is still very wet, so actually getting photos and updates back through Smith’s sketchy service can be a bit of a challenge. That said, we’re probably not going to have too many more lulls like this unless some lightening moves through.

 

8:30 Our first limit

Jeff “Gussy” Gustafson has the first limit of the day. He says it only goes about 9 pounds, but that’s a fine spot to be starting from.

 

8:19 Thrift has three

Bryan Thrift has three small ones. He’s two away from extending his limit streak one more day.

 

8:18 Huff and Lambert

Rex Huff is on the board early with three keepers. Jason Lambert has just one, but it’s a largemouth, so that’s kinda fun.

 

8:03 Technique notes

Early on a lot of the anglers are fishing offshore or on points and the like – basically, they aren’t fishing the flooded bank. That’s not to say that the flooded cover won’t be useful today, it might, but right now it seems like the spotted bass are behaving as though the water level is completely normal.

 

7:53 Morgenthaler, Scanlon, Rose

Chad Morgenthaler has one in the boat and Casey Scanlon has two keepers early. Mark Rose just added a third that’s about 2 pounds.

 

7:39 A handful of updates

Clent Davis doesn’t have any. He’s fishing a swimbait and says he’s gotten some good bites but they are hitting it funny and not hooking up. Todd Hollowell and Wade Curtiss each have one.

 

7:27 Rose with two, Ryan is empty

Fishing near takeoff, Mark Rose just caught his second keeper.

Oddly enough, the upper end of Ryan is pretty empty today – only about 10 boats ran that far. Usually, that arm is a big player, so it’s a bit of a surprise to see so few folks up there this morning.

 

7:16 McCall gets on the board

Chris McCall has one in the boat so far. He’s alternating between a spinnerbait, a buzzbait and a shaky head.

 

7:08 Nothing for Setzer

Braxton Setzer started out in the mouth of Rock Creek and hasn’t put anything in the boat yet. There are a bunch of other boats rolling up into Rock as well, and we’ll have updates on them as we get to ‘em.

6:56 It’s wet and Gussy is on the board

Our first fish catch of the day goes to Jeff Gustafson – he’s boxed up a 2-pound spotted bass to get things started. It’s not pouring, but it’s raining very steadily and figures to for much of the day.

 

 

 

6:30 Time to chase some spots in the rain

Stop No. 5 of the FLW Tour on Smith Lake is presented by T-H Marine and hosted by The Chamber of Commerce of Walker County. Though the weather for day one is decidedly wet, it sure looks like the final three days will offer great weather and great fishing in the hills of Alabama.

Smith is rocky, deep highland reservoir that has a good population of largemouths and a spotted bass fishery that has gone from good to great in the last few years. The Sipsey Fork, Rock Creek and Ryan Creek are the three main arms of the lake, and they’re all good. That said, Ryan Creek is a little flatter and known for its ability to kick out more largemouths than average.

The big story at the moment is the high water. On day two of practice, Smith came up about 4 feet, and it began coming back down Wednesday afternoon. How much it will fall during the tournament is anyone’s guess, especially considering the new water coming in from today’s rain. What the water level and water color do will be of prime importance to some, but a lot of the fish, especially postspawn spotted bass, will likely be somewhat unaffected.

Though today is going to be wet and difficult, the fishing should be pretty good every day of the event. Most of the bass are postspawn at the moment, and there are going to be a lot of ways to catch them. From fishing flooded cover with moving baits and flipping stuff, to topwaters and swimbaits near the bank for spotted bass. Of course, fish will be caught deep as well, on all the usual finesse offerings that Smith and spots are known for.

 

Conditions

Temperature at takeoff: 56 degrees

Forecast high: 66 degrees

Sky: overcast

Precipitation: 100 percent chance of rain

Wind: south at 8 mph

Water level: 514.06 Feet (tracker)

 

Tournament Details

Folgers Morning Takeoff: 6:30 a.m. CT at Smith Lake Dam Access, 7482 Smith Lake Dam Road, Jasper, Ala.

Weigh-in: Thursday and Friday at 3 p.m. CT at Smith Lake Dam Access and 4 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday at Smith Lake Dam Access

FLW Expo: 12 to 4 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday at Smith Lake Dam Access

FLW Live: Saturday and Sunday from 8:30 a.m. ET to 12:30 p.m. CT

Complete details

 

Tags: headline-story  2018-04-26-smith-lake 

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Through two days of competition on the Potomac in the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event the weights haven’t been nearly what the river is capable of kicking out. That said, all the top pros have managed to put at least one good day together, and some have maintained really strong consistency, just at a lesser pace than would be the norm in June or some other time of the year. READ MORE »

Better Day Keeps Reese Out Front

Better Day Keeps Reese Out Front

A lovely morning gave way to a dismal afternoon on day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the Potomac River, but despite the difference in conditions, Marvin Reese kept on plugging. Weighing 14 pounds, 12 ounces on day one, Reese added 15-14 on day two for a 30-10 total. With his day two bag, Reese has now weighed the two biggest bags of the event, which is presented by Lowrance, and he’s widened his lead over Justin Atkins to nearly 4 pounds. READ MORE »

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 2

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 2

Day two of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event on the Potomac has been quite a swing from day one. However, despite dramatically different weather, some of the top pros are still catching, and it looks like a tight race is setting up for the final day. READ MORE »

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Potomac River Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

As is so often the case, the first day of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits on the Potomac River wasn’t quite as bad as some predicted in practice. Though it was hot and humid as all get out, plenty of limits hit the scale and enough pros weighed 12 pounds or better to make things really interesting READ MORE »

Reese Leads on the Potomac

Reese Leads on the Potomac

Day one of the Potomac River event, which is the second stop of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits, featured plenty of limits, but getting quality bites was definitely an issue for some. In the lead after day one, Marvin Reese of Randallstown, Md., weighed 14 pounds, 12 ounces to get things underway. Behind Reese, Justin Atkins and Jason Kervin both weighed 14-5, and Robert Grike rounded out the 14-pound brigade with 14-4. Overall, just 11 pros cracked the 12-pound mark on day one of the tournament, which is presented by Lowrance, but 8- and 9-pound limits weren’t too hard to come by.  READ MORE »

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 1

Potomac River Midday Update – Day 1

As predicted, day one of the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits event on the Potomac River has been fairly tough. Though most folks have a fish or two, and many will undoubtedly fill limits by weigh-in, it certainly hasn’t been a catch-fest. READ MORE »

High Tide Takes Langford to Top

High Tide Takes Langford to Top

Todd Langford of Great Falls, Virginia, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament on the Potomac River Saturday after catching a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 2 ounces. Langford took home $2,600 for his efforts. READ MORE »

Mills Works Wood at Ohio River

Mills Works Wood at Ohio River

Craig Mills of Hamilton, Ohio, took top honors at Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament on the Ohio River at Tanners Creek after catching five bass weighing 10 pounds, 4 ounces. Mills took home $5,466 for his win. READ MORE »

Pollak Plays Current for Big Muddy W

Pollak Plays Current for Big Muddy W

Joe Pollak of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Great Lakes Division tournament on the Mississippi River at Prairie du Chien Saturday after catching five bass weighing 15 pounds, 1 ounce. For his win, Pollack netted $4,586. READ MORE »

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Thrift Finally Wins the Cup

Everyone knew it was only a matter of time, and that time is finally now. Bryan Thrift is an FLW Cup champion. READ MORE »

Lake Hamilton Day 3 Coverage

Lake Hamilton Day 3 Coverage

Bryan Thrift has the lead with one day left to fish in the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton. But to make it happen, he needs to hold off Kyle Walters, who's had a magical week so far, along with Scott Martin and a crew of other hammers. READ MORE »

What Happened to LeBrun?

What Happened to LeBrun?

Nick LeBrun cracked 15 pounds on day one of the FLW Cup by throwing a Whopper Plopper around docks and seawalls. Then he caught only two bass on day two. The Louisiana pro says he refused to change his approach on day two because he wanted to fish for the win. Though he failed, he says he wouldn't change a thing. READ MORE »

Thrift on the Brink of First Cup

Thrift on the Brink of First Cup

For the second day in a row, Shelby, N.C., pro Bryan Thrift will go to bed with the lead in the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton. Today, Thrift weighed in 12 pounds, 7 ounces for a two-day total of 27-10. He leads Florida pro Kyle Walters by 1 1/2 pounds. READ MORE »

Lake Hamilton Day 2 Coverage

Lake Hamilton Day 2 Coverage

Bryan Thrift and Nick LeBrun lead the charge at the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton. Today, they work toward making the cut and getting to the final day of competition for a chance at $300,000. READ MORE »

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Hamilton

FLW Live Leaderboard - Lake Hamilton

FLW Marshals and media staff provide unofficial weight estimates for the 2019 FLW Cup at Lake Hamilton. READ MORE »

Lake Hamilton Day 1 Coverage

Lake Hamilton Day 1 Coverage

The 2019 FLW Cup features 52 of the best bass anglers in the world competing for $300,000 at Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Ark. READ MORE »

Greene Again on St. Clair

Greene Again on St. Clair

Kyle Greene of Ortonville, Michigan, took top honors at Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Michigan Division tournament on Lake St. Clair after catching five bass weighing 23 pounds, 7 ounces. Greene took home $5,753 for his win. READ MORE »

Buck Drop-shots for Oneida Win

Buck Drop-shots for Oneida Win

FLW Tour pro Grae Buck of Harleysville, Pennsylvania, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Northeast Division tournament on Oneida Lake Saturday after catching five bass weighing 16 pounds, 13 ounces. For his win, Buck earned $5,471 and 250 points in the Northeast Division presented by Gajo Baits standings. The winner of the division’s Angler of the Year title after five tournaments will win $3,000. READ MORE »

Gallagher Nets Win on Indian

Gallagher Nets Win on Indian

Darrell Gallagher of Maplewood, Ohio, won the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Buckeye Division tournament on Indian Lake Saturday after catching five bass weighing 10 pounds, 14 ounces. Gallagher earned $3,553 his win. READ MORE »

Crowder Camps for Potomac W

Crowder Camps for Potomac W

Kermit Crowder of Matoaca, Virginia, won Saturday’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division tournament on the Potomac River presented by Navionics after catching five bass weighing 13 pounds, 12 ounces. For his day on the water, Crowder earned $4,454. READ MORE »