Lake Cumberland

I recently returned from the FLW Tour event on Lake Cumberland, Kentucky. This lake is nestled in the hills of South central Kentucky, and it’s truly one of the most beautiful lakes I’ve seen. It looks like Beaver Lake on steroids - clear water, small water falls everywhere, turkey gobbling, three species of bass and great people. The tournament is a really unique one because of the different size limits on the different species. Spotted bass are 12 inches, largemouth 15 inches and small mouth, 18 inches. I’ve always liked catching smallmouth, especially those in the pre-spawn, so I targeted smallmouth. The unique thing was that all I needed was 5 keepers a day to win the tournament. An 18” smallmouth there weighed nearly 3.5 pounds. The math is clear – with 5 keepers, it’s 17pounds – a good sack on a clear water impoundment. I fished a really good tournament there for three days. I caught most of my fish leading up to the last day on a jerk bait and a small crank bait and had some good patterns going for all three species. I had a nearly four pound lead going in to the last day, but the fickle smallmouth snake-bit me the last day. I caught a lot of good keeper smallmouth late in the day Saturday. But between Saturday and Sunday, I believe those fish started spawning and would not chase anymore. I did catch several smallmouth during the day on Sunday, but none of them kept, and I ended up not weighing in a keeper bass the final day for a 9th place finish. It was still a great week, but I definitely left something on the table. I head to Beaver Lake this weekend, and will be looking for FOUR great days there!