2015 Lewis Smith Lake Tournament Feature Story

ABT Smith Lake Preview

We’re a little less than a week away from the third event of the 2015 Alabama Bass Trail Northern Division at Lewis Smith Lake out of Jasper.

Smith Lake was the site of the inaugural ABT Championship last October, and Craig Daniel and Jackie Flack managed to produce a total weight of 32.48 pounds to win the two-day event with the trophies and the Phoenix Boats / Mercury Outboards championship prize package.

But, that was a fall tournament, and with this particular event being a springtime affair, we can expect things to be a little different.  If the recent FLW Tour event on Smith Lake can be viewed as evidence of what to expect, the anglers should be able to catch bass in a variety of ways.

Erie, Penn. Pro Dave Lefebre came from behind on the final day to win the four-day FLW Tour event with a total of 65 pounds, 5 ounces.  Lefebre used a morning pattern that targeted spotted bass with an underspin, then used a waking topwater lure to target largemouth pushing blue back herring into creeks in the afternoon.

Other anglers talked about finding spawning fish, some spoke of Flipping in dirty water in the backs of creeks, some used topwater baits and jerkbaits.  Buzzbaits and frogs made the difference for one angler and others used finesse tactics like dropshots and Shaky Heads while finesse swimbaits were best for another.  All of these tactics were employed by anglers who finished in the top 10.

The weights would have likely been higher than they ended up being, but a strong cold front moved through the area dropping air temperatures, water temperatures and stirring up the water with winds.  Had they had stable conditions, the field would have been able to see fish better and been able to present their lures better.

With all of that in mind, the 204 teams that make up the Alabama Bass Trail Northern Division will likely have their pick of how they would like to catch fish in the tournament.  The weather conditions won’t exactly be “stable,” but they will be warm.  The weather forecasts are calling for thunderstorms off and on throughout the week, but the temperatures are expected to be stable.

While the field may have to deal with on and off rains and thunderstorms throughout the week, the warm conditions could mean that the resident bass population of Smith Lake will continue on their migration patterns and the anglers should be able to get on a steady pattern and run it through the event.

See you at registration on Friday evening.

The sponsors of the 2015 Alabama Bass Trail include: Bill Penney Toyota, the Alabama Tourism Department, Phoenix Bass Boats, Inc., Garmin, Academy Sports & Outdoors, T-H Marine Supplies, Inc., Alabama Power Company, Buffalo Rock, Inc., Jet-Pep, Inc., Tennessee Valley Authority, and Frogg Toggs, Inc., HydroWaveTM, Alabama Foundation Specialist, Boat U.S., LEER, Vicious Fishing, E3 Sports, Inc., Costa Del Mar, Frogg Toggs, Inc., Power-Pole,  Window World and Yeti Coolers.