Lewis Smith Lake

Feature Story

Roman and Shannon Calvert Preview Smith Lake

By Jason Duran

It is time for stop number two of the ABT North Division.  Lewis Smith Lake is where 225 teams will compete for a chance at the $15,000 first-place prize. Smith Lake is the home to an abundant population of spotted and largemouth bass. With 21,000 acres of water covering three counties and depths of 264 feet, teams will have plenty of fishable water to put together a limit to bring to the scales. We caught up with the team of Roman and Shannon Calvert to give us a preview leading up to this weekend.

Roman and Shannon have been looking forward to this event since the schedule was announced. They shared, “We believe this tournament is right on the perfect weekend for teams to catch fish the way they want to.  There will be a lot of fish caught in a bunch of different ways. It will be a hard tournament to win because of that.”

We have spent a decent amount of time practicing for this event. There are going to be a lot of fish caught in a bunch of different ways this weekend. With the weather getting warmer, it could start pushing the fish up. There are still some spotted bass to be found from out in the middle of the lake all the way up shallow and on the bank. They have been trying to move up for weeks. As soon as they start moving up, we have a cold front, and that pushes them back out. However, this week it seems a little more stable, especially with the low Thursday being 60 degrees. That is a good sign and maybe that will push them up shallower. The water temp has been in the 60s in the backs of the creeks. That should set up well for this event.”

Smith Lake is ready, and teams should find a lot of areas on the lake ready to produce good fishing this weekend. “With the rain expected this week, teams will find muddy water up Ryan Creek around Smith Lake Park. Teams in that area will catch fish up shallow using crankbaits and moving baits. Down around the dam, the water will be clear, and fish can be caught out deep. Teams that go up to Rock Creek will find clean water till they head to the back of the creek. In the back of Rock Creek, teams will find a similar area like Smith Lake Park where the water is muddy and shallow. Teams will be able to find fish from 40 feet to 6 inches of water, and they should be able to find the water clarity they choose. From what we have seen, the fish have been really scattered out. There aren’t as many big schools as there normally are.”

There will be several key baits that will play this weekend. “Teams that are scoping will be using a Damiki Rig style bait. A Shakey head will be used in the back of creeks for teams targeting spotted bass and fish up shallow. A buzbait used in the middle of the creek will be a good way to get a big largemouth. Teams will also use a jig to target the largemouth bite. It will take a mixed bag to win this event with probably 3 or 4 largemouth in the bag. The weight to win will be around 18-19 pounds with around 14 pounds to get a check.”

Blast Off & Weigh In: March 16, 2024, Lewis Smith Lake Dam, 7811 Smith Lake Dam Road,

Jasper, AL 35504. The Pre-Tournament Briefing was held via Facebook Live and YouTube on Monday, March 11, 2024, at 6:00 P.M. There is a replay available. Friends and family are welcome to attend this event, bring lawn chairs, and see some of the best bass teams in the country cross the stage. Everyone can watch the live weigh-in and over 4 hours of on-the-water live coverage on the ABT Facebook page, YouTube, and the ABT website.

The 2024 Alabama Bass Trail Sponsors Include: Phoenix Boats, AMFirst, Landers - McLarty Chevrolet, McGraw - Webb Chevrolet, Rapala, VMC, Crush City, Buffalo Rock, Academy Sports & Outdoors, Jack's, Garmin, Alabama State Parks, Halo Fishing, Snag proof, NetBait, Bait Fuel, TH Marine Supplies, Power-Pole, Pro Guide Batteries, American Trailer Rental, Yamaha, Anheuser-Busch, Big Bite Baits and FishAlabama.org