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  1. #1
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    smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Is it just about time to find the giant smallmouth on Lake Cumberland?....I've heard in the past...that the month of Nov. is the best for "trophy" smallmouth fishing; like in the 6-8 lb range!!!!....anybody got any thoughts on this?

  2. #2
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    I would think December is better. For one they will have eaten all November to fatten up and two, they will start developing some eggs for spawning in December (which not too many people know this, but it is true). I personally don't fish Cumberland for Smallies but the actual fish growth and eating habits are not too different from Dale Hollow, where I do fish for Smallies. All 3 of my 6 pounders have came in December and approximately 25 of my 35 that were over 5 were caught in December plus a bulk of my 4+ pounders. More fish and bigger fish are caught in December for me than any other month of the year.

  3. #3
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    Question Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Quote Originally Posted by elnutsmalljaws View Post
    I would think December is better. For one they will have eaten all November to fatten up and two, they will start developing some eggs for spawning in December (which not too many people know this, but it is true). I personally don't fish Cumberland for Smallies but the actual fish growth and eating habits are not too different from Dale Hollow, where I do fish for Smallies. All 3 of my 6 pounders have came in December and approximately 25 of my 35 that were over 5 were caught in December plus a bulk of my 4+ pounders. More fish and bigger fish are caught in December for me than any other month of the year.
    congratulations, on the trophy smallmouths. did you catch those big smallmouths, on live bait? and if not would you care to say what kind of lure they were caught on.

  4. #4
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Quote Originally Posted by waterdog101 View Post
    congratulations, on the trophy smallmouths. did you catch those big smallmouths, on live bait? and if not would you care to say what kind of lure they were caught on.

    One 5+ on the 1/4 oz Yellow Hoss Fly (January), another 5+ on 1/2 oz Silver Buddy (December) and all other 5 plus and 6 pounders were caught on the greatest winter fishing technique known to man FLOAT N FLY. Best technique for suspended fish and it will flat out catch fish. My guess is 100 plus fish over 4lbs, plus the 5's and 6's listed and lost another that was an EASY 8 pounder after fighting the big girl for 10 minutes and she straightened out the hook on my FNF jig. I use 1/16oz Duck Feather with Chartreuse and either Red, Blue or Purple, depending on what is hot at that time 98% of the time. 99% of the above fish were caught with a leader lenght of between 9 and 13 feet, depending on conditions. All were caught out of Dale Hollow since winter of 2004, when I started fishing Dale.

  5. #5
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    Smile Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Quote Originally Posted by elnutsmalljaws View Post
    One 5+ on the 1/4 oz Yellow Hoss Fly (January), another 5+ on 1/2 oz Silver Buddy (December) and all other 5 plus and 6 pounders were caught on the greatest winter fishing technique known to man FLOAT N FLY. Best technique for suspended fish and it will flat out catch fish. My guess is 100 plus fish over 4lbs, plus the 5's and 6's listed and lost another that was an EASY 8 pounder after fighting the big girl for 10 minutes and she straightened out the hook on my FNF jig. I use 1/16oz Duck Feather with Chartreuse and either Red, Blue or Purple, depending on what is hot at that time 98% of the time. 99% of the above fish were caught with a leader lenght of between 9 and 13 feet, depending on conditions. All were caught out of Dale Hollow since winter of 2004, when I started fishing Dale.
    i really like reading your story, it makes me want to go fishing. it sounds like your a man that knows smallmouth. I don't get to fish dale very much, it's a two hour + drive for me. when i do get down their, i put in at the state dock. 4 pound is the best one i've caught yet. i caught it on a 1/2 ounce hair jig with pork chunk. I've never tried the float n fly you talked about, but i plan on trying it this winter. thanks for the tip. I hope you get hooked up with another 8 pounder this winter. thanks again, and may the good lord bless you.

  6. #6
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Quote Originally Posted by waterdog101 View Post
    i really like reading your story, it makes me want to go fishing. it sounds like your a man that knows smallmouth. I don't get to fish dale very much, it's a two hour + drive for me. when i do get down their, i put in at the state dock. 4 pound is the best one i've caught yet. i caught it on a 1/2 ounce hair jig with pork chunk. I've never tried the float n fly you talked about, but i plan on trying it this winter. thanks for the tip. I hope you get hooked up with another 8 pounder this winter. thanks again, and may the good lord bless you.

    I can appreciate the drive to Dale for it is almost 3 hours for me to get to Holly Creek from my house in Frankfort. Well worth the extra time on the road to learn Dale Hollow versus Cumberland, in my opinion. More fish, better quality fish and flat out more structure ie humps, ledges, grass beds, islands, black shale points and other stuff to fish on Dale Hollow. I drive right over the Cumberland Dam on the way to Dale and don't even give it a thought to stop and fish. The Hair Jig, football head jig, peanut head jig (Hoss Fly) are all good winter baits as well as the Silver Buddy to catch fish. Good Luck and heres to you landing your first 5 pounder this winter. Elnut

  7. #7
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    I've never fished Dale, but do alot of striper fishing on Lake Cumberland. My buddy and I have caught some nice smallies while striper fishing including two in one night that were in the 5 to 6 lb range. All our night time smallies were caught on crankbaits. I know one person on this board that caught a 24 incher. Now thats a brute. He caught it on a Gizz 4 while casting at stripers in the jumps. Elnutsmalljaws, glad to hear that silver buddies catch big smallies. I'm going to try a Flitterbait this December on Lake Cumberland.

  8. #8
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    I have caught several Smallies at night on Cumberland while fishing the Gizz 4, Super Zara Spooks, Redfins, Slivers and Thundersticks while fishing for Walleye and Stripers. Smallies will hang around and bust the shad just like Eyes and Stripers at certain times of years. October of 2003, I went night fishing and had one of the best nights ever on the water in landing several Smallies over 3lbs including a few over 4, several good stripers all over 15lbs each and even hit the morning topwater bite beside the Webb Boat just before sunrise and caught several of each and some good Greenfish as well. I will be trying the Flitterbait as well for if it works like the Silver Buddy then it will catch Smallmouth in the winter time plus catch other schooling fish when ripped thru the school just like the Silver Buddy.

  9. #9
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    elnut, while not a great smallie fisherman,i fished dale about 4 years in a row. i went in the spring and fall for two years and then the spring the other two years. i had great days and days of not even catching a fish. havent been in a few years, but itching to get back. my best day on the lake was in march and had about a half inch of snow in the boat. we were actually catching more greens than browns and lots of spots on jerkbaits. i need to learn how to float and flie and get there in the winter i guess!!

  10. #10
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    bigwormy your not from somerset are you i went to dale with a guy in march and we tore them up and it was snowing and sleeting both days we were there.

  11. #11
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Quote Originally Posted by bigwormy View Post
    elnut, while not a great smallie fisherman,i fished dale about 4 years in a row. i went in the spring and fall for two years and then the spring the other two years. i had great days and days of not even catching a fish. havent been in a few years, but itching to get back. my best day on the lake was in march and had about a half inch of snow in the boat. we were actually catching more greens than browns and lots of spots on jerkbaits. i need to learn how to float and flie and get there in the winter i guess!!
    Smallies hate the sunlight more than any other fish that I know. Days of overcast rain, sleet, snow where the sun does not shine all day long are the BEST days no matter what time of year. I will even fish the shaded side of the points when I am night fishing just to get out of the moonlight because they hate the light that bad. Love the days in Dec and Jan when it is 34 degrees, rain-sleet-snow and the sun does not shine for days and days. The fish will suspend more and move up in the water column a bit more, which makes them easier to catch on the fly. Rule of thumb, higher the blue skies and sun the longer the leader, overcast and no sunlight the shorter the leader. I use this all the time and will start out the early morning before the sun gets up with pretty much a 9-11 foot leader and adjust based on changing conditions from there. depth and presentation are WAY MORE IMPORTANT than color in my opinion. Not saying some off the wall color is just as good as a shad color or duck feather, within reason, color the last thing I change if they are not biting. I will change my presentation first, depth second, then presentation again, then depth again, then presentation before changing color. When I change color it is not going from Duck Red Chartr to Duck Blue Chartr because I really don't think the little amount of Red or Blue that is in the jigs I use is the difference maker. I change from Duck Feather to craft white/pink/blue or smoke, change means change. Seen it where solid Pink craft hair, solid chartr craft hair was the ticket to Duck Feather, to Smoke Craft. Pretty much these are the 4 colors that I use with Duck Feather being on 98% of the time. I play the sun ALL DAY LONG and fish shaded banks pretty much all day long. Even at high noon, there are some banks on Dale that don't get any sunlight, but there are plenty before 11am and after 2pm that you can fish to avoid the sunlight. If the deeper side of the cut or bay has no sunlight then that is the side I fish.

  12. #12
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    Re: smallmouth on Lake Cumberland

    Thanks so much for your willingness to share with those of us that don't have the knowledge you have with the brown fish and flys. It gives us hope!

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