CullmanTimes.com - Cullman, Alabama

Top Sports

April 29, 2013

TOP ROD SOLO TRAIL: Chambers wins Open at Smith Lake

There is no doubt the bass fishing on Lewis Smith Lake is on an upswing, and April always the best time to fish the deep clear lake. This is the one time of year the fish are close to the banks and easy to catch, as they think about spawning.

Thirty-nine anglers turned out for the 4th Top Rod Solo Trail event of the year on April 20-22, launching out of Smith Lake Dam, and most reported catching 20 to 40 fish on the day.

The cold weather that has hung around North Alabama all year showed up again on the first day, with another cold front that dropped the air temps to 42 degrees at takeoff on the 22nd. It became a beautiful sunny day, with temps nearing 70 degrees by the time the tournament ended. Water temps ranged from 62-68 degrees, and the fish were in all stages of the spawn. There were post-spawn and pre-spawn fish weighed in, and sight fishing was a major factor as well.

Rex Chambers of Baileyton almost cracked the 20lb mark to take the win with 19.49lbs, which is a monster bag on Smith Lake. He also had a giant 8.34lb largemouth to take home the Big Fish award. There are four tournaments left in the 2013 Top Rod Season culminating in the season ending championship on Guntersville.

Chambers on a roll

Rex Chambers of Cullman, AL had one great weekend on the water.  

After winning a tournament on Wheeler Lake with more than 100 boats two weeks ago, Chambers made it two wins in two days with his first Top Rod victory of the season.

He had an absolute monster largemouth for Smith Lake with an 8.34lber and added a couple of big spots with it for his 19.49 winning weight. He took home $877 for first place, and will also cash in with the Phoenix First Flight program and the T-H Marine Angler Rewards program. He also won $100 for the biggest fish award.

Chambers has fished Smith Lake for many years and he used his experience  to blow away a solid field of regular Top Rod anglers and some of Smith Lake’s finest sticks. He was one of the few top finishers that did not target spawning fish. Instead, he caught most of his weigh fish on a black and brown 3/4oz homemade football jig with a green pumpkin Strike King Rage Craw trailer in brushpiles.

His other fish came on a Bull Shad swimbait. He caught his fish in 10 feet or less using each bait.

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