Thursday, June 9, 2011

Fishing with Bill

Very early Monday morning (2:20 A.M.) June 6th, I left my house in Memphis and headed toward Jasper, Alabama. My destination was Bill Trussell's house and ultimately Lewis Smith Lake. It was an exciting day, because I was going fishing for the first time with a fellow blogger who I met through the Outdoor Blogger Network. Bill writes the blog Fishing Through Life, and if you don't read it, you should. Bill always has interesting things to share and writes with genuine enthusiasm about fly fishing his home waters on Smith Lake.

Bill lands the first Bluegill of the day.

Bill was just as enthusiastic in person as I imagined he would be from reading his blog. I was thoroughly impressed with how well he knows practically every shoreline and rock formation on the lake... which is pretty impressive when you consider that Smith Lake has 500 plus miles of shoreline. He also knows the fish on Smith Lake pretty well too. He knew very quickly that we weren't going to have an easy day... I think it only took him about five casts.

Bill wrote a pretty thorough account of our morning on the lake, so there's no sense in me trying to reinvent the wheel. The only thing I would add is that Bill has a very beautiful lake to call his home water. I would have to say that Smith Lake is probably the most scenic still water I've ever been on in the South.

Now, Bill calls the fish in his lake "Kentucky Spots," and there's certainly nothing wrong with that, but I believe the Spotted Bass there are actually Alabama Spotted Bass (Micropterus henshalli).
Why do I think this? Well, Alabama Spotted Bass (or just Alabama Bass as they are now more properly called) are found in the upper Mobile River basin, and Smith Lake is indeed part of the Mobile River watershed.
What does this mean? It means that I get to cross another species off the list for the Bass Slam quest- one that I missed out on during our last trip. That pushes our collective total to 7 out of 18. I'm actually catching up with Kelly too. Currently, she has a one species lead.

My Bass Slam 12.25" Alabama Spotted Bass

Yet another victim of the Bunny Butt Slider

Although I only needed to catch a 12" Alabama Spotted for the Bass Slam, I'd really like to catch a bigger one... and I hope to get another chance soon. Bill was a great fishing partner, and I can't wait to visit him and his amazing home water again.


  1. Nice report Jay. Looks like you guys had a great trip.

  2. Great post! I have also heard of Smith Lake and that it's a great fishing lake.

  3. Isn't it fun to meet up with fellow bloggers?? How fun...yes, Bill.seems to be a great guy and very knowledgable on the

  4. One more great thing about the whole blogging scene , meeting new friends to share the sport with. Good luck on your "Bass Slam" quest...Jeff

  5. Jay
    I really enjoyed the trip and I am looking forward to another outing in the near future. I hope the spots are hitting a little better next time around.

  6. Certainly an unexpected plus from blogging is meeting others who blog as well. I'm looking forward to that. Nice going guys.

  7. Thanks for all of the comments. It was really cool meeting a fellow fly fishing blogger. Hopefully something I'll get to repeat.