Tims Ford Reservoir, a winter retreat for Tennessee fishing

Sure hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and 2019 brings you many great fishin’ trips right here in Tennessee. 

With the holidays being so busy, not many people are thinking too much about fishing this time of year, but January on Tims Ford Reservoir can be a fine time to go out and catch some wintertime smallmouth.

With water temperatures in the 40s, small, lower-profiled artificial baits with a slow presentation are generally the preferred method. The Charlie Brewer “Whirly Bee” may be the best artificial bait out there for wintertime smallies on Tims Ford Reservoir. Parallel the banks with these, and hang on.

Other similar baits such as small jigs, Beetle Spins, hair jigs with small grubs or creature baits work great as well. If fish are holding in deeper water, blade baits, spoons or a Little George may be another good option.

Productive sites on the reservoir include the Lost Creek area all the way up lake to the 5-mile marker. Here many of the fish are being caught in coves, even toward the backs of these coves where baitfish may be holding. The smallmouth bass fishery at Tims Ford Reservoir is managed with an 18-inch minimum length limit and a creel limit of no more than five black bass per day in any combination. 

Tims Ford has got an abundance of beautiful size smallmouth, and these fish are truly one of the gamiest around.  A special species, an aristocrat in the angling world and we Tennesseans have some of the top spots in the world, like Tims Ford, to fish for them, and that’s whether you want to catch a lot of 4-pounders or one in that famed 10-pound range.

The fish are smart; they didn’t reach such a caliber by being foolish. I promise you, after the fight, you’ll wonder which one of you won the bout.

They’re a special fish in Tennessee, and we are mighty blessed to have such great places to fish for them in our home state.

Come visit us and see what you think.

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