Tennessee Bass Guides - Tims Ford Lake - Normandy Lake - Woods  Reservoir




Tims Ford Archived Reports





Tennessee Bass Guides LLC


John 3:16





Welcome to Tennessee Bass Guides LLC.  My name is Rick McFerrin , I have  been a full time guide for 12 years.  In the early years I focused on 2 lakes. Old Hickory and Tim’s Ford but in recent years Tim’s only. I have enjoyed many memorable trips with fishermen from literally all over the world. I have made some long lasting friendships and 100’s of wonderful memories. Guiding has given me the opportunity to work with “Blue Chip” companies in our sport and I value them and will promote them as long as I am fishing. But in all things there is a time to take a different avenue and that is what I’m doing.  This will give me the opportunity to fish other lakes that I have wanted to fish and for species other than bass with family, long time clients and friends that mean a lot to me. I will still be giving you the same product and fishing trip information that I always have. Dated trip pictures and 100% honest information is and will always be the standard on my web site. In that respect nothing has changed.  For those of you that fished with me through the years “THANK YOU” If we can't hook up, I will be happy to direct you to other guides that I have confidence in should you desire a recommendation. We have been blessed in Tennessee with a wonderful and diverse fishery, and we as sportsmen have the responsibility to be good stewards of these recourses. My goal has always been to leave the water I fish in as good or better conditions for those that will come after me, I hope you will feel the same way....Rick

You can contact me for information at rickm@dtccom.net or at my home 615-765-7303

  Tim's Ford Lake is not only full of "BIG" Smallmouth, and Largemouth,  Striped Bass, Hybrids. I specialize in using light line and tackle such as Sufix 6lb & 8lb Pro Mix Mono and a variety of Rapala baits and  techniques based on the season and fishing conditions.









Folks, you need to visit the Old Outboard Barn . TK repairs old outboard motors. Old Outboards and boats is his hobby. He also buys and sells old motors and parts and almost anything else affiliated with Antique and Vintage boats and motors.
Contact: TK Walker-Lebanon, Tennessee--615-347-8277  www.oldoutboardbarn.com


Check Out The New Article

What's The Difference Between

#5 Shad Rap-#5 Glass Rap & #5 Shad Rap RS

Click on Tip's On Left Side Of Home Page




Tim's Ford 4-14-2014

I fished multiple areas this morning that I haven't been on this spring and found fish on all but 2. It rained for the first 3 hours then the wind got up to 25pmh for the rest of the time I was there. The Largemouth you see was all caught on the same Tennessee Rig with 3 inch Storm Wildeye Curly Tail Minnow that I was throwing last week. These baits come pre rigged with a VMC Needle point hook and a 1/8 ounce head. The great things about the Wildeye Paddle Tail and Curly Tail is the bodies are tough but yet soft. They also have a Holographic Foil Flash that is fantastic in the water. www.stormlures.com 10lb Test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com I was also using a 7' med/hvy Allpro APX Bait caster www.allprorods.com  Thanks for visiting my site. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com




Tim's Ford 4-10-2014


This report is for Thursday April 10th. Yesterday I fished Tim's by myself in a totally different part of the lake that I have been concentrating on recently. If you look at the water in the left and center pictures on the top row it was very calm-which lasted for no more than 20 minutes or so then the 20 mph winds kicked in for the rest of the day. At the 2nd area I pulled into I caught the 2 Smallmouth you see (I caught 5 other smaller Smallies) and lost a big fish that I never saw all on Tuffy's. I really believe that I was on a very tight concentrated area of Smallmouth  but the way the point was positioned after the wind kicked in I couldn't stay on it. I threw other baits there with no takers. The Largemouth you see was all caught on a Tennessee Rig with 3 inch Storm Wildeye Curly Tail Minnows. These baits come pre rigged with a VMC Needle point hook and a 1/8 ounce head. The great things about the Wildeye Paddle Tail and Curly Tail is the bodies are touch but yet soft. They also have a Holographic Foil Flash that is fantastic in the water. www.stormlures.com Sufix 6lb Test Mono on the Tuffy's and 10lb Test on the Rig www.sufix.com. Rick McFerin www.tennesseebassguides.com




Tim's Ford 4-9-2014

I have been off the water lately  because I have been in Indiana helping my oldest son Rick Jr. get his household move backed to Tennessee. Sure will be good to get them all settled back in. I finally got back out this morning for 5 hours on Tim's with Rick and Mary Ann Ship. These are 2 great folks to spend time with in the boat. This was the 5th  time that Rick and I fished together and the first with Mary Ann. By her smile you can see she was enjoying herself, however she would have had even a bigger smile if she had put the 6 plus Largemouth in the boat that got off at the last minute. Mary Ann will be thinking about the one that got away for a while I'm sure.  We didn't get a lot of bites but the ones we got were good fish. We used Tuffy's on a VMC Fast Grip Octopus #6 hook www.vmchooks.com These hooks are really sharp with a 3 Microbarb Point and a 15% faster penetration power than most other hook of this type. We also used 6lb Test Sufix Pro Mix Mono www.sufix.com  on a 7'6" Medium Light AllPro Atlantis Series Rods that is perfect (in my humble opinion) for throwing minnows. www.allprorods.com  Hopefully I will have more updates yet this week. Thank you for visiting my site. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Tim's Ford 3-24-2014


It was 28 degrees air temp when I put in this morning at Tim's and the water temp was 45 degrees. For the first hour or so I would have to get ice out of my guides....where's spring? ! I had 4 rods rigged but only used one all day. The same one that has been producing over the past several weeks...The Rapala #5 Glass Rap Purple SunFire www.rapala.com scored again today on 6lb test Sufix mono. www.sufix.com  AllPro 7' APX rods www.allprorods.com  I could have taken several more pictures but this will give you an idea of my day.  Everything came out of no more than 5 feet of water at the deepest. We will see how the weather go's the next couple days...Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com









Tim's Ford 3-21-2014


Ken Jenkins and I put at 7:00am this morning with an air temp of 32 degrees and a water temp of 45. By the time we left at 2:15pm the water temp was 47 and the air temp 63 degrees. We caught and released well over 20 mix of Smallmouth, Largemouth and Spots. All But 2 was caught on the same Rapala Purple Sunrise #5 Glass Shad Rap

www.rapala.com that has been so productive for me over the past several weeks We took time to leave the bait in some of the fish so that you could see how the bait changes colors in the sunlight because of it's iridescent qualities.  I'm a broken record I know but you wouldn't be sorry if you pick a couple of these up and try them I assure you. Ken and I both use All Pro Rods www.allprorods.com and Sufix Mono in either the 6lb or 8lb test. www.sufix.com  This has been a good week on Tim's, we will see what the 20's and 40's do to us next week-oh yes they said even snow.............Oh well it is what it is. If I can answer any question for you feel free to e-mail at rickm@dtdcom.net   Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com






Tim's Ford 3-18-2014


Another good March day on Tim's Ford Today.  I lost count but I had every bit as many today as I did on 3-14-2014 (pictures posted below on site) the first several were smaller than last week but I kept moving around and finally found some good fish. . I caught all but 2 today on the same  Rapala Purple Sunrise #5 Glass Shad Rap www.rapala.com  that I have been throwing lately.  While you have the opportunity go to your nearest tackle shop and pick up a couple the fish on Tim's and Normandy have been killing it. While your there put a  AllPro APX 7' Med Spinning rod www.allprorods.com  in your hands. They are unbelievably light, sensitive and powerful.  Speaking of strong! If you haven't tried  Sufix www.sufix.com 6lb or 8lb test mono your missing the boat, fantastic line. Hopefully more later this week.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


Tim's Ford 3-14-2014

This is the first time I have been on Tim's for a long time and I finished the day with a mix of 30 Largemouth, Smallmouth and Spots. The first 5 fish I caught today came on the Rapala DT6 Demon www.rapala.com I had a lull in the action so I picked up the Rapala Purple Sunrise #5 Glass Shad Rap and it was "ON."(picture top center).....25 of the 30 came on this bait. The Glass Rap is a rattlin/Suspending bait that has a harder wobble than the original Shad rap. The Glass Rap has a see through body that when you hold it up in the sun it looks almost translucent. I caught several fish on Normandy recently on this bait as well, this is going to be one that you will want to pick up and add to your crankbait collection.  The wind blew at least 20mph which is always a plus on Tim's and all my fish came out of 45 degree water. The other 2 pictures on the top row is of Ken Jenkins with a Nick A Jack Spot and a largemouth. Ken and I was over there a couple days ago and struggled below and above the dam. As always I used a AllPro APX 7' med spinning rod www.allprorods.com  and 6lb & 8lb Sufix Mono www.sufix.com  Thank You for visiting my site. Rick www.tennesseebassguides.com

Normandy 2-25-2014

Another decent day on Normandy putting 16 Largemouth and Spot mix in the boat on the same 2 baits that has been very productive for me recently. Rapala DT6 Demon and a #5 Shad Rap RS www.rapala.com  The image to the left is the Demon color but in a DT Fat. The image to the right in the Shad Rap RS Shad. The fish above was my best 6 out of the 16.  The rest was smaller Spots about like the one in the bottom right picture all in the 12-13 inch range. We battled a high pressure system today which slowed things down compared to yesterday. Cold weather and snow back in our forecast for the next couple days then bouncing back up Monday. I think I will sit the rest of the week out.  Folks I know I sound like a broken record but if your not using Sufix Mono  www.sufix.com you are missing the boat.  The 6 & 8 pound test that I have been using is super strong, small diameter and comes off a spinning reel silky smooth. I think this is my 12 year with All Pro Rods, as a matter of fact they were my first sponsor and I can tell you that even if I wasn't sponsored by them All Pro APX would still be my rods of choice. Sensitive, strong and ultra reliable. www.allprorods.com . Thank you for visiting my site. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com

Normandy 2-24-2014

I got to Normandy this morning around 9:00am and a good friend of mine already had 15 in the boat. I guess I was trying to hard to catch up and I lost 5 of the first 6 that I stuck this morning. I finally settled down and had a great day throwing a Rapala DT6 Demon www.rapala.com  all but a couple came on that bait. For the day I had over 25 total. I had a memory card problem early that is why you see one picture dated the 23rd....but that fish was today as well. Rapala DT6, Sufix 6lb mono www.sufix.com and AllPro APX Spinning www.allprorods.com Murfreesboro Outdoors Carries each of these and I will be happy to help you find what you need at the Cabin Fever Fix on March 8th. See you there! Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com

Normandy 2-21-2014

This was a very interesting morning on Normandy. In the first 2 hours I only had one fish and then I pulled in on one of those every now and then banks that was loaded with fish. In the next 2 hour I caught 23 off of  one short bank. Yes one bank. Something similar happened to me one time years ago when Bill Campbell and I was down here together. It's not unusual on Normandy when things are right to catch several off of a bank but 23 in a short stretch was extraordinary. When I fished down the bank to the end (which didn't take long) I would go back to where I started and do it again and again. Many of the 23 were Spots (that I didn't take pictures of)  and there was some decent Largemouth mixed in as well. All but one was caught on the #5 Rapala Shad Rap RS Shad Color that I have caught several on this past week. I would have stayed longer but had to be home by 1:00pm. 53 degree water and the fish were right up on the bank. So paralleling was a must,  if I got more than  3 feet off the bank I didn't get hit. Rapala Shad Rap RS www.rapala.om Sufix 6lb Mono www.sufix.com and a 7' Med All Pro APX Spinning rod www.allprorods.com A Great combo. More next week Lord willing. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


The 6th Annual Cabin Fever Fix is set for March 8th at Murfreesboro Outdoors (2204 NW Broad, Murfreesboro) from 9 until 2 p.m. Sale prices are good  until the stores closes at 9 p.m. Store Owner Randy Bolin will offer a 20 percent storewide discount off everything (other than guns and ammo) on that day. This includes all Rapala, Storm, Luhr Jensen, Trigger X, Sufix, Terminator , VMC and All Pro products.  Rapala will be running a BUY ANY 3 RAPALA BAITS AND GET A SPOOL OF SUFIX MONO FREE.  This is the same promotion that we ran the last couple times and everyone really likes it. I will be sharing a booth with BJ the owner of Real Bait Company and will be happy to help you with any of our products. If your looking to buy a Tennessee/Alabama Rig you really need to get a couple of these especially since they are 20% off retail for the day. These are extremely well made 5 wire-4 or 8/#3 Willow Leaf Bladed baits that you can rig with the Real Bait 1/8th ounce Swim bait heads that have a very strong Mustad 6/0 hook. These heads come in 6 colors. White, Black, Green Pumpkin, Chartreuse, Silver and White Pearl.  BJ's Rigs are fantastic all you have to do is look at the 10lb 12ounce Largemouth at the top of the page to see why I say that. In addition, Randy will feed you barbecue and jambalaya and soft drinks or water.   This is a great time to get your favorite baits, rods, reels, turkey calls, and clothing at steep discounts and get to talk with guys that you may not have seen in a year..  Please tell your friends and come spend time at a special store that we all enjoy and miss so much in other communities.  Rick


Normandy 2-17/18-2014

Today was my first time out since all the bad weather set in and over all I was pleased. I caught 12 Largemouth with the 4 above being my biggest. All of them came on a #5 Rapala Shad Rap RS  Shad Color.  www.rapala.com Water temp at Barton Springs at day light was 38.5 (41 when I left) so I knew right away I was going to have to find some warmer water, and I did in 3 location. As always I threw these on a7' AllPro APX Med spinning rod www.allprorods.com and 6lb test Sufix Mono.  www.sufix.com  This is SHAD RAP TIME on many of our area lakes, If your not throwing one you maybe missing out on additional fish in the boat. More tomorrow unless something changes. (2-18-14) Today it was much tougher than yesterday, only 3 in the boat 1 nice Largemouth and 2 small spots. Same lures etc. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com

Just Sitt'n And Think'n


It is January 17, 2014 and here in middle Tennessee it's hovering around 30 degrees and is expected to fall into the teen's as the day progresses. We have some snow flurries happening here and there and more on the way in the next couple days. Sunday and Monday might reach the mid 40's and then the temperature takes a nose dive again.  Lake water temps range from the low 50's (after the last southern rain) to the low 40's and even lower. Winter fishing here in middle Tennessee so far has been....uh....what's the right word?  Let's just use challenging.  It's not only been challenging for yours truly, but for the vast majority of the good winter fishermen that I know as well. This is where "misery loves company " fit's just right.  Fit's just like a tick on a coon dog.  But once the feeling sorry for yourself and lack of fin's in the boat ends you have to regroup, rethink, reenergize, and refocus! That would make a good 4 point sermon at church this Sunday! That's what I'm doing this morning "Just Sitt'n and Think'n. Not about my Sunday sermon,  but rather those elusive green, brown or silver swimming creatures.  I've chased after them every since my dad carried me on his shoulders through weeds taller than I was to get us down to the river bank, and nothing has changed in over 60 years. Well in full disclosure, I'm not hardly as agile in body as I once was, but my fishing spirit is as agile as it ever was. Hey! That might make a good country song.  Enough of the foolishness. 


I think that many of us have understandably put our winter lake game plans together based on prior personal historical results.  In years past that has worked. But this year that doesn't (at least to this point) seem to be working consistently. I'm not saying that there aren't fish being caught and even occasionally some good bags. But from everyone that I have talked to , which are many, that has been more of a exception rather than the NORMAL WINTER rule. If our prior historical approach isn't working but we just keep doing it because it worked in years past, I don't think we are going to get any real substantial change in results.  Do You? That's why I'm Regrouping-Rethinking-Reenergizing and Refocusing  BEFORE MY NEXT TRIP!  I recently talked to a Gooood Smallmouth fisherman that say he is only going to fish by the moon phases and barometer until things straighten out.  I hope that works for him, but not everyone can do that. You fish when you have the opportunity. There is no doubt that the moon, the barometer and weather plays a role in where fish are located and and the lures that we use, but I don't think that's the begin all and end all.  Bait, water color, water temps, lure colors, lure action and many others play a part in this also.  It's at about this point that someone says SO RICK  what's your plan. And here it is I'm still Sitt'n And Think'n I will let you know what I come up with and if it worked after my next trip. I'm one humbled fisherman in Woodbury Tennessee. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com




Real Bait Company

Update Jan 2014

I want to give you some information concerning a new lure that B.J. owner of Real Bait Company started making last year and is a super winter bait that you can use RIGHT NOW!!!.  I know what these look like, no they aren't....BUT.....you won't know the difference except when you go to the cash register to check out because you can buy several of these for what you would pay for 1 of the other brand.  For those of you that are use to catching multiple species on these little bait I won't have to sell you on these. But for those that haven't used them your missing out.....on.....Smallmouth, Largemouth, Spots, Crappie, Hybrids I could go on and on but I think you understand where I'm going. Come by Murfreesboro Out Doors Saturday 3-8-2014 for Randy's annual "Cabin Fever Fix" and check them out (SLOW FALL) and we will talk about how to fish them. Also check out all the other variety  of baits that Real Bait Company produces.  100% U.S.A. made with extreme care, that's just the way B.J. operates.  You can get these at Murfreesboro Outdoors....Poindexters...Rock Creek Mkt...and Lil Joes in McMinnville-HWY 41 Market In Manchester.....Rick McFerrin






Normandy 12-31-13


I met good friend Ronnie Wooten at the ramp this morning on Normandy at 6:45am with an air temp of 24 degrees and water temp of 45.6 (which didn't change while we were there). On our first stop and my second cast with a Red Craw Rapala DT6 www.rapala.com I caught a short Largemouth then Ronnie caught 2 Spots and lost a good fish. We proceeded to our next stop to see if we could get the black nose to cooperate and we caught 4 out of 1 tree. Thinking back on our first stop, Ronnie had 3 hits and I had one. I noticed that Ronnie was throwing a bait that the finish was more of a dull red. So I changed up to the Demon DT6 www.rapala.com and caught 2 in four or five casts. After that we caught 2 more Spots and 1 Largemouth and that was about all she wrote. We stopped at 11:00am with blue bird sky's and a high pressure system sitting right on top of us. I used a AllPro Atlantis Series 7'6" m/L www.allprorods.com rigged with 6lb Test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com for my Crappie and a 7' med APX for my crankbaits www.allprorods.com  Sometimes even the crankbait  finish (bright or dull) can make a difference just like it did this morning.  If you haven't thrown a Rapala Red Craw or a Rapala Red Demon in the winter you are passing up 2 very productive baits. Tanks Ronnie for a good morning and it was nice to be in the back of the boat for a change. Not sure if I will be out any more this week if not I will give you another up date next week. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Normandy 12-19-2013


6 hours on Normandy resulted in 3 Spots, 2 Largemouth, 1 Smallmouth and a net full of big Slab Crappie. All of my bas came on a Green Craw Rapala DT6 www.rapala.com  6lb Test Sufix www.sufix.com and a All Pro 7' APX Med Spinning www.allprorods.com . All the Crappie was on Tuyy's rigged on a VMC Bait Keeper Hook www.vmchooks.com   fished under a slip float, 6lb Sufix www.sufix.com and a 7 1/2 ft All Pro Atlantis Series APX Rod www.allprorods.com.  The gentleman  top center is good friend Ronnie Wooten holding a 4lb plus Largemouth that he caught today as well. Not only is Ronnie a good fishermen but he repairs reels as well. He lives near the Fire Lake ramp so if you need reels cleaned or repaired he is the man to see. Ronnie telephone number is  931-581-6767. Thank you for visiting my site. More next week Lord willing.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com




2 Day Report

Normandy/Tim's Ford

I fished Normandy yesterday and caught 4 and lost 1 on a  Green Craw Rapala DT6 www.rapala.com (1 Largemouth 4 Spots)   Water temps ranged from low 50's to 41 degrees. The further up the river the lower the temp. Water level is good and you won't have any problem with ramps. I threw the DT on Sufix 6lb mono www.sufix.com and on a All Pro 7' APX Med spinning www.allprorods.com  Today on Tim's' I had 4 short Smallmouth 3 Keeper Large Mouth and 4 big Black Nose Crappie all but 1 on Tuffy's rigged on a VMC Bait Keeper Hook www.vmchooks.com  and a AllPro APX  7' 6" Atlantis Series Rod www.allprorods.com .  I want to share something with you that might help you the next time your at Tim's fishing Tuffy's. I always have 3 All Pro rods rigged all with 6lb test Sufix mono. 1 rod is rigged with a VMC hook only, 1 with a VMC hook and a small split shot and 1 rigged with a slip float. Today I started out with the first 2 rods and in the first 2 hours only had 1 bite, I changed to the slip float set at approx 10 feet deep and the rest is history. I have had this happen multiple times on Tim's for various reasons.  Just a little tip that might help you the next time out.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com



Tim's Ford 12-2-2013

I fished Tim's today with Mr. & Mrs. Parker Crist from California.  This is the 3rd or 4th time that I have fished with Parker the first time that we struggled to stay on fish.  For the day we caught and released 2 Hybrids-1 RockFish-7 Largemouth and 1 Smallmouth. Everything we caught was on the 2 baits above. A Rapala Red Craw DT6 www.rapala.com and a Icicle  Trigger X Minnow www.triggerx.com rigged with a 4/0 VMC Wide Gap Hook www.vmchooks.com We used 6lb & 10lb Test Suffix Mono www.sufix.com and either a 7' Med AllPro APX Spinning or a 7' Med/Hvy AllPro Apx Spinning www.allprorods.com I had good time with these "Newly Wed's"  and wish them the absolute best in the years to come.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Tim's/Nick A Jack Combo


The pictures above are from Tim's last week and Nick A Jack today 11-5-2013.  The Tim's fish were caught on 1 or 2 things either live bait or the Hot Tiger Rapala Shad Rap RS. www.rapala.com  6lb test Sufix mono www.sufix.com and a 7' AllPro APX Med spinning rod www.allprorods.com I have struggled on Tim's over the past several weeks. They are pulling the water heavily (which is a good thing) and I anticipate everything will level out shortly. I decided for a scenery change today so I headed to Nick A Jack and found the Largemouth eager to attack a Trigger X Minnow fished over shallow grass. (2' to 3') Every  fish today (17 total largemouth) was caught on the Icicle  Trigger X Minnow www.triggerx.com and a 4/0 VMC Wide Gap Hook www.vmchooks.com  10lb test Sufix Mono and a 7' AllPro APX M/H Rod www.allprorods.com  Water temps on Tim's the first of this week was 64-65 and Nick A Jack was 63 today.  Unless something happens I will be back on Tim's the end of this week and will update you then. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com



Tim's Ford 10-24-2013

I put in at the State Park Ramp at daylight this morning air temp was 43 and the water temps was 65 degrees with a north west wind. They have also dropped the lake about 1 foot since Tuesday. I brought some tuffy's with me today to see if I could coax a Smallmouth into biting.  At my  first stop I caught 1 immediately then lost 4 in a row (^&%$*&) I couldn't believe it. I was throwing the tuffy's on a Real Bait 1/8 ounce Black/Blue finesse jig. (See article blow dated 9-3-2013)   I eventually finished the day catching 8 with the 3 above being my best. Every fish I caught was barely stuck. They will become more aggressive as the water continues to cool down. I was using 8lb Sufix Mono www.sufix.com  Sufix is very strong for the diameter and the G2 winding helps the line come off the spool as smooth as silk. If you haven't tried Sufix you really need to, it is virtually problem free.  I only needed 1 AllPro Rod www.allprorods.com today and that was a 7' Med/Hvy APX. I know I have said this a thousand times but these rods are very very sensitive and when the bite was as light as it was today it certainly helps.  Thanks for visiting my site. Please stay safe we are just a few degrees away from hypothermia

temps if a person falls in. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


Tim's Ford 10-22-2013

I fished Tim's yesterday by myself and had a decent numbers day.  I caught and released 11 Smallmouth, Largemouth and Spots basically all caught on 2 baits.  When I put in at the State Park the air temp was 49 degrees/overcast and the water temp was 65 degrees but warmed up to 68 later in the day. Water color from the State park to Winchester Springs is good. If everything works historically we are within 5 to 8 degrees from where things should really pick up . Hopefully the Corp will start dropping the water level which is still at or close to summer pool. The water needs to come way down for our winter patterns.  I had a good  Icicle Trigger X Minnow bite early www.triggerx.com  rigged with a 4/0 VMC wide gap hook www.vmchooks.com and if I had connected with all of the Smallmouth that lunged at the minnow but didn't attack I would have caught 20 early. This isn't uncommon for this time of the transition period on Tim's. For an example a good friend of mine had a real good day last week on a Original 7" Rapala Floating Minnow www.rapala.com  but today they wouldn't even look at it. If you fish Tim's at all you know that September and October can be frustrating (at least for me) . When the Trigger X Minnow bite went away I used a variety of baits and kept down sizing until I finally found one that they would be interested in and that was a 1 1/2 inch Rapala Shad Rap RS in a Hot Tiger finish. www.rapala.com   These are rattling/suspending crank baits that has a real tight wobble and at least yesterday when they hit it they meant business.  If you have the patience and time you can normally figure something out, you just have to keep a positive mental attitude. What I like about these little baits is you can throw them a mile on light line and they will run down to 10 feet or more. I used Sufix 8lb and 6lb test mono for these presentations www.sufix.com and 2 different All Pro APX Rods. I threw the Trigger X Minnow on a 7 foot All Pro APX m/h and the Shad Rap RS on a ALL Pro APX 7 foot medium. www.allprorods.com If you are a live bait enthusiast I "THINK" that might work right now even though that bite will get better and better  as we progress into Nov-March time period.  Unless something keeps me from going I will be back on Tim's or on Nick A Jack Thursday and will update you then. Thanks for visiting my site and for supporting my sponsors.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Recent Trips

The pictures above represent a few fish from different trips I have taken over the past few week.  The majority of the fish were caught on the NEW Storm Arashi Silent 3 in either the Mossy Chartreuse Craw or the Chartreuse Shad. www.stormlures.com  and a Storm SMS05 Smash Shad in the Cheap Sunglass color. I also caught fish on a 3/8ounce Real Bait Spinner Bait and a Rapala Skitter Walk www.rapala.com.  I used a variety of All Pro APX Rods depending on what I was throwing www.allprorods.com  and as always Sufix Mono is my line of choice www.sufix.com . I hope to get things settled down here in the next couple weeks as the water temps fall and we move further into our fall/early winter patterns. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com








I guess I should start the boat picture. I have had several e-mails and calls wanting to know if I was alright from folks that are on my site. I appreciate everyone of them and yes I'm fine. I was off the water because several weeks ago a man T-BONED me  in Manchester on my way back from Normandy. It totaled the trailer and was a mess to say the least. I had the boat and trailer taken to MFI Metal Fabrication Inc. In Winchester and Van Roach the president of the company and his team did an outstanding job building me a new trailer.  If you have any kind of repair or replacement trailer needs call them at 931-962-0025 ask for Van and he will take care of you.  This morning I met a good friend of mine at the state park ramp on Tim's at daylight and we followed one another from spot to spot. The fish that Ron is holding is a combination for both boats. We didn't have any big fish and I think there was 14 total. I caught all my fish on either a 5 inch Trigger X Perl Minnow www.triggerx.com rigged on a VMC 4/0 wide gap hook www.vmchooks.com or a Rapala Skitter Walk www.rapala.com  8lb Sufix mono www.sufix.com and we both use AllPro APX Casting and Spinning rods. www.allprorods.com Good to be back on the water and I hope to send you some additional reports this week.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


Tim's Ford 8-6-2013


Mr. Earl Hull and I put in at the Rock Creek ramp at 6:00am this morning and fished until 1:00pm. We saw water temps from 78 to 82 and stained water all the way from Rock Creek to Dry Creek. We caught and released over 20 Largemouth all about the same size as the ones that you see above. All of these fish were in the 3 to 5 foot depth range. We caught fish on a variety of baits including a Blue Gill Rapala DT6 www.rapala.com a Trigger X Blue Gill Probe Worm www.triggerx.com rigged on a VMC 3/16oz Darter Head Jig www.vmchooks.com  and 2 different colors of the 1/4 ounce Real Bait Finesse Jig that you see posted below.  I was using 2 different All Pro APX Spinning Rods both 7' with one being med and the other med/hvy. www.allprorods.com  Suffix 8lb and 10lb mono as always my line of choice. No big fish but a lot of action and a lot of fun.  Check out all the area tackle store for the products listed above, they work for me over and over and if you try them they will for you as well. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com



real bait company

September 3-2013




This is a update on the new line of finesse jigs being manufactured by BJ Adcock owner of Real Bait Company.   They come in 2 sizes 1/8 ounce and 1/4 ounce and 2 head colors Black or Green Pumpkin. BJ also covered the skirt color range extremely well using using 5 colors. Black...Black/Blue...Green Pumpkin w/Green & Purple Flake...Green Pumpkin w/Amber & Brown and Homer which is a Chartreuse, Orange, Green Pumpkin & Brown.  All of the skirts are Round Silicone (not flat like most others) which creates more of a pulsating effect in the water. The 1/8ounce Finesse Jig has a 32 strand skirt and the 1/4ounce a 42 strand skirt. Both sizes have 3D Eyes and here is a real plus both come with a 3/0 Wide Gap Mustad Hook. 


We all know that there are multiple ways that you can fish a jig, from casting to pitching to dragging to hopping and more. But my favorite is "Swimming it" year around. It's no secret that I'm a "light line" 6lb to 10lb Sufix mono guy. I like light line and light tackle and these jigs fit the bill perfectly.  There are times when the fish are very shallow and spooky  that the 1/8ounce jig with a smaller/lighter trailer makes a world of difference. There are times in water a little deeper that you want a jig that has a slower fall rate. That's another application where the 1/8ounce shines. Then there is times when you still  want a "Finesse Jig" that has a little more of a bulky profile.  This is where the 1/4 ounce with the 42 strand skirts and a bigger bodied trailer comes in.  These are my  jigs of choice and my company of choice, no questions asked.


I know some of you are thinking a jig is a jig is a jig. And in some respects that's true. But what about a high quality jig that is "CHEAPER" than most all others?  BJ packages these in 3 packs and they retail for approx $5.00 to $6.00 depending on the location. Not only do you get quality but a break at the cash register as well. Real Bait Company is 100% American Locally owned and operated.  Check these out at the following stores in your area. Murfreesboro Out Doors, Poindexters, Flippers, Hook 1, Ace Hardware in Smithville, Rock Creek Market at the Rock Creek ramp on Tim's, Hwy 41 Market (formally Woods and Waters) on your way to Normandy  and Prowler in Leitchfield Ky.  Rick McFerrin Tennessee Bass Guides.




Normandy 7-25-2013

I haven't been on Normandy since early April. I only had 4 hours to fish this morning so instead of running down to Nick A Jack iI put in at the Barton Springs ramp at day light.  I decided to concentrate on areas that historically have given up fish and all but 2 spots paid off. In the 4 hrs I caught and released  9 including the four that you see above.  Everything was caught on a Old School Rapala DT6 www.rapala.com 8lb test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com and a AllPro 7' med APX Spinning Rod www.allprorods.com Water level is a little high and  temps ranged from 78 to 83 and there is good color as far up as the 2nd bridge. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Nick A Jack 7-23-2013


When I got to the river this morning I knew things was going to be tougher than the last trip because there was very little generation. Things started out slowly but when I finally figured out where they were holding it was fast and furious for a couple hours. All the fish you see above was caught on the "NEW" Chartreuse Storm Arashi Silent Square Bill www.stormlures.com that you see pictured above and the OLD RELIABLE  Rapala Skitter Walk www.rapala.com  When they got off the crank bait they would unload on the top water.  There are some very subtle feature in the river channel bends when the water is down like this that makes a big difference. Boat control and positioning is easier with slower current, but I would take all the current I can get (within reason) down here any day.  I think I caught over 20 easy and as I said all on these 2 baits.  I like throwing these square bills on a All Pro 7'6" Blaster Cranking Rod www.allprorods.com and Sufix 832 Braid www.sufix.com . I used a All Pro 7' m/h APX for the Skitter Walk and 10lb Test Sufix Mono. Big fish by the scale 6lb 2oz . Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com






Nick A Jack (Above & Below) 7-19-2013


I headed out to Nick A Jack to fish the lake side this morning. I put in right at day light and caught several on the new Storm Silent Arashi Square Bill #5 in the Shad color www.stormlures.com and the same Real Bait Pumpkin 1/4ounce finesse jig that we used on Tim's yesterday. I rigged these jigs with a Trigger X Craw Trailer  www.triggerx.com  and fished them around the rip rap areas at the dam and swimming them just above the grass in 6 to 7 feet of water. I loaded back up at 8:30 and put in on the river side at 8:45am and fished until 11:30am and had a ball throwing the same 2 baits on the wing walls. I'm very impressed with this new Storm Arashi Square bill. It tracks extremely well, and the broad lip deflects the bait away from obstacles. The hooks are positioned in a way that they just don't seem to hand up as easily as some other baits. I throw my square bills on a 7' 6" All Pro APX Blaster Rod www.allprorods.com and Sufix 832 Braided line. This combination is deadly, you can feel "EVERYTHING" that even comes close to the bait! I will be writing a article on these in the next couple weeks when I have had more time to throw them. BUT if you like to throw square bills these will be right down your alley.  I'm also impressed with this finesse jig that Real Bait Company makes.  BJ's shop is just up the road from our church so I have the opportunity to visit there on a regular basis. He is a very meticulous about everything that he makes and compared to other companies offers you a premium product at a great price.  More for your $$$$$ which you will need to put gas in your boat! A great day and I honestly believe that I could have stayed on fish below the dam most of the day...but to hot for me! More next week Lord willing.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


Tim's Ford 7-18-2013

I met Mr. Earl Hull at the Rock Creek Ramp at 5:45am yesterday and we had a fun 5 hours. We caught and released 15 Largemouth all about the size of the fish that you see above. Water is still a little high and there is great color in the river. Water temp was 85 degrees, and was as slick as glass. We also battled mile high blue bird sky's. But here's the kicker we never caught a fish in MORE THAN 3 feet of water swimming a Real Bait Pumpkin 1/4oz finesse jig with a Trigger X Craw Trailer www.triggerx.com  The key was banks close to the channel that had as much wood as possible. You just had to stay persistant and throw at everything you could see. We both used Sufix 8lb mono www.sufix.com and I was throwing these on a 7' m/h All Pro APX spinning rod www.allprorods.com  If you haven't tried these jigs from Real Bait Company you need to pick some up. BJ uses an oversized 3/0 hook and round silicone skirts that have a pulsating effect in the water, these are very well made just like everything BJ makes and you get a great bang for your buck at the cash register. Check you local tackle store in Kentucky, Alabama, and Tennessee. If you live near Murfreesboro Randy carries a full selection of Real Bait items at Murfreesboro OutDoors along with all the Rapala, Storm,Sufix and Trigger X  www.rapala.com  baits that I use.  Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com


Tim's Ford 7-16-2013


3 weeks ago I was throwing a trash bag into the back of my truck to go to the land fill and "WHAM" there went my back! Down to my knees I went and I didn't know if I was going to get back in the house. But thankfully no permanent damage just some 65 year old mussels in my lower back that stretched the wrong way. Back to 80%!  Last night Daniel my youngest and I went down to Tim's to fish off a good friends dock and try out my MarCum V385 Underwater Camera and the Rapala Jigging Shad Rap www.rapala.com pictured above.   This info will help anyone that loves to vertical jig (day or night) in just about any open water application. If you frequent my site you know that I'm very partial to the bridge columns and docks on Tim's. Through the years I have caught multiple species from Smallmouth, Largemouth, Walleye, Hybrids, Rockfish, Crappie and White Bass on docks and columns  (this is important) 12 months out of the year. A lot of people think they only produce in warm water situations but that's not correct. Also you can use a variety of lures (top to bottom) but one that produces when things are a little tough and the fish are suspended under you is the Rapala Jigging Shad Rap and Rapala Jigging Rap. There is a definite difference in the action of these 2 baits. The Jigging Shad Rap has a tighter/ quicker circle down action when vertical jigged. And with a sharp rod snap it creates a "Vibrating" motion that many times triggers the strike. Their bodies are shad shaped and come in 2 sizes 3/16ths and 5/16ths 12 colors and some have a "Glow in the dark" finish which we were using last night. The Jigging Rap come in sizes from 1/8th to 3/4 ounces and 17 colors had has a Minnow Profile Body.  We set the MarCum Camera V385 at various depths (up to 70 feet) with and without the light function and you could see the fish schooling and chasing shad 15 to 20 feet deep across the screen. These units work extremely well when the water is clear, and with all the rain that we have had Tim's water is stained at best. They also produce sharper pictures  when it is sunny and the light is penetrating the water.  These are additional tools that can be used in many different ways to help you see and understand what is going on under your boat. Although we didn't catch any "Lunker" size fish we did manage to catch 40 or more White Bass and Small Rock Fish in the 4 hours that we were there. All 3 of us was using either 6 or 8lb test Sufix mono www.sufix.com  and AllPro APX Spinning Rods www.allprorods.com . If you have any questions feel free to contact me at rickm@dtccom.net Thanks for visiting my site and Lord willing I will have more updates this week. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





2 Separate Reports


Trying to get caught up from having modem problems here in my home.  I met Rick Ship last week for a short 4 hour trip on Tim's. We caught and released several smaller Smallmouth and Largemouth with the 3 fish pictured being our best. These were caught on a swimming a Trigger X Finesse Worm www.triggerx.com on a 3/16th VMC Shaky Head Jig www.vmchooks.com and 8lb test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com  I was using a 7ft All Pro APX medium spinning rod www.allprorods.com. We left the lake around 10:00am when the temps ramped up. Today I met Ken Jenkins and we fished KY Lake. We had to work for everything we caught (12 Largemouth/no big fish) and all our fish came on either a Rapala DT10 Bleeding Olive Shiner or a DT 10 Parrot www.rapala.com Ken was using a 7ft 3in All Pro Blaster Bait Caster and I was using a 7ft All Pro m/h APX Spinning. We left the lake around 11:30am this morning as well. 2good guys to be in the boat with. More next week Lord willing. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com





Private Lake In Indiana

My youngest son Daniel and I had the opportunity to fish a premier Blue Gill Lake in Indiana for 3 1/2 days last week and we had a blast.  The top pictures are where we stayed and a view of the lake and dock area at the cottage. This is a trolling motor only lake and we fished from a 10 foot 2 man bass boat with a 27lb thrust hand control trolling motor. We caught well over 300 Blue Gill with the largest weighing in at a hefty 1lb 6ounces. The average size was between 12 ounces and a pound. We also caught at least 100 Largemouth with the largest weighing about 3 pounds with most in the 1 1/2 pound range. We used a couple different tactics for the gills including floating a 1/16th oz VMC Chartreuse Orange Hot Glow Jig www.vmchooks.com under a float and throwing one of the "NEW" Rapala Ultra Light Crank Baits in either a silver and blue or Shad colors. www.rapala.com Both tactics worked well, but these big gills would smash the crank bait. We also caught several Largemouth on this small bait as well as the "New" Scatter Raps pictured above www.rapala.com and a #5 Shallow Shad Rap. We teamed these baits up with 6 and 8lb test Sufix mono www.sufix.com a 7 foot All Pro APX Med/Light spinning rods. www.allprorods.com   I can remember many trips through the past 50 years when a smaller bait out performed larger ones and a bait that had a "Different" retrieve pattern like the Scatter Raps made the difference between scatting your head or netting fish . Go by your local tackle shop and pick some Rapala Ultra Light Cranks and the New Scatter Raps. What a great time with Daniel and there are 100's of these types of lakes scattered all across the country that provide a wonderful change of pace from our larger impoundments. Take a kid fishing you will never regret it and they will always remember. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com

Woods Reservoir 5-17-2013

I slipped off to Woods this morning to see if I could find some Crappie for the freezer.  I checked out several areas that normally hold them this time of the year but with no luck only 4 o5 White Bass.  I decided to see if I could find some Gill beds and  when I found them I had a blast for over 3 hours catching and releasing 75 plus Gill's, Shell Crackers , Crappie and White Bass all on a 1/16th oz VMC Chartreuse Orange Hot Glow Jig www.vmchooks.com rigged on a very small safety pin type spinner. There are several real benefits to using this little jig that I need to point out. The skirt is made of a Highly Reflective Tinsel that WILL NOT come off the jig head. I caught every on of these fish on the same small jig. Will they hit a soft plastic grub "SURE" but how many will you have to replace catching 75 or more? The hook is manufactured with VMC Premium Carbon Steel that has a great bite and is stout enough to put even much bigger fish in the boat.  I threw this little combo on a AllPro 5'6" APB Ultra Light Rod www.allprorods.com a 4lb Test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com  I know it's hard to determine the size of these but many of the Gills were "hand size" the 5 Crappie were all 10" to 11" and the Shell Cracker ran larger than the Gills.  This is a great time to TAKE A KID FISHING. When they bed like this they are easy to catch and the kids will have a blast (we big kids do too!) Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com



Nick A Jack 5-14-2013

Less water, less current, less fish and over all smaller. That just about sum's up my morning below the Nick A Jack dam today. I think I had 20 or so today (Spots and Small Mouth) all on a Trigger X Shiner Swim Bait www.triggerx.com  rigged on a VMC Swim Bait Head www.vmchooks.com  and a  Blue Gill 5 1/2 inch Trigger X Probe Finesse Worm www.triggerx.com rigged on a Real Bait 1/8 ounce Bullet Jig Head (see at Murfreesboro Outdoors) All pro 7' APX Rod www.allprorods.com and 8lb Test Sufix Mono www.sufix.com  The water level had to be down 6-8 feet verses last week and the lack of current sure made a lot of difference.  But!!!!! I enjoyed the day the Lord gave me and I will update you on my next trip. Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com






Nick A Jack 5-9-2013


Daniel was suppose to go with me today but he Turkey hunted instead and he flat missed it!!!!  I put in at daylight below the dam and fish 2 spots all day. I could have taken twice the number of pictures that I took but I think the fish above will give you an idea of what happen today. I caught Smallmouth, Largemouth, Spots, White Bass, Rockfish and 1 big Flat Head Catfish all on a 4 1/2 inch Trigger X Shiner Paddle Tail Minnow www.triggerx.com  rigged on a 3/8 ounce VMC Swim Bait Head www.vmchooks.com  Everything you see was caught on a  Med AllPro APX Spinning Rod www.allprorods.com and 8lb Test Suffix mono www.sufix.com . Wow what a great day! Rick McFerrin www.tennesseebassguides.com






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