Cameron Gatlin

Chattanooga, TN

Cameron Gatlin was born in Humboldlt, Tenessee, and there began his fishing career. He started kayak fishing ten years ago, and since then has fished in the Tennessee Valley Kayak Anglers Tournament Trail and the Fishing League Worldwide Bass Fishing League Choo Choo Division, winning 2018 Tennessee State Kayak Angler Champion and Angler of the Year, qualifying for the 2018 FLW Regional Championship, and qualifying for the 2018 Kayak Bass Fishing National Championship four times. However, he doesn’t fish for the tournaments, but rather for the versatility of the sport and the ability to be “the closest that you can get to the fish without going fishing.”

When asked what his favorite fishing memory was, he said the following:

“I was fishing the TN State Kayak Anglers Championship on some old familiar waters.  It was like a homecoming for me so I was really excited.  It was the second day of the tournament and I was sitting in 7th place.  I started out the morning fishing a frog and a fluke in 1-4 feet of water around some grass and lilypads.  I caught a few small fish that moved me up a couple of spots but if I was going to win I needed to make a really big push.  I headed out to an old spot that I’ve fished a lot in the past but there was a boat sitting on it so I waited.  As they were leaving, I started that direction again and another boat pulled in on it.  I was getting frustrated but there wasn’t anything that I could do about it.  I noticed that both boats weren’t fishing this spot correctly and I was getting pretty anxious to move in.  It wasn’t long before the cranked the motor up and left.  I moved in before anyone else could get it.  As I was marking the contour lines that I wanted to fish I noticed that it was loaded up with fish.  This was exactly what I was hoping for.  I made my first cast with a big worm and one hit it immediately.  It was 20” largemouth!  I scuffled around to get the picture taken and submitted online.  While I was waiting for it to upload I had made another cast…Boom! Another one.  It was even bigger.  It was a 21” bass.  My heart was pounding at this point.  I knew that it was going to be close now.  I got that one submitted and made another cast right away.  Bam! Another one hit.  It was a 19.75” bass.  It hit me at that point that I just caught 60.75” in less than 15 minutes!   I was starting to shake with excitement.  I went on to catch several more but time was running out.  I still had over a mile and a half paddle and about a 25 minute drive.  I changed things up and started throwing a deep diving crankbait.  That’s when it got interesting.  I started catching a lot more fish and my biggest one for the day which was a 22”.  I was starting to cull 20” fish at this point.  Before I knew it, it was time to go.  I got back to the truck and started to tally up my total which ended up being 104.75”for 5 bass and a combined weight of 28.5lbs!  This was the absolute best day that I have ever had while fishing a tournament and to top it off, I did it from a kayak.”

“The key to success is being able to adapt to your situation.”