Vernon Summerlin

Hi there! I’m Vernon Summerlin. Like many, I came to Nashville to break into the music industry. After years of striving, I put songwriting aside when I sold the first two fishing articles I wrote. I was being published more than the average songwriter, and I got to fish all I wanted. Talk about being in heaven—it was like being paid to eat candy! Twenty-five years later, I’ve written/co-written 11 books, had a weekly outdoor column for Middle Tennessee newspapers, put my pen to countless fishing articles, and have been a host for three radio programs and two TV shows. I’m immersed in our state’s outdoor life and will do my best to get you outside to experience Middle Tennessee’s slice of paradise. Describe your perfect Tennessee day. Nothing floats my boat better than catching fish, or at least trying. Give me a partly cloudy day with the temperature in the mid-60s by 11 a.m. and a breeze causing a light ripple on the surface. In my “Old Man Boat” with my wife, Cathy, and Jake, the golden retriever, trolling the Cumberland River for smallmouth, walleye, striper. Where’s the first place you’d take a friend visiting Tennessee? We often take our friends for a tour of the northern end of the Natchez Trace Parkway. Each season suggests the activity we’ll include—walking the old trails, wading in a creek, picking berries, photographing waterfalls or capturing deer or turkeys on camera. If you could meet one historical Tennessean, who would it be and why? (This can be someone still living.) I would love to visit with Bill Dance and fish with him. He blazed the trail for so many anglers, inspiring some anglers to become fishing pros, some to write, some to develop outdoor TV shows. He’s always gracious, with something substantial to offer.

Stories By Vernon

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Kentucky Lake FIshing Tennessee

Great Fishing and Fun Events at Tennessee’s Kentucky Lake This Fall

So many lakes, so little time! We are blessed to have some really fine fishing holes in Tennessee but sometimes you come upon a spot...Read on

Marbles Tournament Standing Stone

Get Your Roll on at Standing Stone State Park’s Marbles Tournament

It seemed like I was always losing my marbles. Despite what some might think about the state of my marbles these days, I’m talking about...Read on

Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee (BRAT 2013)

Brake for the 2013 Bicycle Ride Across Tennessee (BRAT)

Do you remember when you got your first bicycle? I still remember the shiny white bike my grandpa presented to me on my fifth birthday....Read on

Mountaineer Folk Festival Fall Creek Falls

The Mountaineer Folk Festival Hits Falls Creek Falls

When I’m at Fall Creek Falls State Park, my ears and eyes are initially drawn toward the centerpiece of this bit of paradise on the...Read on

Dry Branch Creek Natural Area

Don’t Miss These Summer Hikes at Tennessee’s State Natural Areas

Tennessee’s 82 State Natural Areas (SNAs) preserve prime examples of the Volunteer State’s ecologically significant natural landscapes and provide long term protection for rare, threatened...Read on

Caney Fork River

Flat Water Canoeing in Middle Tennessee

I’ve been meaning to write a blog sharing my love of Middle Tennessee’s flat water rivers for several months now and I figure there’s no...Read on

Largemouth Bass Williamsport WMA

Family Fishing at Tennessee’s Williamsport Wildlife Management Area

Sixteen years ago I had the phenomenally good fortune of being assigned to write about the opening of Williamsport Wildlife Management Area (WMA). It was the...Read on