Pickwick Lake News Article

Fall on Pickwick Lake

Reed's Guide Service
Posted: 9/1/2005

Reed Montgomery

As the Tennessee River System flows throughout the South, the last lake of four lakes it creates in Alabama is Pickwick Lake. It is a lake that has been around for many years now, since impoundment in 1938. Pickwick lake (like upriver Wilson Lake), is famous for its trophy, smallmouth bass. There are many smallmouths, some exceeding 5 pounds, taken here each Fall and Winter period.

One big difference in this lake and Wilson Lake is, Pickwick Lake is dropped for winter pool during Fall, often down 3-5 feet. Unlike Wilson Lake (that remains at or near full pool during the Fall / Winter season), Pickwick Lake will show bank growing aquatic weeds, wood cover and rocks, normally in 1-4 feet of water at full pool, all become obsolete. Most bass will relate to wood and rock cover, away from the lake's original shoreline, during low Winter pool.

What this means for many bass tournament anglers, those that practiced this Summer and early Fall period for a major upcoming bass tournament scheduled for this mid to late fall period, is having to depend on a good back up plan or two for falling water.

Creeks that normally have depths of 5 feet or less will all but become high and dry and only the mouths of these feeders (where it meets the main lake) will be productive. Deeper creeks, those that feature 10-15 feet of water during normal full pool levels, will still have biting bass, mostly found in water around the original creek channel, points and deep bluffs banks, when lake levels fall.

Lures for tempting both largemouth bass and smallmouth bass can be many for fishing this Fall and early Winter season on Pickwick Lake. Its all according to how you want to fish this lake. Many anglers launch (and many bass tournaments are held here) at McFarland State Park near Florence, Alabama. This is the closest launch upriver, while fishing the lakes headwaters just below Wilson Lake dam.

This rocky, boulder strewn area is popular for tackling the famed smallmouth bass. There are also some hugh striped bass, hybrid striped bass and some really nice largemouth bass taken in these lakes headwaters each Fall season. Choosing lures such as spinnerbaits, crankbaits, jerkbaits, spoons and lipless lures, will show an angler doing battle with any of these bass during Fall. Also some huge freshwater drum will hit the same lures!

Schooling action on Pickwick Lake during Fall and early Winter can be very exciting, showing anglers hooking up with some of the years biggest bass and stripers, all hitting on top. Topwater lures, especially the bigger models, can be cast great distances when chasing these bass, that are always on the move as well.

Be prepared. Always have some topwaters rigged and ready, for you never know when a hugh school of these game fish can suddenly appear. If you don't have some topwaters already rigged for casting to this often very quick action, the bass could be gone as fast as they appeared, by the time you do.

There are many lures to choose when fishing this lake this Fall. The list would not be complete without including some lures fished on the lakes bottom. Some anglers even prefer small lures like worms, grubs and small lizards or crayfish imitations. These lures are good with light tackle outfits, when coupled with clear water situations.

Heavy rains and swift water can call for choosing bigger model lures such as over sized jerkbaits, deep diving crankbaits, 1/2 to 3/4 ounce lipless lures and 1/2 ounce or heavier spinnerbaits. During Fall and early Winter seasons these conditions can show more stained water. Brighter colored lures that emit flash, sound and vibration, aid the fish in finding your lures in stained to muddy water conditions.

For more fishing tips, lake reports, seasonal conditions and links to the worldwide web for fishing on all of Alabama's Lakes, see my website: www.FISHINGALABAMA.com

If interested in fishing Pickwick Lake for any bass species or when practicing for an upcoming bass tournament, always call on Reeds Guide Service (205) 787-5133...first! Several boats and guides available for multiple parties and corporate trips year round.

This report provided by:
Reed Montgomery / Reeds Guide Service
Producer / Host "Fishing Alabama" With Reed Montgomery Radio Show
"6 Years on the Radio  / Jan 2005"
Birmingham, Alabama
Call Reeds Guide Service...First! (205) 787-5133
"Over 40 Years Fishing Alabama for Bass and Stripers"
E-mail: ALABASSGYD@aol.com
Website: www.FISHINGALABAMA.com

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