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MONDAY, MAY 7, 2007
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North Alabama Fishing Reports

Setting your alarm clock early and hitting the water before the sun comes up is a way to improve your odds of getting a good catch. If you are on the water in darkness, be sure to use all the necessary and required boat lights and other safety equipment.

Wheeler Lake: Anglers casting for largemouth bass have plenty of options when it comes to choosing a technique that works. One such technique is to cast in and around shoreline grass beds with a Texas-rigged plastic lizard or plastic worm. While it is easier to manuever a plastic worm through the thick grass, the legs on a lizard can make a big difference in the size of your catch.

Another method for catching largemouth bass is to throw spinnerbaits around stump flats and other areas that have stumps, grass and plenty of shad. A slow and steady retrieve is the technique to use to catch big, largemouth bass.

Wilson Lake: The catfish bite has been excellent, and no slowdown is in sight. Catfish anglers are working the tailrace of Wheeler Dam with shad guts, cut skipjack, nightcrawlers, rooster livers and live minnows with the best catches coming during early morning and late afternoon.

Look for largemouth bass to feed early in the morning near the back-current side of rock points. Look for current breaks and miniature whirlpools and throw a shad-colored, medium-depth crankbait with a big wobble lip. If the crankbait doesn’t have any color red on it, consider using a red magic marker and give the lure the look as if it is bleeding.

Pickwick Lake: The overall smallmouth bass bite has slowed, but anglers are still catching a few decent bags. Early morning is the time to throw topwater lures in sloughs near the main river channel. Look for sloughs that have a gravel bottom and rock or boulder structure and toss the lure over these areas to attract the strike.

Lake Guntersville: Michigan professional bass fisherman Kevin VanDam told about his winning technique at the recent Bassmaster Elite Series tournament held on Guntersville. VanDam would look for areas where shad were spawning and simply cast a spinnerbait overhead the action and wait for the strike. Running a crankbait through shad-infested waters should also attract attention of any hawg bass in the area.

Paul Stackhouse

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