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MONDAY, JULY 30, 2007
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North Alabama Fishing Reports

A look at area lakes:

Wheeler Lake: Early morning is a good time to throw Texas-rigged plastic worms into grass beds and make a slow, jerky retrieve out toward deeper water. It can be exciting when you see the ripple of water behind your bait caused by a big largemouth bass about to strike. A couple of the favorite colors are motoroil/gold glitter and junebug.

Also, during early morning and late afternoon, a floating plastic worm works. Toss the floating worm into the weed bed and slowly work the lure out into deeper water. Two good colors to use are pearl/black spots and bubblegum.

Catfishing is excellent at night when current is flowing. Chicken livers or cutbait on the bottom is a good way to attract a big bite.

The overall bream bite has slowed, but anglers still are making a few good catches. It has been hard to find a decent willowfly hatch lately, so anglers are having to resort to other techniques. One such technique is throwing small, in-line spinners into shady areas where structure is abundant. If you get a strike, consider switching to live redworms or crickets and work the area thoroughly before leaving.

Wilson Lake: Anglers are catching a few hybrid stripe and smallmouth bass in the tailrace of Wheeler Dam. They’re doing it by drifting live shad or live shiner minnows in the current. Another technique to catching hybrid stripe, stripers and smallmouth bass is to throw a silver-colored Pop-or in the current and make some big splashes on the retrieve.

Catching largemouth bass has been easier said than done lately. Some of the best catches come from anglers throwing jigs in small sloughs that follow points when current is flowing.

Pickwick Lake: Using fast moving topwater lures other than buzzbaits is a good method for catching smallmouth bass. The key is to be casting when dark turns to light. Find moderate to large sloughs that have tree overhangs and — most importantly — a gravel bottom before you start casting.

White bass are in abundance around causeway bridges when a swift current is flowing. White bass, along with a few smallmouth bass, crappie and hybrid stripe, let the current flush bait toward them and strike as the shad move by.

Lake Guntersville: The summer pattern of using buzzbaits and other topwater lures around floating vegetation near the main river channel is in full force, and anglers are catching plenty of largemouth bass that weigh at least six pounds. Use heavier-than-normal tackle to get the fish out of the thick grass.

Paul Stackhouse

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