Brent Crow: Pickwick Lake in Early Spring

Early springtime is Alabama Rig time at Pickwick Lake. There are other ways to catch them, but in the past two years since the introduction of the multi-lure rig, nothing has caught them any better on Pickwick when the water temps are in the 40s and 50s.There seems to be no wrong way to rig the Alabama Rig, with just about any type of swimbait and any size being effective. A good general rig will consists of 1/8 or 1/4ounce jigheads with 4 inch swimbaits in a pearl or shad color. Smallmouth and largemouths alike will inhale the A-Rig when it passes in front of their face.

Current is the biggest key on Pickwick lake, whether you are fishing downlake below the Natchez Trace Bridge or in Tennessee waters, or if you are in the Florence, AL area near Wilson Dam. Look for anything that breaks the current, whether it be points, rocks, gravel bars or islands. Find the seams, where the current meets the slack water areas, and expect the fish to be hanging just off the edge of the current in the slack water. Throw your Alabama Rig upstream just into the current and retrieve it back down the edge while holding your boat in the slack water.

If the A-Rig is not your cup of tea, you can find largemouths shallow in the backwater areas on Pickwick in the spring time as well. They can be caught with crankbaits, spinnerbaits and rattle baits like the Strike King Red Eye Shad in the flat areas of creeks and pockets. Look for areas with shad and cover water until you find the bass. They could be from 2-6 feet on the flats, some of which could have grass growing on the bottom. You can also flip and pitch a jig or creature bait around flooded cover when the river is high. Look for pockets off the main river that have shoreline grass or bushes and laydowns that are partially submerged.

Brent Crow
North Alabama Guide Service

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