There’s never been a better time for spring fishing in Alabama, so grab your favorite rod and reel and hit the water! Here are the places you won’t want to miss.
Last March at the Big Bass tournament on Lake Guntersville, anglers brought in more 6-pound bass than ever. The big fish weighed 12.74 pounds. And at the three-day FLW tournament, the winner brought in 15 fish weighing 86.07 pounds — a 5.7-pound average.
With Guntersville’s largemouth in a pre-spawn pattern, the most consistent and effective method for caching bass is to work the ditches and creek channels leading to the spawning flats. These structures act as funnels to concentrate the fish.
The lake warms up from east to west, with the flats on the north side warming first. Use a lipless crankbait to search these areas.
For a guided day of fishing on Lake Guntersville, telephone Alex Davis at (256) 298-1178 or visit www.spinnerbaitkid.com.
The shallow water in Aliceville Lake warms quickly this month, making the crappie there the first to spawn on the waterway. Fish 1/16-ounce jigs in the grass along the bank. March is also an excellent month to catch smallmouth on Pickwick Lake.
During the day, Lake Martin’s crappie anglers find slabs in brush piles 6 to 12 feet deep. These mostly man-made fish attractors offer excellent fishing, but require some effort to locate.
Anglers new to the lake have an option well known to the veterans who fish Martin. It’s as easy as finding docks with the pier lights on. The clear water makes night fishing extremely deadly, and it’s fun for the family. Crappie congregate under the lights, and they are not as spooky.
Of course, not every dock holds fish. The water must be at least 8 feet deep, and have hardwood cover nearby.
For a guided fishing trip for bass or crappie on Lake Martin, call Chad Miller at (334) 300-5337.
In Lower Alabama, Gantt Lake has the sandy soil, calcium deposits and aquatic vegetation for growing mollusks, which are an important food source for big shellcracker. Look for bedding redears on the north side of the lake. To the north, hybrid bass fishing peaks in the tailwaters below Neely Henry Dam.
Lake Eufaula is a place to catch tremendous numbers of largemouth in May. On a good day, skilled anglers can catch up to 100 fish. The aggressive behavior of post-spawn bass working shoreline cover or migrating from spawning flats creates some of the best fishing of the year.
When the lake is at full pool, target fish on shoreline cover in Wylaunee and Cowikee creeks. The best lures for searching cover are buzzbaits and swimbaits.
To find migrating bass, look for ditches leading from the river channel to the spawning flats. The ditches concentrate fish and make them predictable.
For the most strikes, fish the section of the ditch nearest the channel with a 3/4-ounce spinnerbait.
Call Young’s Big Mouth Shop for fishing information at (334) 687-3200 or visit the shop on North Eufaula Avenue.
On Lake Martin this month, use sonar to find schools of striped bass on the main lake and lower a live shad to the waiting fish. Also in May, bluegills are spawning on Wilson Lake.
Don’t forget to share your best fishing photos with us on Camera Corner for your chance to win free gear!
MSRP: Pricing starts at $22,195.
The 186 VLO measures in at 18 feet 9 inches with an 89-inch beam. The boat is built on a fiberglass, foam-filled hull and weighs in at 1,450 pounds and can hold a payload of 1,320 pounds. Maximum room is devoted to rod and tackle storage and fishing deck. VLO comes with a cus-tom-built, single axle trailer with submersible lights, a swing jack and a swing-away tongue.