Alabama Friday Fishing Report –


From Guntersville, Captain Mike Gerry says weed mats are starting to be perfect for fall fishing with weedless frogs, including his Spro favorites. The mats become thick in early fall, forming a ‘roof’ over the sea bass where fish can stay in the shade and find plenty of sunfish and crayfish to eat, and weedless frogs. like the Bronzeye can make them jump across the mat to catch the lure. He said a lot of the bass is also deep and can be traced to sonar and captured by jigging vertically with a spoon or with soccer jigs or dropshot rigs;

From Lake Weiss, guide Mark Collins says striper fishing continues to be good around the cool spring influxes into Lake Superior, with live shad the best bet. Bass and crappie fishing is only considered ‘okay’ elsewhere due to the water temperature approaching 90, although recent rains and cooler nights in the coming week are likely to set it back fish to shore grass and other shallower covers. Like elsewhere in Alabama, expect a good mouthful of surface water, as this year’s shad crop reaches forage size for bass – the Tiny Torpedo and other surface waters get them;

In Lewis Smith, clear water and lots of baby shad and herring cause a good mouthful of surface water each fall, and that should start over the next week with the cooler temperatures. Local favorites include the Gunfish 115 and the Sammy, but any noisy surface water will work. Look for fish breaks around areas where tributaries meet the main lake as well as around long spikes and bumps offshore. Alternatively, drop vertical jigging spoons around the bait banks to connect to the spotted bass, or drift a live shad 65 feet and above along the edges of the canal for jumbo stripers. Below the dam, trout action is good whenever there is a constant current – check Riverside Fly Shop at the bridge for flow schedules;

In Pickwick, Mississippi Wildlife Fisheries and Parks reports fair to good action on spinnerbaits in hydrilla scattered over the shoulders of deeper water, and notes that this bite is even better at night. Some surface water banks are also underway – rat traps and surface water lures thrown to break up fish do the job. Some larger bass are still caught on seashell beds up to 25 feet deep on soccer jigs and Carolina-rigged soft plastics. Cat fishing remains good below the dam and on the cliff sides where there is a good current to carry the floats, and cut skipjack is the preferred bait.

From the coast, Mobile Bay anglers find tons of Theodore trout heading south around the bait pads, although many are not of legal size. Fish live shrimp under a cork to connect. Slit reds continue to hang around rip-rap, bridge pilings, and gas-powered platforms and are easier to catch on live croakers at the bottom, although some can also be caught on jigs with Berkley Gulp trailers. . Bull redfish action is improving and will peak at the end of October around the passes, at Dixey Bar, Sand Island and off the beaches. Again, live croakers are the best bait, although big spoons and jigs with plastic swimbaits get them as well. Remember, these oversized breeders need to be let go. Offshore action is good, with several boats bringing in swordfish and releasing white marlin;

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