UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Pickwick Lake

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At the day two takeoff, most boats started in Pickwick, while a handful headed for Wilson Lake.

FLORENCE, Ala. - It's kind of a chain gang feeling - taking off for another sweltering day of grinding it out, but EverStart Series Southeast Division anglers stand to gain much more than a tan, as Pickwick Lake is producing good catches for those who would invest the time and laborious effort to find them.

No doubt, the ledge fishing that dominates the summer action on Pickwick and neighboring Wilson Lake presents the tough task of locating fish along sprawling habitat, jockeying for position among fellow competitors and figuring out how to get the fish to bite. Many accomplished this task on day one and several heavy sacks crossed the weigh-in stage.

Lloyd Pickett Jr., leads the pro field with 24 pounds, 15 ounces and a margin of 2-11 over secondPro leader Lloyd Pickett Jr will stick with the Carolina rigs that produced 24 pounds on day one. place pro William Davis. Pickett caught all of his day-one fish on Carolina rigs and he'll depend heavily on this tactic again today. He'll run Zoom Brush Hogs, Old Monsters and finesse worms on his Carolina rigs.

"I have five Carolina rigs on the deck, a spoon and a Strike King 6XD crankbait," Pickett said prior to takeoff. "I'll probably pull up and start throwing a crankbait to try to attract a bite in (the early morning's) low light conditions, but it won't take long before I go to a rig. I figure 90 percent of my fish will come on the Carolina rig and the other 10 percent might come on the spoon or the crankbait."

Pickett said he's confident that the rig will continue producing, perhaps even better, as lake pressure increases. With so many fast moving baits passing the ledge fish, a more creeping presentation is likely to appear more appealing to the fish.

"We've had so many tournaments on this lake the last three or four weeks and the fish are really spooked - they're really finicky," he said. "They're used to seeing all of these crankbaits coming through on the humps and the drops. I'm throwing a Carolina rig behind everybody and I'm slowing it down. I let them get a good look at it and when they do, I think they're less wary about taking the bait."

Jigging spoons and crankbaits will be two of the productive ledge baits.Florida pro J.T. Kenney starts day two in 40th place with 14-11 after a day-one engine problem delayed his start by a few hours. He's hoping to capitalize on a full day of fishing by working the ledges with a crankbait and a jigging spoon.

"The bait really doesn't matter - it's where you put it," Kenney said. "It seems to me that (the better fishing) is from the Natchez Bridge downstream to the Tennessee line. I'm fishing in about 15-20 feet of water."

Some, like former National Guard College Fishing standout Shaye Baker, will fish near the Pickwick Dam where shad imitators like swimbaits and lipless crankbaits often produce well.

"The (dam) current gets the shad pushed up against the wall," Baker said. "You can catch them all times of the day. It's just a grind because you have to make the same cast 1,000 times."

Other productive baits will include dropshots, football head jigs and even bucktail jigs. Sixth place proFormer College Fishing standout, Shaye Baker hopes to find a big stringer near the Pickwick Dam. Bobby Padgett fished the latter on day one and sacked up 19-5. He said the bucktail's flaring skirt and slow fall rate resembles a dying shad and an easy target for hungry bass.

Logistics

Anglers will take off from McFarland Park located at 200 James M. Spain Drive, Florence, Ala. at 5:30 each morning. On Friday, weigh-ins will be held at McFarland Park beginning at 2:00 p.m. Saturday's final weigh-in will be held at the Walmart located at 3100 Hough Rd. in Florence. Saturday's weigh-in begins at 3 p.m. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.

Pros will fish for a top award of $35,000 plus a 198VX Ranger boat with 200-horsepower outboard if Ranger Cup guidelines are met. Co-anglers will cast for a top award consisting of a Ranger 177TR with 90-horsepower outboard and $5,000 if Ranger Cup guidelines are met.

The EverStart Series consists of five divisions - Central, Northern, Southeast, Texas and Western. Each division consists of four tournaments and competitors will be vying for valuable points in each division that could earn them the Angler of the Year title along with $5,000 for the pro and $2,000 for the co-angler. The top 40 pros and co-anglers from each respective division will qualify for the EverStart Series Championship that will be held on Kentucky Lake in Buchanan, Tenn., Oct. 27-30.

Swimbaits and other shad imitators are a good choice when fishing around the TVA dams.The EverStart Series tournament on Pickwick Lake is being hosted by Florence/Lauderdale Tourism.

Friday's conditions

Sunrise: 5:37 a.m.
Temperature at takeoff: 70 degrees
Expected high temperature: 94 degrees
Wind: NNE at 1-3 mph
Humidity: 40 percent
Day's outlook: sunny

Tags: david-a-brown  morning-story  2011-06-09-pickwick-lake 

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