Pickwick has been a friend to me the last few times I have been there. The last tournament I fished there was a Stren Series Championship and I finished 3rd. It was in November, I have been there in the summer and fall, but never in the spring. I have heard some great things about the spring time there.
Practice: I spent the first morning up by the dam, which is where I fished in the SSC. The area near Florence is always good and there are always high finishes out of this area. I caught a few small fish, several drum, and a 5 pound smallmouth. I spent the rest of the day fishing the lower end of the lake and caught several fish but no real big ones. The next day I spent most of my time in the middle to lower part of the lake. I got a lot of bites flipping and caught a few that were 3-4 pounds. The last day I wasted the morning fishing on Wilson, the lock was broke and we could not lock thru, and then spent the rest of the day on the upper end of the lake. I checked out some other backwaters, but didn’t find anything that was very good.
Day 1: I had one area that stood out from the rest. I started here with 2 other boats. I had a limit by 9am. I did have a couple of decent ones in the bunch. I left here a little before noon to go run some other pockets that were in the area. I culled a little here and a little there but not big. Then I got to one little pocket that I had seen in practice. I didn’t even fish it because it looked so good. I caught a 4 and a 4 ½ in this little area. I caught pretty much of all of my fish flipping a Berkley Havoc Pit Boss this day. I ended up with almost 17 pounds and in the mid 20’s.
Day 2: I started in the same area again. It was slower today than the day before. I left around 9 with 4 fish. One was maybe a 2 1/2. I started running the same pockets again and it was a lot tougher on me. Finally around 11:30 I had a vision! I picked up a Clatter bait and on my second cast caught a 3. I moved 20 feet down the bank and had a good one roll on it and miss it. I went 20 more feet and was about to turn around and caught another 3. I told my marshal, “I going back to get that other one now”. I went back over the little tree it was on and caught it, that fish was about 3 ½. I worked the rest of the way out of here and moved down to the pocket that was so good to me the day before. I caught a couple out of here that helped some. There was a bush on the way out that I lost a good one out of the day before. I made the same pitch and felt a bite. I set the hook and wedged the fish between the limbs. I pulled a little more and she came out of the bush. After a short fight I flipped her in the boat. This was my biggest fish of the day, about a 4 1/2. On the way back, I stopped where I began my day to try it in the afternoon. It was ON! I culled twice with real good fish then headed in. Most of my weigh-in fish came on the Pit Boss again, but a couple of them came on the Clatter bait. I ended with an ounce shy of 19 pounds and moved up to 9th.
Day 3: I started in the same area again and caught about the same limit. I fished a couple of new areas and one of them produced the best fish of the day on the Clatter bait. I had a good day again fishing the same areas just never got the bigger bites. I ended in the same place as the day before and found a big one the bed. I got the fish to bite once but missed it. I ran out of time and had to leave a 5 pounder sitting! I only had 13-9 and fell to 20th.
Added edge: The Berkley Havoc Pit Boss is the bomb! It was such a fish catcher for me this week. I could go behind other boats and catch fish they didn’t. It also catches fishing swimming it like a jig. There seems to be no wrong way to fish it. I used the old standard green pumpkin here.