Fun & Games

Trivia Games


Contact Us




John's Journal... Entry 249, Day 2


Nighttime Baits

Editor's Note: Roger Stegall of Iuka, Mississippi, has guided for smallmouths on Pickwick Lake on the Tennessee/Alabama/ Mississippi border for 17 years and has fished for smallmouths on the lake since 1975. In an average year, he and his party of fishermen will catch 50 to 60 smallmouth bass that weigh 5 pounds or more. At times, he'll even catch smallmouths that weigh 8 pounds or more. Stegall most enjoys fishing for smallies at night during the warmer months. This week, Stegall shares his tactics for catching nighttime smallies.

Carolina Rig:
Often at night, I'll throw a Carolina rig in a junebug color. You can use a shorter 3-foot leader at night. I fish on pea-gravel points and banks, or, I try to find some humps and ledges at night on which I can throw a Carolina rig. I work the bait slowly and give it a pretty good jerk every once in a while. I use a junebug-colored Strike King 3X Lizard or a junebug-colored 3X Centipede. The 3X will last so much longer and will hold up against 10 times more fish.

Nighttime Spinner Baits:
I like the spinner bait with the Indiana blade No. 5 in black or black and red. I fish it just like I'll fish a Texas-rigged worm - bottom hopping it off a steep bank. I use 12-pound High Impact Stren line. I usually keep my drag set light and use a medium/heavy action rod. You don't have to have big line because you won't have as much water drag on the line in deeper water.

Rattling for Nighttime Smallies:
Another bait I use a lot is the little Bitsy Flip with a rattle on it that Strike King has just developed. I put a Strike King Denny Brauer 3/8-ounce Chunk Trailer to make it smaller. I shake it a lot when I throw it out, and then I let it fall. That rattle rattles and falls slower because it has a Chunk Trailer. I position the boat in 15 to 20 feet of water and throw it in 3 feet of water.

Nighttime World Records:
The current often runs at night, which helps anglers catch the smallies. At night I fish points of islands where water is running over a point. When there's not a current, I'll fish flats where they'll hit buzzbaits or Diamond Shads. On an average night, I'll catch 10 to 18 fish a night. Some weigh 4 to 5 pounds. I'll occasionally catch a 7 pounder.

For more information on fishing with Roger Stegall, call (662) 423-3869, e-mail rogstegall@fishpickwick.com, or check out www.fishpickwick.com.

You can learn more about Strike King Lures by going to www.strikeking.com.

For more information on staying at Pickwick Landing State Park on Pickwick Lake, contact the Hardin County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau at info@tourhardincounty.org, call (731) 925-8181 or (800) 552-3866, or visit www.tourhardincounty.org. Pickwick Landing State Park offers fishing, boating, hiking, camping, swimming and golf. Lodging includes the lakeside inn with over 100 rooms, cabins that sleep eight and a campground that contains 48 sites with grill and electric/water hookup at each site. A restaurant at the park offers delicious southern cuisine. Call (731) 689-3135 or (800) 250-8615 to learn more.




Check back each day this week for more about CATCHING SMALLIES AT NIGHT AND IN WARM WEATHER WITH ROGER STEGALL ...

Day 1 - Fishing on a Full Moon
Day 2 - Nighttime Baits
Day 3 - Catch Smallmouths After The Spawn
Day 4 - Summer Tactics
Day 5 - Work the Current

John's Journal