John's Journal...


Buzzbaits in November Will Help You Catch Smallmouths

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Longtime pro fisherman Roger Stegall of Iuka, Mississippi, has guided fishermen on Pickwick Lake on the Alabama/Mississippi/Tennessee border for over 17 years. Here's some of his tactics for catching big smallmouth during the month of November.

A lure that many fishermen over look is the buzzbait at this time of the year, since most anglers think of the buzzbait as a spring and summer lure. But actually it's very deadly in the fall. I like the Strike King Bleeding Bait Series of buzzbaits, particularly the white with some red on the head and a chartreuse-and-white skirt. I like this Click to enlargebait because it has the three dominant colors the smallmouth prefer in November, white, chartreuse and red. On cloudy or rainy days, I'll fish this buzzbait around boat docks, stumps and logs or on open-water flats where the smallmouths are schooling in 5-7 foot water. One of the ways that I modify this bait is to take the rivet off the blade and soak it in Purex to bleach it and cause it to squeak more than it normally will. The smallmouth can't stand a squeaky buzzbait and just have to eat it. During the fall, smallmouths will become extremely active when you're fishing Click to enlargethe buzzbait..

Another advantage to buzzbaits at this time of year is that most people aren't fishing them. This lure is one smallmouth aren't accustomed to seeing and are more likely to hit. I've had some of the best strikes I've ever had fishing a buzzbait at this time of the year. I fish the buzzbait on the same rod as I do a spinner bait. But I'll use a baitcasting reel and 17-pound-test line because the bigger line helps the bait stay high in the water, which makes it fish better. I like the super-tough Click to enlargeShakespeare Supreme line when I'm fishing this bait.

To learn more about fishing below the dam at Pickwick, contact the Hardin County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau at, call 731-925-8181 or 800-552-3866, or visit 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 HOW TO CATCH SMALLMOUTH NOW WITH ROGER STEGALL

Day 1 - The Crankbait for Smallmouth
Day 2 - New Redfish Magic - Perfect for Smallmouth
Day 3 - Buzzbaits in November Will Help You Catch Smallmouths
Day 4 - Jerkbaits for Smallmouths in the Fall
Day 5 - The Truth About the Quad Shad Spinner Bait


Entry 274, Day 3