Hot weather and hot fishing on Alabama lakes this month
Why can’t we save up some of this heat and humidity for next January when we’ll be freezing as we fish on the lakes of Alabama? Come January and winter, the heat of August will be only a memory, but right now, dealing with the hot days and high humidity is just part of the fishing for Alabama anglers.
Although the conditions can be tough in August, anglers can fish early and late to escape the worst of the heat. Even night fishing can be quite productive in August. Anglers can look for moving water in the lakes. Feeder streams that provide a bit of cooler moving water can be very good for fishing this month.
Anglers who want to fill a cooler with something good to eat can look below the dams for catfish. Panfish anglers can find deeper weeds and shell bottoms for hot bream fishing.
August brings its own set of angling problems. Daily thunderstorms are common and some of the storms can be quite fierce. Anglers should think about finding shelter from high winds and lightning when the first rumble of thunder is heard.
The lakes in August can be very popular places. Anglers often encounter boaters who are less than polite and considerate on the water. A little patience can make busy boat ramps and docks easier to bear in August. Of course, a good PFD for each person on the fishing boat can make problems a lot less serious than they might otherwise be.
So let’s see what some of the best anglers in Alabama can tell us about fishing in August on Alabama lakes.
The big northwest Alabama, waterbody, Lake Pickwick will have lots of pleasure boaters and other non-fishing craft for anglers to deal with, but with some patience, crowded ramps and crowded water will not be too difficult.
Capt. Brad Whitehead fishes Pickwick a great deal in summer. He tells us, “For crappie, fish early and late. August can be a great time for some really big crappie.”
“Anglers should try hot colored crankbaits. Pink and orange crankbaits can be great.” — Capt. Brad Whitehead, fishing guide
A good way to find crappie in August is too set the boat up with a spider rig. Multiple rods increase the chances of locating the best concentrations of crappie.
Captain Brad says, “Spider rigs with lots of rigs using crankbaits and minnow-tipped jigs can be good. Anglers should try hot colored crankbaits. Pink and orange crankbaits can be great.”
For bass anglers in August, the key will be fishing early. There will be a good topwater bite, but as the sun gets higher, shad go deeper and the bass follow them.
Captain Brad adds, “Later in the day, try big plastic worms fished on ledges in the 15 to 20 feet of water.”
Capt. Brian Barton spends a lot of time guiding clients on the waters of Wilson Lake for big catfish, bass, bream and stripers. Although August can be uncomfortable in the middle of the day, there are ways to beat the heat on Wilson.
Captain Brian says, “For the best catfishing in August, think of fishing at night below the dams. High temperatures during the day can really slow the bite. August is very good for flathead cats. At night after 10 p.m. is usually best, but rain or current can produce good flatheads at any time.”
Anglers should look for logjams and big trees in the water. Flatheads love wood cover.
Captain Brian says, “Try to fish during peak generation, usually during late afternoon. Late in August, the thermometer will start to disappear and then fish will be scattered all over the lake.”
White bass and hybrids will be chasing shad below the dam. Watching for feeding birds over schools of shad being pressured from below by stripers can be very productive in August.
The whole chain of Coosa River lakes can be very good in hot summer weather. Weiss Lake might just be the best of the whole system, but don’t be fooled. It will be very hot, too. Capt. Lee Pitts fishes Weiss Lake all year long and he has some good advice for anglers who want to catch fish on this northeast Alabama lake.
Captain Lee says, “We still have very good bass fishing in shallow water in August. We’re fishing water in the 3- to 5-foot range. Anglers should look for wave action and dam-produced current to find actively feeding bass.”
As the sun gets higher, anglers should move off the banks and concentrate on docks and blowdown trees that make shadow on the water. Crankbaits and jigs worked in and around the dark shadows can be effective.
Captain Lee tells us, “Try buzzbaits in silver and shad patterns. Spooks and Chug Bugs can be great on early mornings and cloudy days. In midday, work jigs and Texas-rigged worms on ledges. Try pumpkin-green colors.”
Yes, it is going to be hot on Lake Eufaula in August. Anglers should come prepared to fish early and late or at night.
Our buddy Capt. Sam Williams says, “There will be a good early topwater bite. Frogs and spinnerbaits fished around shallow water cover will be strong. Fish the lily pads early.”
“Look for willow fly hatches for some really good bream fishing. Bass will be feeding on the bream that are feeding on the willow flies.” — Capt. Sam Williams
Many anglers at Eufaula will want to look for created trash piles in 18 to 25 feet of water for bass holding close to the structure. Deep-running crankbaits and jigs work well around the deeper structure.
Captain Sam says, “Look for willow fly hatches for some really good bream fishing. Also, be aware that some big bass will be close to the feeding bream. They’ll be feeding on the bream that are feeding on the willow flies.”
Crappie anglers on Eufaula will want to fish the creek and river ledges. Night fishing around bridges and causeways and other light-producing structures will be best.
Captain Sam adds, “Catfishing is always good at Eufaula. In August, try jug fishing with cut bait for some really good catfish action.”
Joe Dunn of Dunn’s Sports in Thomasville tells us that Millers Ferry Lake will be hot, hot, hot in August and the fishing will be great, too.
He says, “In August, the crappie bite will be more of a river ledge, main creek channels situation this month.”
Anglers looking for slabs should spend time bottom bouncing jigs and live minnows in 18 feet of water or so. This bottom bouncing technique works best when the lake is not having water moved through it when the dam is pumping water. When the dam is moving water through the lake, crappie anglers should try deep vertical jigging over treetops in river channels.
Trolling multiple rigs can be very strong in August. Trolling jigs or Road Runners can be very good when the water is still with little current from the dams. Crappie anglers should look for shad, which will be higher early in the day, about four to six feet deep. Then, move deeper as the day goes on.
Bass anglers fishing Millers Ferry in August should look mostly for moving water and use crankbaits, Carolina rigs, drop-shot rigs and under-spinner baits around ledges and creek mouths. A good early morning bite can occur around grass. For most kinds of angling at Millers Ferry in August, Joe Dunn advises us that moving water and good current is crucial.
For the best and most secure places for anglers to launch at Millers Ferry, Joe Dunn tells us that the State Park, Bridgeport Park and Millers Ferry Marina are all good, safe places to launch a boat and leave a vehicle for extended trips.
August is prime time for anglers fishing big Lake Guntersville to find some big bass hanging out under the thick grass waiting for a topwater lure to flap and flutter overhead. Capt. Jake Davis tells us that the grass at Guntersville never really died out last winter and it is coming on super thick and super strong this year. The whole lake is going to have a very good growth of floating weeds.
Bass anglers can use a wide range of fishing techniques this month. Anywhere along the main channels of the lake will be good where the grass is thickest.
The Pro-Z Tree Frog is a very good topwater frog for fishing the grass at Lake Guntersville. When asked what color frog anglers should use, Captain Jake says, “Black, black and black. The bass can see the black frog overhead easier than any other color.”
When the topwater bite slows, anglers can still catch lots of bass using Tight Line Mussel Crawler jigs with Missile Baits D. Bomb trailers. Let the heavy jig punch through the weed cover to the shaded areas where the bass will be holding.
Panfish anglers can fish the backs of channel along grass lines to find some good bream.
Catfishing is very good in August during most years. This year looks to be even better than most years. Captain Jake tells us they are even catching nice channel cats on bass lures. Catfish are biting swim jigs and chatterbaits intended for bass.
When asked to name a good local source of information and gear, Captain Jake recommends Waterfront Grocery and Tackle. They can supply good information, good housing for visitors and good gear for anglers.
IMPORTANT GUIDE CONTACT INFORMATION
Capt. Brian Barton
Capt. Jake Davis
Mid-South Bass Guide Service
33356 Highway 43
Capt. Lee Pitts
Little River Marina and Lodge Pitt Stop
Capt. Brad Whitehead
Capt. Sam Williams
Hawks Fishing Guide Service