Late Winter/Early Spring on Guntersville
by Mike Gerry
Guntersville can be completely different from the north end to the south in late winter.
When I hit the water in early spring, I generally start the day out cutting the lake up into different
Guntersville seems to have many tales to tell in early spring and there is a good
reason for it! Guntersville can be completely different depending on where you are fishing
this time of year.
If you’re upriver above BB Comer Bridge in early spring there is very little deep water, and
many long creeks, so fish that might be deep, are generally not any deeper than 10 to 12 ft.
because the upper river is so shallow.
If you’re mid river or around the lower end, the lake
widens, and the depth can be as deep as 45 ft. so the bass can stage in 20 to 25 ft. of water.
There are also some differences in water temperature, that being the shallow water warms
quicker than deeper water so the fish movement can be completely different. The upper
river warming earlier than the mid and lower end, generally allows the fish to go into pre-
spawn and the spawn sometimes 3 to 4 weeks early as water temperatures can get into the
60’s much quicker upriver.
One of the things I continually try to do is cut the area up that I am fishing with different
baits; I will work deep crank baits off staging drops first to either eliminate deep water or find
feeding fish. I then get to the next drops at about 10 to 12 ft., and I work several baits at this
depth, rattle baits, square bill crank baits and jigs. Lastly if that hasn’t produced some good
fish I then get into the shallows, and I always look for cover at this depth. Boat house, lay
downs, rock, or just odd objects sticking up out of the water and of course the grass. My
favorite bait in shallow water for big fish is always a jig. It is a catching machine in shallow
water for me.
Fishing from the staging drops to the mid-range water or the second drop if you will to the
red clay bank shallow water is one of the best tips I can offer in early spring!