Fishing in Pickwick Lake and Wilson Tailwaters
Located in northwest Alabama on the Tennessee River, Pickwick Reservoir runs 50 miles from Pickwick Landing Dam in Tennessee to the "Shoals" area below Wilson Dam. The total surface area at full summer pool is 47,500 acres. McFarland Park at Florence can host major fishing tournaments.
According to the 2012 BAIT Report, Pickwick Reservoir ranked among the top four Alabama reservoirs for “Average Bass Weight,” “Pounds per Angler-Day,” and “Hours per Bass Larger than 5 pounds.” It ranked 3rd overall for reservoirs reporting five or more tournaments.
Largemouth bass and smallmouth bass are the most sought after species by anglers, although some nice spotted bass exist in the Reservoir too. Pickwick Reservoir is Alabama’s best location for that angler trying to catch a black bass “Grand Slam:" largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted bass. Pickwick Reservoir's greatest reputation is its superb smallmouth bass fishing.
One of the most popular smallmouth fishing areas is the "Shoals" section directly downstream of Wilson Dam to the end of Seven-Mile Island. Generation discharge from Wilson Dam creates a strong current in this area that smallmouth bass love. The middle to lower reaches of Pickwick provide excellent habitat for both largemouth bass and smallmouth bass. Smallmouth bass habitat in Pickwick Lake is so good that several line class records have been certified by the International Game Fish Association.