Casting on the Coosa…with Marty Dixon


Allow me to preface this article with a disclaimer.
I am no writer by any means, and only a fair fisherman. So obviously I am the first choice to come up with some sort of weekly fishing article for The Messenger. I truly believe I may be the only fisherman Chris knows, so here I am.
First of all, I’m a retired teacher and coach, and one of my passions is fishing. My mom and dad introduced me to the sport at a young age. We camped on the lake, and fishing was just what we did. I remember the first big bass I ever caught, a five-pounder from Alfred Johnson’s pond. I definitely hooked after that. Although I enjoy other types of fishing, I bass fish more than anything else.
Fishing of any kind is a lifetime sport. The knees or back may go as one grows older, but if you can cast a pole and turn a reel handle, you can fish. Fishing is one of the few things that you don’t have to be good at to enjoy.
Also, being outside on a lake or a pond is relaxing and can clear your mind and help you unwind. As I sit here writing in my granddaughter’s coloring notebook, I am reflecting on today’s trip out on Neely Henry Lake. It was not a particular awesome day of fishing, but I managed to catch two nice fish, so the time spent socially-distancing was well spent.
Since this supposed to be a fishing article, let’s get some sort of fishing information out there. The mid-river area is where I’ve been fishing the most lately. The water is at full pool and muddy. Bass have been in a post-spawn type pattern with a few still bedding. A variety of baits have been working for me.
Most of my better fish have come off of a jig, spi-nnerbait and brush hog. I may go a day with a big zero and the next day catch a few good fish, so it has been hit or miss for me. Most of my trips have been short and close to home. I think you can put together a nice stringer with a little more time and willingness to travel around the lake.
Next week we’ll talk more about how fishing is going and anything else I can throw in from Neely Henry Lake. Until then, wet a hook practice some social distancing.
Marty Dixon is a Sardis native and retired high school teacher and coach. He was head coach of the Gadsden State women’s basketball team from 2015 to 2019. He and his wife Texann live in Gadsden. He can be contacted at and the Neely Henry bass fishing page on Facebook.

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