Central Georgia Fishing Report: January 20, 2017

Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant.  See  (http://www.southernfishing.com/current-fishing-report.html) for most recent updates.

LAKE RUSSELL IS FULL, CLEAR, 50’s

Bass fishing is slow.  The cold air and dropping surface temperature have bass holding tight to cover or suspended in deeper water.  Some anglers are using jigging spoons and Carolina rigs to catch a few Bass.  Others are still fishing rip rap rock with Rapala Shad Raps and small Rapala DT10 crank baits after mid-morning.  Both will work well and should continue to produce for a couple more weeks.  Continue to fish the points and any drop offs.  In middle of the lower lake creeks, fish any isolated stumps and wood cover for the best results.

CLARKS HILL IS DOWN 8.7 FEET, 50’s

Bass fishing slowed down from the previous weeks with the cold weather moving in strong by the middle of the week.  The fish were up in the flats looking like they wanted to start a pre-spawn mode.  With the change in weather, the bass simply moved back to the deeper water and suspended themselves.  The bass can still be caught with patience and the right technique.  Back off, locate the fish and use a slow moving Jerk bait and the Rapala DT14 use the parrot color Rapala crank baits.  A slow presentation will still be necessary as long as the bass are suspended.  Remember, now active bass have a smaller strike zone, so be prepared to make several presentations in the same area with your baits.

LAKE OCONEE IS FULL, THE LAKE IS CLEAR, LIGHT STAIN UP THE LAKE. STAINED UP THE RIVER TEMPERATURE 52-55

Bass fishing is good.  The best bite has been the spoon bite on the humps on the south end of the lake.  White and chartreuse have been the best colors.  Spinner baits fished in the creeks and coves shallow will produce fish.  White and chartreuse have been the best colors.  When Georgia Power is pulling water the same spinner bait will work on the bridge rip rap (they have been pulling early in the mornings), Small crank baits fished along the side of the docks in the middle of the coves out to the main lake will also produce.  You can also add fishing a rattle trap around any deep dock and around rip rap early.

Striper report by Captain Mark Smith, Reel Time guide service. Call 404-803-0741 or reeltime@bellsouth.net

Striper fishing is good.  The fish are mid-lake around river bend.  Use your Lowrance to locate the large schools of bait and the stripers will be close by.  Look for the birds diving; if you see birds go fish them.  Live bait as well as spoons will produce large numbers of fish.

Crappie fishing is fair.  The fish are staging in the creeks.  Long lining jigs over the fish will produce good catches.  Spider rigging will also catch some fish.

WEST POINT LAKE IS DOWN 5.5 FEET, CLEAR & 60’S

Bass fishing is fair and crank baits are working.  Bright crank baits on the rocky banks and rip rap is fair early but its gets better as the water warms.  Use small Rapala Shad Raps and DT 10 lures in bright colors and fish any rocks, secondary points in creeks, and where sand meets the rip rap along the bridges.  The lake is going to stay low until the middle of January and then will rise slightly.  Use the vertical jigging spoons on the bottom.  Find the fish on your depth finder and then vertical jig using a 1/2 to 3/4 ounce spoon of your choice.

LAKE SINCLAIR IS DOWN .96 FEET, CLEAR, 50’S

Bass fishing is fair.  The fish are ready to migrate back to main river and creek structures, although some do remain in coves and the upper halves of creeks.  Cranking had been the primary means of success for much of the last few weeks, but this has mostly changed.  More subtle and slow moving baits like Carolina rigs, jigs, and jig head and worm rigs have been the best choices recently.  Even the fish that remain in coves are now hitting finesse baits better.  Look for most of the remaining cove fish to be located in or near the basin or ditch at 10 to over 20 feet deep.  Don’t waste time in coves that aren’t showing lots of bait on the depth finder.  More of the larger groups or schools of fish are holding along main river or creek points and humps.  Generally, the fish are deeper down the lake and progressively shallower farther up the lake.  Try a Carolina rig with a Zoom finesse worm on a 3 foot leader of 12 pound line with a half-ounce weight on 15 to 20 pound main line.  Try the green pumpkin, June bug, red bug and natural blue colors on the SpotSticker jig head from 1/16 to one ounce, although it’s best to use the lightest possible and maintain bottom contact.

LAKE JACKSON IS DOWN .70 FEET, 50’s

Bass fishing is fair even with the cold water.  Start with jigs around boat docks and then go to spinnerbaits in the deeper water near the dam.  The Texas rigged worm and short Carolina rig seems to be the favorite in Yellow River.  The water is stained so have a Zoom u tail red shad worm rigged Texas style.  Throw right into or next to the wood and work the bait slowly stopping it every foot or so.  The bass are holding tight to the heavy cover.  The recent cold nights have driven these fish in tight so work each stump or log several times. Try different angles and a good 14-pound or better test line is recommended.

BIG LAZER PFA

Surface water temperature:   50o F

Water visibility:  Visibility is about 27” (stained)

Water level: Recent rains have raised water level back to full pool

  • Largemouth bass: Slow – Fish plastic baits slow now that water temperatures are chilly.  Plastic-worms fished around the deep water by the picnic area and around the newly repaired fishing pier may produce a few good bites.
  • Crappie: Poor- crappie fishing has been poor but their spawning season will start soon, until warmer temperatures fish for crappie in 10-12 feet of water with minnows.
  • Bream: Slow- Bream fishing is also slow but try pink and red worms around the new fishing pier.  Also, target areas that have structure like woody brush and blow downs associated with it.  This time of year, most bream will be located in deeper water.  Still, live bait will be your best bet for bream.  However, make sure the hooks are small because the bream have small mouths.
  • Channel catfish: Poor- Fishing for cold cats has been slow even around the dam area.  However, you may get lucky using livers at or almost at the bottom and at several different locations around woody structures and the rocks around the dam.  Fishing with two poles will increase your chances of catching a keeper.
  • In general, the weather is cold and the bite has become less consistent.  Anglers have to be more patient and persistent to have a good day fishing.  However, winter weather means less anglers are fishing; thus, less fishing pressure for the dedicated angler.

Additional information at http://www.gofishgeorgia.com/PFA/BigLazer

MCDUFFIE PFA

Average Morning Water Temperature:   50 – 52 ⁰F

Water Visibility:     24 – 54+ inches

All PFA lakes are full and flowing into next lake.  All boat ramps are useable.

  • Largemouth Bass:  Fair. Bass are biting slowly.  Fishermen are actively pursuing bass most days. New***Rodbender, the trophy bass lake is open year round starting this month.  Anglers may harvest one bass 22 inches or longer if they desire.
  • Signage will be installed around the lake to notify the anglers.  This lake has been setup with multiple bait species for optimum feeding conditions for the all-female largemouth bass.  Bass fishermen are fishing Rodbender today but no catches reported.
  • Bream:  Fair. Bream fishing has slowed dramatically due to cold water temperature.  Bream can still be found around structure and aquatic plants suspended over deep water.  The best baits for catching bream are still meal worms/red wigglers/worms fished deep in the lake channels as the water cools.
  • Channel Catfish:  Fair. Catfish are still biting but slowing down due to falling water temperatures.  The best fishing is on the bottom in deep water using chicken liver, worms, and stink-baits.
  • Striped Bass:  Stripers like cooler temperatures, however, no catches have been reported.  Striped bass are located only in Bridge and Clubhouse Lakes. Stripers will be chasing available bait during winter months, particularly on warm days.

Additional Information:    http://www.gofishgeorgia.com/PFA/McDuffie

Licenses Required at a PFA:

FISHING

  • Anglers 16 years and older must possess a current fishing license, AND a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) license to fish.
  • If you have either a Sportsman’s, Lifetime, Honorary (resident disability license or resident one-time veteran’s license), 3-day Hunting and Fishing License, or 3-day GORP Plus you are NOT required to have a WMA license to fish.
  • A WMA license is NOT required to fish at Rocky Mountain Public Fishing Area.

GENERAL ACCESS

To access a PFA for non-fishing activities, visitors age 16-64 must have one of the following (visitors under age 16 and/or over age 64 are exempt):

BUY A FISHING LICENSE HERE!

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