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Lake Lanier fishing report: Bass feeding well on bluebacks, shad

POSTED: May 21, 2009 5:37 p.m.

Lake temperatures have dropped a little after the recent mild temperatures and are around 70 degrees. This rainy season has really helped Lake Lanier levels and we are at 1,065.5 feet or just 5.5-feet down from the normal full pool of 1,071 feet. The Chattahoochee River is clear. Check generation schedules before heading out to the river at 770-945-1466.

Bass

Spotted bass fishing remains consistent and fishing is good. Most of the bass we have been catching are recovering nicely from the spawn. While several have their normal worn down tails from where they were fanning nests, their stomachs are full, which is an indication that they are feeding well on bluebacks and shad.

The blueback herring spawn should be finishing up and the topwater bite is on, so target the main lake points or humps. Cast walking baits like SPRO Dawg100s, Super Spooks, Sammys and other noisy topwater plugs. The strikes have been explosive, even in choppy water, which indicates that the fish are aggressively feeding. This action seems to be best from sun up to around 2 p.m., but it can work all day long. Other subsurface lures that mimic the long, skinny herring are also working. SPRO McSticks, Zoom Flukes, Fish Head Spins and Basstrix type swim baits all get the nod for catching spotted bass.

In the afternoon, move around and find clay and rock banks that drop off quickly and work finesse worms on a jig head. Texas or Carolina Lizards also work well for bass relating to the bottom. My Humminbird 797c Side Imaging unit is a fantastic tool for locating productive spots. It produces a photographic type of view of the bottom and will actually show me submerged boats, lawn chairs, bush piles and timber. Target depths from five to 20 feet as the bass have been shallower with the recent mild temperatures.

Bank anglers have a great opportunity to catch spotted bass this week because they are shallow. Cast out topwater plugs or use a Texas rigged lizard. The topwater plugs won’t hang up and you can use a light ¬-ounce bullet head on your Texas rig to avoid snags. Make sure to use Gamaktsu Hooks on all your lures to make sure you actually land the bass that strike your offerings.

Crappie minnows, medium shiners and even bluebacks from Hammond’s Fishing Center fished on a circle hook will almost guarantee your catching success

Stripers

The fish are eating schools of blueback out on the main lake and we have been catching a few mixed in with the spotted bass on topwater plugs and swim baits. Throw a Red Fin or walk a SPRO Dawg or Super Spook to entice these line sides to strike.

Live blueback herring fished on a flat line are the best bet for catching these main lake fish. Use your Humminbird Electronics to locate the schools.

Later in the day you may need to switch over to a weighted line but you shouldn’t have to fish too deep.

Crappie

The fishing is fair, but anglers adept in shooting docks can still catch some nice stringers of the tasty fish. Shooting a crappie minnow is a method that is relatively easy to do but it takes practice.

You will need to use a spinning rod. Hammonds Fishing Center can steer you in the right direction. You will need to get low to the water to make sure you have a good shot at the underside of the dock. Flip open your bail and feed out about two to three feet at the end of the rod tip. Hold the line coming off the spool in your finger and grasp the jig in your other hand and create a bend in your fishing pole. This will create a slingshot out of your pole. Release the lure from your hand while simultaneously releasing the line from the spool in your other hand. Once you get good at this, you can shoot a tiny jig head way up under the docks where other anglers can reach. Use small Hal Flies or Micro Spoons.

Night fishing below lights is also starting to pick up.

Trout on the Chattahoochee

There are plenty of stocked trout on the Chattahoochee. These newly released trout that are easy to catch and will hit just about any small lure, flies or worms (check local regulations before fishing live bait in certain off limit areas). Get out early in the day for your best fishing action.

Eric Aldrich is a part time outdoor writer, bass fisherman and is sponsored by Humminbird, SPRO, Gamakatsu, Tru Tungsten and Hammonds Fishing and Boat Storage. Reports are based on personal experience and permission from a close network of friends. He would love to hear from his readers so please email him at esaldrich@yahoo.com or visit his website at aldrichfishing.com. Remember to take a kid fishing!



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