Lake temperatures are in the lower 70’s. The lake level is 1,068.9 feet, which is just around 2 feet below full pool.
Lake Lanier is in the process of turnover and is clear to stained on the main lake, stained in the creeks and the rivers, and the Chattahoochee River is stained. Check generation schedules before heading out to the river at 770-945-1466.
I was out a few days this past week and fishing has been up and down. The lake is in the process of turning over.
This is the term for when the upper layer of warm summer water cools down enough to equal the cooler mid to bottom layers of cooler water.
When this happens, the lake can appear to be stained and you will often see bubbles appearing on the surface.
According to one of my contacts at the DNR, this process happens over the period of a couple of months but it only seems to affect fishing for a couple of weeks in my opinion.
Because there are no defined layers of water temperatures, the fish will move around from the surface to the bottom and they usually prefer cleaner water that has more oxygen.
The good news is that the bass that were locked into the deeper cooler water to escape the summer heat are now able to roam in the shallows where anglers are more likely to be able to catch them.
It pays to keep several lures tied on and to experiment with several techniques to find the best pattern for that particular area or day that you are fishing.
I have been spending most of my time targeting midway on back into the lower lake creeks targeting fish that are eating blueback herring on or below the surface.
Sammys, Super Spooks and the larger SPRO Dawg 125s have all been working when the bass and stripers are on the surface. When the fish are down, try using a swim bait that mimics the longer blueback herring.
A BBZ1 6-inch trout or a Sebile Magic Swimmer are both great lures to try and they really look like a fish when you see them working in the water. Swimbaits have long been a mainstay of West Coast Anglers.
They are also great tools for catching Lake Lanier bigger game fish because most of the blueback herring are more than 5-inches long right now.
Shaky Heads rigged with a Big Bite Squirrel Tails will work very well around the docks and brush piles. Also, try throwing a top water lure or crank baits around this same cover to pick off the more active fish.
Live blueback herring on a flat line with a Gamakatsu Circle hook are working for both bass and stripers. Using circle hooks will increase the chance for the fish to survive and you don’t need to set the hook, just wait for the rod to pull down and the fish will usually be hooked right inside the lips where the can easily be released.
Striper fishing remains very good and, like with the bass, many methods are working. There are some small schools of stripers that are starting to appear on the surface and this action should get even better in the next few weeks.
Topwater plugs are the most popular lures to throw because people love to see these aggressive game fish explode on top but subsurface lures also work well.
Zoom Flukes, McSticks and Bomber Long A plugs are great lures to cast a real through the schooling stripers.
The trolling bite continues to be working well. Keep using a SPRO Buck Tails tipped with a live blueback herring, which are working well and you may want to set your downriggers or lead core a little shallower right now. Set your down riggers to around 15-to 20-feet or troll lead core out seven-eight colors at around 2-to 3-miles an hour.
Watch your electronics and move your lures up or down to the level at which they appear on your screen.
Both flat and down lined blueback herring or even a large gizzard shad are working well in the creek mouths and also in the rivers.
Target the cleanest water you can find and that is where you should encounter the most stripers.
The Bomber Long A bite is just starting to happen after dark but it is defiantly hit and miss. This bite should get better around the World Series so get out after dark and have the lake almost to yourself.
Target the main lake islands that have wind blowing on them.
The crappie are moving more shallow in the creeks so try trolling crappie jigs on a “lake rake”, which basically means a crappie boat rigged with as much as 12 trolling rods of different sizes so you can stagger the lines.
Start out with different colors, then switch over to the most productive ones that catch fish.
Downlined crappie minnows both during the day and after dark at around 10-to 15-feet on the docks and bridges are working fair.
Trout fishing is fair both in the mountains and on the river. Live bait is working best but make sure you check your local regulations to make sure you are allowed to use it where you are fishing.
Silver inline spinners and silver Rapala Countdown Minnows are working well below the dam. Because of the lake turn over the oxygen levels will drop, so target the areas around the rapids for your best success.