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Fishing report: Trout biting strong from the banks
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Lake Lanier’s water level is 1,070.65 feet, or only .35 feet below a full pool of 1,071.

Lake water temperatures are right around 80 degrees. The main lake is clear and stained around the banks from boat traffic. The creeks are clear to stained.

The Chattahoochee River is clear below Buford Dam. Check generation schedules before heading out to the river at 770-945-1466.

Bass fishing remains good and the majority of fish have spawned but there are still a few fish holding out that will finish the reproductive cycle soon. A lot of bass that spawned early have recovered, making for some fun power fishing.

People ask why some anglers feel that they need a 20-plus foot bass boat with outboard motors in excess of 200 horsepower. The answer is simple: We don’t if we can find the active fish consistently but for the rest of the anglers it helps need to be able to run the lake to find that one school of fish that can change us from zeros to heroes. Quality equipment, including high-end Humminbird electronics. Larger, smoother riding boats with maximum horsepower can also change an average angler into a top contender in local and regional tournaments.

Most lakes in the South have a great active topwater bite first thing in the morning, then again right at sundown. We are blessed on our home Lake Lanier to be able to enjoy topwater action all day. The spotted bass Lake Lanier is famous for can be caught on a variety of lures right now.

The great news is that most anglers are chunking topwater plus over points, humps and brush piles to score some awesome catches.

I like to use a variety of lures to coax Lake Lanier spotted bass into biting on the surface. The first lure I go to is a Heddon Super Spook in bone or chrome colors. The second I would choice would be a Zoom Fluke or Big Bites Jerk Shad.

These soft-plastic lures are deadly when worked on a single of double rig, and retrieved across the surface to mimic wounded or fleeing blueback herring. Other lures like a Cordle Red Fin, Bomber Long A or SPRO McStick can be very effective lures for spotted bass that chase but don’t hit the normal topwater lures than most anglers use. Fish a secret lure that works for you to scoop up fish those other anglers miss.

There are still plenty of shallow bass worth targeting. For many anglers, it is no secret that the population of largemouth bass on Lake Lanier is very healthy and many tournament anglers are finding out that it takes a big kicker fish to get into the money. If you are targeting largemouth bass, then head into the creeks and rivers and start your days casting black or white buzz bait around any cover you see. As the sun rises over the horizon, skip jigs or larger profile shaky head rigs around docks or bank cover. They can produce some five-plus pound catches.

After dark, the bass fishing has been awesome. Cast black Colorado blade spinner bait or dig a black crank bait into the bottom of the rocky banks around the mouths or the creeks.

Striper fishing is good. Most guides are reporting decent action on both live bait and artificial. Dragging flat lines, while casting a surface plug from the front of the boat has been a killer combination.

Start your days shallow and move deeper as the rises in the sky. The topwater action has been incredible at times but this bite can change and disappear. Daily and even hourly adjustments are needed to keep up with the fish.

Rely on your electronics now. They should not let you down. With Side Imaging technology you can scan an area over 200 feet wide. You should easily be able to see the thick blueback herring schools that the stripers are keyed into. Use flat lines while casting a Red Fin or Super Spook from the front of the boat.

Just about every technique will work well right now. Let your electronics tell you whether to flat line, down line or troll. You should be able to catch some stripers right now, if you keep an open mind.

After dark, some anglers have been sneaking out and dropping Hydro Glow lights while down lining blueback herring or a Gizzard Shad around the lower lake marines for some decent action after dark.

Trout fishing in Georgia is as good as it has been in years. The Department of Natural resources has opened the trout streams to year-round fishing.

There are so many methods and places to catch trout right now.

Bank Fishing: Trout streams win the bank-fishing section this week. While many methods of fishing are easier or more obtainable with a boat, this is not necessarily the case with trout fishing. Trout anglers can find very private places where they can catch a lot of trout.

Eric Aldrich is an outdoor writer, marketing specialist and bass angler. Reports are based on personal experience and permission from a close network of friends. Contact him at or visit his website at

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