Lake temperatures are range anywhere from the upper 70’s to lower 80’s. Lake Lanier is two feet below full pool at 1,069 feet. Lake Lanier is clear on main lake and stained in the creeks. The Chattahoochee River is clear. Check generation schedules before heading out to the river at 770-945-1466. Sunrise happens at around 7:23 a.m. and sunset is around 7:39 p.m.
Bass fishing keeps picking up and boat traffic continues to diminish so get out and fish! The lake seems much calmer, the bass are eating a variety of baits and fishing has been steady for the past few weeks.
In fall, the bass start to migrate back shallower and they make a move into the creeks gorging themselves on shad, blueback herring and crawfish. The lower air and water temperatures have made for some very active fish. This can be great if you can stay with the schools.
The bass that are chasing herring can come up in an area and then reappear at 50 yards away just a minute later. Knowing where the underwater brush piles and structure features are located is key to catching these offshore schoolers.
I have been using the larger SPRO 125 Salty Dawgs and Super Spooks because the blueback that the game fish are targeting are 5-to 8-inches long. The big schools of bass we have been seeing in the past weeks seem to be in smaller groups, but there is still plenty of action both on top and below the surface. We also caught several good spots on swim baits like the 6-inch BBZ1s and larger Sebile lures in natural shad colors.
Other lures are working well, so keep your options open. Junk fishing is a term for using several different lures and patterns, and this may be the way to go right now. I have spoken to some anglers that have caught some very good spotted and largemouth bass with jigs and pigs this week, and the bass are eating crawfish which these lure mimic.
Drop shots, Jig head and Texas rigged worms fished around the docks in the creeks and pockets have been producing some good bass, and this pattern should get better as the weather cools.
Striper fishing is very good, and as with the bass, several methods are producing well. I spoke with my friend, Bill Carson, this week and he says they did well in last week’s striper tournament by trolling large soft plastic lures on Lead Core set out to nine colors. Other anglers say trolling is working very well, but that down lined bluebacks are also producing very well.
If you are having a hard time catching stripers right now, consider hiring a reputable guide. This can quickly accelerate your learning curve.
The crappie are deeper in the brush and docks at around 20 feet during the day, and they are very catchable if you can stay over the school.
Drop small crappie jigs, Micro Spoons and down lined crappie minnows over these dead brush. As dusk approaches, some crappie are moving shallower and they can eat all night long. Set out lights around the bridges or fish lighted boat docks after dark with crappie jigs or live minnows at anywhere from 5-to 15-feet deep.
Trout fishing remains very good on the Chattahoochee and in the mountains. The Department of Natural Resources is really stocking the river for the Kids Event coming up next weekend. The DNR welcomes everyone to check out the Free Kids Fishing Day from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 25 at the lower pool just below Buford Dam off Buford Dam Road. This will be a fun event for all kids 15-and-under and there will be helpers on hand to assist parents and children. Bring your own rods, if you have them, or they will have a few loaners on hand. They will also supply bait, drinks and food. An adult must accompany kids and life jackets are recommended.
Bank fishing is good. Fish a live minnow or even a live night crawler 2-3 feet below a bobber to catch bass, stripers, brim and even catfish. Depending on the fish’s mood, you can often remove the bobber and add a little weight and throw these same minnows and worms out on the bottom to catch these same fish when they are inactive.
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. He would love to hear from his readers so please e-mail him at email@example.com or visit his website at aldrichfishing.com. Remember to take a kid fishing!