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Lake Lanier fishing report: Never leave active fish
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Lake temperatures are in the high 60s and low 70s. Please be very careful out on the lake over Memorial Day weekend, as it will be busy out there. The lake is down 13.2 feet at 1057.8 and 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.

Bass fishing is very good right now. This is the time of year when run-and-gun power fishing is in full swing. The term run and gun means fishing many different spots in a day. To do this efficiently you need to know the lake well and have a predetermined route with productive spots. We often make 20 to 40 stops in an eight-hour day. Fish the main lake points and secondary points in the creeks with fast moving lures like a big SPRO Dawg 125, buzz bait, larger swim baits, jigs or a Fish Head Spin. Make five to 10 casts on each spot and if there is no action move on. By doing this you should eventually get on a productive area where the fish are biting. When you find an area with active bass, fish it completely before moving on. Never leave active fish. This type of fishing isn’t for everybody. If you prefer a more relaxed pace, then slow down and fish dropshot rigs, finesse worms, smaller crankbaits and topwater plugs in the creeks and around docks for some decent action. If you are taking the kids fishing or if you just want to ensure that you catch a few, use live medium minnows (available at Hammonds Fishing Center) and place these 3 feet below a float. Make sure you use sharp Gamakatsu Hooks.
Striper fishing is also good. The topwater activity is happening. Use plugs like the SPRO Dawg, Zara Spook or even a Red Fin V-Waked on the surface around main lake points and also in the lower lake creek mouths. The strikes are usually vicious and that’s what makes this type of fishing so much fun.  Fish main lake points near the river channel even if there is no activity on top. These stripers will seem to come out of nowhere to crush a top-water plug. Live bluebacks on a flat line early in the day are producing well.

After the sun gets up, switch over to a weighted down line. Always pay close attention to your Humminbird electronics for the clouds of bluebacks and any arcs that appear around them. Place your down-lined baits slightly above where the fish appear on your finder as stripers will move up to get a bait but they seldom move down.

Crappie are finished spawning and they are really relating to the deeper docks toward the backs of the creeks. Due to the lower-than-normal water levels this year a lot of the brush piles are high and dry. Some dock owners have moved the brush out deeper and these areas will be your best bet as crappie love to bury into wood cover during the day. Fish from 5-20 feet deep with live minnows, jigs and Crappie Spoons.

The Department of Natural Resources is still stocking the Chattahoochee River with plenty of trout. Continue to use worms, salmon eggs, corn or Berkley Power Nuggets (where permitted) on a large split shot and a small hook. Rooster Tails or Rapalas on 4-pound test are my go-to baits almost year round as you can probably tell from these reports. Fly-fishing with dry flies is getting better.

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. I would love to hear from our readers so please e-mail me at or visit my website at Remember to take a kid fishing.

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