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Lake Lanier Fishing Report: Shallow fishing can yield plenty of bass
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Lake Lanier’s current water level is holding around 1,070.66 or 0.34 feet below the normal full pool of 1,071. The main lake, creeks and rivers are clear to slightly stained with some pollen on the surface in the pockets and banks. The Chattahoochee River is clear below Buford Dam.

Bass fishing is good to very good.

The spotted and largemouth bass are in all stages of the reproductive cycle. Some are prespawn, some are spawning and some are recovering in postspawn.

Pick your favorite method and go catching! You can fish shallow in the pocket around docks and bank cover, in the creeks and rivers or out on main lake banks, points and humps.

Popper style topwater plugs or small zig-zag walking lures will trigger aggressive strikes from bass just about anywhere you can locate active fish. Subsurface swimbaits like a Spro Slow Sink BBZ 1 6 inch Trout or a McStick 110 have been fooling some of the biggest bass.

Finesse worms on a Gamakatsu Alien Head or small jigs like a Strike King Bitsy Bug tipped with a Big Bite Baits Fighting Frog trailer will work well skipped around docks or main lake humps and points.

There are a lot of bass spawning, so it is a good idea to invest in some high quality polarized sunglasses to see these fish. If you are a sight angler, there are some tricks to disperse the pollen. Some pros will put a drop of Dawn dishwashing detergent with a full charge of water into a super soaker and spray it over the nests. You can also throw a tortilla chip into the water and the oil will disperse the pollen.

Crank baits, spinner bait, and even night crawlers under a float will all catch bass in spring so take a kid fishing this week.

The striper fishing is good. There has been a good morning bite out on the main lake around humps close to the river and creek channels. Top water lures will work. Put long herring shaped lures like Bomber Long A, Spro McStick 115 or red fins have been more successful for catching these fish.

Because the striper are in the upper level of the water column. These hard fighting fish will strike live herring fished on flat lines or planner boards. Drag your line baits around the main lake humps and points, creek mouths and even in the mouths of the pockets in the middle of the creeks and rivers. Keep a Spro or Chipmunk Bucktail or medium sized jerk bait at the ready for any schooling fish that can appear on the surface at any time.

Trolling umbrella rigs or Spro McRips at one mph on the same areas as mentioned above can also be productive.

Crappie and bream: Live crappie minnows, red wigglers crappie jigs or small rooster tails can catch a mess of fish for the fryer this week. Panfish are very shallow around docks, bank cover or even in the marinas.

Trout: What can I say except that trout fishing is excellent! Dry and wet flies, spin fishing with inline spinners and small lures or live earthworms, corn or salmon eggs (where live bait is permitted) are all working well.

Bank fishing: You don’t need an expensive fishing reel and rod to catch fish from the banks. Go old school fishing with a bamboo pole with a short line, bobber and a small hook. Add a cricket, worm or piece of bologna to catch bream in local ponds, streams, rivers or Lake Lanier.

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 readers so please email him at or visit his website at or Remember to take a kid fishing.

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