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Lake Lanier fishing report: Stripers, bass moving deeper
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Lake Temperatures are in the lower 80’s and the lake level continues to rise. Presently we are around 1,066.8 feet, which is 4.2-feet below a full pool of 1,071 feet.

Lake Lanier is clear on the main lake and slightly stained in the creeks. The main lake and creeks will become stained around the edges on the weekends due to lake traffic.

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

Bass fishing is good and the early summertime patterns are working well.

Get out away from the banks and find the deeper offshore areas where structure and cover combine in 20-35 feet of water.
Structure and cover are frequently terms confused with each other in fishing.

The term structure in fishing means typographical elements or a change in bottom contour in the lake like humps, channels, ledges, roadbeds and so on.

The term cover refers to brush piles, submerged logs, aquatic weeds, lily pads, docks, etc. If you have an area where a brush pile (cover) is located on the edge of a ledge (structure) at the proper depth, then it should be an excellent place to fish.

We have been fishing brush piles at 20-to 35-feet deep this week. Proper electronics are essential for finding these deep fish holding areas.

I ride around the big motor while watching my Humminbird 797c to side imaging to locate brush piles or other fish holding cover. Work the surface areas over brush with a topwater plug or swim bait. Topwater plugs like SPRO Dawg 100s, Super Spooks or a Rapala Gun Fish will entice active fish to strike and they will often come up from 20 feet or deeper to eat.

Swim baits like a SPRO BBZ1 Shad or Sebile Magic Swimmer will also work for the aggressive spotted bass.

This time of year bass really start eating live spottail minnows.

Anglers can chum out grits and catch this native baitfish with a small mesh cast net. You can also buy medium-sized minnows if you don’t know how to net spottails.

Check in with Hammonds Fishing Center to get advice on the proper cast nets or to buy live bait. Spotted bass fishing after dark is good with dark colored crank baits and large black spinner baits.

Striper fishing is good and the stripers are moving deeper, just like the bass, into their early summer patterns. Stripers may be located at almost any part of the water column so watch you Humminbird Electronics to determine the best depths to fish.

Topwater activity has been a little slower this week but the stripers will still eat a large plug on the surface. Target main lake humps and points in the mouths of the lower lake creeks.

The best method for catching numbers of stripers in these hotter months is live bait.

Use downlined bluebacks midway out in the creeks. Target the mouths of the larger coves at 40-70 feet and set your lines to the level that fish appear on your electronics.

You will need a quality bait holder, and treat the water with ice and salt to keep your bluebacks as lively as possible.
Hammond’s Fishing center will tell you all the details and they also have the latest fishing reports.

Anglers are also catching stripers by trolling in the mouths of the creeks. Use a Captain Mack umbrella rig or a single large SPRO buck tail on a Cannon Down Rigger and work these at around 20-to 30-feet deep and troll at three miles an hour. You can tip your buck tails with a live blueback herring to increase you odds.

Downline live bluebacks and gizzard shad under Hydra Glow Lights in the creek mouths after dark.

Crappie fishing had been tougher during the day but night fishing has been OK.

Use a Hydra Glow or floating light around the bridge pilings and fish a live spottail or crappie minnow at around 15-feet deep. Try tipping a Micro Spoon with a crappie minnow. Cast it out and let it sink down 10-feet deep and reel it very slowly back to the boat or bank.

Get out early in the day for your best trout fishing on the Chattahoochee River.

During the summer months raft and boat traffic really picks up on the river and the trout can become a little skittish.
Up in the mountains trout have been biting all day. Whether you fish in the mountains or on the river, small inline spinners like a 1/8- or 1/16-ounce Rooster Tail or a Yosuri Pinns Minnow will be productive.

Live bait, where permitted, is always a good choice and the smaller red wigglers have been catching fish in the deeper pools on the river.

Eric Aldrich is a part-time outdoors 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. He would love to hear from his readers so please e-mail him at or visit his website at Remember to take a kid fishing!

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