With warmer weather arriving in Georgia, fishing is heating up everywhere from seasonal trout streams – which opened March 30 – to deep reservoirs.
According to fisheries staff at the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division, now is the time to catch striped bass in north Georgia. Water temperatures have risen and large stripers are hanging out near the surface at Lake Lanier. Fisheries staff collected a 33-pound striper while sampling Lanier on Monday, April 8, and a 39-pound striper the next day.
The water temperature on Lake Hartwell was 60 degrees on Monday, April 8, just right for stripers to move into shallow water on primary points in coves. Anglers should target colored water and fish the windy side where the bait will be concentrated. The biggest fish collected on Hartwell in the last week of electrofishing weighed 38 pounds.
The hybrid bass run at Hartwell has also started. Fisheries staff have seen a number of large hybrids in the 6 to 9 pound range around the mouth of the Chauga River. Expect these fish to move upstream of the U.S. 123 bridge as water temperatures rise.
For anglers interested in gar fishing, you may find success in the shallows on points and flats in the backs of coves on Lake Hartwell. A lot of gar of have been spotted in those areas. Rope bait might be the ticket for some furious battles with a 3-4 foot longnose gar.
Take advantage of the great weather and introduce someone new to fishing when you Go Fish Georgia this spring!
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- Buy a fishing license
Special thanks to fisheries biologists Anthony Rabern and Patrick O’Rouke for contributions to this blog post.