Info Provided by: Jeff Durniak, GA DNR North Georgia Region Fisheries Supervisor and North Georgia Region Fisheries staff

Caught at Dukes Creek in July.

Caught at Dukes Creek in July.

By now everyone’s probably heard of the new state record brown trout caught in the Hooch Tailwater last weekend. Congrats to that lucky and skilled angler, Mr. Doughty!

There are more big ones out there, so swap your dry fly or corn kernel for a jointed Rapala and try swinging for the fences occasionally.  Skeptical?  Well, take a look at this photo of the state record’s little sister, who recently visited Buford Hatchery.  This submarine, which appeared to be in the ten-pound range, hung around long enough for Hatchery Technician Travis Taylor to take her picture.

Bigger waters with groceries, like the Hooch and Toccoa tailwaters and the Chattooga River, have a very small proportion of very large fish.  They eat meat like stockers, not snacks like midges.   If you want one, you have to aim for them and accept many more strikeouts than homers.  But when you connect, it’s sweet.  Just ask Mr. Doughty.   Good luck, Chippers of the Georgia angling world.

And if you’d rather sit in the stands and watch, there’s a college championship right in our back yard.  Enjoy this week’s news.

BASS College Championship – Happening now on Lake Chatuge, with daily weigh-ins at Young Harris College.

Ken’s reservoir reports

Lanier stripers – Lot of pics!

Allatoona and Carters – Lot of pics!

Stocker best bets – Trouters this weekend should give these stocking destinations a try: Lanier and Toccoa tailwatrs, Little Cedar, Johns, Dicks, Boggs, Cooper, Wildcat, Warwoman, and Tallulah.

Hooch Tailwater“Twenty-six in four hours.”

Toccoa Tailwater – The yakking trio of Volfish, Guru, and Dredger had a great boat ride, but a slow “catching” afternoon last Saturday on the tailwater.  A few risers were caught early, and then a small handful of rainbows and brooks were caught on dry/dropper rigs.  The high sun and hot weather had fish hunkered down.  The bait anglers we floated past had a much better day by working the shadows of the deeper pools.  Our friend, an early riser who was OFF the water by 10AM that morning, said he did great that morning as we finally settled our shuttle and got in the river to fish.  Take home message: the early bird gets the fish. Check generation schedules and tributary rainfall before heading that way; the tribs can muddy-up the main stream and turn off the bite.

Fat specks on fireThis is what happens when north Georgia has a couple of good water years.

Small stream tips

Bear video – Recall my reference in last week’s report.  Here it is, along with an important “PSA.”

Good luck this weekend.  Check the USGS rain gauges on your smart phones, pack some rain gear, and have some state park lakes ready as a Plan B.  While some fisheries may be blown out, others can really turn on.  Don’t believe me?  See the second photo, courtesy of a reliable source who wore a raincoat.   Grab somebody new, buy them a license, and go fish Georgia.  It’s cooler outside, so try it, you’ll like it.