Happy Friday before a Holiday “week” next week. Hopefully, you will get to take at least one day off to celebrate our amazing country AND get in some quality fishing with family and friends.

  • Trout stocking secrets: A little fishy told us about 51,000 trout that headed out of hatchery gates this week to prepare north Georgia streams for holiday anglers! How can you get info? Check the weekly trout stocking list.
  • Slam Tips: Working on your Georgia Bass Slam? Be sure to check out this blog post about How to Catch a Largemouth
  • Safety First: Holidays often bring more traffic to Georgia waters. Boat safely!

Enjoy the following reports from Central, Southeast and North Georgia. We hope you have a safe and happy Independence Day! 

CENTRAL GEORGIA

(Fishing report courtesy of Steve Schleiger, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts) 

Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant  

LAKE RUSSELL IS FULL, CLEAR, 80’S

Bass fishing is still good.  The lake will remain at or near full pool and the water is good and clear.  Getting an early start in the mornings will be best.  Daytime temperatures are rising fast and low 90’s were reported over the weekend.  Top-water baits, Skitter Pops and Chug Bugs, are working early.  Best place to use these baits is around the lay downs and small bushes in 3 feet of water.  Make sure there is a channel or deep water nearby.  The bass and especially the spots are moving up from the deeper, cooler water to feed.  Look for shad activity along the bank and points.  Scan the area for bait schools with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology.  The more bait in the areas, the chances go way up that bass will be close by.  Fish any areas where you see bait fish breaking the surface.  A shallow running Shad Rap in the shad colors will catch the bass in the shallows.  Later in the afternoon, the bass are hugging bottom structure in deeper water.  Carolina or Texas rigged plastics worked slowly will still trigger a bite.  Shades of green and brown are good choices on these rigs. 

CLARKS HILL IS DOWN 1.87 FEET, 80’S

Bass fishing is fair.  A typical summertime pattern is in force now.  Bass fishing has slowed down a bit on the hot, sunny days.  The water has warmed up over the 80 degree mark and fishing gets tough on some days.  Try using different plastics like Culprit red shad worm on 1/4 ounce Texas Rigs.  Fish isolated structure especially wood with this bait.  Slow cranking a number 10 Husky Jerk bait and Number Five Shad Raps on points and the edges of the submerged grass mats is working early in the morning and late in the evening.  Look for shad activity along the banks and points.  Scan the area for bait schools with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology.  The more bait in the areas, the chances go way up the bass will be close by.  Fish any areas where you see bait fish breaking the surface.  Expect to find the fish scattered for the most part.  Singles and maybe a double is all that is coming from one area.  The next few weeks will be the run and gun pattern.  Catch a bass and then move on.  Spending too much time in an area will only be time wasted on the water. 

LAKE OCONEE IS FULL, 80’S

(This report brought to you by Capt. Mark Smith of Reel Time Guide Service) — Lake Oconee is full; the water temperature is 84 to 88. The lake is stained up the rivers and the main lake is clear.  Richland creek is clear.

Bass: Bass fishing is fair.  The buzz bait bite is producing the first hour of daylight.  White and chartreus seem to be the best all-around color.  Keep a trick worm tied on and if a fish misses a buzz bait follow it with the trick worm.  Small crank baits fished in the same areas will also be good producers.  There is also a worm bite under docks and around wood structure.

Striper: Striper fishing is good.  Start looking in the usual post spawn locations, humps and points up the lake up from the dam.  The down line bite has been the best bet and you will need lake shad.  Most of the fish are 20 to 30 feet deep and use the Lowrance 200 and 83 beams to get a lot more coverage.  Look for shad activity along the bank and points.  Scan the area for bait schools with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology.  The more bait in the areas, the chances go way up the bass will be close by.  Fish any areas where you see bait fish breaking the surface.  The umbrella rig bite is also starting to produce on some of the lower lake humps and points.  You can also use the Minnie Mack rig trolled off of points and humps.

Crappie: Crappie fishing is good.  Long lining has been the best producer over the past week.  Any jig color will work as long as it has chartreuse in it.  The fish are deep so you need to make sure you are getting your bait down to the fish.  The best locations have been in the mouths of the creeks and big coves.

WEST POINT LAKE IS FULL, STAINED & 80’S

Bass fishing is fair.  There are small bass roaming the banks.  Look on the ends of points and the drop offs on the lower lake river ledges.  Early there are shallow fish around any wood and cast baits to shadows.  Use a gourd green Zoom u tail worm down lake on a Texas rig and use the brass and glass on the rig for more sound.  Look in the mid-lake half way back in the creeks and hit any dock or on points.  There is a good buzz bait bite midday and add the Zoom Trick worms in June bug to the list.  A Zoom Ol’ Monster worm in the u tail style in red shad or a June bug Zoom Trick worm can be worked slowly on wood and docks.  Use a Texas rig and fish all lures slowly and let them fall.  Never forget to fish a buzz bait in the shallows anytime of the day.  If it is cloudy use a black buzz bait and a silver buzz bait if it is sunny.

LAKE SINCLAIR IS DOWN 1.59 FEET, STAINED, 80’S

Bass fishing is good.  Top-water baits are still producing during early morning on much of the lake.  Most of this action is happening along main river banks and just inside the mouth of coves.  Fish the top-water lures like the Pop R, Chug Bug and Tiny Torpedo.  A few fish are feeding in grass, mostly on mornings when the lake is less than a foot below full pool.  Flukes or buzz baits are working.  Boat houses and docks continue to produce a few fish, mainly using soft plastics and jigs.  Try a 5-inch Senko in watermelon or green pumpkin rigged weightless or with the lightest weight possible.  Skipping a Zoom Trick worm under the docks works well on some days.  Power fishing with a large worm should also be tried.  A Zoom Old Monster or similar worm may not get as many bites, but it may coax a large bass into biting.  Bass are now using a lot of the deeper structures like points, humps, and large flats.  Most often the fish will locate along the sides of these structures where deeper water is close by.  At times, mostly during power generating current flows, the fish may scatter across the top or crown of the structure.  Usually a crank bait is best when the bass are on top.  Some good choices are the Bill Norman DD14 and DD22 and a Rapala DT10 and DT14.  Shad patterns and chartreuse patterns have both worked recently.  But most of these deeper fish are caught using a Carolina rig.  Try Zoom Trick and Finesse worms on a 3-foot leader with a half-ounce weight.  Green pumpkin, red bug and June bug are the best colors.  A jig head and worm can add another fish or two that wouldn’t hit the Carolina rig.  Try a Weedless Wonder head with a Zoom Finesse worm.  A spinning rod and reel with 10-pound Sufix line is best. 

LAKE JACKSON IS .51 FEET OVER FULL, 80’S

Bass fishing is fair and it’s time to head to the river for day fishing.  Current is a real plus up the river and these fish eat more because of the constant water flow.  Be sure to keep a large red shad Culprit worm on a Texas rig ready and a brown or black jig and pig.  June bug and red shad are also Jackson lake favorites for deeper fishing.  Work the drop offs and channel or creek ledges and any sharp drop off points during this time.  Add some scent and garlic is preferred by most anglers.  Long cast and slow retrieves will be the secret on the Carolina rig.  Look for shad presence along the bank and points.  Scan the area for bait schools with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology.  The more bait in the areas the chances go way up the bass will be close by.  Fish any areas where you see bait fish breaking the surface.  Down the lake towards the dam, a darker color jig along with the Carolina rig will be all the baits you will need.  Fish every stump and lay down you can find either on your graph or on the bank.  During the later afternoon, fish the areas that hold the most shade and don’t overlook any of the numerous docks that you come across.  Buzz baits might catch the big bass too.  Most of the docks have man made brush piles out in front of them or on the sides and big bass have been known to hang around here from year to year.  Why not try this lake after dark as well.  Lights on docks draw the entire food chain and try trick worms in dark colors. 

FLAT CREEK PFA (More Information Found HERE)

  • Surface Temperature: 86.5˚ F (30.3˚ C)
  • Water Level: 5’ 8.5” Below Full Pool
  • Water Visibility: 20”
  • Night-time fishing opportunities now through Sept. 30

As the hot days have continued to warm the waters of Flat Creek the fish are slower on the strike and are enjoying the cooler deeper depths.  Those that start fishing early have had good luck catching fish.  Bass fishing has been good for those who have been able to get their lures into that six to seven-foot water depth where the bass seem be hanging out.  The large bream have been biting well during the full moon.  Night fishing for crappie has been great for those using lights and minnows with reports of limiting out each night they were fishing.  Daytime crappie fishing has started to slow down and a little more finesse is required to catch them. 

Bass: Plum colored ‘Ol Monstor worms by Zoom.  Watermelon or Pumkinseed Culprit worms.  Minnows and worms. 

Bream: Crickets or Worms (Red Wigglers and Pinks). Near cover or near the shallower water during a full moon.  Catalpa worms. 

Channel Catfish: Fresh catalpa worms are the go-to bait right now. 

Crappie: Daytime – Jigs (John Deere or yellow and white colored Triple Ripple, or June Bug colored Teaser Tail) and light tackle.  If you are bank fishing, try dangling a minnow right in the corner of the pier to catch those Crappie in the shade created by the pier.  If on a boat, try cover that creates shade (tree tops) or structure (gravel piles).  Nighttime – Lights and minnows

MCDUFFIE PFA (More Information Found HERE)

  • Temperature range is 85.6 – 89.6 ⁰.
  • Water Visibility: 18 – 54 inches
  • The Fish Cleaning Station is open. Please inform MCDPFA staff if it’s not working (706-595-1684).
  • Night fishing started May 1st and ends September 30th. Jones Lake is the only lake open to night fishing on McDuffie PFA.  All parking is outside of MCDPFA main gate at Jones Lake.

Bass: Bass action has slowed down due to hot daytime temperatures! Bass anglers are watching for the bass feeding on shad during early mornings and late evenings and following the bass around Lake Willow.  Several anglers are using finesse worms and fishing them slowly, while other anglers are using jerk baits in shad patterns.  Anglers are using spinners and shaky-head jigs with small worms.  In Lake Rod Bender, the bass activity has been slow.  The trophy bass pond is open year-round and anglers can harvest one bass (22) twenty-two inches in length or longer.  Bass action remains spotty.

Bream: Action is still good!  Memorable bluegill and redear are being caught across the PFA but in small numbers.  An angler has caught a 13-ounce bluegill in Clubhouse.  Breambuster has redear bigger than 10 inches but when they are on beds they are especially spooky.  Anglers are catching bluegill and redear fishing worms on the bottom around structure near the shoreline in Bridge Lake, Jones Lake, Willow Lake and Breambuster.

Channel Catfish:  Catfish are feeding hard early in the mornings.  The catfish action has been very steady with anglers catching catfish in every lake except Rodbender.  An angling family has been catching limits of 2-pound catfish from Jones Lake. Jones Lake is still producing eating-size catfish but no trophy-sized catfish. Speckled-catfish a.k.a. bullheads are in Willow and Clubhouse mainly.  The old 6E that is located on the east-side of Willow also has a good speckled catfish population.

Striped Bass: Stripers action has been slow.  When anglers are catching stripers its usually in Bridge Lake fishing chicken liver on the bottom.  The stripers feed during spring and summer but mostly during low light or cooler periods of the day.

MARBEN PFA (More Information Found HERE)

Bass: July weather patterns often bring afternoon showers that bring sudden changes to bass feeding behavior.  Anglers should look for bass feeding in early morning and late evening on schooling shad.  Anglers have reported a lot of top-water action in the morning especially in Margery, Bennett, and Fox.  Anglers are targeting bass on lay downs in approximately 6 to 12 feet of water in early to mid-morning.  As the day warms up, anglers will target bass in deeper water.  Successful anglers mimic lethargic shad by casting jerk baits and crank baits.   Mid-day can produce some big bass but look for these big fish in deeper water (10-15 ft.).  Remember that Marben PFA is open 24 hours until September 30th.  There have been a few reports of success between the hours of 4AM and 6AM, just before sunrise.  Additional habitat to target is submerged timber and rock beds at Marben PFA.  Anglers need to be patient this time of year.  The water is hot and fish may take a little longer to chase.  Patience is extremely important this time of year due to the weather.  Bass are sluggish and have to be enticed in order to be caught!

Crappie: The crappie continue to be aggressive in early evening, crowded around submerged timber in deeper water.  Anglers should see a slight change as crappie become a little less aggressive as the water warms in the summer months.  Another technique used to catch crappie are boat mounted lanterns which attract bait fish during the late and early morning hours.  Flooded timber is a popular habitat to target and the most popular bait is live minnows and yellow jigs.  Try fishing cover approximately 10-12 feet throughout the day, especially in the evening.  Bennett Lake is the hot spot at Marben for anglers targeting crappie.

Bream: Bream fishing is just slow in July.  Look for the “bite” to continue to drop as late July approaches.  Even with this drop in aggressiveness, bream will remain the most sought after fish on Marben PFA.  Anglers should expect bream fishing to be best throughout the day but a little slow when temperatures get really hot.  Remember bream are shallow when spawning this time of year so to be successful anglers will have to target shallow areas (4 to 5 ft.) in order to increase your chances.  Early morning is a great time to target bream at Marben PFA.

Catfish: Catfish will start to slow a little this time of year.  However, Margery and Fox are producing some nice stringers and are a popular destination for anglers targeting catfish.  Anglers will find catfish in 7-9 ft. of water and most aggressive in the morning and late evening.   Anglers should target days when it is sunny but patience is necessary when targeting these fish.  Catawba worms, livers, night crawlers and stink bait are the preferred choices if targeting catfish at Marben.

SOUTHEAST GEORGIA 

(Fishing report courtesy of Bert Deener, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts)

Pond and saltwater fishing have been tops recently. Full Moon is June 28th. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website HERE.

ALTAMAHA RIVER

Brittany at Jaycee Landing Bait and Tackle reported that fishing for all species is picking up with the falling river. Big bream and redbreasts were caught with crickets. Mullet were thick and caught in good numbers on red wiggler worms this week. The catfish bite (blues, channels, and flatheads) was on fire for limb-liners and rod-and-reel anglers using goldfish as bait. The bigger flatheads were in the 20 to 40 pound range. Donald at Altamaha Park said that some anglers caught coolers full of mullet over the weekend. Last Saturday night, two anglers caught 400 pounds of catfish (flatheads, channels, and blues) using goldfish for bait. Panfish anglers caught big bream on crickets and shellcrackers on pink worms fished on the bottom. The river is falling out perfectly for the holiday week, unless we get more big rains upcountry. The river level was 5.2 feet and falling (88 degrees) at the Baxley gage, and 7.6 feet and falling at the Doctortown gage on June 26th.

SATILLA RIVER

Michael of Winge’s Bait and Tackle in Waycross said that lots of channel catfish were caught by limb-liners using shrimp or rooster livers for bait. Redbreasts were caught in the Highway 158 area of the river with crickets. In the Burnt Fort area over the weekend, catfish anglers caught flatheads, some of which topped 40 pounds. The river level on June 26th at the Waycross gage was 7.2 feet and rising (82 degrees), and the Atkinson gage was 9.9 feet and falling.

ST. MARYS RIVER

The fishing is taking off with the falling river. At the time of writing this, the upper river is at a great level for getting around and catching panfish. Creels of 20 to 25 fish (mostly redbreasts and bluegills) per trip were the norm this week. Crickets were tops. Down-river the big bream were biting pink worms fished on the bottom. Catfish were caught about anywhere you dropped a bait. The river level at the MacClenny gage on June 26th was 5.4 feet and rising.

OKEFENOKEE SWAMP

Buck Johnson made his last trip of the spring to the swamp before switching to the Satilla. He usually fishes from March through May, but the conditions improved and the warmouth bite picked up well enough that he extended his swamp fishing into June this year. On Tuesday he fished on the east side from daylight until 10:30 and brought home 37 warmouth and a catfish by pitching jigs. He lost track of the number of throwbacks he caught, there were so many. Most of his keepers were just a little smaller than his hand, but a few were about as big as his hand. On Friday he fished the east side from daylight until 10am and caught 32 warmouth (kept 25 of them) by pitching jigs. He also had a gar and a softball-sized softshell turtle (that, understandably, did not like him getting the hook out!).

SE GA Carter Barnes 9lb 2oz Bass - IMG_7084
Carter Barnes caught this 9-lb. 2-oz. bass from a Waycross area pond recently. Bass fishing should be great this weekend in area ponds and lakes.

LOCAL PONDS

With the heat of summer upon us, night fishing for trophy bass will pick up. Fish the deepest part of the lake with black buzzbaits. I usually use a black flat blade or quad-blade version with a black skirt. Some nights they have a preference for one or the other, and some nights it doesn’t matter. Chad Lee caught 20 bass on Thursday by fishing a wacky-rigged stickworm in an Alma-area pond. Michael Winge said that in Waycross area ponds, big bream were caught on crickets.

SALTWATER (GA COAST)

Lots of whiting and flounder were caught in the Brunswick area over the weekend. Limits of trout were caught at the St. Marys Jetties by anglers flinging artificials. In the St. Simons area, an angler caught a limit of trout and a couple of flounder by fishing Vudu shrimp. Off the beaches, good numbers of Spanish mackerel were caught on spoons. Tarpon were starting to be caught in the rivers this week. I like to catch them on the beaches around pogy pods or while they are crashing through bait around the St. Marys Jetties. I wrote an article for Georgia Outdoor News about Crooked River State Park  and fishing in the area. Check it out in the June issue if you are interested in the details. Mike and Trish Wooten of St. Simons Bait & Tackle said that the flounder bite is going full-throttle. Finger mullet and shrimp were working as bait for flatties. Trout, whiting, croakers, small black drum, and sharks were also caught. Buckets full of blue crabs were caught under the pier over the weekend. You can monitor the marine forecast HERE.

BEST BET

Bass fishing in ponds should be a great options this weekend. Fish early and late or even at night with topwaters and then slow down with stickworms when the sun gets up. Saltwater shark and tarpon fishing is typically in full-swing around 4th of July, and this year should be no exception. Cast-net some pogies and fish both live and dead pogies on big tackle around pogy pods or structure (such as the jetties) to fool them. Warmouth fishing in the swamp has been consistent and should continue for a couple more weeks. River fishing should be picking up with improving river levels in the Satilla, St. Marys, and Altamaha for the holiday week.

NORTH GEORGIA 

(Fishing report courtesy of Jeff Durniak, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts) 

Welcome to the July 4th Holiday Edition, and congratulations on making it to a little time off from work.  Despite the heat, there are still a lot of good fishing opportunities across north Georgia for your holiday exploits.   On most of our streams and rivers, the flows are finally dropping, after several weeks of high water from Tropical Storm Alberto.  We finally have many more windows of opportunity on those bass rivers and even on the larger trout streams at higher elevations.  Our only challenges now are these pop-up thunderstorms that can quickly drop an inch or more of rain and create chocolate floods for a day or two before dropping back and clearing.  Watch weather radar and USGS river gauges carefully, call local tackle shops for current stream conditions, and have your nearby Plan B’s (small streams and ponds) ready in case your honey hole gets whacked by a passing storm. Although the storms are inconveniences, they sure beat extreme droughts and big forest fires, so be flexible and rejoice in the rain.

Holiday trout stockings are heavy and widespread, as 51,000 trout exit three state trout hatcheries and one federal hatchery, and enter a big bunch of north Georgia streams for your angling and dining pleasure.

The lower elevation trout waters, like Panther Creek, Middle Broad River, and West Armuchee Creek, are starting to heat up with our ninety-degree days and sometimes aren’t cool enough (below 70 degrees) for a weekly stocking, let along good fishing.  Avoid them and go higher or below a real big dam to find cold water and eager trout.  The trouting intel below will point you toward success.

Small lakes should be good, especially early and late, as they should not host the boating traffic that our larger reservoirs are known (notorious?) for on the holidays.  On the big lakes like Allatoona, Hartwell, and Lanier, the bite is best and the boater conflicts are least early and late in the day.  Watch the latest scoop from actual fishing guides in Ken Sturdivant’s Southern Fishing Report and learn all about lake stratification, below, to put your bait or lure at the correct depth for your finned summer targets, which tune in to temperatures!

Enjoy the photos and let the following hot leads send you and your kids toward some great holiday fishing trips.  Here we go with this week’s edition of GAWRD North Georgia Guide Services, courtesy of your fishing license and TU Tag dollars:

TROUT

Holiday Trout Stockings: GAWRD trout stocking coordinator John Lee Thomson said that 51,000 trout will head out the gates of state and federal hatcheries this week to prepare north Georgia stream for the holiday angler onslaught.  This number beats the fairly hefty count of 39,000 trout stocked last week.  Grab a kid, an ultralight fishing outfit, a tube of crickets, and jar of powerbait and head to the mountains next week.

Best bets: Hooch Tailwater, Blue Ridge Tailwater, the mouths of small, cold feeder streams to our trout-stocked lakes, Holly, Rock, Cooper, upper Toccoa, Dicks, Boggs, Frogtown, Hooch on WMA, Soque, Tallulah, Wildcat, Holcomb, and Warwoman.  And for zero crowds, hit one of the smaller, lesser-stocked streams on the weekly list that flow on national forest land (see the interactive trout map).

Website intel: Click HERE 

Glove Box: And here’s a good book for your truck’s glove box.

Reminder – Avoid This Area! Remember to avoid this congested area of the national forest until the holiday week has passed.  You’ll have a better angling experience if you pick streams other than Nimblewill, upper Etowah, and Jones during the next week or so.

Stocker Report: Jeff, I took one of the guys from work to a White County stream last week.  Had a fun time.  Cooler weather up there & not crowded during the work week.  I stopped in your region office & picked up a box of Fishing Regs. Your Secretary was really helpful.  Always a pleasure talking to her on the phone too. Thanks – Jack Becker (Academy Sports, Gainesville store)

Headwaters Wild Trout: Uphill treks for these small, colorful mountain jewels are still a best bet.  Toss a small adams, elk hair caddis, or anything bushy and yellow in a size 14 or 16, and hold on!  Remember that a nine-incher is a trophy, so scale down to a 6 or 7 foot rod and light line to make it a fair fight inside the rhododendron tunnels, where cool air and water will make a wet-wader’s day enjoyable.  Hint-remember the Stimmy Strip technique from our last fishing report. Tips for bluelining HERE and HERE.

Happy zooming: More info HERE 

RIVER NEWS

bass shoal 16in Hooch BS JH 6-23-18smallRiver Bass: Guru and Dredger waded the upper Hooch at midday last Saturday.  Summer floater traffic was heavy and the river bass were too skittish to rise to poppers on the long rod.  However, they were very eager to inhale soft plastics tossed under shady bedrock ledges in midstream or into deeper, bankside runs under shade trees.  The spinning rig that worked well was a short Carolina rig of a 1/16 ounce bullet sinker ahead of a barrel swivel, then two feet of eight-pound fluoro, and then a 1/0 worm hook buried, Texas-style, into the body of a stubby (3–inch) Senko style worm (PB&J color) or a bright fluke-type plastic minnow.  Both were slow-rolled and twitched along the bottom, where the bass still felt safe and hungry, despite the overhead flotilla of innertubes and kayaks. The great soft plastics were a recent tip from Mike, at the fly shop counter at Bass Pro Shops – Lawrenceville.  Thanks Mike! (see Mike for a paper copy of the WRD trout stream map)

River Stripers: When some reservoirs get too hot in summer, and there is not enough oxygenated winter water in their depths to provide summer refuge, many stripers travel on “summer vacation” to cooler upstream waters.  Examples include Coosa and Allatoona (Etowah River) and West Point (Morgan Falls Tailwater).  More intel HERE.

LAKE NEWS

Ken’s Reservoir Reports: Great intel from local guides, fresh every Friday.

Capt Mack’s Lanier Report: This Lanier legend is always spot-on because he’s always on the water.

Nottely Bass: (From WRD fisheries biologist John Damer) – Jeff, Mark and I hit Nottely to collect those spotted bass samples yesterday (6/27). We found a good number of quality largemouth up very shallow, presumably chasing the abundant blueback herring that we found all over the lake.  We got three fish in the 8-lb range before getting pinned down under a bridge for 1.5 hours by relentless popup thunderstorms.  While under there we snapped a few quick pics for you (see attached).  Spotted bass were hard to find, no doubt due to surface temps in the mid-80’s.  Saw some surface feeding early, and I bet anglers could do pretty well right now throwing topwater baits before about 10am.

Find Your Fish with WRD’s Lake Stratification Profiles: You can use these monthly DNR lake profiles, along with your knowledge of the temperature and oxygen preferences of your targeted species, to narrow down your deep summer searches for stripers, hybrids, walleye, and even black bass.  More intel HERE, HERE and HERE.

Rocky Mountain PFA (More Info on the area HERE): (From Dennis Shiley, PFA Manager) – Overall the fishing has been slow at Antioch Lake with the hot weather that is upon us. However, if you can stand the heat and stay with it, the bass can be caught and some good ones are being landed as of the past couple weeks. If you are after numbers, fish riprap and shallow cover, keeping an eye out for bass chasing shad early and late in the day. Use soft plastics and crankbaits for the shallow fish. If you’re looking for a big bite, fish deeper and be patient. Fish around structure in 8-12’ of water and maybe you’ll be lucky like the two fishermen that landed fish in the ten pound class this past week (see pics). A few walleye are being caught on small shad crankbaits trolled over 10’ of water. Catfish are biting cut bait and liver on the rip rap and shallow cover in the mornings. Heath Lake is open the 1st through the 10th of the month and should be outstanding this month. Rocky Mountain PFA is not on the list of PFA’s that you can night fish on. The access ramps are open at sunrise and close at sunset each day. Rocky Mountain PFA fishing guide found HERE.

Lake Allatoona: (Lake Allatoona Fishing Guides Report is provided by First Bite Guide Service of Lake Allatoona) – Water Clarity is 8 feet and surface water temp is 85 degrees.  Lineside fishing is Good! Down-lining shad is still the ticket to catching big numbers. Down-lines fished in the mouth of any creek, creek channel or river channel will get you bit. The water temperature is rising and the dissolved oxygen levels are falling. Bait isn’t living very long on a hook fished deeper than 24 feet. So, make sure you carry plenty of bait with you.  There are two bites going on right now. The first one is from the dam to Holiday Marina. The other one is from the mouth of Kellogg’s to Bartow Carver.  Downing lining Threadfins and small gizzard shad is working extremely well fished 18-24 deep. Any deeper the bait just doesn’t live very long. Trolling is also Good!! The U-Rig bite is finally taking off. We are starting to see multiple hook-ups on our trips. I am fishing my rigs 120–150 feet behind the boat at speeds of 2.4–3.3 MPH. The rig bite should be on fire by the end of next week.  Live it up. Go fishing!

Happy holiday, everyone.  I’m sure glad my grandfather took his long boat ride away from communist Russia and toward Ellis Island.  With great pride, he earned his citizenship building battleships in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.  Because of his American dream of long ago, I now have this chance to work and to fish in paradise.  God bless America, its great natural resources, and its abundant public lands.  Boy, do we have it good in this country!

Tight lines this weekend.  Don’t forget your cameras and your raincoats!