Have you gone fishing as a way to handle the stress of our current situation? If you do – be sure you are heading out responsibly! Choose the time you fish, and the location you fish, wisely in order to cross paths with as few people as possible. Try to take food/drinks/supplies with you versus stopping at stores in order to minimize interaction with others. Maintain proper distancing upon arrival. And maybe, just maybe, you will be fortunate enough to catch yourself a tasty dinner!
In case you missed it, here is some news to know!
- Fishing Bingo: What a fun way to pass some time – great if the kids are with you! Find out more HERE.
- Observe, Don’t Disturb: Reminder to Everyone that might see young wildlife – it’s ok to look, but LEAVE it where it lies. More info HERE and HERE.
- Fishing for Walleye? HERE are 6 Tips for Spring Walleye
Let’s get to those reports. This week, we have Central, Southeast and North Georgia reports. Grab your face mask and your fishing gear, and let’s Go Fish Georgia!
(Fishing report courtesy of Steve Schleiger, Fisheries Biologist and Region Supervisor 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 DOWN .92 FEET, 60’S
Bass fishing is good. Get the shallow baits rigged and get to the lake. Spinner baits are the go-to bait as anglers are depending on them to catch lots of fish. Main lake points are getting a lot of pressure along with some secondary points. If all else fails use the Carolina rig with a Zoom green pumpkin lizard. Shallow crank bait fishing is good early and late in the day or any time the light is low. Increased water clarity will move fish deeper or under docks on a clear day. Deep Net Boy football jigs and shaky head finesse worms will produce. Keep the jerk baits on hand and use them any time of the day.
CLARKS HILL IS .53 FEET OVER FULL, 60’S
Bass fishing is very good. Spinnerbaits in 3/8-ounce sizes need to have the chartreuse and white skirt. This bait is excellent for covering water to find productive areas holding bass on the large flats. A swim jig is an excellent choice for covering shallow heavy cover. Swim jigs in and over the heavy cover with the heavy braid or with the fluorocarbon. Be sure to use a stiff rod. The heaviest the better as the bass are settling into the bigger cover. Keep a green pumpkin trailer on the jig. Soft plastics are excellent and stick worms like Yum Dingers in green pumpkin and June bug are great choices fished along the edges of the grass lines.
LAKE OCONEE IS .85 FEET OVER FULL, 70’S
(The report is by Captain Mark Smith Reel Time Guide Service) —
Bass: Bass fishing is good. The temperature is 67 to 74. Richland Creek and the main lake are clear, north of the 44 bridge is stained. The fish are in the coves and creeks. The middle of the coves is a good starting place. Small crank baits are drawing some strikes around docks. You can now look for fish in the back of the coves and creeks. Small shallow running jerk baits have been very good over the past week. Sugar Creek is a great creek to fish now. The shad have started to spawn on rip rap around the bridges and on sea walls. This is a great opportunity to fish a spinner bait on the sea walls and rip rap at first light.
Striped Bass: Striper fishing is good. Live bait bass minnows as well as shad have been working on flat lines, and plainer boards. The down-line bite has picked up over the past week. Most of this action is on the south end of Richland Creek to the dam.
Crappie: Crappie fishing is good and the long line (trolling) bite has picked up over the past week. The schools are moving into the coves and creeks. Locate the school depth with your Lowrance and troll to that depth. One day they are in 5 feet of water the next they are in 10 feet. Be ready to adjust your baits. Cold fronts are the only thing slowing the crappie bite. It should be very good this weekend.
WEST POINT LAKE IS DOWN 3.0 FEET, STAINED 60’S
Bass fishing is great. Up lake the points and pockets are key right now. Fish are feeding shallow all day. Use a Zoom Trick worn in green pumpkin and a 3/8-ounce ChatterBait in Pearl. Use a Lucky Craft 3/8-ounce spinnerbait in the shallow water and the backs of these creeks. After you locate your fish slow down and use a 5-inch Senko or a June bug 6-inch Zoom lizard. The best areas will be Yellow Jacket Creek, Jackson Creek and the no name pockets up the river. Down lake the fish pattern is similar and use Shad Rap crankbaits and soft plastic worms and search for the buck bass. Zoom white flukes is a great bait to use. Take a Shaky Head and a 1/8-ounce head with a green pumpkin rigged with a Zoom finesse worm and it will come through brush with little hang ups and it works.
LAKE SINCLAIR IS DOWN 1.1 FEET, STAINED, 70’S
Bass fishing is great. The full moon is gone and the bass are hungry. Zoom Super Flukes are working and use the pearl and baby bass patterns and make sure to take the small size in these flukes also. Keitech swim minnows on a ¼-ounce lead head can work and try a fast retrieve. The best all day baits are a spinner bait, a weightless Super Fluke, and the Senko. Fish that don’t take the other baits will often go for the weightless Senko. Use 5 and 6 baits on a 4/0 EWG hook. Rig this wacky rigging for the weedless factor. Fish it just about anywhere but look for docks and shallow wood cover with shade.
LAKE JACKSON IS .70 FEET OVER FULL, STAINED, 70’S
Bass fishing is very good. But be prepared as most of the fish feeding are smaller spots. The threadfin shad all are also shallow and that makes catching numbers easy. Fish the seawalls, any rip rap, sand bars, and wood and of course all the docks. If there is a grass bed close by, throw a Pop R over it. Start with the top water baits like the buzz bait or a Zoom frog. Get on any bank and cover them with a jig head and Zoom trick worm or Texas rigged craw. The best color is green pumpkin. A double willow leaf spinner bait is hard to beat around the shallows and the grass beds. Be sure to fish a chartreuse and white skirt silver blades and don’t forget to add a trailer hook for short strikes. A Senko in green pumpkin fished on docks rigged with no weight will work. The key has been to fish walkways from the docks. This period won’t last long, so make plans to take full advantage before it slips away.
BIG LAZER PFA (More info HERE)
- Surface water temperature: 67°F
- Water visibility: Visibility is about 33”
- Water level: 1” Above Full Pool
In general, April water temperatures at Big Lazer are warming up and so is the fishing. April is one of the best times to fish Big Lazer PFA because spawning fish move into shallower water. Also, spring is a great time to not only fish but also picnic at Big Lazer with the whole family.
Bass: Good- The bass fishing is good now as they have moved into shallower water to spawn. Try throwing spinners and crankbaits at about 4-6 feet of water. Fishing plastic worms and lizards near spawning beds should produce decent bites. You may have luck by locating feeding shad near the banks and throwing a crankbait or spinner in the area.
Crappie: Fair- Crappie fishing has slowed a bit from last month’s peak. However, there are still a few being caught. Minnows are still your best bet. You can also try trolling with bright colored jigs and minnows at varying depths to find bunched up crappie.
Bream: Good- We have had some reports of decent bream fishing lately. They are getting ready to spawn soon so look for beds to fish near. Red worms and crickets are still your best bet for bream. Woody structure and areas near the pier may produce some good bites.
Catfish: Fair- Catfish fishing is improving as of late and should continue to do so. Try using livers or worms at or near the bottom of the lake. Woody structure as well as the rip rap near the dam may be your best bet at a good cat. The deeper water near the new pier may also be a good spot to try.
MCDUFFIE PFA (More info HERE)
- Water Temperature: 74 ⁰F
- Water Visibility: 20 – 54+ in
- The Fish Cleaning Station is open.
Bass: Bass fishing has been hit-or-miss with the temperature swings lately but should be picking up as temperatures rise and stabilize. Nice bass are still being caught throughout the area, but especially in Jones, Willow, and Breambuster Lakes. Lures that imitate small threadfin shad have been successfully catching numerous 2+ lb bass in Breambuster Lake. Beaverlodge Lake isn’t exactly known for big bass fishing, but it may be worth fishing the submerged treetops back there. During our annual fish sampling, several large bass like the one pictured were sampled in Jones Lake which is open to night fishing. As temperatures continue to rise, these fish will be a blast to catch on buzz-baits or jitterbugs at night.
Bream: The bream bite has started to pick up some. Clubhouse and Bridge Lakes have been the best for bream fishing lately, but several nice shellcracker were recently caught in Beaverlodge Lake as well. For large bream, Clubhouse is the lake to fish. Fish feeders at Jones, Beaverlodge and Breambuster Lakes are good spots to try for bream, as well as any structure in deeper water.
Channel Catfish: The catfish action has been good lately. Bridge, Willow and Beaverlodge have been the best catfish lakes. Deep water around the siphon drain structures continue to be good spots. Fish feeders at Jones, Beaverlodge and Breambuster are excellent spots to fish for catfish, too. Remember, the PFA record catfish has not been set. Any channel catfish caught on McDuffie PFA that exceeds 12 lb. will qualify as an official PFA record fish. Please see application at kiosk for details.
Striped Bass: Stripers can be found in Clubhouse and Bridge Lakes. Large stripers have been congregating where the siphon drain flows into the Clubhouse Lake. These larger fish have been caught on crankbaits, swimbaits or umbrella rigs but smaller stripers are consistently caught on chicken livers.
(Fishing report courtesy of Bert Deener, Fisheries Biologist and Region Supervisor with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts)
Wow, how things have changed since I last wrote a fishing report a few weeks back! It has been a traumatic month for all of us. My condolences go out to those who have lost friends and family to COVID-19 and prayers for those still battling it. During Governor Kemp’s stay-at-home order, outdoor recreation is still allowed, and this includes fishing. While it is allowed (within the order’s guidelines of distancing, etc.), there are a few things you can do to make a more enjoyable and safe trip. For one, obviously stay a good distance from folks launching or taking out their boats. I’ve had good success by fishing the late afternoon or evening bite, as most folks have been going earlier in the day. I have fished some high-use ramps without a bunch of folks by choosing a weekday or evening instead of morning on the weekend. Private ponds are also a great place to get away from crowds if you have access to them. Take all your food and drinks with you so you can limit your exposure at commercial establishments. I have fished with everyone in my immediate family during the last month, and we have made some really fun memories and have reduced the stress of sitting on the couch getting on each other’s nerves.
New Moon is April 22nd. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website HERE. For the latest marine forecast, click HERE.
ST. MARYS RIVER
Several anglers reported catching nice panfish from the tidal portion of the river. One person got up in a creek on a busy Saturday and was able to get away from the heavy boat traffic and comfortably fish. They caught quite a few bluegills and redbreasts on crawfish Satilla Spins. Jared Strickland fished the Folkston area and caught a BUNCH of channel catfish along with a few redbreasts and bluegill. The river level at the MacClenny gage on April 16th was 8.9 feet and rising. This will give us another shot at the upper river when it drops back out. Right now spend time in the tidal portion below Traders Hill.
The river was getting about right when we got this week’s rains. My wife and I fished the Waycross area on Friday evening for 3 hours and caught 27 panfish (mostly bluegill, redbreasts, and stumpknockers, but we had a few bass, crappie, and warmouth, also). The only color Satilla Spin we could get them to hit early in the evening was cracklehead crawfish, but they bit the chartreuse bruiser a little bit close to dark. We kept 14 of the biggest fish that were big enough to filet. Our biggest redbreasts and bluegills were over 10 inches each. Chuck Deen has been fishing the lower river lately and catching some nice channel catfish. He has also caught some good bass by flipping green pumpkin plastic crayfish. The river level on April 16th at the Waycross gage was 10.9 feet and rising (69 degrees), and the Atkinson gage was 7.5 feet and rising. The river is too high for good panfishing this week, but you should be able to catch some catfish. The water will be ripping and out in the floodplain at the high river level so be careful if you go.
The post-spawn bass bite has been outstanding in area ponds. You can catch them on about anything you want this time of year. One angler fishing a Blackshear pond reported catching 11 bass up to 4 pounds in just 2 hours of fishing. Pink Trick Worms worked best for him in the shallows. Teddy and Emma Elrod fished a pond and caught 10 bluegill (some were over a pound) and 2 bass by flinging 1/16-oz. copperfield Satilla Spins. Yep, the 4-pound bass ate the tiny little bait, as well. Chad Lee and Daniel Johnson have been doing well for numbers, but the size has been a little small. One trip over the last 2 weeks they caught 50 bass, but most of their fish have been 2 pounds or less. Plastic craws, spinnerbaits, stickworms, and crankbaits have produced most of their fish. Gunner White reported catching a chunky bass on a Rage Craw rigged on a Toad Hook.
The warmouth bite has been the best from reports I’ve received over the last month. Brentz and Alex McGhin and Jim and Garrett Page had a great day chasing warmouth. They pitched crawfish, crickets, and plastic craws to land 58 nice warmouth on the east side. Go early if you are going to target them, as they generally bite best the first hour of daylight. Flier fishing is ok for those pitching pink or yellow sallies, but the numbers haven’t been impressive. Pickerel and bowfin fishing will be good for the next month until yellow fly numbers ramp up.
DODGE COUNTY PUBLIC FISHING AREA (near Eastman, more info HERE)
The Bonvechio family fished the area for several hours on Saturday and had a blast catching panfish. They put worms on the bottom to catch over 30, mostly redear sunfish (shellcrackers), but they also had a few bluegill. They kept 7 of the biggest fish (all over 9 inches) to filet. Bass fishing has been good on the area for anglers fishing plastics on offshore cover and points. Green pumpkin and watermelon-red colors usually work well at the area. Small Texas-rigged plastics will catch plenty of small “bank-runner” bass.
SALTWATER (GA COAST)
I did not hear of many impressive redfish or trout catches, except for one group out of Crooked River that landed about a dozen redfish by fishing dead shrimp on the bottom at a creek mouth. Most of the better reports have been anglers fishing shrimp on the bottom in the St Simons and Cumberland sounds and catching whiting. Whiting have been numerous in the sounds lately and will continue to bite all spring. Check with Mike and Trish Wooten of St. Simons Bait & Tackle (912-634-1888) for the latest on the St. Simons Pier.
(Fishing report courtesy of John Damer, Fisheries Biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts)
Lake Lanier Report: (From Fisheries Biologist Hunter Roop) — There’s rarely a better time of year than now for fishing on Lanier. With water temps in the mid-60s, dusk arriving late at 8, and a falling barometer over the weekend, fishing conditions are excellent! While conducting annual standardized sampling on Lanier this week, Largemouth were hugging the banks and spotted bass were typically cruising shallows in 4’ – 6’ of water. Our best samples for spotted bass were those mid-lake stations with rock outcrops throughout, where the bait were congregating in pockets and the spots were taking full advantage. We observed a number of spots consuming crayfish, so don’t discount a drab craw patterned crankbait or rattletrap this weekend. Many post-spawn crappie are now in 6’-10’ of water around submerged structure, a jig and bobber cast into blowdowns at the right depth can fill the boat this time of year. Lots of fishing patterns are working right now, so just get out on the lake and have some fun!
Lake Lanier Bass Report: (This report Courtesy of Jimbo Mathley, www.jimboonlanier.com ) — Lake Lanier is 1.3 feet over full, the main lake and creeks are stained & 60s. The lake stands at 1.3 feet above full pool and continuing to fall. The surface temperatures have been around 63 degrees, which is a drop from last week and resultant of the multiple cold fronts we have experienced this week. The backs of the major creeks as well as the rivers are still slightly stained, and there is some pollen related stain in the pockets, but overall the lake looks good. The majority of our fish again this week has come from 10 feet or less. You will find the fish are now shallow all over the lake. Points, secondary points, shallow humps, rocks, docks, backs of pockets, they are all holding fish. We are at the point of the year where you can throw practically anything you want and catch fish top water, under spins, swim baits, flukes, and shaky heads will all catch ’em right now, along with plenty of other baits as well. The cold front knocked them back a bit and they are not as willing to chase, but they will still bite. Look for the aggressive bite to return as the weather warms over the weekend. Stay shallow and versatile to find the best options each day, and switch to a shaky head or Ned rig presentation if the moving bait bite is tough.
Lake Lanier Striper Report: (This report Courtesy of Buck Cannon, Buck Tales Guide Service) —Striper fishing is good. We are finding the fish north of River Forks in the coves up the river. You can also watch your electronics and locate the River channel where the major bends or points. I have been using flat lines, planer boards and down lines. Blue backs and gizzard shad are my bait of choice. 35′ behind the boards with split shot and flat lines 80 100′ behind the boat with split shots. Down lines 15 feet to 30 feet deep. Casting the mini Mack has been productive when you see top water action
Lake Hartwell Report: (From Fisheries Biologist Anthony Rabern) — The water temperature is rising quickly on Lake Hartwell with temperatures reaching the low 70s during peak sunshine. With rising temps, fish are also moving into the shallows for their annual spawning event. An early wave of bass are hugging the banks but there are also plenty of bass still holding onto the secondary points. Crappie are holding tight onto downed trees and a few are moving into the flooded grass along backwater areas. This will be a good year for crappie fishing on Lake Hartwell with an abundance of fish topping the 1 ½ lb mark. Bass are not the only fish cruising the secondary points. We have also seen an increasing number of hybrid bass on secondary points chasing threadfin shad. The highest number of hybrids were in the Gum Log Creek arm of the lake.
Lake Hartwell Bass Report: (This report Courtesy of Ken Sturdivant, www.southernfishing.com ) —Lake Hartwell is 0.58 feet over full, and in the 60s. Bass fishing is good. Road beds, points and docks have been the best producers. The #7 and #8 Shad Rap in the crawdad and baby bass patterns are working. Also, the Rapala DT10 in the green tiger pattern also caught especially mid lake and up the rivers on points. Some top water activity is going on in the cuts and bowls and some bass can be caught but don’t expect big fish right now. About a pound to a pound and three quarters are the average size. When it slows go to the Weedless Wonder worm with a green pumpkin worm on the road beds and submerged stumps. Try the Realis V Tailshad 3 and 4-inch for spinner baits jigs Alabama rig and Ned rig too.
Lake Allatoona Bass Report: (This report courtesy of Ken Sturdivant, www.southernfishing.com ) — Lake Allatoona is down 2.2 feet, stained, and in the 60s. Bass fishing is good. Fish are active and can be caught with just about any technique. Use the fluke style baits, Ned rigs and popper style top water baits and cover water. The bite is good most all day but the best times are before 9 am. Pockets and secondary point around Red Top and Stamps Creek seem to be best right now. Have a second rod rigged and ready as the spotted bass are chasing small baits mid-day. An all-white 3/8-ounce Rooster Tail will catch almost anything.
Blue Ridge Lake Report: (From Fisheries Biologist John Damer) — Armuchee staff sampled Blue Ridge Lake this week. The latest cold snap had pushed temperatures back down into the upper 50s in the morning, but they were in the low 60s by mid-afternoon. We found lots of bluegill and redbreast in shallow areas in the backs of coves and in small pockets. Good numbers of largemouth were up shallow too, mainly in debris jams and blowdowns on the upper end of the lake and way up the larger creek mouths. Spotted bass numbers were a bit below normal, suggesting that we sampled a little on the early side to catch their main migration to the shallows, but they are there and will be shallow very soon. We found a couple smallmouth, one of which was a marked fish we stocked last year.
Northeast Georgia Walleye Lake Report: (This report courtesy of Follow the Son Guide Service) — I was able to catch a couple of walleye and a dozen keepers yellow perch over the weekend. This is a post spawn female. That are starting to recover and roaming for a meal (aka small perch).
Small Lake Report: (This report courtesy of “Academy Jack” Becker) — I made a trip to a small pond this week in Jackson County a day ahead of the cold front. There were a few bass nests with fry everywhere and a lot of bluegill nests in the shallow water side of the pond. I was hoping to find a big female still hanging around protecting the fry. I was using Zoom split tail flukes and a Texas-rigged Missile Baits D Bomb. I caught a half dozen small 1 lb. males and was getting discouraged. I was dragging the D Bomb into an abandoned nest when I noticed a swirl behind a tree stump near the nest. I paused and jigged the bait a couple of times. That’s when I saw this 6.75 lb female come out of nowhere and attack the bait. This is my personal best largemouth so far this year!
Arrowhead WMA Lake Report: (From Fisheries Technician Matt Phillips) — The lakes at Arrowhead WMA are open for family fishing, and the bass and bream have moved up shallow, making it easier for little ones to make lifetime memories. Whether it’s catching a first fish or setting a new personal best (like the 8.6 lb bass pictured), Arrowhead WMA Lake is a great place to get some fresh air and enjoy time with the family.
Rocky Mountain PFA Reports: (From Fisheries Biologist John Damer) — Armuchee WRD staff have been sampling the three lakes at Rocky Mountain Public Fishing Area over the last week. Like other smaller lakes in north Georgia, bass and bream have come up shallow to spawn, and we had no trouble finding them. We saw some really nice shellcrackers around a pound, along with great numbers of 4-6 pound bass at each of the three lakes. Rocky PFA has been very busy lately, but there’s plenty of room for everyone to spread out. Just make sure to keep your distance from everyone (especially at the boat ramps) and have a great time!
Lower Etowah Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) — The Etowah River was fishing well for Spotted Bass before the storm earlier this week. Water clarity was terrible earlier this week and they’ve been generating a good bit. If the generation subsides, I would recommend fishing 6-8 weight fly rods with flies imitating small, 1.5-3 inch baitfish patterns like Clouser Minnows, Lunch Money’s, Kreelex’s, and Sparkle Minnows. I like to have an intermediate or type 3 sinking line this time of year so I can get deeper when needed but still fish a little slower.
Hartwell Tributary Report: (This Report Courtesy of Box Lux) — Tonight, we hit up our favorite Hartwell tributary in hopes for another mixed bag venture. As we were approaching our parking area, we turned the corner and saw some heavily stained water. It wasn’t necessarily muddy, but fairly stained. We made the trip and you can’t catch fish from the truck, so we suited up to give it a shot. Water temps were a bit cooler and the flows were a little higher than normal. Well, the takes were few tonight. Nothing better than cold muddy water to shut things down a bit for warm water species. Mr. Twisters were the ticket today as usual in this location in the pumpkin seed flavor. I managed a white bass and a walleye while my daughter managed one walleye. We fished until the normal fish shutdown at 9 and headed home. We’ve filled the freezer with enough walleye this year, so these one went back to get a bit bigger for next year.
Wild Trout Report: (From Fisheries Biologist John Damer) — I took my oldest daughter for her first “real” trout fishing trip recently. We’ve caught stockers several times before, and even a few wild trout here and there, but this was her first time focused solely on wild trout up high in the mountains. She needs to work on her casting, so she acted as my net-man for the day. I think we wound up with 11 in the net before she slipped and fell in, putting a slightly early end to the day. All of them attacked a 14 elk hair caddis. I’m glad to say, she had a great time and can’t wait to go again. Now she wants to learn how to fly fish just like Dad!
Little Amicalola Creek Report and Video: (This report courtesy of Pautzke Bait Co.) — Georgia is stuffed with opportunities to catch trout. Meanwhile, not all stocked waters are ideal for young anglers. Fortunately, Little Amicalola Creek is. Flowing through the heart of Amicalola Falls State Park, the creek is stocked weekly by the Georgia Division of Natural Resources from spring into summer. Learn how to take your kids here and catch trout in this episode of Pautzke Outdoors. Watch the video HERE.
Toccoa Tailwater Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company)— Horseshoe Bend Park and Tammen Park are open on weekdays. Curtis Switch might be open as it is a TVA access point. I would call the county before heading to fish the tailwater. IF it is open, I would mostly prospect with subsurface patterns imitating big stoneflies like pat’s rubber legs and tungstones, followed by a dropper fly like a March Brown Jig, Soft Hackle Pheasant Tail, Holy Grail in olive, or a Rainbow Warrior. I start replacing my strike indicators with Chubby Cherynobyls this time of year, and I would also carry a few dries just in case – Parachute Adams 12-16 (March Browns, Hendricksons), Elk Hair Caddis in Tan 14-16, and Griffith’s Gnats 16-22.
Upper Hooch Report: (This Report Courtesy of Box Lux) — Hit up the Chattahoochee in Helen on Tuesday evening. Flows were fairly stiff yet clear from the rain we had and it could have been about a half of foot lower for better wading. We didn’t have a lot of time to fish, so we got to business pretty quick. The winds were high, so nymphs were on the menu today topped with tungsten beads. We got a handful of stockers on mops, eggs and hot bead nymphs. More natural flies did not produce any strikes and oddly, squirmy worms produced nothing. Soft edges near fast water produced the most fish.
Upper Toccoa Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) — The Upper Toccoa spiked out around 5000 cfs after the rain from earlier this week, but is now back down to 908 cfs. I wouldn’t try wading here until the flow drops below 500 cfs. Sandy Bottoms Canoe Area is currently closed.
Small Streams Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) — Small Streams are possibly still a little high and off color from the storm. I would recommend having a few heavier, bigger patterns like TungStones, Pat’s Rubber Legs, and Wooly Buggers as well as split shot to fish high stick methods in pockets with swift, deep water. I would also carry the gear to switch to a dry-dropper rig if the water level drops and clears. Parachute Adams 12-18 (March Browns, Hendricksons), Elk Hair Caddis 14-16 Tan, and smaller Chubby Cherynobyls followed by an unweighted pheasant tail soft hackle or smaller pat’s rubber legs should produce well.
National Forest Area Closures: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) — If you head through the Chattahoochee National Forest, there have been a few closings in group areas and campsites. I would call the Blue Ridge District office to make sure that the stream you plan on fishing is accessible. The number for their office is 706-745-6928. According to the Chattahoochee National Forest website as of April 10th, all national forest developed campgrounds, group recreation sites, picnic pavilions and all restrooms, as well as many trails, dispersed recreation sites and roads are temporarily shut down. Click HERE for a list of all the closings.
Trout Hatcheries Still Stocking: (From Trout Stocking Coordinator John Lee Thomson) — If you have the opportunity, please take the time to thank all our trout hatchery personnel for working hard during these challenging times. GADNR’s partnership with the USFWS is strong and vital to the success of the trout stocking program. This year alone the Chattahoochee Forest National Fish Hatchery has contributed 56,000 10-inch fish to the Georgia Trout Stocking Program. Find more trout fishing information, including the ability to sign up for the weekly stocking report, HERE.
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