Fishing is HOT right now, and that is super cool! Staff with the Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division is excited that so many people have seemed to use this time of social distancing to renew their love for the outdoors.
News to Know:
- Get Awarded for Fishing: Want to get rewarded for fishing? We have several different types of programs: Angler Award program (categories for youth, adults, big fish at state Public Fishing Areas and Trophy Bass), the Georgia Bass Slam, and the state record program. Be SURE to read all rules for each program (especially about getting certified weights and/or correctly measuring the fish) and send in your entry with all requirements met!
- Using Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) during COVID-19? Be SURE to dispose of it properly. Click HERE for more info.
- Hatchery Harvest: They are wiggly and slippery! Brood catfish are being harvested at the Cordele State Fish Hatchery! Hatchery staff pair together male and female channel catfish weighing between 3 to 9 pounds in individual spawning pens. Once the catfish lay their eggs, the egg masses will be moved into the holding house for hatching. The goal is to produce approximately half a million fry to help meet the state’s stocking goals for fingerling, intermediate, and harvest-able channel catfish. The catfish produced will be stocked in Kids Fishing Event ponds, PFAs, and water bodies across the state.
This week, we have reports from Central, Southeast and North Georgia. Read on, make your notes from all this info, and then Go Fish Georgia!
(Fishing report courtesy of Steve Schleiger, fisheries biologist and Central Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts)
Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant.
LAKE RUSSELL IS DOWN .33 FEET, 70’S
Bass fishing is fair. Use the Zoom’s Creepy Crawlers in motor oil on the up-lake and the river points. A few top-water fish will hit a gold black back bang a Lure early and late. Try the Zoom Trick worm in centerline yellow. The down-lake fish are biting any small blue worms or blue crank baits on the points and humps. The lake is still very clear so use light line. The Zoom pumpkinseed lizard is fair using a long Carolina rig and a full one-ounce weight cast to points. The small Stanley buzz bait is fair up the rivers in coves. The Champers football jig with a green pumpkin Zoom trailer will work. If the fish are picky on the larger baits, try Booyah Baby Boo jigs 3/16 ounce black and blue and Bankroll jig 3/8 ounce.
CLARKS HILL IS 1.78 FEET OVER FULL, 70’S
Bass fishing is fair. Bass are feeding on the long points at mid-day. Check the docks and wood and the fish are after small baits. Start out with any blue and silver top-water stick baits. Small Chug Bugs in all chrome or blue and chrome will work and make the baits really churn up the water. The Zoom u tail worms on a Weedless Wonder lead head with these colors especially green and pumpkinseed worms are catching the spots. Point’s cuts and docks are good all-day locations and the fish have been fair even under the high sun light in the middle of the day. Old boat houses and docks are still holding fish especially and find the brush with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology. Ride by points and old docks with this technology before casting to them. Have a pearl Zoom Super Fluke tied on all day and use it everywhere the boat stops.
LAKE OCONEE IS FULL, 70’S
(This Lake Oconee fishing report is by Captain Mark Smith of Reel Time Guide Service) —
Bass: Bass fishing is good. The temperature is 77 to 82. Richland Creek and the main lake are clear but up the river is stained. The shad spawn is still going on but slowing down. Spinner baits fished on sea walls and bridge rip rap along with small crank baits fished in the same locations will produce at first light. Soft plastics fished under docks in the middle of the coves will produce some good fish. If there is structure under or around the dock it will increase your chances. Carolina rigs fished on points have also been producing.
Striped Bass: Striper fishing is good. Live bait, shad have been working on down lines all over the south end of the lake. Find the schools off from points and humps on your Lowrance and drop a lively shad to them and hang on. Some trolling action is also happening in the same location. There is a good spoon bite in the afternoons when Georgia Power is pulling water as well as a strong umbrella rig bite at the same time.
Crappie: Crappie fishing is good. Shooting docks has been very productive over the past week. The summer down line bite on top of timber and brush piles has produced large numbers and sizes over the past week. Find the fish in the tip of the timber with your Lowrance down scan and drop a minnow or a jig into the school and hang on.
WEST POINT LAKE IS FULL, CLEAR 70’S
Bass fishing is good. Find any bait schools in the coves and there will be bass close by. Midday the fish are holding on points in 8 to 10 feet of water. They are feeding after the spawning season. Several good baits are a green pumpkin or June bug lizard rigged Carolina style and trick worms. There is good top-water bite going on back in the creeks. Go to the backs of the lower lake creeks and use buzz baits Pop R’s and Zara Spooks and keep moving as the spawning is over. The Champers Football jig and green pumpkin and a Zoom trailer is a good choice. Cast the Booyah Baby Boo jigs 3/16 ounce black and blue and Bankroll jig 3/8 ounce. Hit the banks and the button bushes and use the spinner baits and the Bang O Lure Rapala or Pop R’s.
LAKE SINCLAIR IS DOWN 1.75 STAINED 70S
Bass fishing is fair. The shad spawn is still going on and the early morning bite is super, but you need to be on the water at daylight. Look for the hard shoreline like riprap or a seawall made from rock stone or rock in front of any seawall. Look for the shad flipping on the rock and fish right along on top of them with a buzz bait, Shad Raps or a Rat L Traps. The Yamamoto 4-inch Swim Senko Green Pumpkin and 6-inch Pro Senko and Yamasaki can work. Midday use a Rapala Rip Stop albino shiner and a Spro McStick. Once the bite has slowed just back off a little and use a small crank bait while fishing the same area for the next hour or two. Boat houses and docks are still holding fish especially those that have brush and located very near deep water. Ride by the docks with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology and these machines can see the fish before casting to them. A sinking worm worked around the docks and shoreline will bring you a few good fish during the day. Working a Texas rig worm around the docks will also get you a few bites.
LAKE JACKSON IS .62 FEET OVER FULL, CLEAR 70’S
Bass fishing is fair. Down-lake is fair, but the river fish are a little more active. The bass are off the river points and stump rows. Flipping a dark Zoom U tail on a Texas rig on wood and brush very tight to the bank and river structure can draw a strike. Later in the day try casting or flipping the river docks and shallow bank with a small Zoom motor oil lizard. Main lake docks and sea walls are fair; cast a buzz bait early and late. Try the Texas rigged red shad and green pumpkin worms on the docks. Use the lightest weight possible and the bass can strike the lure as it falls. A black Jitterbug can get a big bite and use heavy line on both lighted and dark docks after dark. There is a major feeding period this week right in the middle of the day. The best bet for fishing is to head up the rivers to beat the heat.
FLAT CREEK PFA (More Info HERE)
- Surface Temperature: 78.3˚ F (25.7˚ C)
- Water Level: 14” Below Full Pool
- Water Visibility: 25”
- Flat Creek PFA Fishing Guide
Catfish and bream have been biting the best right now. During the cooler hours of morning and evening the fish have been more responsive. During the heat of the day the fish are sluggish with their strikes. Those fishing in deeper, cooler water are still having success even in the hotter parts of the day. We will hopefully have less visibility in the lake as the algal bloom continues. As you notice the visibility diminishing, a switch in baits to darker colors will be a better option for all fish.
Bass: Junebug, or Watermelon Zoom Trick Worms, Watermelon Zoom Centipede worms, fished shallow (2-3’) and silver spoons, and lipless crank baits fished in 6-8 foot of water.
Bream: Worms (Red Wigglers, Glow worms, and Pinks) on a Carolina rig.
Crappie: Bobby Garland Glitter Critter (fished 6-8’). Red &Black Hal-Flies (5’ of water). The Crappie fishing has slowed down considerably during the day, but during the night, minnows off the fishing pier have worked well.
Channel Catfish: Chicken livers tied with sewing thread and then placed on the hook will prevent the fish from stealing the bait and has proved very successful. Worms fished on a Carolina Rig.
MARBEN PFA (More Info HERE)
- Water level: All ponds are full.
- Water Clarity: 18” – 36” depending on plankton bloom. Fox Lake is not fertilized and has a visibility of >36”.
- Surface temperature: 72 – 80 degrees. Cooler late spring nights have maintained lower water temps, especially in the larger lakes. However, temperatures will most likely increase rapidly in June.
- CEWC Fishing Guide
Bass: Largemouth are still in the shallow’s early morning and after daytime temps fall in the late evening. They will surely be moving to deeper water as temperatures increase. The shad are schooling early morning and late evening in the larger lakes. Look for bass busting shad schools and choose a bait or lure that mimics and shad. Early morning and late evening topwater are a go to also. Rubber worms (wacky style) and lizards work well as they can be fished in a variety of depth and presentations.
Crappie: Few crappie are being caught this time of year. However, there are a very few anglers that have figured out how to catch summertime crappie by trolling jigs in deep water.
Bream: The bluegill and redear bite is on. Wax worms, pink worms, and small grubs with spinners (Beetle spins) are a sure bet. Just find out where the fish are by fishing different depths of water and placing your bait at different depths.
Catfish: Several anglers have figured out that the channel catfish in Fox Lake bed in the riprap on the berms. Use livers or night crawlers.
(Fishing report courtesy of Bert Deener, fisheries biologist and Southeast Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts)
Full Moon is June 5th. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website HERE. For the latest marine forecast, click HERE.
The big muddy is just that – high and heavily stained. Most anglers didn’t do much, except for catfish. The backwaters and tributaries produced some good whiskerfish on limb lines. A couple of anglers floated one of the tributaries of the Altamaha in kayaks on Friday and caught several decent redbreasts and a giant, purple-cheeked bluegill on Satilla Spins. Cracklehead crawfish and chartreuse bruiser were their best colors. The river level was 9.4 feet and falling (75 degrees) at the Baxley gage, and 9.4 feet and rising (77 degrees) at the Doctortown gage on May 28th.
The Satilla basin got up to 6 inches of rain this week, and the water rose and muddied. Before the rains, I heard several good reports of anglers flinging crawfish Satilla Spins in the upper river. A couple anglers reported fishing the middle river with marginal numbers but good size on their redbreasts. Chuck Deen fished the upper river on Wednesday and had a 2.7-pound bass slam a Capt. Bert’s black buzzbait. The extreme upper river should be in pretty good shape this weekend. The middle river is fishable, but it’s relatively high and still offcolor. Take note of the Highway 158 Bridge landing being closed due to construction of the replacement Hwy 158 Bridge. This will affect anglers fishing that upper river area, so plan accordingly. The river level on May 28th at the Waycross gage was 7.7 feet (75 degrees) and falling after rising to almost 11 feet earlier in the week. The Atkinson gage was 6.7 feet and rising.
ST. MARYS RIVER
Kyle Higginbotham caught an impressive stringer of redbreasts, bluegill, and warmouth on Sunday morning from the Traders Hill area. Bottom fishermen did well for catfish by putting worms or shrimp on the bottom. Shady Bream Tournaments held a panfish tournament out of Kings Ferry over the weekend. These are the results. 1st Chris Beasley and Alen Hodges with 7.53 pounds; 2nd Daniel Gullion and Darrell Goodwyne with 7.14 pounds and big fish 1.05 pounds; 3rd Dale and Emma Anderson with 6.67 pounds. The next tournament is June 20th out of Traders Hill. Check out the Shady Bream Tournament trail on Facebook for more information. The river level at the MacClenny gage on May 28th was 2.5 feet and rising.
The bass bite was good in ponds again this week. Chad Lee caught about 20 bass during the holiday week. His biggest was a 5-pounder, and it was fooled with a big senko. He also caught them on Keitech Crazy Flapper crayfish, Rat-L-traps, and Lunker Hunt Phantom Spiders. The bream bite was solid for anglers throwing artificials and pitching crickets. An angler caught some nice bream on rainbow-colored Satilla Spins. Ben Warren put it on a bunch of big shellcrackers this week. Some crappie were caught by anglers spider-rigging minnows in the deepest part of the pond this week.
The adjusted refuge and Okefenokee Adventures hours at the time of writing this are 7am to 4pm (closed Mondays). Okefenokee Adventures will also provide take-out lunches at the café during lunch hours (check their website for the latest details- okefenokeeadventures.com). The warmouth bite was solid for anglers fishing early. The bowfin bite picked up some for anglers flinging in-line spinners. Alex Crib caught 5 jackfish around 18-inches and some bowfin from the east side boat basin, by casting crawfish Dura-Spins. On the west side, the catfish bite was the most consistent. The water level is still good for getting around, and the yellow flies still aren’t too bad yet in the main canals. I usually let the yellow flies have the swamp in June, but I might give it a try this year with the higher water level (I’ve heard that exposed mud is an important part of the yellow fly life cycle – and the prairies are inundated this year).
OCMULGEE PUBLIC FISHING AREA (near Hawkinsville, more info HERE)
A few crappie were caught this week, but the bass fishing was tops. Most anglers caught a couple 4 to 6-pounders. The best bite I heard of was an angler who caught fish up to 8 pounds. Bream bit crickets and worms for bank anglers fishing over the holiday weekend.
SALTWATER (GA COAST)
On Friday, a couple Waycross anglers fished the St. Marys Jetties and landed a redfish, 2 trout, 8 black sea bass, and a couple other fish. Bucktails and Jetty Jigs rigged with Sea Shads produced their fish. On Sunday, Ed Zmarzly and Justin Bythwood fished the Crooked River area and landed 6 trout up to 25 inches. Spinnerbaits and live baitfish produced their fish. They caught 6 black drum to 15 inches on dead shrimp. Two redfish (1 keeper) ate their spinnerbait and mudminnows. Clint Williams fished this weekend in the St. Marys area and kept 3 flounder (one was a 4-pound doormat), a sheepshead, and 10 whiting. They also caught some bull redfish at the end of the jetties. Live shrimp worked best for them. 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 Jim Hakala, fisheries biologist and Northwest Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts)
Lake Lanier Bass Report: (Courtesy of Jimbo Mathley www.jimboonlanier.com) — LAKE LANIER IS .70 FEET OVER FULL THE MAIN LAKE AND CREEKS ARE STAINED & 70S. Bass fishing is good. The majority of our fish this week have come from 15 to 20 feet of water. We have focused mainly on secondary points for the majority of our fish. Brush in 15 to 25 feet is holding more fish and there has been some decent schooling action this week. Top water has been our main pursuit this week and will continue to be for the next several weeks. Walking baits and flukes have been best for us recently. It is about to go crazy out there!
More Lanier Bass: (Courtesy of “Academy” Jack Becker) — I fished Lake Lanier again this week and didn’t really expect to do very good. Not the best conditions. East wind 10 to 15 miles per hour and light rain off and on all morning. We started on the main lake points and hazard markers that were good to us last week. After several hours we only had 2 Spots for our efforts. Both fish came on top water baits. We changed our game plan and moved to off shore brush piles in 20 to 25 foot of water. Most places we fished had high waves, but when the wind let up just a little bit it was game on. Not every place held fish, but the ones that did produced multiple fish and we went back later and caught more fish at the same location. We threw quite a few different baits. Same as always-small swimbaits, under-spins, Sebile’s, jerkbaits, Shakey Heads and top water. We caught a total of 14 Spots and 3 Stripers. Unlike last week when we caught our fish on jerk-baits and small swim baits, top water baits produced all our fish. At one brush pile, where we saw quite a few fish on our downscan, several fish came up for our topwater baits when the bait appeared to be surfing in the waves. Big Whopper Ploppers and big walk-the-dog style baits with rattles gave the fish something to key in on worked great.
Lake Hartwell Report: (Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant) — LAKE HARTWELL IS 1.58 FEET OVER FULL, 60’s. Bass fishing is fair. There are a variety of baits from a wide range of depths. Throw top water lures and spinner baits during early morning and late afternoon. Pop R’s and similar type baits have worked well along main lake docks and rocky points near the mouth of coves along the main river runs. Buzz baits, spinner baits, and weightless Trick worms are catching a few fish from grass and blow downs. A few shad are still spawning near the upper end of the rivers. Cast the Rapala Rip Stop albino shiner. For a fast shallow bite try the Strike King Rattlin 1.5 and square bill sexy shad. Keep moving and use a wide variety of baits to draw strikes. Use a ¼ ounce Rat L Trap, Super Flukes and small crank baits. Boat houses and docks are still holding fish, especially those that have brush located very near deep water. Ride by the docks with the Lowrance Structure Scan technology and these machines can see the fish before casting to them. Soft plastics are usually the ticket for fishing docks. Carolina rigs retrieved along the sides and front of docks have produced well recently. Try a Zoom Trick worm on a 2 foot leader with a half-ounce weight.
Lake Allatoona Linesides: (Courtesy of Robert Eidson of First Bite Guide Service) — Lineside fishing is great. The bite has been incredible! Both ends of the lake are fishing equally well. Shad and shiners fished on down lines 18 to 24 deep on the river and the creek channel’s has been our best bite. If live bait isn’t your thing, trolling is working well too. Umbrella rigs pulled a 100 feet behind the boat at 2.4 miles an hour has been working almost as well as live bait.
GON-tel: lineside topwater frenzy
Carters Lake Report: (Courtesy of Carters Lake Guide Service) — Had an absolute blast with some incredible clients/friends over the past week. We are catching striper & hybrids over a 50-75ft bottom using live bait on down-lines 40-50ft deep. For spotted bass the shaky head/Neko rigs are working well on main lake & secondary points. Also, fish are starting to randomly school on the surface throughout the day. Topwater lures & flukes are an excellent choice to have on hand should surface opportunities present themselves.
Lake Weiss Report: (Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant) —
- Bass: Bass fishing is fair. Some Bass are still on the bed and some are off. Jigs and spinner baits are working well around the grass beds. The Spotted Bass are doing well on deeper structure and the creek channel ledges and the Carolina rigs and crank baits are working well.
- Striped Bass: Striper fishing is fair. Some fish are starting to be caught in the upper Chattooga River on live shad.
- Crappie: Crappie fishing is fair. The fish have spawned and are moving to deeper cover near the spawning areas. Try spider rigging with live minnows to catch them.
Yonah walleye record (From Region Supervisor Anthony Rabern) — During the rainy mist of Thursday morning, Austin Sellers was fishing on Lake Yonah when he hooked and landed a new lake record walleye. The fish tipped the scales at the 7.5 pound mark. Congratulations Austin and thanks for sharing your story with us. Got you thinking about walleye fishing? Here is a guide to Georgia “glass-eye” fishing to get you pointed in the right direction.
North Georgia Mountain Lakes: (Report courtesy of Dave Pedone, Follow the Son Guide Service) — Getting out early and covering water was the trick to catching walleye this past weekend. Walleye are roaming early in the morning looking for small perch to feed on. Find the perch and you will find a walleye on the prowl. The two walleye pictured topped 27 inches in length. It’s heavy boat traffic season, so everyone please be safe and don’t let that discourage you. Angler Ford Beard holds a nice NE GA mountain lake walleye he recently caught. We also noticed that young Ford was sporting a nice Youth Angler Award ball cap. Way to go Ford! Learn more about Georgia’s Angler Award Program HERE.
GON-tel: Mountain lake mixed bag
Lower Etowah Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) — The Etowah River is fishing well right now. Striper fishing is in early season mode and winding up. Break out the 9 and 10 weights and beef up that leader! The spotted bass fishing has been phenomenal. We’re catching fish on poppers, big frog patterns, batifish patterns, and articulated flies, so you can fish how you want for the spots right now. I like taking a couple rods rigged with different lines for the technique you’re fishing: a 7 weight with a floating line and an Umpqua Swim Frog, mouse pattern, Boogle Bug, or Flat Fred, an 8 weight with a full sink or intermediate, and a 9 weight rigged with a full sink for the Striped Bass. All of the lines we’re running from now through the summer are tropical core. Make sure you check the flow out of Allatoona Dam, as they’re spilling water continuously all summer and will raise or lower the levels for flood control rather than generating a standard high and low flow.
Lower Pool Park is Now Open: Yes, we ran this last week, but it’s worth mentioning again. On Saturday, May 23rd, the Corps of Engineers at the Lake Lanier Project office re-opened Lower Pool Park (west). DNR has resumed stocking of rainbow trout on the Lanier tailwater as these public access locations have been re-opened. After a two-month breather on fishing pressure, expect good fishing opportunities at Lower Pool Park and along the Lanier tailwater this weekend!
Upper Hooch and Bluelines: (Courtesy of angler Bob Lux) — I’ve neglected my duties a bit over the last two weeks, but I have gotten out each mid-week hitting the Hooch in Helen. I haven’t been out since the tubing has opened, but prior to the “pink tube” hatch, the river had been fishing really well in town. Egg flies and brown mop flies have been the ticket. They have also been all over my jig headed wooly bigger. Swinging this fly and giving it some jig strips has really drawn the attention of the stockers. These fish aren’t river educated enough to rise to a dry, so those efforts have been futile with that.
To change gears, I went a bit old school on a blue line. Thinking along the lines of elk hunting and the northern slopes being cooler, I looked to a northern flowing stream. The logic in this is the northern sides of mountains getting less direct sunlight during the day while a southern slope just sit and cooks all day long. I’ve fished this watershed before, but not this particular stream, but some research had my hopes up for a good day. Knowing all the suburban vacationers would be flocking to the mountains for the holiday weekend, I left the house for my 1.5 hour drive before dawn to beat the traffic. I got to the base of the mountain near the confluence of stream X and started hiking. I forgot to download my OnX map for this area before losing service, so I had to trust my memory of the map. Luckily, I was able to grab a bar of service and it confirmed I was on the right track. I decided to drop down in and to my surprise, I had made it 3 miles up to brookie territory.
My plan was to work up to brookies, but ended up starting my day hitting them first. As to be expected, the brookies attacked the dries with ferocity. A size 12 Elk Hair Caddis was the ticket, despite the fish being on the small side. I pushed as far as my patience let me as the stream was fairly choked with mountain laurel and the stream was filled with deadfalls making upstream travel difficult.
I backed out of the land of char and dropped back down the mountain about a 1.5 miles and dropped back down into the river. It turned out I literally found the end of the rainbows and started immediately catching solid wild rainbows. Some of these fish took a small hares ear nymph, but the majority of them took a sized 12 elk hair again. I played around with some Klinkhammers and Stimulators, but they were refused. These fish wanted the caddis despite almost all of the hatches being mayflys.
Before I knew it, the sun was beginning its path down and the fishing had started to slow down, so I decided to call it a day. All in all, I ended up with 6 brookies and well over 20 wild rainbows. I missed out on getting the slam as I never did touch a brown. There were rumors of browns in this stream, but I cannot confirm. I almost forgot to mention the stream name. The name is…
Toccoa Tailwater Report: (Report Courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) —The Toccoa Tailwater has been fishing well. Float trips have been the best option on weekends, as public access points have been hammered the past month. If you can swing a weekday wade or float, I would highly recommend it! You may see Sulphurs, Light Cahills, and Tan Caddis out on the river as far as hatches go, so keep a dry fly rod handy with a 9 foot 5x leader. For subsurface rigs, I’m fishing long dry-droppers with a large, buoyant dry fly up top like a Fat Albert or Chubby Cherynobyl and dropping either a Pat’s Rubber Legs or a large TungStone off the back at about 1.5x the water depth. If you’re comfortable with a third fly, add either a small caddis pupa pattern, lightning bug, or a sulphur mayfly nymph off the back of the stonefly. If you don’t want to fish three flies, try a smaller dry fly like a Parachute Madam X in orange or yellow with any of the subsurface flies listed above dropped off the back. I’m fishing a lot of 4.5x Trouthunter or 5x Fluorocarbon for my droppers.
More Blueline Fishing: (Courtesy of Retired Fisheries Supervisor Jeff Durniak)–Bluelines still a best bet due to good stream flows and hatching spring bugs. Any small, buggy dry fly will work. Suggestions: Adams, caddis, and cahills.
Small Streams Report: (This report courtesy of Cohutta Fishing Company) —Small streams in the area are stabilizing from the rain earlier. Right now, it’s hard to beat a good pair of wet wading shoes, a cup full of yellow dry flies, and a short 3 weight on these mountain streams. I like rigging a single yellow stimulator or parachute x with a small pheasant tail soft hackle. If you want to chase some relatively larger stream trout, take some small chubby cherynobyls or larger beetle patterns with a small pat’s rubber legs dropped off the back. Stay back off of pools, bring a couple spools of 5x and 6x just in case the trout get finicky, and don’t wear bright colors! If you keep an eye on tailouts of bigger pools before you step in them, you may even get some sight fishing opportunities!
GON-tel: Small stream trouting success
Trout Stocking: (From Trout Stocking Coordinator John Lee Thomson) — The stocking trucks continue to roll. Consistent rain over the past two weeks will have trout highly dispersed from traditional stocking locations. During these periods of high flows trout will often hug the bank. Read the water and look for areas where trout can rest out of strong currents waiting to ambush prey. Cast above these areas and allow your bait to drift into the slower water. If you do not get a strike after 3-5 attempts move slowly up or downstream to the next pool or eddy.
High Water Trouting Technique: (Video Courtesy of Pautzke Bait Company) — Nice video showing a high water flow trout fishing technique. Video shot at Amicalola Creek near Dawsonville, GA.
Before They Were “Stockers”: (From Hatchery Manager Josh Tannehill) — In addition to stocking trout, our hatchery staff are busy growing next year’s crop of stockers. Pictured is tank of 2-3 week old rainbow trout fingerlings at Summerville State Fish Hatchery. These young upstarts are fed a high protein diet and should reach “stockable” size (10 inches) in about a years-time. The next time you lay eyes on these fish, they will be considerably larger and may be swimming in the waters of your favorite fishing destination.
Want to do more to support trout fishing in Georgia? Consider upgrading to a Trout Unlimited license plate this year. Aside from being a great looking tag, each purchase or renewal of a Trout Unlimited license plate directly supports Georgia’s trout conservation and management programs. Hatcheries and wild trout efforts both benefit from the trout tag.
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