Happy Fall Y’all! It’s nice to have a few consistent cool-weather-feel mornings – makes me excited to start planning some fun fall family fishing trips.

News to Know:

  • I like the Night Life: Now equipped with lighting on piers and parking lots, 10 of Georgia’s PFAs are open for night fishing to anglers that hold a Georgia fishing license. Want some night fishing tips, click HERE
  • Don’t Be That Person: Whether you are fishing, target shooting, hunting, or just wildlife watching. If you pack it in, pack it out. Don’t litter! 

This week, we have reports from Southeast, North and Central Georgia. Don’t forget to pack a pole and some gear when you head out to that pumpkin patch this month so you can find a nearby water body and Go Fish Georgia!


(Fishing report courtesy of Bert Deener, fisheries biologist and Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts)

A couple rivers were getting close, but this week’s rains put an end to that. This is another great week to spend time at a Public Fishing Area, a pond, lakes, or saltwater.

Last quarter moon is October 9th. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website HERE. For the latest marine forecast, click HERE.


The upper river is near flood stage. You might find some protected backwaters in the lower river, but the only real option is the Darien area for white and channel catfish. The river level was 13.0 feet (flood stage is 13 feet) and falling (70 degrees) at the Baxley gage, and 10.7 feet and cresting (72 degrees) at the Doctortown gage on October 1st.


The river is rising again, and your best bet (although I would fish elsewhere) is white catfish fishing on White Oak Creek. Shrimp on the bottom is a great way to catch them. The river level on October 1st at the Waycross gage was 7.9 feet and rising (73 degrees). The Atkinson gage was 7.7 feet and falling.


Same as the other rivers – the lower river white catfishing is your only real option this week. The river level at the MacClenny gage on October 1st was 9.9 feet and falling.

DODGE PFA (near Eastman, more info HERE)

The crappie bite was decent, but the bass fishing shined this week. An angler reported catching and releasing 6 bass for 18 pounds on Wednesday. His biggest was a 6-pounder. Artificials fooled his fish, but I’m not sure what style. Hand-sized bluegills bit well this week, as well.

OCMULGEE PUBLIC FISHING AREA (near Hawkinsville, more info HERE)

The biggest bass I heard of caught this week was an 8-pounder, and it was caught (and released) on Sunday. Effort has been high for bass because the bite has been good. The crappie bite has been solid this week. You can expect to catch a nice mess of fish during a trip. Remember bass are catch-and-release……


The kids’ fishing ponds Cup and Saucer will be open to adult-child fishing this Friday through Monday. The ponds are full of channel catfish, so bring your favorite whiskerfish bait. Don’t lay your pole down, though, as a big catfish might pull it in. Most of the fish are in the 1 to 2 pound range, but there are some over 10 pounds swimming in the lakes. Adults must have a child to fish the ponds. The ponds will open at 8:00am on Friday and close at 8:00am on Monday (October 2nd – 5th). Limits still apply, and adults must have a valid fishing license. The water has cooled down into the 70’s, and the fish have gotten active this week. The crappie bite improved with the cooler weather, and bream and catfish were caught, also. The entrance ponds,  and the first couple Horseshoe series lakes have been consistent for both bream and catfish.

Riley (right) who is only 53 inches tall caught this 35 1/2-inch grass carp on Wednesday while fishing in a Brunswick area pond with her dad, Syd. Way to go, Riley!!!!


The bass and crappie bites continued this week. Before the cold front hit, the crappie and bass both fed well. Most of the bass were caught on plastics, and the crappie on minnows fished under a float in the deep areas on the pond. Expect the crappie to spread out into shallower water now that it has cooled down. Catfishing was good this week. Eight-year old Riley fished with her dad (Syd) at a Brunswick area pond mid-week and caught 15 catfish from the bank. They used cut bluegill on 3/16-oz. Catfish Catcher Jigheads. But the highlight of the day was when a 35 1/2-inch grass carp inhaled Riley’s  Fish Food Fly and headed for deep water. She expertly worked the fish to the waiting net and got a photo of her trophy. She also caught a smaller one about 2 feet long that ate the same little fly. I didn’t hear of any great bluegill catches. Most of the folks reporting to me this week only caught a few per trip.


The swamp water level is still high, and the fishing is slow. If you still want to go, your best bet is to cast an in-line spinner down the middle of the canal for bowfin or pickerel (jackfish) or put a shrimp on the bottom for catfish. The water level is still in the mid-121 foot range (I like it in the low 120 range for the best fishing).


The weather and tides were much more cooperative this week than last. I heard back from a couple people who fished the St. Marys Jetties on Saturday, and the bite was slow for them. They only managed one redfish (a 26-incher) on bucktails and plastics rigged on jigheads. Scout Carter and a friend fished the St. Marys Jetties and ICW on Saturday. At the jetties they had one keeper black drum using dead shrimp on a Redfish Wrecker Jighead (4/0 model) and a keeper flounder that ate an artificial. Fishing in the ICW, they ended up catching 10 seatrout (2 keepers). Plastics under an Equalizer Float was key for the trout. The bull redfish bite has been good on the sandbars. Cut mullet has been the ticket. Jim and Garrett Page fished off a Brunswick dock and landed a couple sheepshead, a couple black drum, and a few of the biggest croakers that Jim has caught in years. It was a short trip, but they caught enough for a nice supper. Expect the inshore bite to fire off big-time after this cool snap. When the trout start schooling up, it’s an absolute blast (when you find the school!). For guide trip information, call Capt. Greg Hildreth at (912) 617-1980 or check out his website.  Check with the Jekyll Island Fishing Center (912-635-3556) for the latest on the Jekyll Island Pier or St. Simons Bait & Tackle (912-634-1888) for the latest on the St. Simons Pier.


(Fishing report courtesy of Anthony Rabern, fisheries biologist and Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts)

This week’s cool, sunny weather is a welcomed change from the recent flurry of tropical storms and rain. Although water temps are hovering in the low to mid-70s, most fish are still holding onto their summer patterns. From my perch this week on the bow of a DNR electrofishing boat, I’ve noticed that the cooler weather has brought about a big uptick in angling activity on our North Georgia lakes.  The cooling surface temps are bringing more stripers and hybrids to the surface during the morning hours.  In fact, some striper anglers were catching fish just 100 yards away from me while I was launching the boat on Wednesday morning at Hartwell Dam. Those fishing for crappie seemed to be targeting bridge pilings and docks over deep water near creek channels. Bass anglers are targeting the long, rocky points on the main channel and working the creek ledges that drop into the main channel on the lower end of our large reservoirs. With all the recent storms, the new blowdowns are starting to draw in some big bass on the outer margins of their submerged canopy. These big fish are waiting to ambush unsuspecting bream and minnows passing by.  We even noticed an increase in the consumption of crayfish by largemouths.  I realize that catching fish with an electrofishing boat is very different than with rod and reel, so here’s what the experts are telling us this week.  The following snippets are from the GON Fishing Report page, so be sure to check it out for more information.  Also check out Ken Sturdivant’s weekly fishing report for more helpful tips.


Lake Lanier:

  • Bass: Guide Ryan Coleman reports, “Fishing is excellent right now on Lanier. The fish are up on humps and points and feeding very well. There is still a great topwater bite right now with chuggers and walking baits, and the bottom bite is coming back to us. Jigs, drop shots and worms rigged on jig heads is working great during the day when the wind lays. As October rolls in, look for windy days to produce a great spinnerbait bite. Work a 3/4- or 1-oz. Mini-Me spinnerbait with a trailer hook quickly over points and humps to draw the big fish up out of the depths. Start with painted blades, then switch to nickel blades if that does not produce.
  • Crappie: Josh Thornton reports, “Crappie are biting under docks that are in 15 to 30 feet of water, so use your electronic charts to locate these areas. Downlining small crappie minnows with bb-sized sinkers and jigs are both producing very well. My jig recommendations are any color and chartreuse!
  • Stripers: Guide Clay Cunningham reports, “The topwater bite has started early this year. As the water temperature drops,

    Nice striped bass shared by Guide Clay Cunningham

    look for the topwater bite to become solid. Be prepared for the surface action with a wide selection of topwater baits. Look for schooling fish and cast right in the middle of them. Concerning live bait, herring will continue to be the primary bait in October. Rig the herring on a freeline, which is basically a 1/0 Gamakatsu Octopus Hook, a section of 10-lb. Trilene Big Game 100% Fluorocarbon and a Spro Power Swivel rated at 120 pounds. Troll the points and shoreline at about 1 mph. This is usually the most exciting month of the year on Lanier. Do not miss it!”

Lake Hartwell:

  • Bass: Tournament angler Kerry Partain reports, “I love this time of year because you can catch them on Zoom Super Flukes, topwater, jerkbaits, crankbaits and a host of other moving baits.  The bass and the bait should be active, and the fishing should be fast and furious.”
  • Linesides: Guide Preston Harden reports, “Hybrid and striper fishing has been slow with bait but good with power reeling and trolling. Power reeling and trolling get the reaction strike that you can not mimic with live bait. Cooling water temps will have a positive affect on the fishing. I will have a Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost minnow ready for the topwater bite that gets going in October.”

Lake Allatoona:

  • Bass: Tournament angler Matt Driver reports, “The month of October is amazing on Lake Allatoona. This is a month where the shad begin to migrate into the creeks, and the feeding frenzy begins.  The water is still warm enough this time of year, that you should use a quick and erratic retrieve with your jerkbait. Getting a reaction strike is by far the best way to catch bass on Lake Allatoona.  During early morning and late afternoon, the buzzbait bite is phenomenal. Fishing around cover in the Etowah River and any bluff walls are the best areas to target for this technique. This is also a great time of year to break out a large swimbait. A 6-inch jointed hard swimbait is a good way to find a trophy largemouth or spot in Lake Allatoona. My favorite fall areas are around the Delta in the Etowah, also in Little River and bluff walls in the Bartow Carver area.”
  • Linesides: Robert Eidson, of First Bite Guide Service,reports, “The topwater bite has been the overall best producer, with trolling umbrella rigs and downlining live bait running a close second. Mid-lake to south has been producing best for the bigger hybrids, but if you’re after numbers, the white bass bite is hard to beat on the north end of the lake. This is the time of year that you need to be universal and not one dimensional on techniques. Any of these methods will catch you fish on any given day. I really look for the bite to pick up in the next few weeks with these cooler temperatures.”

Lake Weiss:

  • Bass: Guide and tournament pro Mike Carter reports, “Weiss has finally started showing some more consistent action with the cooler temps that have finally arrived. The more productive patterns during this time are covering a lot of seawalls and rip-rap areas the first few hours of the morning with Choo Choo buzzbaits and Echo squarebill crankbaits. As the day progresses, going out to main-lake humps and points with Echo squarebills can also keep the action going consistently.”
  • Spotted Bass: Guide Mark Collins reports, “Most bass are on offshore structure and the river and creek channel ledges. Spinnerbaits, Carolina rigs and medium- to deep-running crankbaits are working well. Spotted bass are doing well on main-lake points and the creek channel ledges. Carolina rigs and crankbaits are working well.”
  • Crappie: Guide Mark Collins reports, “The bite is starting to get better. Crappie are on deeper cover in the main lake and bays and on the main Coosa River channel ledges from Cedar Bluff to Leesburg. Spider rigging over brush with live minnows and jigs is catching fish.”

Carters Lake:

  • Bass: Guide Louie Bartenfield reports, “Spotted bass are starting to spread out from main-lake humps and points closer to creek mouths and channel swings. Expect lots of surface schooling throughout the day as we move into fall. Flukes and topwater baits like Pop-Rs and smaller walking baits will be my primary weapons. If you follow wind and bait, you’ll consistently find large groups of spots in October.”
  • Spotted Bass: Eric Crowley reports, “Spots are starting to feed on the giant schools of bait. We have been catching fish with the flutter spoons. Just get it close and let it sink on a slack line. I like the Blue Fox spoons in chrome and green for casting. Anywhere you see bait up shallow is where you need to be fishing.”
  • Stripers: Eric Crowley reports, “Stripers are still holding deep in the creek mouths, but in the last couple of weeks, we have been seeing some fish being caught in 40 feet of water. The hybrids have moved back in the creeks with the bait or into the lower part of the main river under huge schools of small bait. Jigging spoons, Captain Mack’s umbrella rigs and live bait are all good options this month. Take advantage of the diversity of tactics. Worley and Fisher are good starting points.”
  • Walleye: Eric Crowley reports, “The walleye bite continues to be good early in the morning and right at dark. Spoons have been our top producers in recent weeks, even out fishing live bait. We have had some six and seven fish days recently, all on artificial while targeting fish in the 60- to 80-foot range. After sundown, you want flashy and noisy baits. Deep water adjacent to any shallow humps or shoals that the fish use to corral bait are key locations.”

Lake Blue Ridge:

  • Bass: Guide Eric Welch reports, “This month, we should start seeing a lot more shad action with these cooler nights and days, which means it’s time to start your mornings out throwing topwater. My go-to baits have been a Pop-R, a Zara Puppy, a Strike King Sexy Dawg Jr. and a Whopper Plopper. I like to start out around rocky points and flats. Then I’m going to throw the Ned rig with a Z-Man TRD worm or a 3.5-inch tube, while watching my graph. If I see any fish schooled up, I will toss a drop shot down on top of them. After spending my mornings on the main lake, normally by noon I will run up and start fishing the deep, rocky banks up the river with the same type baits.”
  • Spotted Bass: Eric Crowley reports, “Spots are everywhere, literally every point is holding fish from the dam to Point 8. Use your sonar to locate them as some are suspended and some are on the bottom. I like fishing deep cranks and jerkbaits this month. Use the same color choices for the spots throughout the day as I mention for walleye.”
  • Walleye: Eric Crowley reports, “Walleye are moving toward the shallower structure to feed both early and late in the day. Trolling, jigging spoons and casting deep, slow, retrieve baits is the go-to this month as the fish start to transition. As far as baits go, I like bright colors early, then clear, drab colors midday and chrome and gold in the evening.”
  • Perch: Eric Crowley reports, “The perch bite has been good for the last few weeks, and we are seeing some really nice fish in the 14- to 15-inch class. Live minnows, small jigs and small spoons have been productive early in the day.”

Lake Nottely Linesides: Guide Jeremy Seabolt reports, “We have been catching a lot fish from Point 6 to the dam. Fish are holding out over a 50- to 80-foot bottom. The first few hours of morning, we have been dropping herring.  By mid-morning, we switch over to Captain Mack’s u-rigs, pulling them about 130 to 150 feet back at 2.5 to 3 mph. We have also been catching a lot fish on topwater. They are killing a fluke when working it really slow on top. October is always one my favorite times to fish. The stripers will be on a feeding frenzy trying to fatten up for the winter and will start spreading out some. The topwater bite will be on, and it also means it’s time to drag out the planer boards. Don’t forget the Bait Shack on Nottely has herring.”

Lake Chatuge:

  • Bass: Guide Eric Welch reports, “I’m starting my mornings out looking for breaking fish, which is normally around flats or in pockets. The topwater baits I’m using are a Berkley Cane Walker, an Ima Skimmer and a Strike King Sexy Dawg. I just mix them up until I find the magic bait. I have been following up in areas where the fish have been breaking with a 1/8-oz. swimbait head and a 3.25-inch Rage Swimmer. After the morning bite dies down, I will start targeting humps, deep points and rocky banks around these areas. I’m throwing a drop shot with a 6.5-inch Roboworm, a 3/16-oz. shaky head with a 6.5-inch Strike King green-pumpkin finesse worm and a Ned rig with a green-pumpkin TRD worm. If you know where there is brush deep or around docks, throw a 3/8-oz. pb/j jig. As the month goes on, the fishing is just going to going to get better.”
  • Hybrids: DNR Fisheries Biologist, Hunter Roop reports, “In partnership with North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, the Fisheries Section of DNR’s Wildlife Resources Division annually stocks fingerling hybrid striped bass on Lake Chatuge to diversify anglers’ fishing opportunities on this beautiful TVA reservoir. Chatuge’s hybrid fishery (the same one that produced a world record hybrid at 25.5 lbs in 1995) is reportedly fishing great this year, just check out the latest report on page 18 of the Atlanta edition of The Angler Magazine. Target bait-chasing schools of hybrids anywhere from 20 – 40 foot depths, and as the cool fall weather really sets in, be prepared early and late to catch shallow hybrids on topwater or just below the surface. For more information on Chatuge’s hybrid striped bass fishery, fishing techniques, and other available sportfish, check out Chatuge’s Fishing Forecast.

Lake Burton:

  • Bass: Guide Wes Carlton reports, “The spotted bass are still biting the drop-shot rig really well. We haven’t caught the size fish that Burton is known for, but the number of fish has been surprising. We have been working the backs of the creeks in the 13- to 20-foot depths close to grass. The topwater bite has just begun, as well. Keep a Heddon Torpedo or a topwater plug ready for these fish that are on the move and surfacing regularly. The blueback herring schools are everywhere in the backs of the creeks, and the bass are always close to them. This bite should continue for the next few weeks as we transition into a cooler November bite.”
  • Yellow Perch: Guide Wes Carltonreports, “The perch bite has been great the last few weeks. We have caught most of our fish on a drop-shot rig on clay points in the 20-foot depth range. Roboworms have been working the best. Try locating the fish on the electronics and working an area several casts before moving. Just remember when you find one yellow perch, there are several others. Small Little Cleo spoons have also been working well. The yellow perch will start moving up shallow this month and will be easier to catch in the shallows as the water temperatures dive.”


Perspective: In case you’re struggling to land as many trout through the month of October, here’s a perspective from Tom Rosenbauer – “Something seems to happen to trout around the fall equinox. Low water, shorter days, falling water temperatures. In my experience trout almost disappear. Some may move, others may just hide under rocks and logs. But you don’t even spook as many, which to me suggests they are not feeding much (when trout feed they are more likely out in the open so you see them when you approach). It’s a fallacy that trout “feed heavily to fatten for the winter”. Growth rate studies show their feeding slows way down in the fall. They do get more aggressive, especially brown and brook trout prior to spawning, but resident rainbow in streams just don’t feed as much. Your casts need to be more precise as they are less inclined to move a few feet for your fly. In general, stuff is changing and fish are shuffling around, so don’t assume what worked in spring and summer will work in the fall. Play around and experiment!” Find more tips on Orvis’ Podcast featuring Tom Rosenbauer.

From Unicoi Outfitters: Hello October! What color comes to your mind this month? For many of us, it’s orange. That’s true for trout, too! As our larger streams finally cool off, resident trout appetites are restored and fish are on the hunt. One of their favorite fall snacks, often unknown to new anglers, is the October caddis (more info HERE and HERE). These big bugs hatch sparsely, but have trout looking for the high-calorie snacks all day long. Make sure you stock some imitations in your fall fly box. Try a size 12 elk hair caddis with a rusty orange body, or a #12 orange stimulator with plenty of floatant on it. It’s a great attractor, and a very good, buoyant indicator for your trailing # 14 Prince nymph or caddis pupa or larva. Aim your casts at the bankside shade and shadows, where fish feel safe enough to rise during the day. Dead-drift the flies first, but if you have no takers from prime lies, twitch your bugs a few times on the last 2-3 drifts through them. Fall’s chill has thankfully arrived, so grab your light fleece jacket and enjoy fly casting once again on bigger waters. Go soon, before month-ending leaf fall complicates your drifts. Toss some orange at ‘em and see what happens. Remember your net, too, as these big bugs can attract big fish!

From DNR’s Trout Biologist, Sarah Baker: I was happy to see the forecast call for some temperature drops and only a little rain this week. I made plans to visit a stream just after the rain was supposed to let up, but alas, Mother Nature is not one to be told what to do: so I spent the duration of my fishing trip sopping wet. It did prove worth it though (it’s always worth it, just more so when you land a fish)! And, just as Unicoi recommended above, orange was the color of the day! I was using a crayfish pattern and voracious Browns eagerly devoured the crustacean disguise. (see Sarah’s photo).



There are plenty more fishing tips for you to peruse on the internet, but be sure to check out DNR’s fishing forecasts. Tight lines.


(Fishing report courtesy of Steve Schleiger, fisheries biologist and Region Fisheries Supervisor, with help from Region Staff and local experts) 

Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant.   


Bass fishing is fair.  Have the early fall baits ready.  Start the mornings off with a white buzz bait up the rivers on long run out points.  Get the Zoom pearl Super Flukes on a 4/0 Mustad offset worm hook on 10-pound test Sufix Elite line ready too.  Make long casts to the shallow water and work the bait all the way back looking for any bass that might follow it.  Work the points using all angles and this will include throwing to deeper water and working it back to shallow water.  On the same point switch to a four-inch Husky jerk bait in either a blue and chrome or green and chrome and work the same areas that you just worked with the buzz bait.  By mid-day, the Carolina rig with a Zoom finesse worm in green pumpkin seems to be working best when thrown to the sides of sharp points near deep water.  Down-size the weights as much as possible and use no more than 12-pound Sufix Elite line.  The late afternoon is the best time for throwing those crankbaits.  Start after midafternoon with the #5 or #7 Shad Rap in either fire tiger or natural.  Try both colors and fish the points and sides of point’s lake wide. 


Bass fishing is fair.  Try the Shad Raps in shad and the natural perch colors.  Work the first part of the retrieve just like you would a jerk bait and crank it like you would a Shad Rap on the second half.  This will let fishermen know which retrieve the bass are looking for.  Work this bait around the major points and especially around the smaller isolated grass mats near the points.  Zoom pearl Super Flukes on a Mustad 3/0 worm hook will also work on the schooling fish that may not hit a Sammy or a Pop R.  If all else fails, get on any main lake point and sit the boat in 20 feet of water and cast the Carolina rig with a Zoom finesse worm in any color of green. 


(This Lake Oconee fishing report is by Captain Mark Smith of Reel Time Service. 404-803- 0741)–

  • The temperature is 75 to 80.
  • The lake received almost 7 inches of rain from the last storm.
  • Richland creek has a light stain on the very north end to clear on the south end.

Bass: Bass fishing is fair.  The best advice is to slow down and downsize your bait.  The water temperature dropped almost 20 degrees in two days.  We are now 5 degrees below where it was this time last week.  Fish soft plastics around docks and wood structure.  Match your bait color to the watercolor.  You can also pick up a few fish with a spinner bait fished slowly around the rip rap.

Striped Bass: Striper fishing is improving.  Live bait (shiners) have produced some good fish around the river bend area.  Look for the schools on your Lowrance and drop a minnow down to the depth you see them.  Flat lines are also working, with a split shot.

Crappie: Crappie fishing is good. This is the best and most consistent bite going.  The summer down line bite on top of timber and brush piles has produced large numbers and size over the past week.  Find the fish in the top of the timber with your Lowrance down scan and drop a minnow or a jig into the school and hang on.  


Bass fishing is good.  Fish are beginning to concentrate themselves near shallow cover.  A few more cool nights and the lake should really turn on.  Continue to cover water with shallow crankbaits until you approach cover such as a lay down or brush pile.  The best crank bait has been Bandit 200 series in a shad pattern of any type.  Matching the hatch is crucial right now.  On the cover switch to a shaky head rigged with a Zoom green pumpkin finesse worm.  This little worm can truly catch big fish that have been pressured.  A Ned rig and a Fluke isn’t often found 15 feet deep but the baitfish it’s made to imitate are certainly prevalent there.  So try rigging Neko Fluke by taking a nail weight and sliding it into the nose of the Fluke.  Over the next few weeks look to see spinnerbaits and top water come into play with cooler temperatures as these are two patterns that you can begin experimenting with now as the patterns begin to transition into fall. 


Bass fishing is fair.  The fish are feeding early morning.  Shallow fishing and deep fishing later have both gotten better.  More bass are moving to near the back of coves and creeks.  Use a white ½ ounce buzz bait, weightless Zoom Trick worm, ¼ ounce Rat L Trap in a shad pattern, Pop R, Super Spook Jr. and shallow crank baits.  Fish fast and hit any kind of cover.   After the sun rises get on the shady banks.  Dock fishing with lightweight plastics is also working better in the morning.  More fish are also showing up on point’s humps and flats.  Concentrate on or near the drop offs on the side of these structures.  Deep crank baits or Carolina rigs are the ticket.  Normally, cranking is best during power generation and the worm in slack water.  Depths are varying daily from 10 to 18 feet.  Try the Poe’s 300 Norman DD22 and Yo Zuri Crank N’ Dive in chartreuse and shad patterns.  For the Carolina rig use a ½ ounce weight during slack water and a ¾ or 1-ounce weight in current.  Try a 3-foot leader of 12-pound line with a 1/0 or 2/0 Gamakatsu wide gap hook.  Use a Zoom Trick worm in green pumpkin red bug or June bug.  A Ned rig and a Fluke isn’t often found 15 feet deep but the baitfish it’s made to imitate are certainly prevalent there. So try rigging a Neko Fluke by taking a nail weight and sliding it into the nose of the Fluke. 


Bass fishing is fair.  The fish are feeding on the major feeding periods all day.  Be sure to check out the Fish and Game Forecaster for these peak times on our web site.  Fish remain deep on points and humps so use the Carolina rigs with a Zoom u tail in green pumpkin and red shad.  As the weather cools the fish will start to move up and then go to the top water baits on deeper main lake seawalls like the Pop R, the Sammy, or the Zara Spooks.  Bait will begin to move toward the creeks at the beginning of the month.  It will be hard to beat a 1/4 ounce spinnerbait when that move begins.


The fall is a great time to fish while enjoying some cooler temperatures.  The fish also appreciate cooler temperatures and can finally be seen cruising the shallows once again in search of food.  This means that bank fishermen will have a good opportunity to catch fish.  The best dates for catching fish in October should be around October 1st, and October 31st which are full moons or October 16th which is the new moon.  The days surrounding those dates are when the fishermen at Flat Creek have had the most luck catching fish.  Those fishermen that were fishing for bream or bass were most successful when fishing around cover.  The cooler temperatures have also been good for crappie fishing. 

Bass: Try fishing around cover or near the shallows in the mornings and evenings.  During the heat of day, try cover 6’-8’ deep.  Here’s what the successful anglers have suggested to catch bass: White spinnerbait or Flukes. Shad Live Target Swimbaits. Plum or June Bug colored ‘Ol Monster worms by Zoom.  Watermelon or Pumpkinseed Culprit worms.  Shad Colored Crankbait 2.5 diver by Senkos, Mike Bucca’s segmented Baby Bull Shad (by Catch Co.).

Bream:  Worms, meal worms, crickets and frozen Catalpa worms

Channel Catfish: Chicken Livers tied to hook with sewing thread.  Frozen Catalpa worms and uncooked shrimp.

Crappie: Mister Twister Curly Tail Grubs in bright colors.  Strike King Mr. Crappie Scizzor Shad Jig in any of the four available colors.

Nice catch at Marben PFA!


  • Water Level: All bodies of water are at or near full pool with Otter being the only exception.
  • Water Clarity: 18” – 36”
  • Surface Temperature: Mid – Low 70’s.  Temperatures will decrease as the month progresses.
  • CEWC PFA Fishing Guide

Bass:  October will be the most productive month until spring arrives.  Bass feeding will increase this month.  October should mimic spring water temps and the bass will be moving in shallow.  Keep in mind that there can be a huge difference between where bass are in early October and where bass are in late October.  Top water in early morning and late afternoon as well as spinner baits throughout the day should produce many bites.  As always plastic baits are hard to beat.

Bream:  The bluegill and redear bite will depend a lot on how quickly the water temperatures decrease.  October typically maintains mild water temps and as a result the bream bite is not greatly affected.  Red wigglers and wax worms are consistently the bait of choice.

Crappie:  The crappie bite will begin to pick up slowly in October.  Water temperature will determine crappie movement in October.  Margery, Bennett, ad Fox are your best bet for crappie.  Jigs and minnows will be the go-to bait.