Lake Lanier Fishing Report December 7 2018 | Sponsored by Hayes Automotive
The ﬁshing has been good. The weather – well that’s been a bit of a challenge some days. The big swings that accompany the frequent fronts will keep you guessing. Overall the bite is solid. The lake level is solid as well, 1070.49. .51 feet over full pool. An approaching weekend weather system brings the potential for a couple more of inches of rain. In the near term lake levels should stay at or near full. Surface temps are around 53 degrees.
The Striper bite is good and the patterns are really unchanged in recent days. The down line bite has been good. Look in the middle sections of both rivers and on the lower end of the lake. Find the concentrations of deep bait and set up shop there. Look for the bait in the back parts of the creeks and drains. Also try ﬂats beside creek channels over a 40 to 70 foot bottom.
As always, stagger your baits to see if there is a sweet spot, but recently the best bite has been dropping the sinker to the bottom and reeling up a couple of feet. The Herring are producing well, but small Trout and medium Shiners are also good choices. Keep a spoon tied on, not the big spoons that we like to drop in the summer, but a Flex-It spoon or Super Spoon will get the bite if the ﬁsh are grouped up in big bunches.
The umbrella rig bite is very good, and with some big schools of ﬁsh in the roaming the creeks, this technique is accounting for some nice numbers. The pattern here is to troll into the creeks pulling over the boat, or pulling down the banks keeping the boat over a 35 foot bottom. The ﬁsh may be roaming the banks, but generally you will see them when you cross over a point or ﬂat. The Capt. Mack’s 4 arm 9 bait buck tail rig 120 feet behind the boat has been a good combo. The Mini Mack bite that was so strong this time last year is also in play.
You can pull the Mini Mack on a ﬂat line or behind a planer board over 15 to 30 foot humps and points, or anywhere you see birds and ﬁsh working on the surface. What about casting the Mini Mack? Why not, if you see ﬁsh on the surface, the Mini Mack is a really good bait to cast to schooling Stripers. I was fortunate enough to ﬁsh with Capt. David Powell and Capt. Cefus McRae on Watts Bar Lake last week, all we did was cast a Mini Mack all day.
The technique was easy. Find the ﬁsh on the side imaging, then turn the boat into the wind and chunk the rig to ‘em. After the cast, let the rig sink to the bottom ( or count it down to the ﬁsh, a sink rate of about two feet per second). Finally, start a slow retrieve. It’s a great technique. I’ll try and reﬁne it here in the coming weeks. I’ll keep you posted.
Bass ﬁshing is also very good, and as is the case with the Stripers, the patterns are basically unchanged. The deep ditch/drain bite has been strong, concentrate your efforts over a 30 to 50 foot bottom, working the center of the drain or the old creek channel proper. Spoons have been very productive on this pattern. Watch the machine for any suspended ﬁsh. They will take the spoon as well if you can get it to the right depth. Because of it’s density, it is easy to see on the sonar so just reel it up to the ﬁsh and they will generally respond favorably.
Worms and jigs will also be effective on the above mentioned pattern, and your favorite plastic on a Damiki head has been very good. We still have a solid dock bite, docks in 10 to 25 feet are holding ﬁsh, jigs and worms will get the bite. Docks in the middle and the backs in the parts of the creeks are holding ﬁsh. The depth is all over the place and changes with the weather, so factor that in if you are targeting the docks. I am still going to go with the Roboworm/Weedless wonder combo as the best overall producer. Jigs may catch the bigger ﬁsh.
The Crappie bite is pretty good. The ﬁsh are 12 to 25 feet deep, so this is a ﬁnesse bite. If your jig does something you don’t understand , set the hook. Fishing vertically makes feeling those deep bites a little easier. Deeper brush piles in the creeks (preferably near the week channel), deeper docks with brush, and the up lake bridge pilings are all good places to look for the ﬁsh. The water has a little stain in the creek backs. Therefore, darker colors in those conditions may be the better producers. On the deeper ﬁsh, small jigging spoons may also be a very good technique!
Good Fishing! Capt. Mack