Lake Lanier Fishing Report September 27 2019
As we enter into September the lake seems to have begun the turnover process and the subsequent ﬁshing conditions that follow are in effect. Fishing is still pretty good, but be prepared to use a variety of techniques, and in the last few days an early start, or a late evening trip seem to be the most productive. The weather looks great, albeit a little on the warm side, but a great opportunity to get out on the lake for some ﬁshing in between Deer Hunts. The lake level continue to drop, we are down .34 feet from last week to 1068.03, 2.97 feet below full pool. The surface temp was 84 as of Thursday evening.
The Striper bite is still good, perhaps a little more sporadic than in recent weeks. You will be able to use one of several techniques effectively, the summer patterns are still viable, with some more typical fall like patterns also being productive. The live bait bite is producing some ﬁsh, and much of the activity here revolves around the High Spots. Target the humps from 20 to 35 feet, you can troll over these areas or present a live bait as well. Down lines and weighted free lines will get you a few strikes around these areas. My colleague Capt. Ron with the Striper Experience, has experienced some good success pulling downlines around these areas using the “follow the contour” feature on his Ulterra, .5 Mph has been the speed.
Keeping the Herring suspended around 28 seems to be the depth they will survive the best. Trolling over these same high spots has also been very good, with the heavier umbrellas being applicable on the deeper humps, and the lighter rigs, even the Mini Mack’s being a good choice for the shallower areas. The ﬁsh may show up on any of the high spots or long tapering points, but often they will be tight to brush so be mindful of that. This pattern is all about saturation, so if you are willing to move enough and ﬁsh at a really fast pace this can be a very good pattern.
The surfacing ﬁsh are showing up fairly regularly now, mostly in the early morning or late afternoon, and I would probably pick that afternoon/evening time frame as the most productive. That does not mean you will not see them throughout the day, so be always looking for surface activity as they may show up anywhere ,anytime. Jigs, Top waters, and spoons are all good choices to cast at the schoolers once you ﬁnd them.
Don’t rule out casting the Mini Mack. We have established it has a trolling bait, but casting it to the schoolers is also very productive. They are generally easy to see right now, many of the schools are big bunches of ﬁsh, and they are really cutting up and moving a lot of water, making them very visible.
Bass ﬁshing is pretty good, but like the Stripers you will have several patterns and techniques to choose from. The surface activity has increased dramatically in the last few days, again mostly early or late, but with some activity throughout the day. Some of these ﬁsh have been fairly shallow, mostly early and late on the skinny water ﬁsh, with other surfacing ﬁsh showing up over deep humps and points. You do not have to physically see the ﬁsh to catch him with a topwater, you will pull some ﬁsh up to the bait by casting over brush, humps or points.
The wind will aid this bite greatly, and as air the temps spike up in the afternoons we have generally had a good topwater breeze. Chug Bugs, Gunﬁsh, Surge Shad, and Whopper Ploppers are good choices and are just a few of the topwater baits that will produce right now. As far as the schooling ﬁsh you can see, if you can get a bait to them they will bite, but they are often singles or small schools and hard to reach.
Try getting on a hump or point where you see this type of activity and cast to any ﬁsh you see, if they are too sporadic just start fan casting your favorite surface bait and you should be able to pull some of these roaming ﬁsh to your plug. Other baits to try in this scenario are jerk baits like the McStik, swim baits, or Spy Baits.
The brush piles in 20 to 35 feet are also holding plenty of ﬁsh, particularly brush on the humps. If you can’t get a bite on the above mentioned topwater or moving baits, the worm should change that quickly.
Drop shot rigs, Texas rigs, or the Shakey heads will all be effective, some worm colors that have been strong lately are the morning dawn patterns, green shiner, and Aarons magic. The worm bite is mostly geared to numbers, that’s not to say you will not catch some big ﬁsh on the worm, but that has not been the recent history. Try casting your favorite jig into the brush, the numbers may go down but the size may go up
Good Fishing! Capt. Mack