September 13, 2014 | Lake Lanier Turnover Approaching
Cooler days will bring some big changes in fishing as we begin the transition to fall. The lake begins its yearly “turnover” process once the water temps dip below 80 degrees. Prepare for some changes in the fishing patterns as surface temps begin to dip.
Lead core trolling has been the most productive pattern in recent days, pulling the Captain Mack’s Chipmunk jigs over creek channels and the river channels have been producing some good catches.
View my Leadcore Tips Video Here
1, 1.5, or 2 oz. Chipmunks are all good choices. The size of the jig does not seem to affect the bite, but it does determine the depth. As a general rule, the 1 oz. jig will give you about 3.25 feet of depth per color, the 2 oz. Chipmunk jigs will go about 4 feet deep per color. If you feel you need to go deeper, just switch to the larger jigs. Tipping the jig with a live Herring can be a plus, and the Blue/Chart Chipmunk has been a good color choice on Cloudy Days.
Once you locate enough fish to Drop the Live Herring, be diligent about checking/changing your live baits. It is not uncommon during this time of year to encounter areas where the oxygen levels will be low enough that your bait will not survive more than a few minutes. Herring are excellent live baits, if they are in good condition. If you’re on the fish, and you are not getting bites, keeping good frisky bait on the hook can be essential.
Bass fishing is good, brush is the most productive structure and the bite revolves around the 25 to 30 foot brush piles. Start out with a moving bait cast over the brush. Top waters are a good choice, I really like the Super Spooks, but other top waters such as a Sammie, Top Dog, and Chug Bugs are also very good choices. If the fish don’t respond to the top waters, start working you way down through the water column. Something like the Fish Head Spin or Captain Mack’s Game Changer fished 8 to 15 feet right over the brush may get the bite. If that does not work, send old Faithful, the plastic worm, down into the pile and if a fish is there he will respond quickly. Rig the worm Texas Rigged, Drop Shot, or on the Weedless Wonder shakey head.
There are some surfacing fish to be had, but they are very inconsistent. Nonetheless, keep that same fish head or Game Changer rigged and ready in the case that they pop up in casting range.
Crappie fishing is marginal, probably good for this time of year. Bridges at night are still accounting for some decent catches. The fish may be deep, 25 to 30, so stagger your baits until you find the magic number. If you can’t stay up to do the night shift, go up into the rivers and search the 20 to 30 brush piles until you locate fish. Popeye’s and live minnows should fill the live well with keepers to warrant a fish fry. Expect Crappie fishing to improve in the next few weeks as the water cools!