Lake Lanier Fishing Report September 2017

Lanier: Level: 5.6 feet below full pool. Temp: Mid 80s. Clarity: Stained in the backs of the creeks and clear on the main lake.

Stripers: Good. Guide Mike Maddalena reports, “We caught fish this week with live bait, Ben Parker spoons, umbrella rigs and lead-core line. There is an abundance of bait in the lake this year, and the fish are picky and can be difficult to get to bite. We have been experimenting with lighter 8- and 10-lb. test and longer 12- to 15-foot leaders. Having your drag set correctly is critical when using the lighter leaders. We recommend you use 12-lb. test leaders 6 to 8 feet in length. If you want to experiment, rig up a downrod or two with lighter line and longer leaders and compare success rates. While you can catch the deeper fish on herring, your baits are going to die pretty quickly if you put them below 45 or so feet. When you get over a decent number of fish, power reeling either a herring or a Ben Parker spoon will get you a few extra fish. If your Lowrance unit supports CHIRP, be sure to use it.  You can often see all four of your downrods on the screen at the same time. If the bait bite slows, we switch over to trolling either single jigs on lead core or umbrella rigs. There are fish in two types of locations—the creek and river channels being one and pockets and drains, either on the main lake or in the mouths of the creeks, being the other. The creek-channel fish can be anywhere from the creek mouths to one-third to one-half of the way into the back. The umbrella rig works well fishing areas like pockets that require a lot of quick turning, versus lead-core line that is 280 feet behind the boat and is better for trolling the channels. We use umbrella rigs consisting of a 3-oz. frame and nine 1-oz. Captain Mack’s Chipmunk Jigs with white or chartreuse 4-inch shad bodies. Set the umbrella rigs 130 to 150 feet back, and troll 2.8 to 3.2 mph. The Lowrance Outboard Autopilot is a great tool for helping you troll. The ability to have the boat steer itself while you are fighting a fish or re-tying a line is a huge benefit. You can have the auto pilot follow an existing trail, courses you create using Lowrance mapping software or any location you select on your chart/map. Things should remain the same through September. Orr Creek, Two Mile Creek, Six Mile Creek, Shoal Creek and Big Creek are all good places to start your day.”

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