Lake Allatoona water levels have risen rapidly this past week, and just like that there was water in all the creeks again! The heavy rains ultimately brought us above 844 feet today
(4+ feet above full pool and rising) and with it, all the debris you would not hope for. Generation is scheduled to begin tomorrow (Thursday) from 3-8 p.m., in case you wondered "when" the ACOE would start pulling. Water temps are rising thanks to the influx of warmer waters from upstream. These have been marked as high as 55 even with the colder air temps, and low 50's will be prevalent lake-wide.
There is no slowdown on the striper and hybrid bite for the dedicated angler. The fish activity is naturally a little up and down with the barometer and other fluctuations, but we even caught some pretty decent linesides when the barometer tanked into a recent weekend and brought some nice fluffy snow with it.
Downlines have been the most consistent method for hook-ups with threadfin shad and medium shiners as well as small to medium gizzards getting the bite. Placing your bait at the correct depths is important and a line counter is as practical as tires on your trailer. Depth ranges can often vary and electronics will typically tell the tale. 17' and 22' are typically good depth ranges to be at when scouting or trolling from hole to hole. Active fish may be seen at 35-40' down or you may find the fish in less than 15' of water, even this time of year. While there are some decent depth standbys, looking outside of the norms on any given day could put you in an ideal position to catch fish that others could easily pass by.
Both casting and jigging with a Flexi-spoon, Steel-Shad or bucktail with trailer has produced fish, and sometimes this method will out-produce live bait. This can often happen in instances where fish are spread out and covering more water proves beneficial, as well as when they are stacked and more easily enticed by a dancing flash. Conversely, sometimes the water conditions and fish activity call for a very slow-moving presentation. Sometimes we just drop into them with a small spoon or even a 1/16 oz jig to entice the bite.
With similar results, a small A-rig can outshine the live presentation in many situations. Again, fan casting while working a point or break can help to easily locate active fish and then a decision to move in with live bait can be made if preferred. Do not discount the effectiveness of such a tool. At the end of the day, your fish count could be doubled if you are simply willing to work at it with a rod in hand. Not to mention there is such an awesome feeling when the bump comes on an artificial you are working.
The Spotted Bass and Largemouth bite has been quite fantastic. We are catching a slew of these critters both on live bait as well as artificial presentations. They will chase and strike that small school of shad represented by your A-rig. If I had to go out today and fish a tourney, you can bet that A-rig is being worked continually in my hands, and with confidence. They are eating and know that their spawn is soon upon them.
The Crappie bite has been quite decent overall. Trolling jigs behind the boat has proved effective especially when water conditions of limited top-water debris are found. Pitching a small jig (or tiering 2-4 of them) on light line (4-6#) has been our favorite method as we like to feel the bump when possible. These fish can still be targeted in and around structure such as marinas and brush piles as well as bridge abutments. Their spawn is upon us and these fish are definitely staged up in the creek channels and over flats just looking for a nice jig or minnow-tipped jig to cruise by them at around 1mph.
Now, let’s go fishing! If you choose to not go it alone, or simply want a day to be catered to and soak in some new spots and techniques, please reach out to us. Your Adventure awaits. Tightlines, friends.