Current Lake Allatoona levels are at 851.5 feet. While this is well above full pool of 840 feet, we still have a margin of 10+ feet before it is considered a true flood level per the ACOE. The Corps is pulling at full generation today (and yesterday) and the water levels could level off and even drop a little barring any unforeseen precipitation this weekend. Surface temps hover in around 51-52 degrees lake-wide though warmer waters can be found further upstream in the Etowah and Little Rivers. Waters are quite stained from the Delta to Bethany bridge. Some cleaner water can be found in the pass through to Glade area and again stained waters in the major creek arms of Tanyard and Clark.
The fishing has been just what we expected for such a fine fishery as Allatoona. The fish are simply spread out and even into the trees where rising waters are bringing all the worms and grubs and such into the reach of the little fishes' mouths. But they are still hungry!
-While down-lining is still a productive method for the Hybrids and Stripers, we have had some great success in fishing the pockets in between trees for all species of fish. This is not to overlook the point breaks and cove mouths where we were lucky enough to find some good hybrid and striper schools this past week. Free-lines with medium shiners and threadfin shad proved quite effective for secondary hookups while we were pitching into pockets on the shoreline with smaller livebait as well as small crankbaits. On one excursion this week we landed 6 species (no cats) and even netted threads and gizzards in a 4 hour trip. The prize that day was a 4 lb. hybrid with enough spirit to test the drag. No monsters, but tons of fun on a rainy day.
-The Spotted Bass are all over the place. We have fished and hooked up with schools of them in the stained and muddy waters just below the S-turns all the way down into Tanyard Creek. They really like this little DT-6 Rapala we had finally tied on to the line for a test run though I would imagine if you are targeting them specifically that a myriad of baits and techniques could be found effective.
-The Crappie are scattered, at least on the North end where we targeted them a week ago with just a few hookups and the slowest day of fishing aboard our boat this winter, but we still caught some :) While we were trolling where cleaner surface waters allowed after a few windy days, the better technique on days as such would have been working the marinas for resident fish as well as pitching into the trees in the backs of creeks.
Stay safe out there. Be mindful of your surroundings as many of the reef markers and other tethered buoys are just below the water surface and there are still some nice campfire logs and other debris creeping above and below the surface. This is the time of year where they feed on unsuspecting boats. Your life vest is definitely best utilized on your body instead of a random compartment at all times, and no less so when you may be the only one on the water and your rescuer is yourself and common sense.
Tightlines and Godspeed on your adventures!