Bartletts Ferry Fishing Report – Sept. 18, 2023

Ronnie Garrison | September 18, 2023

Bartletts Ferry: Level: Full pool. Temp: 80-82 degrees. Clarity: Light stain from Blanton Creek to the dam.

It helps to read the lake reports in GON from Tyler Morgan, of Summerland Outdoors! I had four bass over 4 pounds each in three days of fishing Bartletts Ferry (Lake Harding.) One bass on Saturday was 4.62 pounds and was good for big fish in the Potato Creek Bassmasters September tournament and helped me win with five that weighed 11.15. Had two bass over 4 pounds each on Friday and one on Thursday! The first three hit on the outer edge of water willow beds, but the big one in the tournament was on the back side of a grassbed in very shallow water. My second biggest bass, almost 3 pounds, hit a jig out in 6 feet of water beside a hydrilla clump I spotted on Livescope. Two others I weighed in came on wacky-rigged Senkos fished under docks.

Second place in the Potato Creek Bassmasters tournament had five bass at 10.75 pounds, and he had a 4.10-pounder—bass were caught from grassbeds. Some fish, mostly spotted bass, were caught down the lake on topwater on rocky point and banks, and several club members said they got bites on top all day. Others caught bass down the lake on points with Carolina rigs and around docks on shaky-head worms.

Outdoor writer Ronnie Garrison with one of several 4-lb. bass he caught while practicing for and fishing a club tournament on Bartletts Ferry the weekend of Sept. 16, 2023.

Bass are hitting weightless Trick Worms in water willow beds all day. Most will hit on the outer edge of the beds. Work your worm through holes and cuts but let it fall all the way to the bottom on the outer edge. A little current moving along the grass helps, let your worm drift with it as it falls. A wacky-rigged Senko will catch bass under docks, especially when it is sunny. A little breeze blowing under them, or current moving under them, helps a lot. If you can find any brush or hydrilla clumps out in 5 to 10 feet of water, work a 3/16-oz. Bitsy Flip Jig through it. A green jig with a green-pumpkin Zoom Creepy Crawler trailer works for me, and I always dip the tails in chartreuse JJ’s Magic.

I camped at Blanton Creek Wednesday through Sunday and practiced for the Potato Creek Bassmasters on Saturday tournament. Most of my fishing was from Idlehour to Blanton Creek, and current moved most days until late afternoon. Cloudy weather may have helped keep the bass shallow all day.

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