Carters Lake Fishing Report December 2012
Carters: Level: 0.9 feet below full pool. Temp: 60 degrees. Clarity: Clear.
Spotted Bass: Guide Louie Bartenfield reports, “The bite is good. November has been a good month despite the unseasonably warm weather we’ve had the past few weeks. My guys and I have been pounding good-sized spots on Spotsticker jig heads rigged with Big Bite Shaking Squirrels and Cane Sticks this entire month. Football jigs and drop shots are also working well right now. If you’re an avid drop-shot fisherman like me, be sure to check out the new drop-shot weight from Spotsticker Baits. They just introduced a new tear-drop-shaped, drop-shot weight that has a top-of-the-line crimp swivel and will not come off without a lot of tension, which is a must for serious drop-shot fishermen. Look for the deep bite to continue improving as we enter December. Prime depths are from 10 to 30 feet with some large groups of spots also being found out much deeper as well. If you’re coming to Carters in December and are unfamiliar with the lake, focus up river, and arm yourself with plenty of 1/8- to 3/16-oz. Spotstickers, a football jig and a Spro Mcstick jerkbaits for early morning. Later in the month, the float-n-fly bite should really pick up, too. December is my favorite month of the year to catch a giant spot, and there is no better lake to do it than Carters Lake.”
Stripers: Louie reports, “The striper bite is good. I’ve had some big fish break us off in deep timber the past few days with clients from South Carolina to Kentucky. We’ve just been unlucky getting the fish up out of the trees, but we’ve had good opportunities using 6-plus-inch trout. Trout is the only live bait I’ve had striper actually bite in the entire month of November, and I’ve netted good-sized thread’s and alewife with zero luck from white fish. My bites lately have all came from 60 to 90 feet over 135- to 200-foot bottom over deep timber. Trolling is also a high-percentage way to catch a striper or hybrid right now. I’ve boated a dozen or so hybrids so far this month while trolling. I’m still trolling single Castaway 3/4-oz. bucktails in Lanier blueback early morning and using 15-lb. fluorocarbon. Later this month, I’ll start focusing more time with u-rigs. I had a good December last year pulling Capt. Mack’s u-rig 100 feet back at 3 mph all over windy main-lake structure.” Guide Eric Crowley reports, “December is a great month for big fish. To increase your odds, there are a few things you can do. First, I like to pull big trout when the water temps hit the 59-degree mark. The herring get hard to catch, and throwing the net in the frigid mornings on this mountain lake can be brutal and dangerous. Trout from 8 to 12 inches are stronger and tend to thrash around a little more then the smaller ones, attracting the attention of the linesides. Also they provide a larger target profile for the fish to see and to me seem more appealing in the cold water. Flatlines, planer boards, big swivels, big circle hooks and heavy mono leaders from 20- to 30-lb. test are all you will find on my boat when targeting stripers in December. When the temps dip down in the 30s, I put the fluorocarbon away and switch to the mono. I like to start early in the backs of the creeks with four or six boards and a couple flats out and work my way out. As the sun comes up, look around the submerged timber or on points near that timber. I like to keep my farthest board no more then 6 feet off the shoreline at any time. This lets me get bait to those fish that will pull up really shallow to feed. I can’t tell you how many times I have had fish blow up on a bait in super shallow water this time of year.”
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