Carters Lake Fishing Report December 2013
Carters: Level: 1.7 feet below full pool. Temp: 56 degrees. Clarity: 5 to 7 feet.
Spotted Bass: Fishing has been tough, said guide Louie Bartenfield. He reports, “Not sure if it’s a prolonged turnover or if the bite just hasn’t progressed like it has in years past, but one thing is for sure, it’s been anything but a normal fall and early winter bite here at Carters Lake. My best bite has been Spotsticker jig heads and crawlers rigged with Big Bite soft plastic worms and craws. I’ve also had some success very early morning up shallow with jerkbaits and medium-diving crankbaits in natural-shad patterns. This bite, however, has been very short lived most days. As December approaches, look for more of the same—early morning jerkbaits and a late-day jig and worm bite. I like to focus a bit shallower in December, fishing primarily less than 25 feet for the bigger spots. Let’s just hope things get back to normal here in December.”
Linesides: “The striper fishing has been good. Trout, threadfins and herring are all getting bit,” Louie said. “A good day of striper fishing here is typically three to five fish per day, but Carters always produces size over quantity. I’m fishing the mouths of major creek arms from 30 to 50 feet deep with downlines. As the cooler December weather approaches, I’ll start trolling both single bucktails and u-rigs for the first few hours of light, and then switch to bait the remainder of the day. About 100 feet back at 3 mph is typically best for the u-rigs and bucktails.” Guide Eric Crowley reports, “The turnover blues are over, and the lake looks great. The striper bite has been getting better and should continue to do so as we move into December. The fish are scattered from the dam all the way up to the river mouth, with the best concentration of fish mid lake from Stumpy Island and Worley Creek down to Woodring and the marina area. Check the 15- to 60-foot depth ranges around long points and creek mouths in the morning and in the open water around these areas in the afternoon. Trout from 4 to 10 inches have been the go-to bait on my boat for the past few weeks with good results. Pulling flatlines way behind the boat or on planer boards is how I have been starting my days—100 feet back on the flats or 50 to 60 feet back on the boards with 2/0 to 4/0 circle hooks depending on the size of the trout. I am running a 14- to 20-lb. mono leader this month as I have found that the fluorocarbon has had a tendency to get brittle and break in the cold temps under the stress of big fish.”
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