Carters Lake Fishing Report – February 2020

GON Staff | January 29, 2020

Carters: Level: Full pool. Temp: Upper 40s. Clarity: Clear.

Stripers: Guide Eric Crowley reports, “Most people seem to think the striped fish should be shallow right now—and some are—the majority of the fish on Carters are holding 50, 60 and 70 feet deep still. We are typically watching sonar and dropping baits to waiting fish. Let the baits hang in the depth of the fish a few minutes. If they don’t eat, go find the next school. We have sat on schools of fish for an hour with zero bites. On the same day, you will find a school that will eat right away. That doesn’t mean the first school won’t eat. It just means they aren’t eating right now. Simply drop a waypoint and come back later. Gizzards, alewife and big threads are all working when it’s time to eat. If sitting still or slow drifting isn’t your thing, the trolling bite is still solid. Capt. Mack’s Mini Mack Umbrella Rig and Chipmunk Jigs are still getting attention when being trolled from 2 to 3mph. I like pulling the creek mouths and river bends in the afternoons, but in the early mornings, the creeks are the place to be. I’ve been starting about halfway back where I start marking bait. The spoon bite has been good on certain days for hybrids and big spots. The best depth for the spoon bite has been 50 to 65 feet deep while working the bottom 20 feet of the water column. Anything from small 1/2-oz. spoons to big Parker spoons have been producing hybrids and spots holding near bait.

Walleye: Guide Eric Crowley reports, “February can also be the start of some solid walleye fishing. Look for prespawn staging fish to start gathering on rocks and shallower points upriver. You can use live bait or cast artificial lures like swimbaits or small jigs to try to entice a bite. The trolling bite will increase by the end of the month. Look to target these fish in 15 to 30 feet of water. As is typically the case, the pretty post-front days with lots of sunshine are usually going to be slower days, while the cloudy pre-front days have been producing more bites and more fish.”

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