Carters Lake Fishing Report January 2016

GON Staff | December 22, 2015

Carters: Level: Full pool. Temp: 57 degrees. Clarity: Good.

Spotted Bass: Guide Louie Bartenfield reports, “Fishing has been consistent. Spotted bass have been scattered all over the place as of late with extremely high water for most of December and lake turnover lasting longer than usual this year. My guys have caught fish from 5 feet to 60 feet deep and everywhere in between. As January approaches, expect the deep bite to become the dominant pattern. Drop shots, SpotSticker jig heads and hand-tied jigs tipped with Big Bite soft plastics will be my primary weapons. January is always a good month for the SpotSticker jig in PB&J tipped with a twin-tail Big Bite grub. I fish the jig on 10-lb. Sunline Sniper fluorocarbon and prefer to fish timber edges 25 to 40 feet deep for bigger fish. My drop-shot and shaky-head fish are more open, smooth-bottom fish. Look for big schools of spots following flats leading into and out of ditches and creek channels. These fish are generally glued to the bottom and are oftentimes hard to see on 2D Sonar, so pay close attention to your graph, and focus more on depth zones than bait or fish activity on your sonar.”

Stripers: Louie said that he’s been putting some 35-lb. stripers in the boat. He reports, “Carters is never a numbers lake when it comes to striper fishing, so bring your patience with you. But if you like to pull umbrella rigs or have the patience to fish deep and slow, Carters can produce in a big way. This is the lake for a giant fish. In January, I like to pull my rigs close, 70 to 80 feet behind the boat at approximately 2.5 mph. I typically use wild colors this time of year. Pinks, blues and real bright greens produce more bites for me in winter than any other time of year here. As far as your live-bait bite, fish downlines 30 to 40 feet over creek channels or breaklines in the river channel. Trout or shad will work. Just keep your bait fresh, and cover water slowly.”

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