Clarks Hill Fishing Report – January 2009

GON Staff | January 5, 2009

Clarks Hill: Level: 13.1 feet below full pool. Temp: 48-52 degrees. Clarity: Clear toward the dam; muddy on the upper ends.

Guide Craig Johnson reports that the fish are starting to pull into the ditches. “Most of them are small, in the 2- to 2-1/2 lb. range,” said Craig. “The bigger fish seem to be holding on any form of rock you can find. Look for the better fish on rock in 5 to 30 feet of water.” Craig fishes a 1/2-oz. brown Mop Jig dressed with a Zoom Super Chunk and a 3/4-oz. brown Buckeye football-head jig. “Most of the bigger fish are coming above the 378 bridge. The lower end just isn’t producing the big ones yet,” he said.

Crappie: Good. “January for crappie is just like the stripers, find the threadfin shad, and you’ll find both species,” Capt. William Sasser said. “We’ll pull jigs in tributaries off the main lake this month — Soap Creek, South Carolina Little River, Holiday Park and so on. The crappie will congregate in groups and feed on baitfish early in the mornings. It’s a great month to fish for stripers and crappie at the same time with four planers out with live herring and four crappie rods with jigs. Barely moving with the trolling motor works well. I always tip my jigs with small minnows this time of year. Try to stay in creeks with a lot of baitfish and surface activity.”

Good, according to William. “January stripers on Clarks Hill require a little patience, but the rewards are huge. We’ll fish mostly in the upper ends of the lake. Like always, find the bait, and the fish won’t be far. We’ll pull planers with herring and shad in the little tributaries and downlines in the mouths of creeks. Always throw flukes or shallow-running baits while you’re pulling planers. Raysville and Soap Creek are great places to start.”

Clarks Hill Tailrace: William said, “For yellow perch and bream, below the Clarks Hill dam in January is a lot of fun — and usually a lot of fish. You can use a variety of small lures — Beetle Spins, minnows and worms are good.”

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