Clarks Hill Fishing Report – July 2008

GON Staff | June 24, 2008

Clarks Hill: Level: 10.4 feet below full pool. Temp: 85 degrees. Clarity: Very clear.

Bass: Bill Crompton said the bass have gone into summer patterns. “Early in the morning fish can be found in the backs of creeks, rip-rap and around bridges and roads,” said Bill. “On a windy morning throw a double-bladed white buzzbait. Use a white Zoom trailer with a trailer hook. On a calm morning, fish a yellow Zoom floating worm. Throw the worm on the bank, and hopefully you won’t spook the fish that are there. When the sun comes up, go to the rocky points and humps and throw a Carolina rig. Start out with a green-pumpkin or green-pumpkin-red Zoom worm. On windy points and banks, throw a blue-and-silver Buckeye 3/8-oz. spinnerbait with a blue-glitter Zoom trailer.” Bill said July is a good time to bass fish at night. “Use dark-colored worms and buzzbaits,” he said. “Congratulations to the winners of the Tommy Shaw Memorial Open Team Bass Tournament Saturday, June 14. Hutto and Burgess won with 20 pounds.” Craig Johnson likes fishing in the middle of summer. “July is topwater, topwater and even more topwater, oh and a little deep crankin’ on the side,” said Craig. “The three basic topwaters you’ll need are a clear Gunfish, a 1/4-oz. Buckeye DH2 buzzbait (white shad) and a Zoom Super Fluke (white ice). For deep cranking, try a Fat Free Shad, a DD22 or a No. 9 Risto Rap, if you can find one. The best colors vary depending on water clarity, but often the parrot color or blue-back with chartreuse sides are good choices for deep cranking. The topwater action is heating up as we are already catching between 30 to 40 bass per day on the baits mentioned above. Experiment with the depth you are fishing. It seems some days the fish congregate in shallower water — 5 to 18 feet — and some days they’ll be deeper, 18 to 30 feet. The fish move a lot in the water column, so if they’re suspended on your graph less than 10 feet from the surface the topwater bite will be good. If they’re suspended deeper than that, the crankbait should catch some quality fish.”

Linesides: Capt. Dave Willard said the large stripers and hybrids are grouping up in the river channel 30 to 40 feet down. “They are definitely open for business,” said Dave. “Look for fish in or close to standing timber. Put a live herring on top of them, and watch out! My clients are catching limits of fish, 3 1/2- to 8-lb. hybrids and 6- to 12-lb. stripers with an occasional larger striper. The main bite has been from daylight to 10 a.m., and we’re back before it gets hot. Concentrate on the upper river from Wells Creek and Soap Creek all the way up to Russell Dam. This area is holding the best oxygen and the coolest water.” Capt. William Sasser will fish from Wells Creek to Lloyds Creek in the main creek channels. He said 40 to 60 feet of water seems to be a good place to look. “Fish live bluebacks 30 to 40 feet deep early, then troll umbrella rigs and Red Fins later in the day covering more water. The closer you pull the lures to the treetops, the more success,” said William.

Crappie: William looks for the bite in 30 to 50 feet of water with minnows and jigs (tipped with minnows). Fish over brush tops and existing hardwoods that are still standing from where the lake was built. “We’ll mainly fish out in the main flow of Little River, not in the smaller creeks of the lake,” said William. “Don’t move around too fast, and you’ll catch larger crappie. Nighttime, I’ll fish in the shallower water over brush with lights and minnows in Cherokee Creek and do well. We use Hydro Glow lights for this.”

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