Lake Allatoona Fishing Report – October 2023
Allatoona: Level: 3.4 feet below 840. Temp: 78 degrees. Clarity: Clear.
Bass: Tournament angler Matt Driver, reports, “October is a great month on Lake Allatoona. Fishing has been great throughout the summer months, and October should be amazing, as well. The bass begin to feed up for wintertime. Four main baits for me in October are a 6-inch jointed swimbait, a shad-colored jerkbait, a black buzzbait and a brown, 3/8-oz. jig. October is a great time to catch the elusive largemouth, as well as spotted bass. Water temps start to cool down and the largemouth begin to get shallow. I’ll be running and gunning shallow areas of brush, stumps and rocks for the largemouth. Spotted bass can be found on the main lake and secondary points and in wind-blown pockets in October. On Lake Allatoona, the bass are always following the bait. Bait is beginning to move back in the creeks, so the more we go into the month, the creeks will get so much better. Stamp Creek, Illinois Creek and Little River are on fire. The bite will be very consistent this month. It will change slightly as it gets cooler. Enjoy this time of year on the water as most pleasure boaters have slowed down quite a bit.”
Linesides: Guide Robert Eidson, of First Bite Guide Service, reports, “Decent. Fall is in the air, and the water temperature is dropping. The lake is starting to show signs of turning over. The fish are on the move and very hard to pattern right now. Our most consistent bite right now is our live-bait bite. We are fishing the river channel from Galts Ferry to the dam. The better (only) bite seems to be 24 feet deep out over open water. We are starting to see limited topwater action. As the lake starts to turnover in the next couple weeks, we expect to see more with more consistency. We believe we will have a very strong fall bite, and with any luck, November will produce big numbers and some quality fish.”
Crappie: Robert DeHaas, of Red Rooster Custom Baits and an OG from “Team Geezer,” reports, “Fall is officially here, and it’s time to dust off those trolling rods. The winter drawdown on Lake Allatoona has started and the lake level by Oct. 1 should be at 835 feet, which is the magic number for longline trolling. The fish are starting to leave the brushpiles and are starting the fall feed up and will chase a moving bait. Let’s get you set up for longlining starting with my rod and reel set up. My reels are spooled with 6-lb. yellow monofilament. I mix up my jig-head weights (round ball heads) with 1/24-, 1/16-, 3/32- and 1/8-oz. weights. I love orange, red and pink jig-head colors. My favorite clear-water soft plastic colors are watermelon ghost, blue glimmer, white/chartreuse, black/chartreuse, blue/chartreuse and blue/orange (Albright Special). My boat setup for longlining is as follows: My rod setup is six rods off the front, three on each side and six rods in the back, three on either side of the big motor. My front rods are 14-, 12- and 10-foot rod lengths on both sides of the boat. The rods in the back position are all 6 feet. The rods are spaced out 2 feet apart. My boat is 9 feet wide, so I’m trolling a path 37 feet wide with a jig every 2 feet. My preferred longlining pattern goes like this: I usually start about halfway back in a major creek and work my way back to the mouth of the creek. Using GPS mapping on my electronics, I keep my trolling speeds at .07-.09 mph. This is key speed. The trolling tips are to make long, slow s-turns (like a snake). Then, from time to time I will turn off the trolling motor for 10 seconds, then back on. This allows for the baits to fall, then rise when you turn the trolling motor back on. Both those trolling secrets will help you determine what depth the fish are at. Remember the mid-creek is your starting place. Work out to the mouth of the creek, making sure you troll over any secondary points, creek ledges and depressions in the lake bottom. If the fishing is slow, and sometimes it will be, I will change jig colors and shapes every 15 to 20 minutes and let the fish tell me what they want. If you don’t know your electronics, now is the time to get familiar with your unit via internet searches. Watch videos to learn how to save waypoints and control your troll speed, which is a key to longline trolling. We fished the south end of Allatoona on Sept. 21. It was a little early to start longline trolling, but we were up for the challenge! We installed the trolling bars and had six to 10 rods out testing the new red rooster Dagger crappie jig. Believe it or not, we caught six crappie and six bass longline trolling. The crappie were found in 18 to 20 feet of water, suspended anywhere from 8 to 12 feet deep. The magic trolling speed seemed to be 0.68-0.72 mph. It was the speed to get the 1/16-oz. jig heads in the strike zone. We ran through a school of spotted bass and we had three bass on at one time. The beauty of longline trolling is that you never know what you’re gonna catch—crappie, bass, hybrids, stripers, catfish… they all hit crappie jigs. Check out our Long Line Trolling Guide (www.redroosterbaits.com/assets/images/Red-Rooster-Long-Line-Trolling-Guide.pdf) for more information and tips. This chart will help you understand what depth your jig heads are swimming and your trolling speed; this is really critical to keep your jigs in the strike zone. This is the time of year when taking the family can be a great experience as you work together having fun. Bring drinks and snacks to make the adventure even more special. Remember to be a conservationist and keep only fish you can use, and release the rest to fight another day. This time of year can be a special time with friends and family, a time of fun and fellowship. Remember what the Lord has given us, to be thankful of our gift of this wonderful lake. May the Lord bless you and your family.”
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