Lake Hartwell Fishing Report – December 2009

GON Staff | November 25, 2009

Hartwell: Level: 1.4 feet above full pool. Temp: 60 degrees. Clarity: Clear.

Fair over the last few weeks. “The high water level combined with the lake trying to turn over has scattered the fish,” said Josh Fowler. “The largemouths are just starting to show up in the backs of the major creek arms, but most of them are small. The high water has created a ton of shallow cover, so you will have to use baits that you can work through the grass and brush. A Z-man Chatterbait, Zoom Horny Toad, Rat-L-Trap and spinnerbait will all produce when you get around fish. If you’re in the right creek, you’re going to see some activity. The fish will be chasing bait in the shallow grass and weeds. If you’re on the main lake, you can expect to catch spotted bass. These fish are still feeding on the offshore structure. Try casting a Buckeye Lures football jig rigged with a Zoom Creepy Crawler or a Buckeye Lures Flick It wacky jig head rigged with a green Zoom Trick Worm. Look for any brush or rock piles in the 25-foot range. Always have a drop shot ready to drop on any fish you see on the graph. As we move into December, we should see the bigger largemouths show up in the creek arms. If the fish are not in the shallow grass, you can back out to the first major contour change and fish the sharp drops. The old roadbeds in the creeks are great places for the fish to stack up in December. The spotted bass should begin to set up on the edge of the timber as the water temps continue to drop. Look for these fish to hold in 25 to 40 feet of water on the edge of the deep timber.”

Striper: Preston Harden reports, “The lake has finished turning over, and the fish have moved into the creeks up lake. December is going to be a great month with fish schooling shallow. Fish will be catchable with artificials and with live bait. Cast flukes and bucktails to busting fish and pull freelines with herring or shiners. When the sun gets high, try downlines close to the bottom or vertical jigging with spoons where you mark fish and bait. Usually the fish will be close to the bottom in 35 to 45 feet in the creeks when the sun is high. They will be shallow early and late and on cloudy days.”

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