Lake Hartwell Fishing Report December 2015
Hartwell: Level: 0.5 feet above full pool. Temp.: Low 60s. Clarity: The main lake is clear, and the creeks and rivers are stained.
Bass: Tournament angler Kerry Partain reports, “The recent rains has the lake full, and there are several patterns working, but they depend on the weather conditions. Normally this time of year the lake is lower, but for now there are some big fish shallow, and they will bite a crankbait on secondary points and a jig around brush and docks. The deeper fish are starting to bite as the water has stabilized from the turnover, and you can catch them on drop shots, Carolina rigs and jigs. There will still be some bass schooling in creeks on humps and points, so always keep a Zoom Super Fluke ready, and watch for baitfish activity or birds diving. As the water cools into the 50s, a jigging spoon and a Blade Runner are the go-to baits for active fish as they bunch up in the ditches.”
Linesides: Guide Preston Harden reports, “December fishing can be the best of the year. The turnover is complete, and the fish become eating machines. Water temperature decreases through the 50s during December, and this is optimal for fish activity. Stripers, hybrids, largemouth and spotted bass are all eating heavily before they shut down for winter. This is usually when the water reaches the upper 40s. Calm, overcast days before cold fronts are usually the best days. Windy, sunny, post-front days are usually the worst. By December, most fish have migrated up the lake and into the rivers and creeks arms. The fish are now feeding mostly on threadfin shad and do not want large lures, such as topwater plugs. Fish small lures slowly. Small flukes on jig heads, bucktail jigs and small clouser flies are my favorites.”
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