Lake Hartwell Fishing Report October 2011
Hartwell: Level: 6.9 feet below full pool. Temp: 78 degrees. Clarity: Clear.
Bass: Good. Josh Fowler reports, “It’s taking weights in the mid to upper teens to win the local tournaments, and these types of weights will likley continue to show up until the lake turns over. The fish are still holding in a summertime pattern on points, humps and ledges all over the main part of the lake. The key to catching these offshore fish is the topwater run-and-gun techniques Hartwell is known for. The best lures for this approach include a weightless Zoom Super Fluke, a Lucky Craft Sammy or Gunfish and a Lucky Craft Smasher 125. It’s really all about timing with this deal, and you have to stop on the right place at the right time to hit an active school. Typically you only get one or two bites before you have to move to another location. It really helps to have at least 30 or 40 waypoints on your GPS so you can quickly move around the lake as you search for that active school. If the topwater bite is not producing, you can just about always catch fish on a drop shot. As you’re fishing the offshore areas, pay close attention to your graph. If you see any activity on the screen, be ready to drop a Wackem Baits Big Sissy Worm in the Amarillo-flash or watermelon-ice colors.”
Linesides: Good. Preston Harden reports, “It has been cool and cloudy, and fishing is improving every day. Stripers and hybrids should start schooling on the surface at any point now. Fish are stacked in the lower lake close to the dam. The fish are holding at about 80 feet deep. Trolling has become less effective with fish so deep. Carolina-rigged herring quickly lowered to the depth of the fish will usually get eaten. If you don’t get hit, try power-reeling up through the fish seen on the graph. Jig heads and big soft plastics or jigging spoons reeled up quickly through suspended fish have been working well also. A good graph is necessary to see fish at such depths. Good GPS mapping such as Navionics is just as important. As we enter October, the fish will start to spread out from the lower lake and hopefully feed on the surface mornings, evenings and during cloudy conditions. A Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost color is my favorite. Zara Spooks work well also. Binoculars are important, as you can see much better and burn less gas. Be sure to turn your outboard off before entering areas of schooling fish. They spook easily and go down if you push them too hard.”
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