Lake Hartwell Fishing Report – October 2019
Hartwell: Level: 2.5 feet low. Temp: Mid 70s. Clarity: Clear.
Bass: Tournament angler Jayme Rampey won a BFL Savannah Division event on the lake Sept. 14. An FLW press release quotes Jayme as saying, “I hate to be vague, but I’ve got a BFL Regional tournament coming up here, and I don’t want to give away all of my secrets just yet. Maybe we can do this interview again in a couple of weeks and I can really share the juice.”Although vague, Rampey did say that he caught around 20 fish a day, most of them on an unnamed topwater bait. “I ran around a lot and fished pretty much the whole lake,” Rampey says. “From takeoff to the dam, up all the rivers. I just hit places where I know they live. This time of the year, the fish are doing a certain thing, and I know where the bigger ones set up for that topwater deal. Everyone does it, but I know that the bigger ones get into certain places. The biggest factor for me in this one was my Lowrance graphs. I was able to pick out those very specific places that I wanted to fish.”
Linesides: Guide Preston Harden reports, “As the water cools in October, most fish move shallower and become more active. Hybrids and stripers will school on the surface early and late. They could school in the surface all during the day on a cloudy day. Most fish will still be in the lower half the lake in October. When they school early in the month, I like to throw a Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost minnow. If the water is choppy, I will switch to a Lucky Craft Gunfish in ghost minnow. The Gunfish is cupped to make more commotion. By late month, they will switch from feeding on herring to eating threadfin shad. Then I fish with a small shad imitation. This usually happens when the water cools to a certain point. When the water cools to a certain point, turnover will start. Fishing can get tricky then. Fish do not like when the water turns over. It depletes the oxygen in the water. It turns the water a dark brown. Look for greener water then. Try not to fish after a cold snap. Wait until the weather is stable for a few days. Largemouth bass and spotted bass also become more active in October. They move shallower to feed more aggressively after a hot summer. The lake becomes deserted in October with football and hunting. The leaves are beautiful in October. Get out and enjoy the fall on Lake Hartwell.”
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