Lake Lanier Fishing Report March 2019
Lanier: Level: 5.1 feet high. Temp: Low 50s. Clarity: Clarity is completely blown out in the river systems and in the backs of the major creeks. Clear on the main lake.
Stripers: Guide Clay Cunningham reports, “During the month of March, look for the stripers to be feeding out over open water. These fish are feeding to prepare for the spring spawning run in April up the Chestatee and Chattahoochee rivers. Be prepared with 15- to 20-lb. Trilene Big Game spooled on a new Penn Fathom II line counter reel. The new Penn Fathom II is going to be the reel of choice for striper fishing. Most days you will want to freeline the baits 100 to 150 feet behind the boat. The most common bait is a blueback herring. Hook the herring on a 2/0 Gamakatsu Octopus hook, short leader of 15-lb. Trilene 100% fluorocarbon, a Spro Power Swivel, and you are good to go. Another new tactic that is rapidly catching on is pulling Mini Mack’s with the trolling motor either behind the boat or behind planer boards. March is also a great month to look for fish shallow in the backs of the creeks. Cast a 3/8-oz. Capt. Mack white bucktail jig to these fish. All you need is a medium-action Fenwick spinning rod spooled with 10-lb. Trilene Big Game line and the Capt. Mack bucktail. Cast to the bank, and reel with an occasional hop. Many times they will follow the jig, and they will eat the bucktail on the hop. Lastly, be prepared for the spring topwater bite. If March is warmer than usual, it may come early. Keep several topwater baits, like the Berkley Surge Shad in bone or chrome, in the boat.” Capt. Ron Mullins reports, “March will be a transitional month with deep fish on downlines early in the month to shallow fish on flatlines and Capt. Mack’s Perfect Planer Boards and even topwater artificials later in the month as water temps increase. The downline bite will be in 35 to 90 feet of water from halfway back in the creeks out toward the river channels. This will be the case in most of our northern creeks on the Chattahoochee arm and the creeks more so in the middle of the Chestatee arm of the lake. These fish will eat a variety of bait from herring, large shiners, small trout and threadfin shad. Most of the fish up in the river systems have been pushed south with all the flooding and cold, muddy water. If the rain will stop, expect fish to move up into the river systems getting ready to spawn. These river fish will be caught on a variety of live bait, as well, but mostly on larger gizzard shad or trout on flatlines and Perfect Planer Boards. As the water clears from muddy to stained in the major creeks, the shallow bite will get better throughout the month. Flat, 4 Mile, 6 Mile and Baldridge on the south and Thompson, Taylor, Lathem, Gainesville, Wahoo and Limestone on the north end of the lake will all hold fish later this month. Live baits pulled over points and humps in 15 to 30 feet of water at 0.8-1.1 mph with herring, threadfin shad or small/medium trout on flatlines or Perfect Planer Boards will be the go to technique. Run your flatlines 50 to 100 feet behind the boat or boards with smaller baits and 15 to 30 feet with larger baits. Make sure you put a Capt. Mack’s Mini Mack somewhere in your spread in March, as well. We are just learning how good this lure is for striped bass.”
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