Lake Lanier Fishing Report – May 2009

GON Staff | April 28, 2009

Lanier: Level: 7.3 feet below full pool. Temp: High 60s. Clarity: Clear down the lake a slight stain up the lake.

Guide Billy Boothe reports, “The spawn is in full swing. I had 19 pounds of bed fish in the April 26 Boating Atlanta tournament, and the bed bite should continue for the next week and a half. I’ve had the best success with a white Mann’s Hardnose Tube or a watermelon-shad TABU Whiptail Worm. Look for pockets with a mixture of sand and rock in 3 to 6 feet of water. In stained areas, fish a junebug Senko or a 5/16-oz. black-and-blue TABU jig slowly around any cover such as stumps and grass. As the spawn winds down, there will be a great topwater bite around the newly flooded weeds and bushes. For the sparse cover, use a shad-pattern Pop-R. For the thick stuff, buzz a black Mann’s Hardnose Frog. As we move into the middle part of the month, the two best bites will be flipping and cranking. For numbers, target mid-depth ledges in 6 to 10 feet of water with a citrus-shad Mann’s 15 Plus up the rivers. For a big bite, flip laydowns and docks leading out of spawning areas with a watermelon-red Sweet Beaver.”

Look for spots to move out this month. Laura Gober marked a map of 10 places to fish this month. Turn to page 18.

Good. Capt. Clay Cunningham said, “The topwater bite is just beginning on Lanier. Cast large topwater baits like a Heddon Houston Bleeding Shad Super Spook or a Lucky Craft Sammy across main-lake points. This is the expected pattern for May. However, if the abnormally warm weather continues, look for the downline bite to pick up earlier than normal. Either way, start around Gainesville Marina, and work your way south.” Capt. Mike Maddalena reports, “We are still catching the larger stripes up shallow with large gizzards and trout on the north-end, main-lake flats and points. The herring on the freeline will boat numbers of smaller fish in the north-end creeks. The fish are moving out of the backs of the creeks, so you will want to target the mid-creek areas. As we move into May, the fish will complete their spawn in the rivers and start moving down lake, so the flats and points on the main lake will continue to produce large fish with big baits up shallow. The smaller fish will continue their migration out of the creeks to the main lake. May should be a great month for topwater. Cast flukes on a lead head and Mack Farr bucktails to any surfacing fish. U-rigs pulled 15 to 20 feet deep on main-lake points should also start producing.”

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