Lake Oconee Fishing Report – February 2023
GON Staff | January 25, 2023
Oconee: Level: Full pool. Temp: 51 degrees. Clarity: Stained to muddy all over the lake.
Bass: Guide Norris Edge reports, “While the majority of bass anglers enjoy fishing the bank and rip-rap, I am confident you can catch a sack full of fish out deep, especially right now and into February. Concentrate your efforts on points that are in 40 feet of water and work shallower. Of course, there’s always bass to be caught around the docks and seawalls, but your bigger fish are coming off of deeper water. A shaky head, a deep-diving crankbait, a jigging spoon and the Carolina rig are your best options.”
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Linesides: Capt. Doug Nelms with BigFishHeads Guide Service reports, “As I write this report on Jan. 22, Lake Oconee is a mud hole, and I understand there is a lot more rain on the way. But my feeling about it is, if it’s got to rain, let it happen now. February is the month we get ready for our crappie season, as well as catching a lot of stripers. Some really big stripers have been caught during this historically cold month, and this February should not be an exception. I have seen good stockings of hybrids, white bass and stripers leading up to this month, and I believe you will see them explode in the next few weeks. As we get into the month, we will begin fishing more and more with live bait. I usually start out with fishing the largest bass minnows that I purchase at Sugar Creek Marina either on a flatline or weighted down into the water column. You will find that it is possible for the pattern to change every time you go out to fish, so just be ready to present a bait in different ways. The artificial bite will still be good in February, and my favorite method is to ride around and look for congregated seagulls. There are lots on the lake this year, and they certainly will show you where the fish are at. So far, it’s been a wonderful season fishing under the birds, and we have had 100 fish days just by watching the gulls do their thing. The number one thing this month will be finding clean water. The stripers don’t like the mud. Sometimes they have no choice but to live in it, but if they can find clean water, they will choose it above the mud each time. So start your search down around the south end of the lake and all over Richland Creek. This year, we have caught stripers on spoons fishing almost 60 feet deep. I think the deepest striper we caught was in 58 feet, so don’t be afraid to drop down deep to those large marks you see on your graph. Next month we will be in full live-bait mode, but for those who love to fish artificial, this will be a good month.”
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