Lake Oconee Fishing Report – January 2024

GON Staff | December 28, 2023

Oconee: Level: Full at 435. Temp: Low 50s on the south end and 49 at the Trestle. Clarity: Clear everywhere.

Bass: Guide Norris Edge reports, “Bass fishing is slow due to the cold and windy conditions that have existed on Oconee for the past couple of weeks, but it should get better this month. There are some fish being caught on the south end of the lake, where there can be a significant temperature difference. Most fish are being caught on any rip-rap that you can find on the south end, using shaky-head worms and jigs. Some of the striper fishermen have been catching some nice largemouth by accident with jigging spoons 25 to 35 feet deep. Hopefully, January will bring some sunny days that will fire them up.”

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Crappie: Capt. Doug Nelms with BigFishHeads Guide Service reports, “There are more threads and gizzard shad on Oconee than I have seen in a while, which means the stripers and hybrids are feasting very well. At the time of this post, I can not find a striper in the south end of the lake where they normally are this time of year. All the fish are mid-lake on both the Oconee and Richland sides. If you start around Old Salem Campground and go to River Bend, you can find fish on just about every hump. Then from the Ritz to Rocky Creek on the Richland side is the same. But once you enter the confluence of Richland and Oconee, they seem to disappear, at least at the time of this post. There are a lot of birds that have made their way to Oconee for their winter home, but at this moment I haven’t seen the gulls show any great fish activity. But I feel like it’s coming this month. January has been the month when I boat my largest fish of the year on artificial lures. Keep a Super Fluke on a spinning rod in your holster at all times because they can come up schooling suddenly at any time. If you can cast it in the mix, you will be rewarded with a big fish. There are three methods I see anglers using this time of year: trolling u-rigs or A-rigs, especially Captain Mack’s Mini Macks 100 to 150 feet behind the boat. The second method is dropping live bait into schools of fish. The most common bait are bass minnows. The third method is dropping artificial bait to them in the form of a jigging spoon, Little George and just about anything that has weight that will quickly get down to them and make a fuss. Any of these methods can put a nice fish in your boat, and as this month progresses, I think we will see more and more good fishing making a show on Oconee.”

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