Lake Oconee Fishing Reports – August 2020

GON Staff | July 30, 2020

Oconee: Level: 0.5 feet low. Temp: 89-93 degrees. Clarity: The Apalachee River is clear, the Oconee River is stained above the railroad trestle, from I-20 bridge to the dam and up to Armor Bridge is clear, and above Armor Bridge the water goes from stained to red.

Bass: Tournament angler Karl Pingry reports, “The fishing is really tough, and unless we get a tropical storm and a big drop in water temperatures, August is going to be a long month of tough fishing. Michael Lynch is the recent winner of the Minor League Bass tournament on Lake Oconee with his partner Chad Barker. Michael recommends a frog, Spook or Pop-R in the mornings. Fish these baits near docks, seawalls and rip-rap. Because the water is so clear, Michael recommends longer casts and keeping your distance from your targets. Once the sun is up, Michael is committed to the docks unless there is cloud cover. Michael is going to throw a jig or ChatterBait in bluegill colors and a shaky head with a green pumpkin or translucent color with some green in it unless you find stained water. There is still some mayfly activity on the lake, so pay attention to the trees hanging over the water. If you see the bugs, Michael’s No. 1 choice is a frog under the trees or right up on the bank. Also, I found bluegill on the bed by my dock the weekend of July 25-26.”

Crappie: Guide Al Bassett reports, “Crappie fishing is currently excellent. Fish are holding in deeper water over brushpiles, standing timber and deep drop-offs. Night fishing under the bridges and in the timber or around the lighted docks is good. This should hold up throughout the month. You should be able to limit out. Using your Lowrance HDS to find the fish on the brushpiles or the deep drop-offs before you start fishing. Mark the area with a marker where you find the fish holding, and either use live bait or cast to the area using Jiffy Jigs Super Grubs. During this time of year, make sure you take care of your live bait. Use bait saver and get the water cool by putting handfuls of ice in there during the day. Also make sure you drink plenty of water and use sunscreen. If you plan to keep fish to take home, be sure you have plenty of ice on hand to put these fish on before they have an opportunity to spoil.” Capt. Doug Nelms reports, “Our crappie will hug closely to the tops of submerged timber all over the lake, and it can be like fishing in a barrel, that is if you can locate them and then zero in your presentation. First of all you have to find them. When Oconee was impounded, Georgia Power left 1,800 acres of submerged timber on the lake, some of it standing above the water and some of it was cut off to depths of 12 to 15 feet from the surface. Those patches of timber are excellent places to find crappie, but you won’t be able to locate them with a flasher, if you know what I mean. You’re going to need really good electronics. I have a Humminbird Solix 12 with Mega Imaging, and it is so easy to tell which trees are holding fish when you pull up into a stand of timber. In most stands, if there are 20 or more trees, there may be only two trees that are holding fish, and the rest will be empty. You have to target that one specific tree and sometimes that target will be no larger than the hood of your truck. My presentation is a minnow on a No. 2 aberdeen hook with 8-lb. fluorocarbon that is attached to a 1/2-oz. trolling sinker and that is attached to 10-lb. braided line for the main line. The braid gives customers much more feel and sensitivity detecting a bite. On most days, we will drop the minnow down 20 feet, right into the ball of fish we have found. Also, you will get hung up if you’re fishing correctly, but usually you can pop your rod and the hook will bend and come loose before anything breaks. So far this season I have not lost a weight because of the braided line, plus I think the braided line increases your hook-up ratio. When you drop your minnow, if you don’t get a bite after two minutes, you are not on the tree. You may have to move around a little until you find it, but when you do, be sure to get a fix on exactly where you caught them at and focus on that spot. You can do that by throwing out a marker. The other thing to realize is it doesn’t take long to wear out your welcome on these spots. Some days we can catch fish for an hour on one tree, then other days they will quit after 10 fish. If they quit, it may be better to move on to your next spot and not waste time. You can always come back and try it again.”

GON’s Lake Oconee Page

Become a GON subscriber and enjoy full access to ALL of our content.

New monthly payment option available!