West Point Lake Fishing Report – July 2023
West Point: Level: 0.2 over 635. Temp: 80s. Clarity: The water is pretty clear over most of the lake with some stain in the backs of the creeks. There is floating debris all over the lake.
Bass: Fair. Guide Keith Hudson reports, “The combination of cooler-than-normal surface temps and the heavy, late June rains filling the lake to full pool (finally!) has kept our largemouth bass still surprisingly shallow for the most part. Topwater baits such as Whopper Ploppers, buzzbaits and Zoom Horny Toads can be extremely effective for shallow fish, especially around bream beds and shallow wood or grass. I expect a second pattern that should work well later in the month is to look for schools of blueback herring on the surface. The herring population seems to have exploded, so I would expect many of the tactics that anglers use to catch open-water fish schooling on herring will come into play. Try fishing open water with Flash Mob Jr. rigs, topwater lures, Zoom Super Flukes and underspin-type baits. Another productive pattern during hot weather is to concentrate on docks and blowdowns. The fish like shade just like we do. Many of the docks have brushpiles under or near them, too. Try an unweighted, wacky-rigged Zoom Trick Worm or an unweighted Zlinky or Senko type bait or a jig ’n pig around or under this type of cover. Water generation can play a factor in improving the bite as the water warms up, especially if the lake level drops and some really hot, dry weather sets in later in the month. If you have the option, base your trips to the lake around that when possible. Some fish will still be caught deeper on old roadbeds or in brushpiles, especially later in the month.”
Linesides: Guide Keith Hudson reports, “The linesides have started schooling on the main lake and can be caught casting Rooster Tails, popping-cork rigs and Gotcha Swim Shad lures. July is usually really good for this type of fishing, especially on cloudy, balmy mornings. Also, fish can be caught trolling with the Flash Mob Jr. or trolling mid-depth diving crankbaits. Downlining live bait like shad or shiners will continue to produce throughout July in most years.”
Crappie: Guide Keith Hudson reports, “Good. Crappie like deeper water in the summer and will typically move out and hold on deeper brush and structure or under docks. Shooting or pitching under the shade of covered docks or around bridge pilings is the way to go. Tube type jigs seem to work the best. The crappie almost always like the shade on a sunny day. Night fishing is usually awesome in July, as well.”
Bream: Guide Keith Hudson reports, “Good. The shellcracker population over the last few years has exploded with some really nice-sized fish and good numbers being caught. They seem to really love worms fished on the bottom. Finding an active bed can take a little effort, but when you do, you can have a ball. Bedding usually takes place on the full moon cycle in July. Look for shallow cover in the backs of pockets. Sandy flats and stump beds tend to draw the fish like a magnet. Use live worms, crickets and small jigs for the best results.”
Catfish: Guide Keith Hudson reports, “Good. Lots of channel cats are being caught by the few anglers who target them. Live and cutbaits (and worms of course) fished on the bottom will catch cats all over the lake, as long as fairly deep water is nearby. Jug fishing is also fun and productive. To target flatheads, go to a larger bait like a 4- to 5-inch bream or large shiner and fish the same areas. Be sure to increase the size of your rigs as fish in the 20- to 30-lb. range are fairly common. Most of the big flatheads are caught in the Ringer/Grayson’s Landing area north of the 219 bridge in the Chattahoochee and the mouth of the smaller feeder creeks in that vicinity.”
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