Fall Feed Allatoona Bass

Spots and largemouths get aggressive this month. Here's a map to 10 October locations.

Ronnie Garrison | October 1, 2011

Brinson Roland grew up near Allatoona, and learning to catch bass there helped give him the knowledge that propelled him to the collegiate bass-fishing scene. Brinson competes with the Kennesaw State team.

Allatoona is a great lake for catching spotted bass — and largemouths — in October. Long known as one of the best lakes for catching numbers of small spotted bass, Allatoona also yields some quality bass. And this time of year in particular, your catch can include some good largemouths.

The lake is full of baitfish, and bass are chasing them and feeding heavily this month. Right now, you can catch bass with a variety of patterns, including some very fun techniques like topwater and power fishing.

Allatoona is a small lake just north of Atlanta crossed by I-75, so it is easily accessible to a lot of boaters. Its rocky points and shoreline offer spotted bass perfect habitat, but you can catch largemouths here, too. In October the lake is not nearly as crowded as it has been all summer, and the bass respond to the cooling water and less boat traffic by getting on patterns that make them easier to catch.

Brinson Roland grew up near Allatoona and loves bass fishing, so much so that he competes on the Kennesaw State fishing team. He has been successful fishing the FLW College Fishing trail, including a win in a tournament at Pickwick. Next year he will fish the college trails in both BASS and FLW as well as fishing some of the Bama BFL tournaments.

Allatoona is one of Brinson’s favorite lakes, and he does well there not just for spotted bass. Brinson also catches a surprising number of largemouths at Allatoona. One of his top memories is a three-bass catch weighing 17 pounds that included 8- and 7-lb. largemouths. Checking the lake two days before we fished in mid-September, Brinson had a five-fish limit weighing right at 18 pounds.

Brinson said fishing with the college team has taught him a lot about finding patterns and following bass, and team members from Kennesaw State as well as fishermen on other teams have shared information, which helps everyone become better anglers. Brinson’s knowledge shines particularly when it comes to his home lake.

“Bass are schooling up, following baitfish in October on Allatoona,” Brinson said.

He expects the bass to be near baitfish all month, and you can catch them on a lot of different baits. Brinson loves to throw a topwater bait like the Damiki MTB buzzbait, a Zoom Fluke, a spinnerbait and a Little John crankbait to cover water, and then he slows down with a jig ’n pig to hook bigger fish. He’s been using Denali rods and loves how well they handle everything from topwater to slow-moving baits where you need good feel.

The following 10 spots all held bass two weeks ago and will get even better  as the water cools this month.

No. 1: N 34º 08.787 – W 84º 43.497 — Across from the ramp at Red Top Mountain State Park there is a bridge. If you are heading upstream, on the right side there is a small island that has a rip-rap ridge running out to it. There is a pole marker on the downstream end of the island and the point runs way out. It is covered with brush.

This is a good spot to start first thing in the morning with topwater like the Damiki buzzbait, and Brinson likes to throw a black bait. He will work all the way around the point from the outside past the marker and to the rip-rap causeway going to the island.

Throw right on the bank, and work the bait out. Bass often hit well off the bank, sometimes giving you a thrill right beside the boat, so fish your bait all the way to the boat. Follow up with a fluke and a crankbait.  If you see activity on top, either swirling fish or baitfish, work the area hard.

No. 2: N 34º 08.306 – W 84º 42.757 — Run up the creek above the bridge, following the channel to the long cove on your left. At the mouth of the cove, a series of small rocky points start on the left side, and they all can hold bass. Brinson likes to start on the second point, upstream of the one with a pole marker on it. It has a longer point that comes out, and you will see a campsite on the bank with a picnic table and lantern pole by it.

This is another good early morning spot to catch schooling fish on top. Brinson will start on the downstream side and fish around it and into the small pocket on the upstream side. There are rocks underwater here, so also work it with a jig ’n pig, especially if there are baitfish in the area. Bass will hold deeper on the rocks after the sun gets up.

Start with a 1/2-oz. peanut-butter-and-jelly jig with a green-pumpkin trailer. Work it slowly, hitting all the rocks. When you hit one, pop it over the rock to draw a reaction strike.

No. 3: N 34º 09.961 – W 84º 43.557 — The upstream point at the mouth of Cooper Branch is a good place to catch bass. There is a sign on the point that reads “Cooper Branch,” so you won’t need GPS to find it. This round point has plenty of rock, and bass hold on it as they move into the creek to feed.

Fish it with topwater and a fluke first. If there is any wind blowing on this point, Brinson will also fish a spinnerbait here. He likes a gold double willowleaf blade with a shad-colored skirt like blue glimmer. He will work it all the way around the point, from the branch side to the main-lake side.

Brinson usually slow-rolls the spinnerbait, fishing it fairly deep with pauses to make the skirt flare. But sometimes burning the spinnerbait just under the surface, especially with a fairly strong wind, will draw hard strikes. Reel it as fast as you can while keeping it under the surface.

No. 4: N 34º 09.728 – W 84º 41.852 — Running up the river, the point at marker 6E is a big sweeping point where the current makes an eddy when it is moving. Start on the downstream side of the point, and fish upstream. Stay a long cast out from the bank, cast a deep-running crankbait right to the bank, and fish it back to the boat.

If current is moving here, Brinson will also get in close and parallel the bank. Throw your crankbait up current, and work it back in a natural action with the current. Brinson likes a shad-colored Little John crankbait. He will also fish a fluke and spinnerbait on this point.

No. 5: N 34º 08.936 – W 84º 40.171 — Farther up the river, the point above marker 14E is a good jerkbait point. You will be sitting in 35 feet of water not far off the bank. Throw a soft jerkbait like a fluke or a hard jerkbait close to the rocks, and fish them back to the boat. Be ready for a strike during the entire cast, from right on the rocks all the way to the time you take the bait out of the water.

There are two or three blowdowns on the point that often hold fish. Fish your fluke all around them, making several casts to each. Also watch your depthfinder, and if you see fish, have a drop-shot rig ready to fish these deeper holding bass. Brinson likes a morning-dawn color Robo Worm on his drop shot, and he will fish it straight down on the fish if they are holding out on the deeper water.

No. 6: N 34º 08.048 – W 84º 39.442 — Go into the creek just downstream of the Atlanta Yacht Club, and idle in past the no-wake buoys. Watch the right bank for three small signs on trees behind the gravel bank, and start fishing at them. 

Brinson said this is a great afternoon buzzbait bank. Stay a long cast off the bank, and throw your buzzbait right on the bank, and fish it back out. Bass chase shad into the shallows here and will often be in a couple of feet of water, so cast shallow.

Fish this bank from the signs around the next point with a pole marker on it, and fish the back side of it, too.  Brinson likes to fish fast with the buzzbait. He will have a craw or worm ready to cast to any bass that miss the bait. If fishing a tournament, you have to reel in your buzzbait before making a cast with the craw, but if you are not in a tournament, immediately drop your buzzbait rod and cast to the swirl with a plastic bait. Speed counts.

No. 7: N 34º 09.507 – W 84º 36.846 — Just above Victoria Harbor Marina, there is a short narrow cove and then a bigger, longer cove on the right. The point between these two coves is a good jig ’n pig cove. Start on the downstream side of this double point at the small pocket, and fish all the way to the bigger pocket.

It is important to keep your jig on the bottom. Brinson likes to start with a 1/2-oz. jig but will throw a heavier jig if the wind is blowing or if there is current. Cast near the bank, and fish your jig back. When you hit a rock, make the jig hop like a panicked crayfish, and you will often draw a reaction strike.

No. 8: N 34º 10.238 – W 84º 37.637 — Running up the river around the bend to the left, before the big turn back to the right, there is a double cove on the left side. It is just upstream of marker 33E. As you go into the mouth of it, there are two small brush-filled pockets on your left. This is a good largemouth hole.

Start out on the point past the upstream pocket, and fish it, the first pocket, the point between them and the second pocket, too. There is a lot of wood on the rocky bank and underwater, too. Brinson will throw a fluke over the wood cover, fishing from the bank out to the boat.

Try fishing your fluke fast, just under the surface. If that doesn’t draw a strike, slow it down, working it a little deeper. Brinson likes a pearl fluke and wants to keep eye contact with it if possible, watching for the flash of a fish taking it.

No. 9: N 34º 10.902 – W 84º 37.288 — Going upstream, on your left there is a narrow cove full of blowdowns. It is downstream of marker 37E, and there are blowdowns on both sides and more wood in the back. Fish all the blowdowns to the back until you hit about 5 feet of water.

Throw a buzzbait over the wood, but also fish a spinnerbait through it. Brinson will make multiple casts to each tree to draw out reluctant bass. You can also work a jig through the wood slowly if the bass are not aggressive.

No. 10: N 34º 10.646 – W 84º 36.699 — Just upstream of marker 36E (on your right going upstream) is a bluff bank with blowdowns on it. Brinson will start on the downstream point of the bluff bank and fish upstream, concentrating on the brush and blowdowns on it.

Fish a fluke over it and a spinnerbait through the brush. Try different speeds on both baits until the bass show you what they want. It is worth making several passes if you catch bass, since these steep bluffs will reload with feeding bass quickly.

Give Brinson’s spots and baits a try, and you can see how he fishes Allatoona. There are many similar places all over the lake where you can use the same tactics. 

You might be surprised at the numbers and size of the bass you catch, but you shouldn’t be. Allatoona is a good bass lake.

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