Clarks Hill Lake

Lake Strom Thurmond, known by most Georgia fishermen as Clarks Hill Lake, is a reservoir at the border between Georgia and South Carolina in the Savannah River Basin. It was created by the J. Strom Thurmond Dam during 1951 and 1952 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers near the confluence of the Little River and the Savannah River. Fishing for largemouth bass and striped bass in particularly popular at Clarks Hill, and the lake also offers very good shellcracker fishing during the late spring spawn, and there are some giant catfish in the lake. Crappie fishing can also be very good on Clarks Hill. At 71,000 acres, it is the third-largest artificial lake east of the Mississippi River, behind Kentucky Lake on the Tennessee River and Lake Marion on the Santee River. The J. Strom Thurmond Dam is located upstream from Augusta. Clarks Hill is one of the southeast's largest and most popular public recreation lakes.

Clarks Hill Lake Resources

Clarks Hill Fishing Report – October 2022

By GON Staff | September 29, 2022

Clarks Hill: Level: 3.5 feet below 330. Temp: 78-80 degrees. Clarity: Clear. Linesides: Capt. Eddie Mason reports, “I was fishing the mid-lake some, but now I’m mostly back on the lower end. Since it’s cooling off some, we’re going out a little later, around 6, but that early morning bite is still the one to go after. We have been trolling some Alabama rigs, but I still prefer downrods with live bait. I’m getting good bites about 20 feet deep in the creeks and river channels.” Guide Bradd Sasser, of Sasser Fishing Charters, reports, “The hybrid and striper patterns are transitioning along with the lake. They are migrating away from the lower end of the lake and heading up the lake toward Soap Creek and S.C. Little River. They are also moving out the Georgia Little River branch up toward Cherokee. With things changing in the lake, the only consistency…

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Clarks Hill Lake Articles

Savannah River Reservoirs Seeing Good Growth From Water Willow Plantings

  Georgia’s eastern flank offers some of the best freshwater fishing in the state, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) works to improve bass habitat at the Savannah River reservoirs. The USACE operates three major lakes along Georgia’s border with South Carolina: Lake Hartwell, Richard B. Russell Lake and Clarks Hill Lake. Administratively,…

Record-Sized Yellow Perch From Clarks Hill Tailrace

Georgia has seen three state-record fish in the past four months. Could another record fish have been caught last week? We will never know because the angler chose to release a huge yellow perch that based on measurements would have been close to state-record proportions. Patrick McCorkell was fishing below the Thurmond Dam in the…

Spotted Bass Sets New Clarks Hill Record

Pulling live blueback herring during a striper tournament paid off in more ways than one. The boat placed second in the Clarks Hill Striper Club tournament, and one of the anglers set a new lake record for spotted bass. Riley Hale was fishing with Capt. Ed Lepley and Kenny Brooks during the tournament this past…

Protected Pockets For March Clarks Hill Bass

Bass at Clarks Hill are on all three stages of the spawn in March. You can catch bass by targeting spawning areas, and you can catch them on a variety of baits. On the lower lake you are likely to have a mixed bag of spotted bass and largemouth, but up the Georgia Little River…

Clarks Hill Lake Live-Bait Linesides In December

Live-bait fishing for hybrids and stripers can be crazy good this time of year on Clarks Hill, with limits in minutes when the fish are bunched on points and humps feeding on herring—if you’re there at the right time. If you’d like to see proof, take a look at fishing guide Eddie Mason’s Facebook page…

Clarks Hill Lake Record Fish

Largemouth Bass14-lbs., 14-ozs.Carl Sasser02/16/72
Spotted Bass4-lbs., 11.8-ozs.Riley Hale03/19/22
White Bass3-lbs., 9-ozs.Ed Lepley03/09/15
Striped Bass55-lbs., 12-ozs.Sam Porter05/27/93
Hybrid Bass16-lbs., 12-ozs.Jim Hankinson-----
Black Crappie4-lbs., 8-ozs.Dewey Marks1979
White Crappie4-lbs., 12-ozs.Weldon Clark03/30/06
Blue Catfish62-lbs.Ralph Barbee Jr.09/12/79
Flathead Catfish64-lbs., 3.5-ozs.Jake Manley05/08/10
Channel Catfish25-lbs., 2-ozs.James Gunn05/13/93
Yellow Perch2-lbs., 8-ozs.Brad Murphy12/89
Sauger4-lbs., 3-ozs.Stuart Bowers04/05/86
Warmouth13-ozs.Daniel Rawlins04/15/01
White Perch1-lb., 4-ozs.Dennis Franklin02/22/15
Shellcracker1-lb., 9-ozs.Kathleen Weeks06/23/11