Freshwater Fishing Trends - June 22, 2016
Information on fishing trends provided courtesy of www.anglersheadquarters.com/, South Carolina's premier fishing report source. Customers of the Angler's Headquarters online tackle store have access to daily updates and full-length reports on its site.
Lake Russell (Updated June 21)
Bass: Fair to good. Guide Jerry Kotal (706-988-0860) and Guide Wendell Wilson (706-283-3336) report that bass are setting up in a typical summer pattern where they can be caught in 20-40 feet of water around depth changes as well as off main lake points. Drop shot rigs, Spot Removers, and deep-diving crankbaits will all catch fish.
Catfish: Very good. Guide Jerry Kotal reports that channel catfish are scattered across the lake and feeding very well on cut herring as well as catalpa worms.
Crappie: Very good. Guide Wendell Wilson reports strong numbers of crappie as well as big fish are being caught around brush in 15-18 feet on worms, and 35-70 fish trips has been the norm.
Striped Bass: Slow. Guide Wendell Wilson reports that striper fishing will get better soon but for now pulling free-lined herring in the mid-lake is the best bet.
Lake Thurmond (Updated June 16)
Bass: Fair to good. Buckeye Lures reports that some big bags have been caught in local tournaments even though it has gotten very hot. Fish can be caught around main lake humps on jigs and soft plastics, and there is also some shallow activity early and late.
Striper and Hybrids: Very good. Captain William Sasser (864-333-2000) reports that early in the morning his boat is catching fish 40-50 feet deep on down-lines. In the backs of coves tons of two-pound hybrids can be caught.
Crappie: Good. Captain William Sasser reports that crappie are still biting well over mid-depth brush.
Lake Wylie (Updated June 2)
Bass: Fair to good. FLW angler Bryan New reports that the deep bite is significantly better than any shallow pattern. Carolina rigs, swimbaits, jigs and deep-running crankbaits will all catch fish around offshore structure.
Catfish: Fair. Captain Rodger Taylor (803-517-7828) reports that priority one for the fish is spawning, and that can make for a tougher catfish bite. Anglers need to display a lot of flexibility and be willing to move around, anchor, drift and try different baits. While it is still worth trying up the river for a big bite, particularly when there is current, more catchable fish may be found in the less riverine areas.
Lake Greenwood (Updated May 24)
Bass: Tough. Stan Gunter reports that fish are in a transition period between shallow and deep water and getting bites is not easy. Some fish can be caught early around seawalls on topwater lures, and others are in mid-depth to deeper water where they will take worms and crankbaits.
Striper: Good. Captain Chris Simpson (864-992-2352) reports that striper are being caught on free lines as well as down-lines fished at the depth where anglers mark fish. Schooling should get hot soon.
Catfish: Fair to good. Captain Chris Simpson reports that channel catfish can be caught around humps and points on dip baits and cut herring.
Lake Monticello (Updated May 24)
Bass: Fair to Good. Andy Wicker reports that this is still a transition period; while some smaller fish can still be caught shallow on topwater lures and flukes, better fish may be beginning to transition out to deeper humps and offshore structure. Deep-diving crankbaits and spoons will both catch fish.
Catfish: Inconsistent. Captain Chris Simpson (864-992-2352) reports that some days the bite for large blue catfish is very good, but on other days the fishing can be very slow. Similarly, the free-line drifting bite is inconsistent – it may take some more warm weather before it gets more reliable. Small pieces of cut bait are the best option right now for all sizes of fish.
Lake Murray (Updated June 19)
Striped bass: Good. Captain Brad Taylor (803-331-1354) reports that the best fish are being caught on down-lines fished in 40-60 feet of water. A few fish are also being caught on free-lines, and there has been sporadic schooling activity.
Crappie: Good. Captain Brad reports that good numbers of crappie are being caught over brush in 18-25 feet of water and around deeper docks. Both minnows and jigs will catch fish.
Catfish: Good. Captain Chris Simpson (864-992-2352) reports that fan-casting a variety of baits – including dip baits and cut herring – in 5-25 feet of water has been productive for channel catfish.
Bass: Fair. Captain Brad Taylor reports that first thing in the morning some fish can be caught on topwater lures fished around points, and later in the day they will take soft plastics fished deeper in the same areas.
Lake Wateree (Updated June 2)
Bass: Good. Dearal Rodgers reports that fish can be found both shallow around the grass as well as deeper in 10-15 feet of water around structure, but the best bite is in the transitional zone between shallow and deep water. Buzzbaits, spinnerbaits, jigs and soft plastics will all catch fish. Catfish: Fair. Captain Rodger Taylor (803-517-7828) reports that most fish are focused on spawning, and that can make for more challenging catfish conditions. While it is still worth trying up the river for a big bite, particularly when current is present, the best bite may be further down the lake where pre-spawn and post-spawn fish are more likely to be found. Anglers should experiment with a variety of cut baits to find what the fish want. Crappie: Good. Will Hinson advises that the largest numbers of fish are moving towards mid-depth brush where they will eat jigs and minnows. With clarity best in the lower lake the best catches have come from that area.
Santee Cooper System (Updated May 25)
Bass: Good. Steve Harmon reports that one group of bass can be found up shallow in 1-5 feet of water where they will eat frogs, but many of the bigger fish have moved out to deeper points and ditches. These fish can be caught on worms as well as spinnerbaits and swimbaits. Catfish: Fair to good. Captain Jim Glenn (843-825-4239) reports that catfish are moving back and forth between shallow and deeper water, and a ton of small blue cats continue to be caught to go along with some occasional big fish.
Bream: Fair to good. Captain Steve English reports that bluegill and shellcrackers are moving up to spawn around new and full moons, and then heading back to deeper water in between moon phases. Worms and crickets will catch fish.
Crappie: Fair. Captain Steve English reports that crappie can be found around mid-depth brush where they will eat minnows. Fishing in the lower lake has been a little better than the upper lake.
Lake Jocassee (Updated June 22)
Trout: Good. Guide Sam Jones (864-280-9056) reports that some nice trout have been caught recently. Fish are getting deeper and moving into a summer pattern, and they are being caught as shallow as 40 feet down into the 70-foot range. Spoons are working best.
Lake Keowee (Updated June 16)
Bass: Guide Brad Fowler reports that fish are getting into a pretty standard summer pattern. Early in the morning there is a topwater bite, and later in the day fish can be caught on drop shots and shakey head worms.
Lake Hartwell (Updated June 16)
Bass: Fair to good. Guide Brad Fowler reports that there is a pretty good topwater bite over points and humps, and fish can also be caught on drop shots as well as around bream beds.
Striped Bass: Good. Captain Bill Plumley (864-287-2120) and Guide Chip Hamilton (864-304-9011) report that the best striper actions is the middle to lower part of the lake about 30-50 feet deep on down-lined herring.
Catfish: Good. Captain Bill Plumley reports that channel catfish are scattered out in the shallow to middle depths where they will eat dip baits, cut bait, worms and more. Flathead catfish can be caught at night on live bait and most blues are in deeper timber.
Crappie: Fair. Captain Bill Plumley reports that the crappie bite is pretty good around mid-depth brush and bridges on minnows, and night fishing has been a litter better than daytime fishing.
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