The newest Clarks Hill fishing report can be found at: http://www.anglersheadquarters.com/ahq-insider-clarks-hill-gasc-winter-2017-18-fishing-report/
Clarks Hill water levels are at 321.37 (full pool is 330.00) and water temperatures are around 54 degrees. Clarity is normal.
On the striped bass front, Captain William Sasser (864-333-2000) reports that fish are in a typical winter pattern, except that they are usually fishing a lot higher up the lake at this time than they are right now. Right now they are staying in the mid-lake.
The pattern is fairly similar to a couple of weeks ago, and his boats are catching fish pulling free-lines back in the coves early in the morning, generally in 10-15 feet of water. Mid-morning they are finding striper and hybrids on down-lines 30 feet deep over 30-40 feet of water off main lake points.
The most significant change is that more birds have arrived, and while there has been no schooling to speak of they are generally helping to pinpoint the fish.
The cold weather is starting to move some Clarks Hill bass into the ditches, but Buckeye Lures in Augusta reports that there are still a bunch of fish chasing bait off points in the late afternoon when the water warms. There have also been some fish caught on square-billed crankbaits around grass.
Crappiehave been in a stable pattern for a while now, and William’s boat is finding them 15 feet down over 25 feet of water in the backs of coves over brush.
In catfish news, Captain Chris Simpson (864-992-2352) reports that most of the big schools of baitfish are holding in the 30-45 foot range at the creek mouths to about halfway back into the creeks in the mid-lake. Anchoring on secondary points that intersect with the depth range of the baitfish is the best bet. When you locate fish the bite can be good, although finding fish that are not already gorged can be an issue when you are fishing around huge schools of baitfish. Accordingly, Chris rates the bite fair to good.
Clarks Hill water levels are at 321.1 (full pool is 330.00) and water temperatures are in the low 60s. Clarity is normal with very little rain.
It’s an in-between time for catching bass on Clarks Hill, and weights have been pretty low in recent tournaments. Lots of 8-9 pound bags are coming to the scales. With water temperatures still pretty warm fish haven’t stacked up in the ditches yet.
Early in the morning the best bet is to throw a square-billed crankbait or a floating worm around the grass. Crawfish, bream and sexy shad colors will all work, and a small 3 ½ – 4 ½ foot diver has been the best. There have also been some fish caught slow-rolling a white spinnerbait around the grass.
Once the air warms a little, if there is some wind then bass will be chasing blueback herring. A fluke or Gunfish is a good option, but if they are on very small bait then a small spoon may be the only way to get them to bite.
On the striped bass front, Captain William Sasser (864-333-2000) reports that mid-lake they are catching fish pulling free-lines back in the coves early in the morning, generally in 10-15 feet of water. Mid-morning they are finding striper and hybrids on down-lines 30 feet deep over 30-40 feet of water off main lake points in the same part of the lake. Birds are starting to show up and there is just beginning to be some winter schooling action.
Crappieare in a very similar pattern and William’s boat is finding them 15 feet down over 25 feet of water in the backs of coves over brush.
Captain Chris Simpson (864-992-2352) reports that the catfishpattern is unchanged, and while the bite is still strong he now only rates it as “good.” It’s unclear why the bite has slowed because that doesn’t usually happen at this time of year, but it’s possible lingering warm weather is responsible.