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AHQ INSIDER Lake Greenwood (SC) Spring 2020 Fishing Report – Updated March 13

  • by Jay

March 13

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 438.03 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are in the upper 50s.  The lake is still muddy although it is beginning to clear. 

The lower end of Lake Greenwood

Even though the water is muddy it’s warming, and veteran tournament bass angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that fishing is finally improving.  Bass are starting to move up into shallower water and make their way in the direction of the backs, even though we are still a little ways off from the spawn.  Right now fish can be found in main lake pockets or pockets in the main part of creeks, and they are also around rocky points.  They are not yet in flat areas in the backs but they are heading that way. 

There have been some nice fish caught on spinnerbaits and Chatterbaits around the eel grass near the state park, and for right now 4-5 feet is the best depth range to look in.

February 27

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 438.61 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are in the lower 50s.  The lake is still muddy from one end to the other, and even the water coming out of the dam is red muddy. 

Lake Greenwood is still as muddy as veteran tournament bass angler Stan Gunter of Saluda has ever seen it, and in these conditions he continues to advise going as shallow as possible where there is a little better light penetration.  Out in the deep water bass are essentially blind and confused, even with their lateral line.  Fish will still be related to some type of shallow cover, as it gives them something to orient towards.

There aren’t many fish being caught, and in recent tournaments zeros have been more common than limits.  The best baits are still spinnerbaits or Chatterbaits, unless you want to flip very shallow cover. 

As we move into March if the water clears fish will start to stage for the pre-spawn around points and brushpiles, which could be shallow or deep.  They will also be at the mouths of creeks near spawning locations.  Jigs, heavy spinnerbaits, or worms will all work.  Stan finds that on Greenwood typically there are plenty of fish that can be caught early in the pre-spawn running the banks, but often the better ones hold out a little bit deeper.  Jerkbaits or medium-running crankbaits can work well for these fish.

February 14

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 437.15 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are in the lower 50s. From one end to the other the lake is as orange and muddy as it ever gets.

It looks like horrendous bass fishing conditions on Lake Greenwood, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that right now the lake is so thick with red mud that it looks like you could walk across the water and leave tracks!  The flood gates are still running, and the best advice is probably to go somewhere else to fish.

With that said, there have been some times where the lake did not look much different than this when Stan has found a better-than-expected bite. In those circumstances the key was fishing very shallow with a fire tiger crankbait. The best such bite he remembers was in March when it was a little warmer.  

It should be some time until the lake clears, especially with recent rains in the Upstate as well as more predicted. When it does finally start to settle out Stan advises heading to the backs of creeks or up the river, which should be the first areas to clear.  

In the dirty water Stan advises throwing as shallow as you possibly can, as fish will be so shallow that you can practically throw a bait on the bank and expect fish to eat it when you first pull it into the water. They can not see, and so to orient themselves they will head to the banks and also try to get near some piece of cover.  The best baits are likely to be spinnerbaits or Chatterbaits, or you may want to flip very shallow cover.

The cleanest, clearest water on the lower end of Lake Greenwood!
The cleanest, clearest water on the lower end of Lake Greenwood!

January 31

Lake Greenwood water levels are down to 434.54 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures range from about 47-51. The lake is muddy. 

It’s still pretty tough bass fishing conditions on Lake Greenwood, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that cold, muddy water is doing nothing to help the bite.   A fresh round of rain today should make things even dirtier.  Still, low visibility is pushing fish relatively shallow and they are looking for something to hold against to orient themselves. Bass will be around shallow laydowns, pieces of wood, rocks, docks, etc. Stan advises staying on the main lake, and the best baits right now are shallow-running crankbaits, Rattle Traps, Chatterbaits, and the like.  Brightly colored lures that are visible and make a lot of vibration are the best bet.

While an Alabama rig had been catching some fish in the clearer water at the lower end of the lake, the whole lake is dirty now. Until the rain today the upper end was actually cleaner than the middle and lower lake.

Stan Gunter with a nice one caught this week
Stan Gunter with a nice one caught this week

January 17

Lake Greenwood water levels are up to 437.44 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are in the upper 50s. The lake ranges from muddy to stained.

Atypical water conditions are making for some tough bass fishing conditions on Lake Greenwood, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that water temperatures should be 49 degrees instead of 58 or 59. The lake is also very dirty, with the conditions above the state park muddy. Below the state park the water has a lot of color already, and will get worse. Water levels have also risen almost three feet in as many days.

In these conditions anglers need to be fishing shallow in less than five feet in the cleanest water they can find. Fish are looking for something to hold against to orient themselves, and so they will be around shallow laydowns, pieces of wood, rocks, docks, etc. Stan advises staying on the main lake. 

Brightly colored lures that are visible and make a lot of vibration are the best bet, such as Chatterbaits, spinnerbaits with Colorado blades, or crankbaits in fire tiger color.  At the extreme lower end of the lake an Alabama rig with bright baits can also be effective.

December 24

Lake Greenwood water levels are up to 437.02 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures have dropped into the lower 50s. With the influx of dirty water the lake is becoming stained to muddy.

Although the dirty water coming into the lake is sure to shake things up, veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that the bass patterns reported below still generally hold. Deep fish can be caught on a jigging spoon, and there is still schooling activity. 

While a shallow cranking bite could also turn on, the only confirmed change since December 20 is that the Alabama rig bite has gotten much better.  Fish have been caught on A-rigs around bridges and train trestles, and they also continue to be caught around docks, points and other cover.  The winter Alabama rig bite is on Greenwood is starting to get as good as expected.

December 20

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 435.96 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are in the low to mid-50s. 

The bass fishing has gotten much better on Lake Greenwood, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that this is one of those times when you have several different patterns to choose from.

Alabama rigs usually feature prominently in an angler’s winter arsenal on Lake Greenwood, and right now you can go down the bank and cast in 6-10 feet of water. Fish are around main lake docks, pockets, points and rock.

There is also a deep bite in 18-20 feet, and fish can be found around rocks, drops and ledges in that range. They could also be on brush. A jigging spoon is probably the best way to target these fish.  

Perhaps the most exciting way to target bass right now is chasing schooling fish, which are mixed in with striped bass.  This is a particularly strong bite for catching spotted bass, but there are some largemouth out there as well.  Action is most commonly found over deep water, but there are also some fish on top in only 10-15 feet of water.  Look for the birds to locate fish.  Fish are on small shad and so small swimbaits and bucktails are working well.<

Stan Gunter with a nice Greenwood bass
Stan Gunter with a nice Greenwood bass

November 25

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 437.39 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are around 60. Up the lake is a little dirty while down the lake is relatively clear.  

It’s still not easy bassfishing conditions on Lake Greenwood, but veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that there are productive patterns both shallow and deep. On the shallower side if you head to the backs of creeks there are some fish that will take a crankbait or spinnerbait fished around docks, and it is also getting to the time where you can throw an Alabama rig. This bite is best in the middle part of the lake.

There has also been something of a deep jigging spoon bite, with some fish being caught in 25-35 feet. As water temperatures drop this bite should improve and there should also be some good action on drop shot rigs fished deep.

Stan with a good one caught recently

 

October 29

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 437.16 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures are down to the lower 70s.

Water temperatures have dropped but are still warmer than typical for this time of year, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that bassfishing remains a little tough. The best fishing is still in pockets and flats on the main lake, and it just has not gotten cool enough for the creeks to have really come on. 

Stan says that as good a pattern as anything is to fish a buzzbait all day long, paying particular attention to docks and walkways. You can also fish a jig or shakey head around main lake docks, and casting a square-billed crankbait is also a good option. 

 

September 30

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 437.77 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures in the morning are in the mid-80s. With no rain the water is clear for Greenwood.

It’s still hot, but veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that bassfishing is starting to pick up on Lake Greenwood. There are not a lot of very large fish being caught on Greenwood right now, but numbers have been pretty good.

The deep bite is basically dead, but in main lake pockets and in the front part of creeks from the lower end up to the Seaboard Trestle fish can be caught in 6 feet of water or less on Pop-Rs and buzzbaits early. After that fishing a shakey head around docks is the best pattern.  

Rocky banks will also hold fish, and a suspended jerkbait or a methiolate floating worm should work.  

 

September 20

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 438.23 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures in the morning are in the low 80s.

It remains tough conditions for bassfishing on Lake Greenwood, but veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that with a bit more cool weather it should get much better. However, now that the temperatures have started to cool a little he advises abandoning the offshore holes unless you want to catch a bunch of small spotted bass.

From now on most of the best fishing will be in 6 feet of water or less, and Stan advises starting at the mouths of creeks and working your way back until you figure out where the fish are holding. Buzzbaits and Whopper Ploppers will catch fish early, and around docks during the day worms, jigs, or shakey heads are the best bet. 

Rocky banks will also hold fish, and a suspended jerkbait or a methiolate floating worm should work.  

 

September 5

Lake Greenwood water levels are at 438.84 (full pool is 440.0) and surface water temperatures in the morning are in the low to mid-80s.

It’s pretty tough conditions for bassfishing on Lake Greenwood, and veteran tournament angler Stan Gunter of Saluda reports that in particular the deep fish are not biting well. He advises concentrating on less than 6 feet of water, but since there has not yet been significant cooling focusing on the mouths of creeks or main lake pockets. Fish are not way in the backs yet.

The best bite is still early and late, and fishing a buzzbait or methiolate floating worm at those times around docks or shallow cover is the most likely way to catch fish. During the day you can try fishing a small crankbait, jig or Senko around deeper docks, or fishing a crankbait, jig or shakey head off rocky points. 

If there is significant rain and temperatures drop a few degrees better fall fishing should arrive.

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