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Lake Wylie Fishing News and Report (Updated November 12)

  • by Jay

What a difference another deluge of rain makes!  In his most recent report Captain Rodger Taylor (803-517-7828) advised that the catfish were hanging out around deep ledges in a typical fall pattern and feeding very well, while the white perch fishing was even better.  Perch were grouped up in the creeks about 25 feet deep and catching 400 or 500 fish in a trip was a real possibility.

Based on his last couple of trips Rodger has learned that everything has changed, and the perch schools that were so abundant have made themselves scarce.  Frankly it’s unclear where the perch have gone and jigging them up is next to impossible when you can’t locate them on sonar or otherwise.

The catfish bite has changed significantly as well, but instead of vanishing the catfish have taken up residence on shallower structure.  On his last few trips Rodger has certainly looked around the deepest ledges where they were so thick just a week or two ago, but instead of finding them there fish have moved onto ledges in 18-35 feet of water.  The bait has moved shallower and so have catfish, and good numbers of fish are also in the creeks.  While the deep bite has been off – surprisingly for the season – fish have not been super shallow either.  Drifting gizzard shad has been the pattern of choice, with white perch not even in the picture since they are unavailable.

While flexibility and adjustment has been required, Rodger still rates the bite as very good.  On the most recent trip his boat caught a surprise 39-pound flathead as well as several blues in the high teens and 20s, and overall they caught 24 fish.  In the creeks the percentage of channels continues to be higher (about 50/50) than in the main channel, but filling up coolers with both species has been doable.

A nice blue caught in the creeks on Captain Rodger Taylor's boat
A nice blue caught in the creeks on Captain Rodger Taylor’s boat

Overall, Lake Wylie is fluctuating between full pool and 99% of full pool, with water conditions generally a couple of feet above normal.  The lake is heavily stained with new fresh water.

Bass: Fair. Tournament angler Bryan New reports that up and down water levels have made for some difficult conditions, and with all the water that has come into the lake fish seem to be grouped up best in the 5-10 foot range.  There are certainly some fish deeper, but the majority are in that zone.  With the stained conditions the best fishing is generally target related, and he suggests fishing around riprap, docks and other mid-depth cover.  A secondary pattern is fishing around the “grass” then grew up when the lake is down – which is actually nut sage.  With the stained conditions Bryan suggests throwing a ½ ounce white or chartreuse Greenfish Tackle spinnerbait with one gold and one silver blade, or a Greenfish swim jig in the same colors.

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