After rising from 97.2% to 98.3% of full pool over the weekend, Lake Wylie has dropped slightly to 98.0% of full pool. Water temperatures dropped from the mid- to upper-70s into the low-70s over the weekend, but they have risen back into the 74-74 degree range. There is more stained water than a week ago.
Rising water levels have slowed the deep bite down a little in the past week, and instead of a red-hot deep bite FLW angler Bryan New says that anglers will find a pretty good deep bite on the water. Still, there is no doubt that the premier pattern on Lake Wylie right now is fishing for deeper fish. Solid numbers of fish can be found out deep, and Bryan says the deep bite should rebound as water levels again stabilize and then get even get better for the next few weeks.
Deep fish can be found in 15-32 feet of water off long tapering points, little points off the side of flats, and around other offshore structure. Carolina rigs, football jigs, swimbaits such as Keitech 4.8s, and crankbaits like a 6XD or DD-22 will all catch fish.
Early in the season before the fish have been pounded it is possible and even realistic to catch 20 fish in 25 casts. However, there are only so many deep spots where the bass set up well, and when the fish are there most Lake Wylie bass fishermen will be on them. Once these spots have been worked over for a couple of weeks catching multiples will get more difficult.
Even though the deep bite fell off a little bit in the last week when water levels rose, the shallow bite did not get commensurately better – although it may have improved a bit. Fish can still be caught “junk fishing” around docks and other visible cover with shallow-running crankbaits, wacky-rigged worms and spinnerbaits, but these are not generally tournament-quality fish.
Catfish: Good to very good. Captain Rodger Taylor (803-517-7828) reports that the pre-spawn catfish bite continues to be strong on Lake Wylie, and the spawn is drawing very close if it is not already under way in some places. While fish can be caught when the water is calm, the quality of the bite continues to generally be tied to current from the dams. Anchoring in about 6 feet of water but fishing deep bends where bait can be situated on the river shelf and off the river ledge down to 30 plus feet of water has been the best pattern. It can take 30 minutes for the bite to get started so it is worth being patient. Gizzard shad are hard to get but cut white perch and blueback herring are both working. Note that herring need to be kept alive and cut just before fishing or else they will get too soft to effectively stay on the hook.