Lake Hartwell Fishing Report
Lake Hartwell is at 655.
Striped and Hybrid Bass: Good. Captain Bill Plumley (864-287-2120) reports that striper fishing has been pretty good, particularly on the lower end of the lake where some big fish have been caught recently. The best fish are being caught in very deep water, often in the 45-55 foot range in 100-150 feet of water. In addition to down-lining these fish are being caught “power-reeling” in which anglers drop a lure through the fish and then rip it up towards the surface through the school. Additionally, schooling activity is starting on the lower end of the lake around the dam and above. These fish are mainly 2-3 pounders.
Catfish: Good. Captain Bill Plumley reports that channel catfish are still biting well all over the lake, particularly in the 15-40 foot range. Cut bait (herring or other fish), dip bait, nightcrawlers, as well as other choices will all catch fish. The blue catfish bite has also started to pick up and some really nice fish have been caught Santee-style drifting. Pulling fresh cut herring or perch on the bottom in 15-40 feet of water has been working, and some nice blues have also been picked up on live herring (often as a by-catch). Flatheads can be caught early and late, but the best action often comes night fishing around stick-ups and brush fairly shallow in 5-10 feet of water. Brush on top of humps is particularly strong and live bream and white perch are the best baits.
Black bass: Fair. Guide Brad Fowler (864-934-5813) reports that bass fishing had really been picking up, but in the last few days the water has started to turn over and the fishing has slowed down. The whole lake is not turning over yet, but it has started to turn over in certain areas. Apart from the turnover, topwater fishing over deep points has been pretty good over most of the lake and bass and striper are mixed in together. Fish are more or less suspended, and swimbaits and scrounger heads are also catching fish and one day Brad did a lot of good with crankbaits fished off points. This is the time of year when a lot of different baits will catch fish. Some baitfish (and bass) are starting to migrate up the creeks, and the fact that water levels are a little higher than has been typical is also playing a role in that. Finally, be alert to wind direction changes because when the wind changes direction it will change where the fish are located.
Crappie: Fair. Captain Bill Plumley reports that crappie are being caught at night around bridges 17-25 feet deep in 25-30 feet of water, and some fish are also being caught during the day in the same areas. Fish are also being found in 15-25 feet of water suspended over the tops of brush in about 30 feet of water. Jigs and minnows are both catching fish.
DHEC Fish Advisories: Due to PCB advisories visit http://www.scdhec.gov/environment/water/fish/Advisories/hartwell.htm before consuming any Lake Hartwell fish.