Santee Cooper Fishing Report
Catfish: Fair. Captain Jim Glenn (843-825-4239) reports that catfishing is fair on the lakes. The most productive pattern may be drifting and covering a range of depths, including 8-9 feet of water and 35 or more feet of water. Try using a variety of fresh cut baits. Some fish are still being caught in the Diversion Canal but not as consistently as a few weeks ago. Night fishing may be more productive than daytime fishing if fishermen can cope with the threat of thunderstorms.
Largemouth bass: Slow to fair. Captain Jimmie Hair (843-553-1139) reports that some fish can be caught in the lakes around cypress trees as well as docks with at least 3 feet of water around them. Soft plastics have been the best baits, including Senkos and Zoom magnum finesse worms. In the Cooper River some fish are being caught at the mouths of the rice fields on the dropping tide, with Zoom magnum worms in watermelon seed color working best. On the lakes and in the river fishing early is key – late afternoon thunderstorms have kept the evening bite from being strong.
Crappie: Slow. Captain Steve English (843-729-4044) reports that the large amount of freshwater pouring into the system appears to have really slowed the crappie bite. Try fishing minnows and jigs over brush in the 14-20 foot range.
Bream: Slow. Captain Steve English reports that the freshwater coming into the lakes has made for an uncharacteristically slow bite, and even on the most recent full moon catches appeared to be way off. Trying fishing crickets and worms around shallow cover.
DHEC fish advisories: Largemouth bass and bowfin (mudfish) should only be eaten once per week.