I got out yesterday on Lake Oconee hoping to be able to fling a spinner bait around and come across a few big females. Unfortunately, a cold front blew through on Friday and seems to have shut down any fish that were thinking about spawning. I got on the lake about 9 am. I was a little worried as the lake seemed extremely muddy from the recent rains. My first stop was one of my favorite springtime creeks in the Richland Creek area. As I always do when scouting an area in the spring, I started about midway in the creek with plans to fish all the way to the back and try to establish a pattern. I was pleased that the water clarity was not as bad as I thought it might be. I could see my spinner bait about 1 to 1-1/2 feet down. Water temp where I started was around 64.5 degrees on one depth finder and 65 on another, another good sign. It was also promising as I came up on the first dock and had one hit the spinner bait but missed it, but as the day went on, it was apparent that it wasn’t going to be a typical April day on Oconee. I wound up catching 8 in around 5 hours. Well, really 7 considering one came off near the boat, but we’ll count that one anyway. Ha!
My first fish came not too long after I started. I threw the spinner bait to the right corner of the dock and it hit after the bait had come past the corner out in front of the dock. It was a typical Oconee borderline keeper that might have been 13-3/4 or 14-1/4. I think it was more on the 13-3/4 size and just under keeper length.
The second fish hit the spinner bait off a point. It actually wasn’t next to a dock, but there was a dock about 10 feet away. It was only around 10 inches long, so it did not warrant a picture.
This fish was the biggest one I saw and definitely a keeper. Unfortunately, it came off near the boat. I had thrown the spinner bait in a boat slip and was running it real close to the edge of the dock when it hit. It was probably around 2 pounds.
At this point in the day, I had fished all the way to the back of the creek. I decided to slow down and do something I hate to do, throw a Carolina rig. I just wanted to see if slowing down and throwing plastics would be any better. It was not. I fished back up through the creek over the places I had already fished. The only decent bite I had was fish #5. It was another Oconee special, probably just under keeper length. I had a few other bites but missed them, either very small bass or bream.
I decided to put the plastic down and move to another area. I really wanted to fish a spinner bait anyway. I went farther up the lake and fished a small creek where I had success in the past. I started at the mouth of the creek and the second dock produced my next fish. I threw the spinner bait down the left side and it hit as soon as the spinner bait got near the dock. I was only around 11-12 inches long.
About 100 yards down the bank, between 2 docks, Fish #7 hit. This one was decent and the first decent fish not be around a dock. Something I had hoped for as the water had warmed up to around 67 degrees. It was a decent one and definitely a keeper.
I fished the rest of the creek I was in and moved up the lake to a large cove that had a split in it. My last fish came on a seawall. There were no docks around and the water was warming up to almost 68 degrees. This was another borderline keeper.
Overall, I guess it wasn’t a bad day considering the colder temperatures and strong winds, but I was hoping for some bigger fish. If we get some stable warm weather, the fishing should really turn on. Still, it was great getting on the water and fishing pressure was not bad. I saw more pleasure boaters than fishermen. If you were down there, I hope you had better luck than I did, and if you didn’t, I hope this report helps if you are planning on going.
Thanks for reading. Keep chunkin’ and windin’!