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Lake Oconee, Madison Georgia

Capt. Doug Nelms
February 27, 2002
Lake Oconee - Freshwater Fishing Report


The water in Oconee is begining to warm up, as we have experianced sunshine for the last few days. This is good, however as I look out my window and read my temp gauge, it looks like it is about to turn cold again. Stupid groundhog! We are catching fish though and they are big. Catches of 10 to 30 is about common for about a half days worth of fishing, but most of these fish will be huge. This week one of my friends caught the nicest stringer of crappie that you will ever see. 15 fish at 25 pounds! That is definatley worth floating around for about half a day in the cold. The method is boring and still the same. Fish as many rods as possible, with minnow tipped Hal Flys, under corks anywhere from 5 to 10 feet. The trick is just finding them. Of course we all know how finicky these things can be. But when you find them, just stay there slow trolling and eventually they will bite. You will find them in the powerlines now up the Apalachee River side; in the sticks up the Oconee side across from the Redlands; in the mouth of Town Creek; and in the very back arm of Sugar Creek. These are the big ones we get at the first of the season, so make sure you have a net to land them because you will not be able to swing those heavy bodied, thin lipped fish into the boat. Hopefully it will just get better.


They are showing up close to the dam now and by the end of March they will be stacked up deep in there. I am catching them at the river's bend about 3 miles from the dam. This is done by downlining shad about 20 feet and moving slowing across the water. If you can find the huge pockets of bait in this area, the fish will be there. However don't think you can just throw your shad net and catch your bait here. Weird is not the word to explain me and my quest to catch bait in this area the other day. The bottom of the graph was covered with bait and I couldn't pick up the first one. My guess is the water is so clear here and the bait is so deep that they elude the net; so if you catch your shad, you will have to find them somewhere else. Lick creek, Hwy 44 bridge and any place a little shallower should do the trick. In a few weeks you will be able to walk across the boats fishing for Hybrids, so my suggestion is to get out right now and go. If you would like to book a trip with me just go to my web site to contact me. It will only get better from here!

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Doug is a licensed USCG Captain and has been guiding over 14 years. His specialty is trophy Striped Bass, and huge Crappie during certain months. His boat is a Ranger 2300 Bay Series powered by a 225 Yamaha 4-stroke motor. It is spacious and can fish up to 6 people! During the hot summer months he heads to the Chattahoochee River to pursue monster Striped bass. He fishes from a custom jet boat, built exclusively for fishing the river. BigFishHeads Guide service operates year round.

Contact Info:

BigFishHeads Guide Service
9186 Tara Drive SW
Covington, GA 30014
Phone: 770-354-0300
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