Raysville Marina (Leon Buffington and Doug Pentecost), (706) 595-5582 – Billy Inglett and Jack Owens, of Grovetown, caught 26 crappies over brush fishing 16 to 18 feet down in 20 feet of water. They caught 20 on another trip on minnows in Big Hart Creek. Cliff Crowe and Don Ginder caught 25 crappies on jigs.
Capt. David Willard, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, fulltime professional guide specializing in hybrids, striped bass and trophy largemouth bass. Boat phone: (706) 214-0236. (803) 637-6379 (www.crockettrocketstriperfishing.com) – Water temperature is in the high 50s, the lake is clear and continuing to drop. We’re still catching a smorgasbord of fish – stripers, hybrids, largemouths, white perch and an occasional flathead all mixed together. Sharon Jones, originally from New York City now living in North Augusta, and her fishing crew, Lena and Fred, on Monday caught a nice mess of fish. We’re still fishing live herring but doing a lot of jigging with Berry’s Flex-It Spoons.
Ralph Barbee Jr., professional guide specializing in largemouth bass. (706) 860-7373 – Bob Bernoy and I fished last Friday in the Raysville area. We caught six nice bass 2 to 3 pounds on the Rat-L-Trap (brown crayfish color and clear with pearl top). Last Monday, we caught 15 bass after launching at Big Hart Park. Bob caught 10 and I caught five. He was in the back of the boat. The bass were on shallow banks. We returned to that area on Tuesday about 11 a.m. He had just finished saying that it had been a while since he last caught a 7-pound bass caught when he caught an 8-pounder. We caught 16 fish, including five hybrids. Bob went up Thursday with Donnie Roth, of Greenville, S.C. They caught five largemouth and Bob caught a 15-pound striper and a 5-pound hybrid, all on that Rat-L-Trap. Bob is now a member of the “tree finders” after hitting a submerged tree. There was no damage.
Fishing with Ralph Barbee airs Saturdays at 11 a.m., and Sundays at 1:30 p.m. on Comcast Channel 21, My12TV, Knology Ch. 7, G-Force (Aiken) Ch. 7 and Northland Ch. 9 (Fort Gordon).
William Sasser’s Guide Service, (Capt. William Sasser, Capt. Mark Crawford, Capt. Bradd Sasser, Capt. Andrew Tubbs, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, full time professional guides specializing in crappies, hybrids and striped bass). (706) 589-5468 (William), (706) 373-8347 (Mark), (Bradd) (706) 267-4313, (Andrew) (803) 507-5083 – This week has felt like spring weather-wise, not only to us, but to the fish. The lake has been producing super-nic e catches of stripers, crappies, largemouths and hybrids, despite being down 15 feet. There are still plenty of ramps open. You just have to pay strict attention to shoals and trees (and your depthfinder). The Germany Creek, Red Bank Island (up Georgia Little River) and Amity areas have been red hot for fishermen pulling live herring behind planer boards in the shallows. The other end of the lake around Shriver, Wells, Hawe Creek and S.C. Little River also has been producing good catches. Keep your field glasses close by and watch for diving gulls. This week, we enjoyed fishing with Paul Vincent, Jeff Hudson, Scott Abernathy and Chris Varnadore, all of Aiken; Timothy and Alana Coolidge, Leah Fernandez and Sam Williams, all of Grovetown; James Widener, John McMichael and Mitch Bransby, all of Evans; Michelle Erickson, of Harlem, Ga., all with nice catches of stripers, hybrids, white perch and yellow perch. Hunter Hopkins, Evans, and Joe Bergela, Augusta, went home with a limit of nice-sized crappies. George and Betty Tabor, of McCormick, S.C., fished with us in Lake Russell. They caught a nice mess of Kentucky spotted bass and stripers weighing 18 and 26 pounds. Betty had a fish on that she couldn’t get in.
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Clarks Hill Herring Hut, (Capt. Bradd Sasser) (864) 333-2000 – Slab-sized crappies are being caught around the treetops in Grays Creek and in Buffalo, Long Cane and Baker creeks off S.C. Little River. Small shiners and black and chartreuse jigs fished around cover in 20 to 25 feet of water. Bank fishermen are taking advantage of the low water and fishing new areas. Gilbert Hampton caught a 10-pound flathead catfish and several nice crappies in S.C. Little River. Fishing below Thurmond Dam is still producing nice catches of bream, yellow perch and crappies.
NORTH GEORGIA MOUNTAIN STREAMS
Carter and Hunter Morris, licensed professional guides specializing in fly fishing for rainbow, brook and brown trout. (706) 833-1083 (www.flyfishingnorthgeorgia.com) (facebook.com/flyfishingnorthgeorgia) – Little rainfall over the past few weeks has left most north Georgia trout streams low and clear, making it tougher to catch trout. Just try nymphing without a strike indicator, or using a big dry fly to drop nymphs behind when fishing choppier riffles. Fishing on the Soque River and Toccoa River has been excellent.
MERRY LAND BRICKYARD PONDS
Check-in station, 1408 Doug Barnard Parkway, Gene Kirkland, (706 722-8263) – Military personnel, senior citizens, you can fish for half-price. If you’re handicapped, you can fish for free. Contact the bait and tackle shop for details.
Brickyard report: Bill Brock caught 100 crappies in the Ditch. Sammy Hogan caught 50 crappies on minnows in the Expressway Pond. Roy Davis caught 75 crappies in the Ditch on minnows. Mel and Josh Langston caught 80 crappies in the Membership Pond. Larry Johnson caught 75 crappies in the Garden Pond on minnows. Tracy Eubanks caught 65 crappies and 20 catfish in the Cornell Pond. Jim and Betty Smith caught 65 crappies in the White Elephant Pond. Bill Williams caught 45 crappies in the Expressway Pond.
Lock and dam: J.C. Skinner caught 38 crappies and 25 bream on minnows and worms. Bobby Turner caught 25 crappies on minnows.
BEAUFORT, S.C. & VICINITY
Ralph Goodison, Fripp Island, (843) 838-2530 – Spotted sea trout are being caught in great numbers in the tidal creeks around Fripp. A husband-wife team fishing with a guide caught and released 55 large redfish. Fishing has been really good, but few fishermen have been out. On Thursday morning, a pilot whale beached itself just below the Fripp Island bridge.
Miss Judy Charters, Capt. Judy Helmey, (912) 897-4921 (www.missjudycharters.com.) P.O. Box 30771, Savannah, Ga. 31410-0771 – The artificial reefs continue to produce a varied catch of bottom-dwellers, including gag groupers.