When thinking of the state of Georgia, peaches, pecans, and the lush fairways of Augusta National Golf Club usually come to mind. With all the great things the state has to offer, it can be easy to overlook the tremendous fishing opportunities. From bass to tarpon, Georgia’s waters have it all. Here are the top 10 places to fish in Georgia:
1. Lake Seminole
Lying along the border of Georgia and Florida, Lake Seminole is home to monster largemouth bass. Abundant aquatic vegetation, primarily hydrilla, and loads of standing timber provide plenty of habitat for bass to lurk in. Bring your grass fishing arsenal of topwater frogs, lipless crankbaits, and soft plastic worms to fill your boat with giant bass at Lake Seminole.
2. Golden Isles
The Golden Isles along Georgia’s Atlantic coast give saltwater anglers all the fishing action they could ask for. Redfish, snapper, and arguably the best saltwater game fish, the tarpon, all thrive here. The Golden Isles offer spectacular saltwater fishing whether you are fishing from the bank, a charter boat, or a kayak.
3. Lake Hartwell
Lake Hartwell is a prime bass fishing lake for both Georgia and South Carolina anglers. The deep, clear waters here hold a growing population of both largemouth and spotted bass. The 2015 Bassmaster Classic at Lake Hartwell was won by local favorite, Casey Ashley, with a hefty three day total of 50 pounds 1 ounce.
4. Clarks Hill Lake
At just over 71,000 acres, Clarks Hill is Georgia’s largest lake. The main forage of blueback herring in Clarks Hill can make the largemouth and spotted bass fishing tough at times, but the striped bass fishing here is world class. Local anglers regularly catch striped bass over 20 pounds and it isn’t uncommon to see a striper over 40 pounds caught.
5. Chattahoochee River
Grab your fly fishing rod and get to the Chattahoochee River! Since the introduction of brown and rainbow trout to the Chattahoochee in the 1950s, the trout fishing has been off the charts. The state record brown trout, pulled out of the Chattahoochee by a kayak fisherman in 2014, weighed in at a whopping 20 pounds 14 ounces.
6. Lake Oconee
The perfect home for leisurely fishermen, Lake Oconee is one of the most popular lakes in Georgia. Here you can catch trophy largemouth and striped bass and then spend the evening playing golf or taking in the scenic views from one of the many cabins lining the lakeshore.
7. Flint River
Flowing south into Lake Seminole, the Flint River is one of Georgia’s most famed river fishing destinations. The shoal bass is unique to the Flint River and brings anglers from across the south to its waters to attempt to catch this rare cross between a largemouth and smallmouth bass.
8. Lake Allatoona
Lake Allatoona has a long standing reputation as a tremendous spotted bass fishery. The lake record spotted bass weighing 7 pounds 11 ounces even rivals the giant spots of the west coast. Western and northern bass anglers will feel right at home here as the dropshot, jerkbait, and the topwater walker are the primary tactics for landing trophy spots.
9. Lake Jackson
Located in north central Georgia, Lake Jackson makes our list of top lakes because of its great bass fishing year-round. This small reservoir houses a power plant that emits energy that keeps its waters warm all winter long. Head to Lake Jackson when weather conditions seem less than ideal for fishing and you’ll find that the bass still bite in these heated waters.
10. Lake Lanier
Lake Lanier sports quality largemouth bass fishing and arguably even better spotted bass fishing. Lanier plays host to hundreds of bass tournaments and even more recreational fishing each year. This exceeding amount of pressure has made the bite tougher over the last few years, but the potential for a 20 pound limit of bass still exists at Lake Lanier.
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