These are my favorite bass lakes in Georgia. I fish about 21 major reservoirs regularly but these ten would be my favorite. Some are better at certain times of the year, and that is noted. If you are fishing in Georgia give these lakes a try and let me know how you do.
I grew up on Clark's Hill and still have a place there. Built in 1950, this 72,000 acre Corps of Engineers lake has a lot of public access and camping areas. Bass fishing is good year round but is outstanding in the spring when the blueback herring spawn. Look for schooling fish on humps and around islands in April and May, throw Spooks and Flukes. During the summer, fish long points and hydrilla beds. Fall fishing is good on clay and rocks with crankbaits. In the winter, jig spoons.
2. Lake HartwellHartwell is a 56,000 acre Corps of Engineers lake. It has good public access with many boat ramps and campgrounds. Bass feed on blueback herring here in the spring when they spawn. Fish islands and high spots with topwater in April and May. After the herring spawn you an "call up" bass in the same areas with topwater baits all summer long. Fall fishing is good with crankbaits in the creeks and jigging spoons and bucktails are excellent on the lower lake in the winter on long points.
My best catch of bass ever came from Lake Oconee in a March club tournament - 9 bass weighing 37 pounds in two days. This 19,000 acre Georgia Power lake has pumpback so current flows both ways many days. Current is important. Fish humps and points with Carolina rigged worms and big crankbaits in the summer, fall and winter. Docks hold fish year round, too. Flip or pitch jig and pig or plastic worms to them. In the spring go to the backs of coves with spinnerbaits. Riprap is good year round.
4. Lake SinclairLake Sinclair is a 15,000 acre Georgia Power lake directly downstream of Lake Oconee. It has current flowing both ways, too. It is a great winter lake due to the warm water discharge from a power plant. Fish crankbaits and jig and pig around shallow cover like docks all winter long. In the spring go to the backs of coves and grassbeds with spinnerbaits and worms. Docks can be good in the summer, too. Try crankbaits around rocks and clay in the fall. Carolina rigs on points work year round.
Georgia Power's Lake Jackson is 4,750 acres and one of the oldest lakes in Georgia. It used to be extremely fertile with sewage runoff from Atlanta and was fantastic for big bass - I caught my first two 8 pounders there in the 1970s in January tournaments and my biggest ever, a 9-7 came from there in Feb 1991. In a January, 2008 tournament I caught the 8-13 in the blog picture. It is still a good lake but has lots of spots now. Fish crankbaits in the fall, winter and early spring. Try docks and points in the summer, and backs of coves and creeks in the spring.
6. Lake LanierLanier is a Corps of Engineers lake of 38,000 acres. Spotted bass have become prime targets and spots weighing 5 pounds are common. Fish spinnerbaits and topwater on points and humps in the late spring for bass feeding on blueback herring.Spots can be caught year round on that pattern, drawing them up in the summer and using jerk baits for them in the winter. Spots bed on humps and points so fish them in the spring as well as pockets with tubes and lizards. The clear water helps bed fishing.
West Point is a Corps of Engineers lake of 26,000 acres and hosts many national tournaments. It has great structure and many man made brushpiles. Summer fishing is good on main lake structure while current is moving. Big crankbaits and worms are keys. In the spring go to the backs of creeks and coves and use spinnerbaits and Rat-L-Traps. In the fall try crankbaits on riprap and clay points. In the winter find deep brush and jig a spoon around it. The lower lake is clearer in the winter.
8. Bartlett's FerryAlso known as Lake Harding, this Georgia Power lake of 850 acres and is lined with boat docks. It gets very crowded in warm weather but bass can be caught on long points and main lake structure on worms. In the winter jig spoons and jigs and pigs on the same structure. In the spring and fall try boat docks with crankbaits and plastics. Run up the river for less crowds and moving water in the summer, too. Topwater is good here for about 9 months of the year.
Lake Eufaula, also known as Walter F. George is a Corps of Engineers lake of 45,000 acres. It was made famous by Tom Mann and his Jellyworms. It is excellent for big bass as well as numbers of bass. River ledges hold big bass most of the year, use big crankbaits and worms or Ledgebuster spinnerbaits from late spring thru fall. Fish grassbeds with spinnerbaits and topwater from late winter to late spring. Try jig and pig in brush and stump fields during the winter months. Riprap is good, too.
Grassbeds, alligators and Jack Wingate are icons on this 37,500 acre Corps of Engineers lake. Fish around the hydrilla beds from late spring until late fall with plastic baits and topwater. Try the standing timber with spoons and plastics during the winter. For a real thrill, run way up the Flint River to the shoals and cast crankbaits and topwater for shoal bass. Seminole is right on the Florida line and is more like a Florida lake than any other in Georgia. Bass often spawn in Jan and Feb.
Tell me what your top lakes. Which state are you in and what fish are you trying to catch. Let me know what you think.