UPCOMING EVENT: Costa FLW Series - 2019 - St. Lawrence River

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

2018 Lake Lanier Preview

2018 Lake Lanier Preview

Lake Lanier

Gainesville, Ga.

March 8-11, 2018

Hosted by Gainesville Convention & Visitors Bureau

 

About the fishery

Sprawling north of Atlanta in the foothills of the Appalachians, Lake Lanier is fed by the Chattahoochee River and the Chestatee River with just under 700 miles of shoreline at full pool. It offers plenty of clear water – though with some dirty water up the rivers – and is comparable to some of the mixed-species lakes in the Carolinas such as Lake Hartwell or Lake Norman. Additionally, Lanier has a lot of standing timber. Though the lake does boast a quality largemouth population, its calling card is hefty spotted bass, and it wouldn’t be a big surprise to see 20 spots win the tournament.

 

Last time

FLW has spent quite a bit of time in the summer on Lanier, but the bulk of the March action has taken place at the BFL level. Most recently, FLW Tour rookie Rob Jordan took home a Bulldog Division win in March of 2015, plopping 19 pounds of jerkbait bass on the scale to win by just 2 ounces. In 2011, Dustin Ray won in early March with a whopping 21-4. Historically, the fishing has been quite good in March, and winning weights are typically near or over the 20-pound mark. 

 

What to expect this time

For sure, some largemouth will be caught, but tournament history suggests spotted bass will account for most of the weight. Though it’s tempting to envision what might happen if there’s a warming trend and an early spawn, Jordan says such a scenario is extremely unlikely. Be that as it may, expect some sort of mix between winter and prespawn patterns to play out. For spotted bass, that might mean anglers are hovering over timber in 50 feet of water. For largemouths, jigs and moving baits in off-color water up the rivers could be more the ticket.

If February is reasonably warm, the fish might be shallower and eager to bite. If the fish are only beginning to break out of the winter chill in March, the fishing could be tough. Lanier doesn’t warm up as quickly as Hartwell does because the rivers that feed it flow down from the mountains, so it takes a little more work to bring on spring. A good warming trend would make for truly stellar fishing, however.

 

Baits and techniques

A real prespawn slugfest on Lanier will likely involve plenty of non-slugfest baits. Think jerkbaits, underspins, shaky heads, drop-shot rigs and jigs. In March, it should be possible to catch fish suspended and on the bottom, and fishing in 25  to 50 feet of water might be the best route for many of the spotted bass anglers. Deep timber will get a lot of attention, but drains and creeks are not to be overlooked either. For largemouths, shallower techniques should rule the day, with jigs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits and the like taking center stage.

 

3 critical factors

1. Winter weather – How the winter shapes up in terms of intensity and duration will impact the quality of the fishing a lot. It might not matter a ton for total weights, but numbers and the ease with which anglers can box 15 pounds of willing spots will go way up if things warm nicely.

2. Kicker largemouths – Spotted bass account for a lot of paychecks on Lanier, but getting a kicker largemouth or two might mean the difference between winning and piling up with everyone else in the standings.

3. The rivers – Both the Chattahoochee and the Chestatee offer good fishing and can be particularly productive in the spring. Jacob Wheeler showed off the river potential with his Forrest Wood Cup win, and though the rivers aren’t the usual path to success, they could be players.

 

Fantasy fishing picks

When spotted bass are on the table, you’ve got to go with Cody Meyer, the universally acknowledged king. Jason Johnson lives on Lanier and runs with Meyer. You can probably count on him to crush it at home. Finally, don’t sell John Cox and Andy Morgan short – there ought to be some largemouths shallow, and if there are they’ll find ‘em. 

 

Tags: article  flw  pre-tournament  2018-03-08-lake-lanier 

A High School Kayak Tournament Experience 

A High School Kayak Tournament Experience 

A recent high school kayak bass fishing tournament showcased the potential of kayaks to get more young anglers on the water and competing. READ MORE »

Hough is Fighting to Fish

Hough is Fighting to Fish

Fishing just her second full season as a co-angler in the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) South Carolina Division, mother of two and first-grade teacher Kate Hough was planning and preparing for a chance to do something no woman has ever done in her division: win Co-Angler of the Year. Instead of preparing for the Super Tournament on Lake Hartwell on Sept. 28, however, Hough is simply fighting to leave her hospital bed. READ MORE »

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 2

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 2

The second weekend in September saw seven more T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) divisions conclude their seasons with two-day Super Tournament events. From the Tennessee River to the St. Lawrence River and a few places in between, here’s a quick look at how the seven events were won. READ MORE »

Cal Delta Set to Host Weekend of Fishing League Worldwide Bass-Fishing Tournaments

Cal Delta Set to Host Weekend of Fishing League Worldwide Bass-Fishing Tournaments

BETHEL ISLAND, Calif. – Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) is set to visit the California Delta next week, Sept. 26-29, for three bass-fishing tournaments that will award anglers of all ages and skill levels thousands of dollars in cash and prizes... READ MORE »

Check-in Time: Matt Reed

Check-in Time: Matt Reed

From time to time, FLW checks in with its anglers to find out what they’ve been up to, what they’re listening to, who they’re following and where they’re heading while out on the tournament trail. This week, we caught up with Texas pro Matt Reed.  READ MORE »

Big Smallmouths, Big Water for Season Finale

Big Smallmouths, Big Water for Season Finale

Any tournament with smallmouths in it is a good one, but when the Costa FLW Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits heads to the St. Lawrence River it's usually a show-stopper. This year’s event, which is presented by Realtree Fishing, shouldn’t be any different as the Northern Division looks to close its season out on one of the best smallmouth fisheries in the world September 19-21. READ MORE »

John Murray Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Watts Bar Lake

John Murray Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Watts Bar Lake

ROCKWOOD, Tenn. – Boater John Murray of Spring City, Tennessee, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 28 pounds, 11 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Volunteer Division super-tournament on Watts Bar Lake Sunday. Murray earned $7,334 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Local Guide Leary Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Guntersville presented by Cortland Line

Local Guide Leary Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Guntersville presented by Cortland Line

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. – Local angler Jim Leary of Guntersville, Alabama, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 37 pounds, 12 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Choo Choo Division super-tournament on Lake Guntersville presented by Cortland Line Sunday. Leary earned $5,869 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Findley Lake’s Seal Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event at 1000 Islands

Findley Lake’s Seal Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event at 1000 Islands

CLAYTON, N.Y. – Boater Zackery Seal of Findley Lake, New York, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 44 pounds, 4 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Northeast Division super-tournament at the 1000 Islands Sunday. Seal earned $6,066 for his efforts. The Northeast Division is presented by Gajo Baits... READ MORE »

Mechanicsville’s Elrod Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on James River

Mechanicsville’s Elrod Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on James River

HENRICO, Va. – Boater Bryan Elrod of Mechanicsville, Virginia, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 29 pounds, 7 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Shenandoah Division super-tournament on the James River Sunday. Elrod earned $3,542 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Eldon’s Fitzpatrick Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake of the Ozarks

Eldon’s Fitzpatrick Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake of the Ozarks

OSAGE BEACH, Mo. – Boater Roger Fitzpatrick of Eldon, Missouri, brought a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 36 pounds, 3 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Ozark Division presented by Bassing Bob super-tournament on Lake of the Ozarks Sunday. For his victory, Fitzpatrick earned $6,891 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Paducah’s Schroeder Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Kentucky Lake

Paducah’s Schroeder Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Kentucky Lake

GILBERTSVILLE, Ky. – Boater Billy Schroeder of Paducah, Kentucky, brought a two-day total of seven bass to the scale Sunday weighing 22 pounds, 12 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) LBL Division super-tournament on Kentucky and Barkley lakes. Schroeder earned $6,122 for his efforts... READ MORE »

Rampey Wins Another – Liberty Angler Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Hartwell

Rampey Wins Another – Liberty Angler Wins Two-Day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Event on Lake Hartwell

ANDERSON, S.C. – Boater Jayme Rampey of Liberty, South Carolina, added another BFL victory to his impressive resume Sunday, bringing a two-day total of 10 bass to the scale weighing 31 pounds, 6 ounces, to win the two-day T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Savannah River Division super-tournament on Lake Hartwell. Rampey earned $5,665 for his efforts.... READ MORE »

When to Fish the Flashy Swimmer

When to Fish the Flashy Swimmer

In April, FLW Associate Editor Justin Onslow documented how Gross likes to cut the belly of his two favorite hollow swimbaits – the Scottsboro and the Zoom Swimmer – when rigging on a weedless hook to achieve a high hook-up ratio. However, that article didn’t break down where and why Gross prefers to use the Beast Flashy Swimmer hook versus a standard weighted, weedless swimbait hook. So we reached out to Gross for more info. READ MORE »

FLW Mourns Passing of T. Boone Pickens

FLW Mourns Passing of T. Boone Pickens

Businessman T. Boone Pickens, who in 2010 partnered with FLW to promote an alternative energy plan to reduce dependence on fossil fuels, passed away Wednesday at the age of 91.  READ MORE »

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 1

Super Tournament Winning Ways – Week 1

College football, hooded sweatshirts and the conclusion of the T-H Marine Bass Fishing League (BFL) regular season are what come to mind as the calendar turns to September. This past weekend, six divisions put a feather in their cap for the year with their two-day Super Tournament events – where the payouts are bigger – but, more importantly, it’s the last chance to accumulate points to qualify for the Regionals this October. READ MORE »

North Little Rock Readies for Weekend of FLW Youth Bass-Fishing Tournaments

North Little Rock Readies for Weekend of FLW Youth Bass-Fishing Tournaments

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) is set to return to central Arkansas next week, Sept. 20-21, with the YETI FLW College Fishing tournament at the Arkansas River presented by Bass Pro Shops and the Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Open at the Arkansas River. The tournaments, hosted by the North Little Rock Convention and Visitors... READ MORE »

Massena Readies For Costa FLW Series at the St. Lawrence River presented by Realtree Fishing

Massena Readies For Costa FLW Series at the St. Lawrence River presented by Realtree Fishing

MASSENA, N.Y. – The 2019 Costa Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) Series Northern Division presented by Gajo Baits will continue their season next week at the St. Lawrence River, Sept. 19-21, with the Costa FLW Series at the St. Lawrence River presented by Realtree Fishing. Hosted by the Town of Massena, the three-day tournament will feature more than 240 of the best... READ MORE »

Kentucky’s George Rogers Clark High School Wins Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Lake Erie Open presented by Costa Sunglasses

Kentucky’s George Rogers Clark High School Wins Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Lake Erie Open presented by Costa Sunglasses

SANDUSKY, Ohio – The George Rogers Clark High School duo of Allen Powe and Alex Dunaway, both of Winchester, Kentucky, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 15 pounds, 7 ounces to win the 2019 Bass Pro Shops FLW High School Fishing Lake Erie Open presented by Costa Sunglasses... READ MORE »

Clarksville’s Williams Wins T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Tournament on Lake Dardanelle Presented by Navionics

Clarksville’s Williams Wins T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Tournament on Lake Dardanelle Presented by Navionics

RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. – Boater Charles Williams of Clarksville, Arkansas, won this weekend’s T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Arkie Division tournament on Lake Dardanelle presented by Navionics... READ MORE »