Welcome to www.n-georgia.com Discover Georgia's Chattooga River - The Chattooga is a tributary of Weiss Reservoir. It originates near Lafayette and meanders about 51 miles southwest. A narrow river channel with numerous hazards makes
most of the river floatable only by canoe or small boat.
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Best Fishing Bets
Bream, black bass, striped bass and catfish
Chattooga River Fishing Tips
Bream dominate the river's sport fishery. Redbreast sunfish are more abundant in the upper reaches, while bluegill dominate the downstream reaches. Bream 5-8 inches long are common, with some individuals even topping the 10-inch mark.

Technique - For artificial baits, small is the key. Try small spinners and natural crawfish imitating jigs. For live bait, crickets or worms rigged under a bobber and bottom presentations weighted with split-shot are both effective.

Target - For catches of larger bream, target the river above the city of Trion. Concentrate in deep pools, behind logjams and along undercut banks. In summer, bream will bed in slack areas along the shore, behind debris and on the downstream side of sandbars.
Black bass fishery is fair in comparison to the bream fishery. Expect most catches to be less than 1 pound. Anglers do have a chance at three species: redeye, largemouth and spotted bass. Redeye are more common in the upper reaches, while spots dominate the lower portion. Largemouth are least common throughout.

Technique - Light colored spinnerbaits, buzzbaits and topwater plugs are all good choices. Crawfish jig imitations bumped along the bottom near structure also works well under most conditions. Stealthy angler will fair best in these “skinny” waters.

Target - Fish deeper pools, especially those with woody debris. The largest individual will be found where the river enters Lake Weiss.
Catfish population is relatively modest. Channel cats greatly outnumber both flatheads and blue catfish. Most channel cats will be in the 1-pound size class.

Technique - Cut fish baits, chicken livers, catalpa worms and prepared stink baits fished on the bottom are recommended.

Target - Target channel cats in moderately deep flowing habitats especially those found along outside river bends.
Chattooga River
White Bass are available seasonally. They migrate into the lower Chattooga in early spring, and the spawning runs peaks in March and April. Outside of these months, few white bass will be found in the river.

Technique - Small jigs and shad-patterned crankbaits (rat-l-traps) are favored lures for these “mini-linesides.”

Target - Find spawn-run fish around creek mouths in the lower sections of the river below Lyerly Dam off Lyerly Dam Rd.
Striped Bass - These striped behemoths migrate into the river during the spring months, and good numbers remain through summertime in search of a cool water refuge. Expect linesides anywhere from 1-25 pounds with the average fish weighing around 6-7 pounds. Persistent drought may limit the number of 15-plus pound fish caught this year.

Technique - Best bets are live gizzard shad or cut bait, but aggressive stripers will hit shad imitations and top water plugs (zara spooks or redfins) under the right conditions. To keep fish from breaking off on the numerous downed trees, 20 to 30-pound line and heavier rods are recommended.

Target spring-fed pools, especially around fallen trees and logjams and in the mouths of cool water tributaries or springs. Look for flowing water near cover, as these are prime striper haunts
Other Fish Species - Freshwater drum are a unique but common edible river resident. Expect the average drum to run slightly better than 12 inches, but a fair number of “bull drum” will top 17 inches or better.

Technique - For drum, small white jigs fished along the bottom, crayfish, cut mussels and shrimp are the best techniques.
Boat Ramps
Access to the river is limited to bridge crossings and an undeveloped ramp in Gaylesville, AL.
Additional River - Contact Info
There are two dams on the Chattooga River. The first is the Mt. Vernon Mill’s Dam in Trion, which is impassible to boaters. The second is a small low-head dam further downstream in the town of Lyerly. This dam is breached in several places and can be floated through or portaged around under normal water conditions.

Contact Wildlife Resources Division, Calhoun Fisheries office - Phone: 706-624-1161

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