Mike Marsh’s book, Fishing North Carolina, shares his best-kept secrets for fishing 100 lakes, rivers, ponds, sounds and piers.


To order:

Fishing North Carolina ($26.60),

Inshore Angler – Carolina’s Small Boat Fishing Guide ($26.20),


Offshore Angler – Coastal Carolina’s Mackerel Boat Fishing Guide ($22.25)

mail a check or MO to:


Mike Marsh

1502 Ebb Drive

Wilmington, NC 28409

or visit www.mikemarshoutdoors.com for credit card orders.



Piedmont Lakes Fishing Report: June-July 2017

What to expect when you head out to fish the lakes of the Piedmont over the next few weeks. Get a clue from noted outdoor writer Mike Marsh.

Catawba Reservoirs


Lake Hickory

Randy Moose, (Lyndon's Riverview Sports, 828-632-7889) said bass be busting crankbaits.


“The bass will be in post-spawn,” he said. “If you cast crankbaits to the secondary points and main lake points you will have some good action. I like the lures that run the middle depths,” he said. “A No. 5 Shad Rap or Bill Norman Deep Little N crankbait cast off a point is always good bet.”


 Stripers will be hitting Zara Spooks and other walk-the-dog topwater lures. They will also hit bucktail jigs, Redfins and Storm Swimbaits cast to the points. The best striper action will occur at dawn and dusk.


 Crappie anglers should find the deeper brush piles to have a chance of catching anything. Minnows work best for summer crappie, but some anglers use Bobby Garland jigs.


 Blue and channel catfish will be biting cut baits and    stink baits. Flatheads will eat live shad or bream.


 Anglers will catch bluegills and shellcrackers by casting float rigs baited with crickets to the docks and around the stickups in the coves.





Lake Norman

Capt. Gus Gustafson (Fishing With Gus, 704-617-6812) said bass fishing would catch fantastic.


Capt. Gus Gustafson (Fishing with Gus, 704-617-6812) said the biggest blue catfish bite in summer.


 “We can catch 10 to 30 catfish a day,” he said. “Most of them will be between 10 and 15 pounds. Some of the biggest are above the NC 150 Bridge, where you should be able to catch a 50-pounder.”


 The best bait for blue catfish is chicken parts laced with garlic powder. Flathead catfish bite live white perch fished on float rigs or on the bottom.


 White perch will strike cut baits in 15 to 20 feet of water. Spoons, jigs and spinners will catch them.


 Spotted bass will be off the rocky points early in the day. The best way to catch them is by watching for the schools and casting topwater walkers, chuggers, poppers and ploppers. As the day gets brighter, they move to the deeper drop-offs. That is when anglers should switch to casting crankbaits and jerk baits.


 The best largemouth bass fishing will occur north of the NC 150 Bridge. Boat docks will attract the most fish. To beat the boat traffic and heat, try casting soft plastics and crankbaits around boat docks with lights at night.

 Crappie will bite at the brush piles in 15 to 25 feet of water. Jigs and minnows will catch them. Fishing at night under the bridges using lights to attract crappie is a great way to catch them in summer.










Lake Wylie

Jerry Neeley (Carolina’s Fishing Guide Service, 704-678-1043) said crappie anglers would be happy.


 “If you want to catch bass, hit the points early and late,” he said. “Small spinners and topwater chuggers are the best lures. I like Rooster Tails and Road Runners. After 10 a.m., I switch to Carolina rigs under the piers because bass head for the shade.”


 Crappie will bite 1/16-ounce jigs trolled on 6-pound test lines in the creeks. The best colors are chartreuse, white, pink and purple. If trolling is not working, anglers should shoot jigs under deeper docks. Brush piles in 20 feet of water are another good place to try.


 Anglers can troll minnows on tight lines in 20 to 35 feet of water to catch white perch. Anglers can locate them with a depth-finder. Good creeks for white perch and crappie are Big Allison, Little Allison, Boyds and Beaver Dam.


 Blue and channel catfish will bite cut white perch in the same creeks and fishing near the perch schools is the best bet. Anglers should begin fishing the shallows at dawn before moving to main lake flats with 30 to 40 feet of water as the day heats up.


 Shellcrackers will be on the beds in shallow, sandy areas where creeks enter the lake. They will bite worms, crickets and wasp larvae cast on split shot rigs.













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