The lake level is at 1071.48 (.48 feet above pool) and the water temps are around 50 degrees.  The water clarity is clear on the main lake up to the Hwy 53 bridges and then stained to muddy going up the river arms, slightly stained to stained in the northern creeks, and slightly stained in the backs of the southern creeks.  We are now in the beginning of what is my favorite few months on the lake. March on Lanier is the month that stripers will begin to feed near the surface and the planer board/ flat line bite will heat up. Pulling blue backs, shad, trout, and shiners will all be productive this month, especially as the water temps warm up into the mid to upper 50s. Most of March is a pre spawn pattern where the stripers are getting ready to head to their spawning areas up the river arms and even to the area around the dam which means they are feeding hard to gain strength for the spawn that will happen in April.  First thing in the morning target main lake points and prominent points in creeks like Ada, Gainesville, Wahoo, Little River on the Hootch side and Thompson, Toto, and Yellow River on the Tee side. A spread of planer boards on either side of the boat would start with an Okuma Striper Rod paired with an Okuma Coldwater line counter loaded with 17-20 pound main line with a bead in line above a premium swivel. Next attach a 4-6 foot, 12-17 pound fluorocarbon leader (depending on water clarity), to a #2-4\0 Gamakatsu Circle hook (depending on bait size). Hook your bait in the mouth, thru the upper jaw, and then out between the nostrils. Do not hook the bait thru the lower jaw as this will not allow the bait to open and close its mouth as it pulls water across its gills. Let the bait out 50-100 feet out and then attach your Captain Mack’s Perfect Planer Board to the line. The Perfect Planer Board line is one of the only boards that make a small and large board to accommodate any size of bait or lure that you want to pull behind them. The small 7 inch board is perfect for herring, small shad, shiners, or small trout. The bigger 10 inch board works great for larger shad over 8 inches, giant 15 inch trout, and even Mini Mack’s or trolling lead core with big jigs in the summer. We will run two sets of boards off each side of the boat. After letting the bait out we attach the board to the line and run the outer board out 60-70 more feet so that we will have 110-120 feet of line out and then run the inside board out 30-35 feet and be showing 80-85 feet of line off the reel. Your flat lines will be run 75-125 feet straight back behind the boat. This will be our basic 6 rod set up all the way thru May. The Capt Mack Mini Mack bite has also been very productive this winter and will continue into the spring. Drop your white head/white grub trailer, in clearer water, down 25-35 feet and then attach your Perfect Planer Board and run it in place of your live bait presentation. If you are in more stained water the blue head/chartreuse grub has been very effective. Pull this spread .8-1.2 mph over points and humps in 15-35 feet of water in all the areas described above. If you are fishing in the afternoons this technique will be the best bet for a bigger fish using a bigger bait and targeting south facing rocky points that tend to warm a bit more in the winter in 5-25 feet of water.

Let God be the Lord of all in your life or he will be the Lord of nothing in your life. This includes your money. Don’t let your finances be your master. Let them work for you and your service to God. Matthew 6:24