There's no doubt that fall presents some of the year's best fishing on South Carolina lakes. As the water starts to cool, fish move into their cold-weather patterns and are a lot easier to catch. But until that water temperature drops, the fishing can be tough, but Capt. Brad Taylor of Taylor Outdoors has a few tricks up his sleeve for Lake Murray striped bass.

"Everything is day-to-day and hit-or-miss right now," Taylor said. "The end of October is better than beginning or middle, but we really haven't had cold weather, and the water needs to drop another 10 degrees before the fishing gets really good.

"You really have to an arsenal when you go fishing right now. You'll find schooling fish on some days, and some days they won't school at all and they're down deep. There's really no rhyme or reason to it."

Taylor (www.Tayloroutdoors.com) makes sure he has plenty of topwater plugs, trolling gear and weights to catch the deep fish – all that and plenty of live bait, too.

"The stripers are starting to migrate up the lake, and you can catch them anywhere from deep water to shallow, depending on the day," he said. "I use topwater plugs for schooling fish, and you can pull live herring and catch fish in shallow water when they're feeding, but you can also catch fish on down-rods when they're deep. I'd recommend fishing live herring between 40 to 50 (feet deep) when the fish aren't shallow.

"Once the fish get in that fall pattern, you'll be on some of the biggest fish of the year," he said. "Lately we've caught fish from 12 to 28 inches all together in the same school, but when they school, if you throw it in there, they'll pretty much hit it."