Billy Lewis of Liberty, S.C. knew the trout fishing on Lake Jocassee would be good during the latter part of April. On previous trips the weeks before, he started dialing in on a good pattern trolling flutter spoons from downrigger balls behind his pontoon boat and had already caught a couple of limits.
This time of year, it’s common to let our attention go to the beaches of the Carolinas for fishing offshore, nearshore, and inshore. The fishing is great for many different species along the coast, but we shouldn’t overlook the trout fishing that we have in the western part of both states.
Capt. Sam Jones of Jocassee Charters said the fishing on the Upstate, S.C. lake has been great in the past few weeks, and he only expects it to get better as the spring weather stabilizes. And he put one of his clients on a brown trout last week that is the new boat record for Jocassee Charters.
Each spring, die-hard anglers look forward to brown and rainbow trout returning to the main-lake area of Lake Jocassee. The first few weeks of the return are a great time to catch trophy sized trout, and guide Sam Jones said he realized the return was in progress when one of his clients, Tony Hale, of Gastonia, N.C., reeled in a 9-pound, 4-ounce brown trout on Saturday, April 18.
A pickup towing a trailer carrying two inflatable boats pulled into the parking lot of the Bridgewater Public Fishing Access Area downstream from one of the two dams that impounds Lake James. A cold, rainy morning is not most what most fly-fishermen call ideal, but Scott Cunningham of Marion was excited about being on the water.
The S.C. Department of Natural Resources’ Angler Recognition Program may be less than two months old, but guide Sam Jones of Jocassee Charters has already put several of his client’s names on the list with trophy brown trout – at least 5 pounds or 20 inches – from the Upstate mountain lake.