Congaree River time!

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA RIVERS TALK' started by Rookie12, Mar 17, 2007.

  1. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    I'm planning on making a trip back down to the Congaree river again either the last weekend of March or the weekend after Easter. Have any of ya'll heard anything from the Congaree lately? Water is high right now. We try to time the striper run when we are down there, but we always catch lots of blues too, and a few flatheads. Never have hit the stripers right yet! This may be the year. Thanks!
     
  2. RiverratSC

    RiverratSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,646
    State:
    Gaffney, SC
    Hope you do well.
     

  3. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Welcome to the BOC, Chris. The stripers are making their way upriver, but I haven't spoken with anyone up towards Columbia that has really hit them yet. I've never fished for them up there, but I've been going up into that area every couple of days for the past two weeks or so, tracking some other fish. I'm seeing more and more people fishing for the stripers, have spoken briefly with several, and it looks like things should turn on pretty quickly there. The water is warming up pretty fast now. Hope you can hit it right this year. :big_smile:
     
  4. flatheadhunterx

    flatheadhunterx Active Member

    Messages:
    1,374
    State:
    South Carolina
    they have been catching alot of stripers below wateree dam at times for the past month or so but not very many keepers. most average around 20 inches. I think more of the quality size fish go up congaree because the water quality is much better. there was alot of good trout being caught in the saluda a couple of weeks ago on small pieces of cut herring though.
     
  5. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    Well, if ya'll hear of anything really heating up, just post it because I would like to hit it right this time of year. I think more stripers go up the Wateree but the more quality fish go up the Congaree. Out of our group of 3 boats, I think we only caught two last year, but they were 12 lb, and 14 lb, so the fish are quality fish. There were tons of blues and channels in there and we caught a few flatheads. Big one was a blue pushing 50 lb. I got him at 1 AM Sun. morning and he gave me a fit in that current. Tommy, what is the water temp. down there, and are there sturgeon up there. I've heard you were studying them for the state. If we see or catch any, I'll be sure to let you know. Thanks for the info.
     
  6. extremecatfishing

    extremecatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    21
    State:
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    I ove fishing the lower part of the congaree my brother caught some big blues up their last week. check out some of our pictures. i love this site!:cool2:
     
  7. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Chris, the temps on saturday were in the 55-56 F range. I see where the water rose a couple feet since then. I'll be back up that way tomorrow and check the temps again. I'm just assisting the biologists who are doing the research, and having a ball. It's really interesting work, and I hope that some good will come out of it for the sake of the sturgeon. There aren't very many in the lakes system, but they travel up the rivers to spawn, and then generally return to the lake system. If anyone happens to catch one, treat them with great care....
     
  8. rivercatsc

    rivercatsc New Member

    Messages:
    1,990
    State:
    South Caro
    I believe I am going to try to squeeze in a trip to packs this week.
     
  9. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    Thanks for the info. Tommy! I think that spawning should peak around 60-64 degrees. It was 62 when we were there last year and we only got two. Maybe we were doing something wrong. Anybody use any different tactics for stripers on the Congaree. We mainly bottom fished with cut bait and some live herring. Thanks
     
  10. extremecatfishing

    extremecatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    21
    State:
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    fish the shallows , you need to put your bait up in the willows...
     
  11. JAinSC

    JAinSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,514
    State:
    South Carolina
    I haven't fished up that way in a number of years, but I spent several years in Cola in school. Seems to me that the striper run in the Congaree below twon peaked in mid April. I had a friend that caught stripers trolling ivy's shad and casting plugs (rebels and condell red fins) to the downed trees on the bank.
     
  12. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    The actual spawn is temperature dependent, but the fish will be there ahead of time, especially the males. JA is probably pretty close on the dates, too, unless we get some dry, warm days between now and then.
     
  13. flatheadhunterx

    flatheadhunterx Active Member

    Messages:
    1,374
    State:
    South Carolina
    Tommy, doesnt the days getting longer trigger a stripers biological clock to start the female in the spawning cycle and start them on their way up the rivers? I know that up here they may be up the rivers for acouple of weeeks before they actually start going trough their spawning motions. usually when the water hits 68 is when they are at it pretty good. the spawn up here at is a waste of time though because the eggs lay on the bottom and die cause there isnt enough river to keep them moving long enough to hatch. Guys I would check the regs with the dnr before chasing stipers on the lower saluda or congaree because they were considering some strict changes in size and what you can keep i will see if I can find it and post it.
     
  14. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Ronald, I'm not the expert here, but it all plays together. The males normally show up ahead of the females, in prespawn, so yes, there are fish up there ahead of time. I've been tracking sturgeon through a series of receivers spread along their migratory route up the Santee and Congaree, and we also pick up the transmitted stripers (this study is being done by another group), that are moving that way. I've not done this tracking before, so I don't have a feel for total numbers. The water temps today were pushing 60 deg. F, so it won't be long. Spoke with a few guys fishing for the stripers today, and the bite is starting to pick up pretty good now, according to the ones I spoke with.
    I have read of some things being considered to help the striper population, nothing concrete, and I haven't been to the meetings that have been held around the state, but if striper fishermen want bigger fish then they have to bite the bullet. I don't often fish for them, so I'll reserve any comments on that. If anyone wants to go on the SCDNR website, do a search for striped bass, etc, there is some good info floating around there. Here is a link to a newspaper that has some good striper related articles: http://www.theitem.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?category=LAKES
    :smile2:
     
  15. extremecatfishing

    extremecatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    21
    State:
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    my brothers and i will be fishing today and friday. i will give a fishing report for the upper reaches of lake marion, packs flats and the river friday afternoon.
     
  16. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I was up that way today. Spoke with a couple of boats near the trestle on the river, but they said they weren't doing much good. The baitshop guy at Low Falls did tell me that the catfish are doing better, didn't have much on stripers, though. Water on the flats near persanti is really getting warm, but still high and muddy.
     
  17. extremecatfishing

    extremecatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    21
    State:
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    that was me. we caught 6 this afternoon. i hope to do better friday... i was in the pontoon about a mile belove the trestle. i will ckeck in again friday!:big_smile:
     
  18. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Hey, I saw that pontoon, I think, on the north bank, bright colored top, and lots of poles out the back. If I'd known, I'd have stopped to speak. I was in a 15' Duracraft w/stick steering, around 3 pm coming downriver.
     
  19. extremecatfishing

    extremecatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    21
    State:
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    that was me! my brothers and i fish 4 to 5 days a week , march through august. pull up to us we would love to talk with you. my brother are stevy and andy pack. by the way we cught alot of fish this morning. the bigest fished weighed in today was a 63 pound blue!!!!! we are having a great year on the cats. :big_smile:
     
  20. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Thanks, Jody. I'll keep an eye out. I never know when I'm going to be up there, but probably at least once every week or so through April. Spoke with some folks up at 601 bridge today and they said the same about the catfish.
    Upper Congaree near Columbia, they are catching stripers pretty good now, from what I hear. Water is warming up real fast.