santee for the new year

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by cckessin, Dec 13, 2005.

  1. cckessin

    cckessin New Member

    Messages:
    17
    State:
    Charlotte,North Carolina
    Fellas
    I am going to be down on Moultrie around the 1st of the year and was wondering how the conditions usually are around that time? I have been to Santee twice and got skunked both times! Once with a guide, the other time we got run off because of the wind. I was hoping that the third time would be the charm.
    I plan on drifting in deep water down near the dam. Is there any hotwater discharge shutes for local power plants on the lake that might be holding some baitfish? Whats the water temps around then? I would like to stay at Blacks or maybe even stay at the south end of the lake closer to the dam and I will be staying for a couple days this time, just in case the weather turns bad for a day or two. I appreciate any help.
     
  2. RiverratSC

    RiverratSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,646
    State:
    Gaffney, SC
    Well the wind is almost always a factor at Santee. If the wind gets to much on the lake usually the canal is still fishable. Not sure about the baitfish because I haven't made it down in the dead of winter yet myself but I really hope to soon. good luck and God speed.

    If you don't mind to much would please put your first name and state on your profile.
     

  3. ToonCat

    ToonCat New Member

    Messages:
    149
    State:
    Tega Cay SC
    If you are going to stay at Blacks, you may want to consider fishing the dam on Marion...it's easier to get to. Sometime in Jan to early Feb, the water temp will drop down and the baitfish will begin to die off. If you happen to be there during that time, you should have great success. Talk to Kevin at Blacks and he'll steer you to where the fish are. Good Luck!
     
  4. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    From what I'm hearing the fishing is hot right now on the lower lake.Read some of the Moultrie posts in the SC section.The Menhaden are stacked up against the dam RIGHT NOW and the bite is on.I've seen two separate reports of a 102 lb blue brought in and Tommy Hughes reported seeing a catch of over 300lbs total yesterday including some fish in the 30-50lb range.You might want to stay closer to the dam because it is a long run down there from Blacks when the weather is cold as it is now, it can be brutal early in the morning.Fish straight down through the schools of menhaden which you can easily find with a fishfinder or by watching the birds,I'll be at Short stay 3-5 Jan,hopefully the bite wont have tapered off before then.
     
  5. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I was on Moultrie today, the water was pretty rough for fishing in my 17' boat, but still had a decent day, 'cept I most friz to death early. Water surface temp was 50-52 deg. In January, with some cold weather, the shad will be dying off and the blues bite good. There are lots of places to fish for them. As Jim said, find schools of baitfish and the blues will be hanging around below them. In Lake Marion, fish the timber and the river channel edges. I don't have as much experience in Moultrie, but near the dam is usually good, and watch the fish finder along the channel drops. If you are staying at Black's the folks there will tell you some of the best places to go, too.
     
  6. cckessin

    cckessin New Member

    Messages:
    17
    State:
    Charlotte,North Carolina
    Fellas, thanks for the info. I am getting excited about the trip already. I am planning on trying to stay near the dam at Moultrie, but have heard a lot of nice things about Blacks so I am still undecided. Some of you guys have a lot of experience handling a boat on Santee in the wind, so I was wanting some of your opinions on boat performance and the weather. I have a 2004 18' bay liner 175 Capri. It has a 135 horse inline four. The beam is 7'6" and has a nice v-hull and pretty high sides. I also mounted a 54lb thrust trolling motor and two rod holders to make it more user friendly for fishing. I believe it is a very versatile rig and would handle some rough water if need be. I am fairly experienced boater and am on the water at Lake Wylie and Norman quite a bit during the summer months. I would not take an extraordinary risk for fishing under any circumstance and I also listen to my instincts about trouble.
    What I would like to ask you guys is this, what conditions on average when fishing Santee do you guys hang in there and keep fishing; and when would you, given my rig and experience decide to pack it in for the day? When I went down to Moultrie last spring I went out one morning with a friend of mine in my boat and found that the lake had a pretty good chop to it. I felt pretty comfortable fishing for a little while even though there were weather reports of high winds in the area for that evening. The breeze wasn't that bad at all, but there were some 2 foot swells out there and an occasional wave lapping in the boat as we drifted. I made sure that I had a radio on a local channel and kept my eyes on some of the guide's boats making sure that they weren't all making a run for shore. My friend I had taken down started to get really nervous and kept saying that we should go in before the waves got any stronger. I relented finally but felt that the boat and my experience could handle what we were facing at that time. I also told him that the guides were still out fishing in their pontoon boats, and that if it started to get bad we would be headed for shore quickly. My question I guess is this; do you think given the small swells and my preparedness I should have called it a day or stayed out for a while longer. I felt comfortable while I was out and went in only to calm down my friend. If any of you guys fish regularly on Santee I am sure that you have tossed and turned on the decks while drifting in some wind? Could some of you guys give an opinion on my boat and your experiences on Santee in the wind? I would love to actually catch something this time down!
     
  7. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I like winds from 1-15 mph, depending on where I will be fishing. At 20, the open water can be very rough, even for your boat. Some areas are more protected than others, and the type of fishing (trolling, anchored, drifting) is also a consideration. Your bayliner should handle some pretty rough water, but common sense should always prevail; in my case, if there is doubt, I tend to lean towards caution. My boat is a 17' Key West, about the same beam as yours. It will handle some pretty rough conditions, but with 2' waves, it just isn't comfortable fishing when drifting or anchored, too much bounce, which causes the rods/bait to bounce. I have noticed in those conditions that my bite rate tends to fall off really quick, too, even when I go to a carolina rig with slack in the main line. I have a 74# troller on mine, and if you head into the waves, that helps, too.
    No offense, but if my passenger(s) aren't comfortable with the conditions, I will not hesitate to pack it up and go in, for their peace of mind. I failed to do that some years ago, and my wife will not go out fishing with me on big water, even now.
    Now, your boat is just a little longer, don't know about weight, and that may help you some. When I fish in the lake, wind direction plays an important part, because if it's from the west, and I'm fishing the east side, even a 15mph wind can create a significant chop where I'm at, and even though the swells may come from the west, the water tends to slosh around like in a tub, especially if it was windy the day or night before. My preference for fishing there would be a pontoon boat because they are so much more stable.
    Listening to the radio, and NOAA weather if you have VHF is a good thing, and always watch to the west, because that's where most of our summer storms come from, and those lakes can turn wicked in a matter of minutes.
    You have experience, and should be just fine there, just exercise caution and common sense, that's all. There's always some area near Black's that you can fish and avoid the worst conditions if you have to. I'll be wishing for you to have good weather AND good fishing while you are there! :)
    There are some others here who fish the lake regularly, and I'm sure they can give you some extra input.
     
  8. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    Last year I was fishing in a tournament on Moultrie down around Short Stay.My son and a female friend were aboard my 21 ft, 8'-6" beam, center console by Triumph.Miserable day with winds between 15-20 and late after noon I could see a dark cloud line rapidly aprroaching so I told my son get the lines in and lets duck in to Short Stay.He said "Pop we have time for one more drift before it gets here".I looked again and said "Son I dont think so and since I am capt of the ship get the lines in"Just as we rounded the corner into safe water the storm hit.Friends of ours also fishing had their motor quit just as they tried to run.By the time we got out of the boat and walked up to the office at SS the waves were breaking over the land and the wind was so strong that it took 3 people to open the office door.My friends had to ride it out with only one drift sock to stabilize the boat because they lost one over the side.Several boats were swamped, one poontoon overturned and it was a general disaster while rescue folks tried to find everyone.Morale of the story:Its a lot easier to be happy with a good decision, breathing air on dry land than be sorry for a bad one while you are trying to breath water.If it doesn't "Feel" good it aint good IMHO.Santee has an average depth of 12 ft.ANY wind gets that water going in a hurry.If you are drifting stern to the wind and waves start breaking over the back its time to assess the situation.If you look out and the waves are as high as the side of your boat its time to assess.If you are looking UP at the waves its to LATE and just getting to shore is going to be tough.Common Sense that rarest of human virtues will usually serve you well.
     
  9. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    PS forgot to tell you that unless you can get in at Navy Short Stay I would highly recommend Blacks and talk to Kevin Davis for good fishing info.They will treat you well.
     
  10. cckessin

    cckessin New Member

    Messages:
    17
    State:
    Charlotte,North Carolina
    Thanks, for the info guys. I am really excited about the trip and I hope the weather is fair. I am total agreement about getting out of trouble before it starts. I thinking about getting a room down near the dam at Moultrie, so the run won't be as long. Last feb I stayed at a place on the canal right beside the bridge. When I was heading out that morning it was one cold ride to the lake. Do any of you guys know of a place that I can get a room at down by the dam. Let me know if there are some restraunts and maybe a launch ramp near by? If any of you fellers are going to be down that way then, I will be out in a white bayliner with a black minn kota on the front and two black rod holers on the sides. I will also be in the company of two real big ugly fellers from West Virginia, they should be easy enough to spot, so be sure and say high.
     
  11. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Chad, there is Atkins Landing, which is about 1-1/2 miles south of the dam. Roundhill stays there a lot, and can tell you more about it. Of course there are motels and restaurants in nearby Moncks Corner. There is a public landing near Atkins, never used it, but the water there is a little shallow, I think. Atkins charges $2.00 to use theirs, probably the best deal.
    Another public landing is at Bonneau Beach, about 4-1/2 miles north of the dam, also on the east side of the lake. It is protected from the open lake by a breakwall, but the ride from there to the dam area can be a little choppy at times, depending on wind direction, etc.
    The only other landing that I know of is at Short Stay, which is for military & DOD personnel and retirees.
    If you like, I could get some of the phone numbers and email them to you later.
    BTW, are you saying all fellers from WV are ugly, or just the two that you'll be with? LOL
     
  12. cckessin

    cckessin New Member

    Messages:
    17
    State:
    Charlotte,North Carolina
    Tommy, thanks for the info. If you happen to have the number to Aktins handy I would apprieciate it. I am thinking of holeing up there for a couple of days. I appreciate your and Jim's advice. I have been a member for a couple months and I notice that you guys are dead on when it comes to fishing these lakes and catfishing in general. Your advice is always appreciated.

    Oh by the way when it comes to the state of Wv all the ones from there I know are pretty ugly including myself! I can't pass a mirror without crying! I must exclude my wife/sister though she's right purdy.. LOL Just kidding I grew up there; it was the best place in the world to be raised. Especially with a whole state of kin folk!

    I hope to see you fellers down that way, if you get a chance be sure to stop and sit a spell.
     
  13. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Chad, Atkins # is 843-761-8428. Hope you enjoy your stay. I hope to be over that way some during the time you are there and I will keep an eye open for you if I do. And don't worry about your looks, there's lots of us uglies around here, too. Only the Lord can control your looks and your kin! :D
     
  14. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    I am going to be down there myself for the New Years weekedn and plan on fishing the dam at Pinopolis...I'll be in a 15' 1/2'' ranger bass boat (brown). if you see me out there, gimme a shout out!!! I'll be out there as long as the wind stays down!! If there is a hight wind, I'll be in the river...They are operating the lock so it'll be convenient.

    Catch a big'un,

    Flathead22
     
  15. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Kyle, glad to have you as a member. I'll make a note and watch for you next week. I hope to get over that way some. 17' key west w/90 yammie.
    Have you been through the lock before? I've never had reason to do that, but I bet it would be cool.
     
  16. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    Yes I have been through the lock...If you want to go through, there is a telephone located at the end of the dike...Get on the phone and request a lock operator. It is a cool experience, but it the whole procedure takes a while (about 45mins at the most). You can fish in the lock when the doors are closed if the operator permits.
     
  17. RiverratSC

    RiverratSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,646
    State:
    Gaffney, SC
    Welcome to the gang flathead22.

    I hope to make it down sometime in 2006.
     
  18. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I might just have to do that some time when the grands are with me. They'd love it!

     
  19. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina

    Didn't you say you were gonna be down for the New Years? I will look for you. Will you have a radio on you? If so, let me know what channel you will be on. I have a motorola T5200, so I can get you up to a few miles...Hope to talk to you there!
     
  20. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I hope to fish during New Year's holiday, depends on weather, of course. I have a radio and usually monitor Ch#69 on lake moultrie. Hope to see you there.