Sutton Lake

Discussion in 'NORTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by shellerflat, Feb 8, 2007.

  1. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    Last month or so I've been fishing Sutton Lake with relatively no success locating the flatheads. All that I have caught with any frequency is bass; brim are even hard to locate now. Anybody been fishing this lake with success recently?
     
  2. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    I've never fished it and don't know anyone who fishes it, but I do know that the flatheads around here will pretty much shut down when the water gets below about 50 degrees. Never had any luck with them any colder than that. You may want to wait until the water warms back up in the spring time. Then they will feed like crazy when they wake up from their winter nap. Until then, try targeting blues or channels. hope this helps!
     

  3. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Sutton is a warm water discharge from a coal burning power plant. The only lake in NC to be stocked with Florida strain bass.

    The lake is designed to cool water by using the dikes like fins on a radiator.
    I would look for some holes close to the plant discharge.
    I've never believed catfish of any kind just shut down because the water is cool.
    Catfish have to feed, particularly those in current.
    I've seen too many flatheads pulled out of rivers in January with water of 38-45 degrees. Big flatheads.

    It used to be thought that the bass bite wasnt there in the winter.
    Now we know or atleast I do, that bass will bite in some of the worst conditions like sleet and snow. Bass have to eat. They arent Grizzly bears. Their metabolism may slow to the point that everyone gives up on catching them but they have to eat. The same goes for flatheads. They have to eat. They dont hibernate.
    The bite and your odds of filling a boat with 15 or 20 flatheads a day isnt so high. The odds of you catching larger fish increases. Larger fish require more food intake even with a slowed metabolism.
    You just got to find the fish and change the tactics to catch them.
     
  4. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    I know they are caught in LKN year round also, but where I fish, you just don't hear of them being caught. If it is a warm water discharge with current then they will bite all year.
     
  5. luke1wcu

    luke1wcu New Member

    Messages:
    56
    State:
    North Carolina
    Where exactly is Sutton Lake?
     
  6. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
  7. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    I was told by the North Carolina Wildlife biologist in this area that the water cycles through the lake within a week or so. That would warm the majority of the lake well above 50. I was fishing on the third lake with water temperatures still above 55. The hardest thing for me right now is locating the bream, which would more than likely have flatheads close by. Could the bream have moved to deeper water?
     
  8. C_wernett

    C_wernett New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    North Carolina
    The bluegills and shellcrackers are all in the hot ditch right now. They'll be there untill the water in the ditch get's over 80. The flatheads are sporadic during the winter, very few people catch them in the winter. However, HUGE channels in the ditch can be caught right now! You might only catch one a trip, but...the chance of it being over 10lbs is nearly guaranteed. Also there should be really nice bass and crappie to be had in the ditch also. If you need someone to show you around let me know.
     
  9. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    Have you fished the ditch recently. You've fished alot with Jay out there if I am not mistaken. I have trolled rooster tails, fished nightcrawlers on the tree line and fished crawlers on the bottom by pilings. All I have picked up is bass. I haven't seen but one grass carp in the ditch all winter. No gar either. The ditch hasn't been good to me this year.
     
  10. C_wernett

    C_wernett New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    North Carolina
    Ahhh, Mike, didn't realize it was you? Have the shad been up in the ditch? They should be up there with the cooler weather, but if not, hit around the docks. Last time Jay went up there he was catching good a few cats from the dock and they've been catching big shellies around the mouth of the hot ditch and bass, smaller gills and shellies in the ditch along with channels still. We never catch any flatties during the winter untill it warms up.

    One other thing...don't use any weight when fishing for bait.
     
  11. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    Saw the shad in there thick about a month ago, but my depth finder is busted so I haven't been able to locate them since. I picked up a couple bream last week in the ditch using rooster tails, but that was only after I had given up on them and started focusing on bass along the tree line. What would you use for the shellies other than nightcrawlers?
     
  12. C_wernett

    C_wernett New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    North Carolina
    Well, if the big ones are up in there, fish with a fish finder rig, with up to 1/4oz. of lead. Use up to a size 3 circle hook if you'd like and a whole nightcrawler threaded onto the hook. Let them hit it a couple of times, but be ready, if you happen across the right spot you'll catch huge grass carp this way too. Or put a redworm on a jighead and just cast it out...I don't know why they like the last one, but it seems to work pretty well! To find some crappie take a little tiny hair jig and troll it back three boat lengths behind you. Keep the trolling motor set as slow as she'll go and move up and down the bushes untill you find fish. Get a couple of rods going with different colors and determine what they want. Last year it was a black head, yellow hair skirt with a single red thread in the skirt.
     
  13. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    man, went again this saturday. Nothing hit no matter the depth or presentation in the ditch. Only hits were bass in any part of the whole lake. Did everything possible and picked up nothing but bass up everywhere went. The rest of the fish in the lake are acting dormant. I have never had any winter be this bad for the fishing I have come to expect out of Sutton. Could the Flats be acting like they do in the river and stacking up in a dormant winter phase?
     
  14. C_wernett

    C_wernett New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    North Carolina
    I've never seen Sutton like that. Jay and I went to the river and for stripers and caught one 2-3lb. blue cat. We were considering heading over to Sutton but ran out of time, and I had to get back up this way before it got too late. I think that Wilmington and I just don't get along too well! lol
     
  15. shellerflat

    shellerflat New Member

    Messages:
    154
    State:
    north carolina
    I think I am going to leave Sutton alone for a while once the shad get to running in the river. I got a better boat than that 10ft metal piece of crap I used to have so I think it is time to start hitting the river soon. I didn't try the crappie rig idea you had yet, but I think I will the next time I hit Sutton.
     
  16. C_wernett

    C_wernett New Member

    Messages:
    693
    State:
    North Carolina
    I hear ya. I haven't fished there in at least three months now. I might hit the beach this weekend to see if the reds are in with the warmer weather.