The Dead Forest

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by flathead22, May 13, 2006.

  1. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    I have never been to the dead forest, but isn't it located in Lake Marion above the I95 bridge? Is it like being in a swamp? Is it shallow? Which landing is best to access the forest? I have a ranger bass boat and want to do some catfishing in the forest, but I have never even seen a picture of the place...Is it safe to venture out there in a bass boat with a deep v-hull? Any advice or suggestions regarding the dead forest would be most helpful, and most appreciative!!

    Kyle
     
  2. flaboy

    flaboy New Member

    Messages:
    616
    State:
    Wedgefield, SC
    Kyle, I am not the most knowledgeable but the lake marion is full of stumps, I have been told that you would only use a trollin motor especially in the upper lake stump fields. I have seen them in low water and it looks almost like a cypress marsh sticking out about 3' outta water. high water looks good, like a big lake but reread first comment abt low water. I have also seen the landing at the north east corner and it looks real fishy but thick swamp, good for sm boats WITH a good compass. I have heard it is easy to get disoriented there. I read that lk marion, the timber was not cleared like lk moultrie, just cut and stumps left. I'd recommend gettin a fishin map and or talk to locals b4 tryin to get on plane.
    wishin you tight lines! Lionel
     

  3. SFISHER

    SFISHER Member

    Messages:
    132
    State:
    South Carolina
    Name:
    Steve
    The dead forest got its name after the lake was filled, and all the trees that were left in the middle of the lake died. You could be in 30 feet of water, and you would be driving past dead pine trees, that were still sticking 30 feet up out of the water. In 1989 hurricane Hugo broke most of the trees off at water level. There are still plenty of trees left, and about 10 stumps under the water for every tree you see standing. If you go in there just idle around. A stainless steel prop helps!
     
  4. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    I have a ss prop...the only reason I have never gotten a busted prop!! Stainless steel is the best way to go, never mind the expense!!! Is the dead forest productive this time of year? Aren't the catfish spawning right now? What is the most productive depth of water to fish right now?
     
  5. peewee williams

    peewee williams New Member

    Messages:
    3,111
    State:
    Pembroke,Georgia
    In the 50,s the "dead forest above hwy.301,now I-95 was known as "The Woods" to us locals.I lived on the south bank at the 301 bridge.A 7 1/2 outboard was known as a BIG Motor back then and was normally run at 1/2 to 3/4 throttle while in the old river channel.Slower when out.You knew that you were going to hit something.You just never knew when.The river channel was considered navigable and the markers were maintained back then.You may be able to find a old map.I have seen the Army Engineers large inboard craft up in the river channel in the woods.They moved very slow at all times.They invited me aboard and showed me around.BIG TIME for a kid.There used to be a tremendous Log Jam floating up there.You could get out and fish it.It was complete with wild life and many plants and brush growing.Coons,possums,bobcat,and once even a bear left it,s sign out there.The predators seemed to show up there every year when the Ducks and Geese did.Great fishing at times.CAUTION!The logs are subject to moving,sinking,spinning,etc. and then coming back together after you have dropped through.This leaves you trapped and drowning with no way out.As long as you keep your speed down to where you can safely hit anything,you should be alright.The State park on the South side use to have a boat ramp.Luck,peewee-williams
     
  6. Beaufort

    Beaufort Member

    Messages:
    343
    State:
    Rock Hill, SC
    I haven't done that good this late in the spawn that far north . i'm coming down next week and will probably target flat heads out of harrys or rocks pond.
     
  7. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina

    I know some good spots for flatties out of harrys. however, i am not familiar with rocks pond at all. when is the most productive time to fish the dead forest? is the diversion canal the best place to be right now?
     
  8. weathermantrey

    weathermantrey New Member

    Messages:
    516
    State:
    central,sc
    I'd be careful with the Stainless steel props. They dont break. But if you do hit something solid it can mess up some stuff that'll make you wish that you only to replace a prop.
     
  9. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    i'll be down here in santee from friday til tuesday of this weekend, and i can't wait to get here!!!!! the cats should be in either the pre-spawn or the spawning stage, right?? if they are in pre-spawn i may just drift the lake and go after foraging cats. if they are in the spawning stage, i will anchor up in the canal in the backwaters or the shallows of the lakes...would ya'll do this too??
     
  10. Foxhound

    Foxhound New Member

    Messages:
    403
    State:
    Georgia
    Kyle,
    The spawn in the swamp is about over for the most part. Last weekend we caught a few in the swamp but really had to work for them. Sat. I tried one last time in the swamp and couldnt buy a bite. We moved on out to the river channel down closer to I95 and fished the flats adjacent to the river channel and the edges of the channel and picked up some really nice blues. The swamp area is a lot of fun during the spawn but I think its about time to move back out on the lake. Good luck !
     
  11. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    I figured the fish would be a closer to the river channel by now.Did you catch any flatheads Ken.
     
  12. Foxhound

    Foxhound New Member

    Messages:
    403
    State:
    Georgia
    Chris,
    We didnt catch any flat heads, all blues, we did actually catch some right in the middle of the river channel but the most bites were on the hard drop offs to the river channels. I think this weekend me and my brother will try the lower end (canal) and fish out on the lake at night for a change of pace. My pontoon boat needs a break from that cypress swamp, quite a few dents in it over the past two months !!! Heard of anybody doing anything in the canal ?? We started using those blood colored circle hooks by eagle claw several weeks ago and Im really impressed witht the hook up results vs. regular shanked hooks. Whats your take on these ?? I havent lost near as many fish on the bite.
     
  13. flathead22

    flathead22 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    State:
    south carolina
    One year I caught several big catfish on the blood colored circle hooks as opposed to the regular octopus circles, but other than that I have not noticed a difference in the color of the hook. I use only octopus circle hooks, number 6-8. I will vouch for these hooks and say that catch and release rates with these hooks are superb!! I will be in Santee this weekend..I plan to fish the lower lake at night some (if the wind is calm). A 15'6" ranger bass boat is a sitting duck at a shooting range out there in rough weather! I also plan to spend a lot of time in the canal as well. Good fishing!!

    Kyle

    Kyle
     
  14. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    I'm using red 8/O circles by eagle claw and they hook 8 out of ten fish that bite and thats a lot better than the old J-hooks.I cant stand to use circles for flatheads though only blues and sometimes channels.