Lake Chickamauga

Lake Chickamauga ranks 2nd In the ENTIRE U.S. for bass fishing

Bass fishing is one of the most exciting freshwater fishing experiences an angler can find. Not only is Lake Chickamauga one of the top bass fisheries in country, but it is also known as “The Land of the Giants” for Largemouth Bass fishing as the lake continues to produce record-breaking bass for top competitive fishing organizations, pumping out hundreds of 10 pounders each and every year. In fact, Lake Chickamauga holds the BFL one-day record of 5 bass over 40 lbs.

Both the Tennessee state records for Largemouth Bass (15 lbs. 3 oz.) and Spotted Bass (6 lbs. 1 oz.) were caught in Lake Chickamauga.

Lake Chickamauga is part of the Tennessee River that stretches 58.9 miles long and has 810 miles of shoreline. This is a river channel lake, so you’re always looking for current flowing. When the current is flowing the fish are feeding… and the best part is that there are a ton of different ways to catch fish on this lake. At any time you could hook into a 10lb bass.

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Sneak peek of a day fishing on Lake Chickamauga

It’s that time of year when you are sitting around at work and you know it’s a pretty day outside and all you can think about is going fishing. Well for me it doesn’t have to be a pretty day, any day fishing beats a day at work. With that being said Spring is just …

They are still fish out on the ledges on Lake Chickamauga, the bait fish are scattered and moving in toward the grassy areas. They are a few fish being caught in the grass on frogs,but the best bite for the frog should start around the mid September. I was out with Mike and Mark the …

Lake Chickamauga is fishing great, we’re catching some numbers and sizes on Largemouth bass, fishing the ledges right now. It really don’t matter what you throw just as long as your patient enough to get the school fired up. I’ve been starting my mornings out with top water and then going to the dropshot with …

Keep scrolling to learn about the variety of bass that can be caught on Lake Chickamauga, as well as some pro tips!

Largemouth Bass Fishing on Lake Chickamauga

Due to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) Florida Largemouth Bass Stocking Project in 2000 (where 3 Million+ fingerlings were stocked), the Chickamauga Reservoir has proved to be a great place to get hooked on a Largemouth Bass.

The most recent TWRA survey has shown that in result of the Stocking Project, the average weight of Largemouth Bass in Lake Chickamauga has doubled since 2000, as well an increased abundance of Largemouth Bass registered over 15 inches.

Target Areas and Techniques (Largemouth Bass)

Largemouth Bass can be caught year-round using a variety of baits such as spinners, topwater lures, lipless lures, swimbaits, blade baits, crankbaits, and jigs. Largemouth bass tend to be deeper during the winter months but can also be found in shallower water on warmer winter days. As warmer weather becomes more consistent in the spring of the year, fish will continue to move toward shallower water away from currents. Fish can be found spawning in shallow water areas near large creeks. During the summer months, Largemouth Bass can be caught throughout the lake in a variety of habitats. During this time, focus on shallower areas along the shoreline with ample vegetation or in the main channel on ledges, humps, or deep areas with structure. As fall approaches use topwater lures, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and plastic worms near flat, grassy areas or areas with structure. Aquatic vegetation areas will be at the highest densities at this time.

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Spotted Bass Fishing on Lake Chickamauga

Due to the influx of Largemouth Bass, Spotted Bass numbers have declined over the past 10 years. However, anglers targeting spotted bass tend to have much more success on the upper reaches and tributaries of the Hiwassee River. Spotted bass spawn when water temperatures are in the 63-68-degree range and prefer gravel substrate.

Target Areas and Techniques (Spotted Bass)

Spotted bass can be caught on a variety of different live bait and artificial lure options.  Historically, spotted bass could be caught from early spring through late winter while drifting shiners or shad below Watts Bar Dam. Crankbaits, jerkbaits, and finesse soft plastics that mimic spotted bass forage, such as gizzard and threadfin shad, will also produce in this area. Rocky banks and bars, and shallow islands are other great areas to fish. Many of the same tactics and areas that work for smallmouth bass will be equally effective for spotted bass.

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Smallmouth Bass Fishing on Lake Chickamauga

The numbers of Smallmouth Bass in the Chickamauga Reservoir have remained stable or possibly increased within the last several years. The upper headwaters and lower end of the Chickamauga Reservoir provide the best Smallmouth Bass habitat and therefore host the greatest numbers of Smallmouth Bass in this reservoir.

Target Areas and Techniques (Smallmouth Bass)

Smallmouth Bass are often caught using jigs, small worms, trick worms, plastic worms, jerkbaits, and crankbaits. Anglers in search of smallmouth bass should target points and gravel flats when smallmouth bass are spawning during early spring (March-April).  Use baits that mimic forage bases such as shad and crayfish. After spawning has concluded, use topwater lures and swimbaits around rocky areas and bluff banks on the river. During hot summer months, anglers typically fish at night while targeting points 15-25 feet deep and areas with vegetation nearby. Live bait will work best during winter months, typically while fishing rocky banks with some current.

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Fishing Gallery from Lake Chickamauga


Ready to book your guided fishing charter on Lake Chickamauga?

We aim to get you hooked on Spotted Bass, Largemouth Bass, and Smallmouth Bass using artificial lures. Please note: We are 100% Catch & Release (on all Bass).

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