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August 2003
Lake Oconee

Lake Oconee - by David Smith

Lake Oconee is at full pool and about 80 degrees. Oconee just can’t clear up because of the wet summer we are having. The lake as a whole is still pretty stained on the main river channels but you should find clearer water in the secondary coves.

I know it is hard to imagine but your first opportunity to get in the woods and hunt critters starts on August 13th with the beginning of squirrel season.

This is a good excuse to get in the woods for some scouting to find the early season patterns of your whitetail herd not to mention a good chance to enjoy some squirrel and gravy. Also Dove season opens in the northern zone on September 6th and in the southern zone on September 27th. Get your guns cleaned and your knives sharpened because the hunting season is just around the corner. William Clarke and his crew at Sugar Creek Marina are the bass tournament headquarters for Lake Oconee. They host many bass tournament trails so if you need information on an upcoming tournament give them a call at 706-342-2231 or 800-648-1665 or even check them out in cyberspace at  Call ahead if you need a place to stay while visiting the Lake Oconee area and try a Sugar Creek Marina lakefront cabin. They are fully furnished including linens. Sugar Creek is also a full service marina. If you have boat trouble, William and the staff can have you back up and running in record time. They also have gasoline available on the water as well as dry boat storage, bait and tackle, boat sales and boat service. And the launch fee is cheaper than the public access and you can get all of your supplies at one stop. Don’t forget the Chester Fried chicken for lunch and I know for a fact that the chicken biscuits and coffee are great too. Go by and visit William and the friendly staff at Sugar Creek Marina on your next visit to Lake Oconee.

Stop by and see all the boats and Kawasaki 4-wheelers that Billy Lupton has at 44 Marine on the Lake Oconee Parkway. They’ve got tons of boats, big and small and now is the time to get yourself a new boat for the summer. Their pricing is great now on everything in the store.  44 Marine also has excellent service for the boats and motors that they sell. They can make repairs to most any boat so if you are having problems call 44 Marine and they will help you any way they possibly can. They have everything you need for your boat from parts to accessories including some cool water toys to enjoy this summer. They have Humminbird depth finders in stock. You gotta stop by and see the new Polar Kraft boats powered by Yamaha.  Check out their ad to see some of the new models.  They also sell Honda outboards which already meet 2006 EPA standards! 44 Marine is now carrying Carolina Skiff boats. Stop by and see all the options these boats have to offer and all the accessories that you can get with them. Hurry in because they are selling fast so stop by soon.   No one does it better in the Lake Oconee area than 44 Marine. Give them a call at 706-485-2133 or check them out online at

Stop by and see Mr. Fred Stovall owner of JR’s Bait & Tackle.  Mr. Fred knows Lake Oconee as good as anybody around and is a good source of information as to what is biting on Oconee. Fred has tournaments out of JR’s every other Sunday.  Stop by and talk to him if you are interested in participating in one of his tournaments, he will be glad to have you. While you are at JR’s go ahead and load up on snacks, tackle, groceries, drinks and ice. They also have a good selection of Suddeth Little Earl crank baits made especially for JR’s.  Their selection of quality rods and reels is second to none.   They also have some real nice bait tanks for all you Hybrid fishermen out there. There is a boat ramp right at the store so put your boat in at JR’s and go fishing for some of those slab crappie or largemouth bass or catfish on Lake Oconee . They are located on Hwy 44 between Eatonton and Greensboro at the Lick Creek Bridge. To have all your “trophies” mounted, there is no better place to have it done than at Newborn Taxidermy in Newborn, Georgia on Highway 142. Ricky Smith at Newborn Taxidermy is a member of the Georgia Taxidermy Association and is professional mounting expert. He does quality deer and fish mounts but can also mount about anything you ask him to. Remember to go see Ricky when you catch that record breaking crappie or bass and you want it professionally mounted. For directions call Ricky at 770-786-3350. 

Blue Springs Marina is on the North end of Lake Oconee and is probably the closest place for you good folks in the Athens area to put your boat in. Blue Springs is a full service marina.  They also have dry boat storage and gas on the water. Also Blue Springs is a great place to check if you are looking for a used boat. Don’t forget to load up on all the snacks and drinks you will need for a great summer day on the lake. Give Charles Baldwin and his crew a call for more information at 1-800-732-7498 or at 706-342-9442. Or just stop by for a visit at 1271 Blue Springs Drive in Buckhead. Welcome back Charles. Stop by and visit Reginald Gustafson and his staff at Boats with Gusto at 881 Harmony Road. Boats With Gusto has so much to offer the lake goers for a great summer on the lake. They have Sugar Sand Jet Boats, Escape Sailboats, Hobie Kayaks and lots of cool water toys. They also have one of the coolest boats you have ever seen. You may have seen this boat featured on the Hank Parker television show. It is made by Hobie and it is called the Mirage Outback.  It is a 12 foot kayak with a pedal device you operate with your feet. This allows your hands to be free to fish. This boat is perfect for those of us who enjoy fishing small water. When you stop in, mention that you saw this ad and receive $100 off your purchase of the Mirage Outback. If you would like to try one out you can rent one too. Give Reggie a call at 706-485-0053 or better yet e-mail him at Remember to support the people who support us and visit our advertisers the next time you visit wonderful Lake Oconee. Great fishing and full stringers!

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