Lake Nottley is a mile northwest of Blairsville, Georgia, on the northern border of the state. This 4,200-acre reservoir is famous for its trophy sized bass, along with its abundant populations of striped bass, crappie, sunfish, catfish, rainbow trout, and hybrid stripers. Its 100-plus miles of shoreline are also highly accessible, with many boat ramps for launching craft or public access areas if you’d like to fish from the bank.
You’ll have good luck targeting largemouth bass at Ivy Log Creek, Young Cane Creek, and in cove pockets in the lake’s mid and upper sections. For spotted bass, fish on steep and rocky shorelines, and in the springtime, watch for them migrating in shallow areas. Recommended techniques for largemouth and spots are live bait such as nightcrawlers, crayfish, and minnows, as well as artificial lures that imitate blueback herring.
Striped bass can be found in shallow coves and Ivy Log Creek in spring. In summer, you’ll find them at the lower end of the reservoir. Try using large surface plugs around points at the deeper parts of the main lake body. Use bucktail jigs, super flukes, and live bluegill, shad, or blueback herring at deep points or steep shorelines.
Expect hybrid bass in the spring at Ivy Log Creek and Point #9. Through the year, live bait fishing with minnows, shad, or herring in 10-20 feet of water should be productive. From May through August, you can also use surface fishing with topwater bait, bucktail jigs, or small lures resembling minnows.
The best time of year for crappie is late winter and spring, using minnows and minnow-tipped jigs. You’ll find concentrations of crappie around brush and fallen trees in shallower water (5-10 feet) at the upper end of the reservoir.