740 Sprewell Bluff Road
Thomaston, GA 30286
Directions: 10 miles west of Thomaston. From GA 74 turn on Old Alabama Road and go 6 miles to the park.
Admission: $5/car, $30 Van, $70 Bus
Hours: 7 AM to 8:30 PM
Boat ramp is present but there are plenty of places to launch a kayak along the river.
Contact Flint River Outdoor Center at 706-647-2633 for canoe/kayak rental, shuttle service and river information.
Click any picture to enlarge
From the forums I had heard about shoal bass on the Flint and George was wanting to get out of the kayaks and do some wade fishing. My wife and I decided to spend the day together and take a trip up to the Thomaston/Macon area and scout out the possibilities doing just that at Sprewell's Bluff.
Although I certainly had my fly rod with me this was not an actual fishing trip. More of a scouting expedition/date/excuse to go the Bass Pro Shop in Macon kind of trip. And a great trip it was! Once off I-75 at Byron the road became two lane, curvy and hilly. A beautiful drive. Made me wish I still had my '94 Corvette.
Cissy noticed a note on the map about a wooden covered bridge on Achumpkee Creek so we took a detour (it was actually a shortcut) to take a look. Plus, I was hoping the creek would be big enough to hold some fish.
AUCHUMPKEE CREEK BRIDGE
A beautiful old bridge built in 1892 and restored 1985.
Inside showing the lattice construction.
And what do you know. The creek was big enough to fish. However, none decided to take my black foam white legged spider during the short time we stopped.
Leaving Auchumpkee Creek we continued to Thomaston then out US 36 to Flint River Outdoor Center which sits right on the river. You won't find many fishing supplies here. Enough to catch fish but just the basics. You can, however, get you some pickled quail eggs, boiled peanuts, play pool, or buy some beer, wine or liquor. Get the picture. Their main business seems to be renting kayaks and canoes and providing lodging. They do provide shuttle service up to Sprewell Bluff and beyond and can give you an idea what the water level on the Flint is by looking out their front door at the bridge markers. Their phone number is 706-647-2633.
According to the DNR officer I talked with in the park it is owned by Georgia Power and run by the state. At one time there was an effort to dam this area but it was stopped by Governor Jimmy Carter.
There is an automatic metal gate that opens and shuts at the appropriate time. If you get caught inside the gate after closing there are instructions as to how to get out.
If you can figure out those instructions you may leave . . .
When you arrive at the Flint inside the park you will see a large open area for parking. Adjacent are places to BBQ, picnic, swim, play volleyball and a play area for younger kids. There are picnic tables and grills available but it's first come first serve so you might want to bring your own.
Oh yeah, the ice cream truck. The driver said he comes on Saturday and Sunday around 3 PM.
Yes, there are bathroom facilities . . .
While it's not a hole in the ground . . . well, OK, it is a hole in the ground but it's better than a wooden outhouse with spiders under the seat. It was actually relatively clean.
I said relatively. Bring your own toilet paper.
KAYAK FISHING AT SPREWELL
It appears to me it is easiest to hire a shuttle at Flint River Outdoor Center, have them take you up to the park, and float the five miles back to FROC. The current seemed a bit fast to count on paddling upstream any distance.
You can fish from the kayak but it would be better, I think, to use the kayak as a means to access the numerous shoals then get out and wade. If you decide to stay in the kayak you'll need a good anchor and an anchor trolley would be nice, too. I'll be trying my Stake Out Pole sold by Stan at Capt. Dick's. Don't know, yet, if it's sandy enough to use the SOT.
This was my first attempt and I must say it is potentially treacherous if you don't pay attention. There is ample opportunity to cut yourself or break a bone if you fall. I did fall. Fortunately, it was near the bank and I landed on the most padded part of my anatomy.
I wore some outdoor water sport shoes by Merrill because that's all I had. These offered no ankle protection and I think wading boots would be a much better idea. As long as I stayed on top of the rocks there was no problem even if the rock was underwater. A slanting rock if slick from algae could take one down quickly. Slipping a foot between the rocks and falling with the current could result in some nasty cuts, twisted ankle, broken bones or all the above.
Personally, if I caught a fish I would stay put. Trying to run around concentrating on landing a fish seems asking for disaster.
A wading stick seems a good idea.
If you click on any of the pictures you'll see the shoals much better. According to FROC the water level at the bridge was 6 1/2'. A bit low probably.
And, yes, I did catch a little shoalie. They look essentially like a smallmouth bass. I think for all intents and purposes that's what they are. From what I understand there are only two types of bass on the Flint: large mouth and shoalie.
As you can see he took the black spider I'd been fishing at Auchumpkee Creek. Also, proof that you can be clumsy at fly casting and still catch fish!
George and I will return!
Interactive map for Sprewell Bluff State Park
Current Georgia river levels: Real Time Georgia Streamflow
Solunar Tables for your zip code: HERE
Rigging your kayak: Captain Dick
Interactive map by Angling Technologies: HERE
Georgia Kayak Fishing
Georgia River Fishing
Jax Kayak Fishing
Gulf Coast Kayak Fishing (you might need to be registered to view this one)
FLY FISHING RESOURCES
Fly Fishing West Georgia
Books and DVD by George Roberts:
Master the Cast
Fly Fisherman's Guide to Saltwater Naturals and Their Imitation
Saltwater Casting - 10 Steps to Distance and Power (DVD)
If you are a resident of Georgia and like to fish from a kayak I recommend becoming a supporting member of the Georgia Kayak Fishing Association located at GeorgiaKayakFishing.com.