Arkansas Weekly Fishing Reports – 6/11/2008
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
Randy Zellers (501)223-6406, e-mail: rdzellers [at] agfc [dot] state [dot] ar [dot] us
June 11, 2008 Edition
This is the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s fishing report for June 11. If there is a body of water you would like included in this report, please call or e-mail us with information on possible sources for that lake or river.
Fishing Tip: When fishing for bass with top-water lures, always have a back-up rod ready. Whenever a bass strikes at a buzzbait or other surface lure and misses, reel in quickly and cast back to the same spot with your backup. The fish will often strike, thinking they stunned the animal they struck at the first time. Tubes, soft-plastic stick baits and worms are some of the best backups.
Arkansas River Levels:
According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, as of Tuesday the Arkansas River stages are:
Trimble Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 13): Headwater – 389.44 feet, Tailwater – 388.59 feet, Flow – 138,130 cubic feet per second
Ozark Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 12): Headwater – 371.84 feet, Tailwater – 353.56 feet
Dardanelle Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 10): Headwater – 337.52 feet, Tailwater – 302.19 feet
Ormond Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 9): Headwater – 285.49 feet, Tailwater – 281.96 feet
Toad Suck Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 8): Headwater – 266.18 feet, Tailwater – 265.94 feet
Murray Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 7): Headwater – 247.88 feet, Tailwater – 238.32 feet, Flow – 137,062
Terry Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 6): Headwater – 230.85 feet, Tailwater – 224.40 feet, Flow – NO READING AVAILABLE
Sanders Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 4): Headwater – 195.26 feet, Tailwater – 191.71 feet
Hardin Lock and Dam (Lock and Dam 3): Headwater – 181.49 feet, Tailwater – 179.76 feet
Mills Dam (Dam 2): Headwater – 161.68 feet, Tailwater – 145.60 feet, Flow – 130,846 cubic feet per second
White River Levels: According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, as of Tuesday the White River stages are:
9 feet at Calico Rock (flood stage – 19 feet)
9.6 feet at Batesville (flood stage – 15 feet)
13.8 feet at Newport (flood stage – 26 feet)
26.1 feet at Augusta (flood stage – 26 feet)
15.5 feet at Georgetown (flood stage – 21 feet)
23.8 feet at Clarendon (flood stage – 26 feet)
Statewide Family and Community Fishing Report
Channel catfish are being stocked in all program ponds and are biting well on worms, liver, hot dogs, shrimp and paste baits. Channel catfish are being caught with more success in early mornings and late evenings. Bream are still biting well on crickets, wax worms and redworms. For more information on catfish stockings, call toll-free 1-866-540-FISH (3474).
Lake Conway: Bates Field and Stream (501-470-1846) said the water is murky and at normal level. Bream are fair in 15 to 20 feet of water on worms, waxworms and crickets. Crappie are fair in 6 to 8 feet of water at the north side of the lake on minnows and jigs. Bass fishing is good around lily pads on Trixie lures. Catfishing is fair on minnows.
Little Red River: Lindsey’s Resort (501-302-3139) said the water conditions are normal with one generator running around the clock. Trout fishing has been excellent on in-line spinnerbaits with a pink worm and yellow Power Bait.
Jed Hollan at the Little Red Fly Shop said the Greers Ferry Power House continues daily water releases using one generator at 4 a.m., ramping up the second generator at 6 a.m. and shutting both down around midnight. Greers Ferry Lake is 481 feet above man sea level which is 20 feet too high. A 30-inch brown trout was caught last week at Winkley Shoal. A 27-inch rainbow was hooked at JFK Park on Saturday morning during the Kid’s Fishing Derby, but got away. The aquatic insect hatches continue to include new participants. Along with caddis flies, sulphur mayflies, March brown mayflies and midges, we now have blue-winged olive mayflies buzzing around. Our insect-rich stream will soon see light cahill mayflies joining in the activity. Most any nymph pattern or emerger will attract trout. When dry fly fishing, try an Adams (size 14-size 24), sulphur (size 16-size 18), BWO (blue winged olive size 16-size 18), march brown (size 14), elk hair caddis (size 14-size 16) or midge (size 22 or smaller in cream or black). The best sub-surface flies include the sow bug (size 14-size 16; UV tan, UV gray or olive), zebra midge (size 16-size 22; red, olive or black), red butt soft hackle (size 14-size 16), San Juan worm (size 14-size 18; peach, fl. orange or red), pheasant tail (size 16), hare’s ear nymph (size 14-size 16) or woolly bugger (size 4-size 12 olive, brown or black.)
Greers Ferry: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 480.84 feet MSL.
Tommy Cauley of Fish Finder Guide Service said the hybrid and white bass fishing is going crazy right now. With the water being pulled down they are eating young fry coming out of the bushes and pushing them to the top up on the banks. Use a very small bait to mimic the fry. No-report on crappie or bream. Walleye are few and far between. A few can be caught on crankbaits up shallow. But the rest are on their way out deeper. Catfish are biting pretty well all over the lake. Some bass are back shallow chasing bream in the bushes and will hit frogs, spinnerbaits and small crankbaits, a lot of the bass are in 22-25 feet of water on the tips of points or on gravel flats making their way to point tips. They can be caught dragging a rig, football head jig or a Texas-rigged worm in crabapple or grasshopper colors. Buzzbaits and Zara Spooks are working in the same places early and late in the day until the sun gets high.
Shiloh Marina said the water is murky and high with surface temperature in the low 70s. Bream are fair on crickets. Crappie are fair on minnows. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and buzzbaits.
Harris Brake Lake: Coffee Creek Landing (501-889-2745) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets and worms. Bass are biting well on plastic worms and buzzbaits. Catfishing is good on worms.
Lake Beaverfork: The City of Conway Parks and Recreation Department said the water is murky and high. Crappie are fair around brush on minnows and jigs.
Lake Overcup: Lakeview Landing (501-354-1470) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets and redworms. Crappie are biting well on minnows. Catfishing is fair on nightcrawlers.
Overcup Landing (501-354-9007) said the water is murky and at normal level with surface temperature in the low 80s. Bream are fair around the banks on crickets and wax worms. Bass are biting well on top-water baits. Catfishing is good on trotlines and yoyos with minnows, nightcrawlers and bream.
Brewer Lake: Overcup Landing (501-354-9007) said the water is murky and at normal level. All fishing is fair.
Sunset Lake: Turbyfill’s Outdoor Sports (501-315-3061) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs. Catfishing is good on Magic Bait.
Saline River Access in Benton: Turbyfill’s Outdoor Sports (501-315-3061) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets. Bass fishing is good on Rooster Tails. Catfishing is good on Magic Bait.
Arkansas River at Morrilton: Charlie’s Hidden Harbor at Oppelo said the flow is still well over 100,000 cfs, but fishing is very good below the dams and in the backwater. Catfishing is very good below dams nine and 10. Use a 3 to 6-ounce weight on a three-way rig baited with live bream. Channel catfish are biting well on liver and worms around Flagg Lake Cutoff, Coppers Gap and Gala Creek. White bass are chasing shad early and late in the day on the backside of jetties. Wobble spoons and Sassy Shads are taking quite a few. Black bass are biting well. Early in the morning, try a buzzbait or Jitterbug under overhangs. Later in the day move to 4 to 6 feet of water and throw Firetiger crankbaits. Bream are biting well in the backwater in 1 to 3 feet of water on crickets. Crappie are on the backs of jetties and in the creeks and are biting fairly well on minnows fished around wood.
Arkansas River in Little Rock: Vince Miller from Fish ‘N Stuff said the water is still really rough and fishing has been slow. A few bass have been caught in the backwater on jigs and frogs.
Lake Maumelle: Jolly Roger’s Marina said bass fishing continues to be good. Largemouth and Kentucky bass are holding just outside the weed line and can be caught on spinnerbaits and Carolina rigs. The best bite is in the first two hours of the day on the north banks. Bream fishing is excellent. The bream should be bedding up again very soon. Patrick Point and the old Jolly Rogers Marina are producing well. Crappie are 10 to 25 feet deep and are hitting minnows and small jigs. Catfishing is good on live and prepared baits in 10 to 20 feet of water. White bas are fair with some schooling reported around Jim’s Island.
Little and Big Maumelle Rivers: Josh Jeffers at Pinnacle Mountain State Park (501-868-5806) said the water level is receding and the surface temperature ranges from 75 to 79. The water clarity is low. Bream are biting well on crickets and worms. Crappie are biting fairly well on shiners and black/chartreuse 1/8-oz. crappie jigs. Bass are biting fairly well on shad-colored flukes, shaky head finesse worms and small top-water baits. Catfish are biting well on nightcrawlers and different types of stink bait.
Hatchet Jack’s Sport Shop said bass are good early on white spinnerbaits. Crappie are fair on minnows. Bream are excellent on crickets in pad beds. Catfishing is excellent on trotlines with cut shad, chicken hearts and live slicks.
Murray Lock and Dam: Hatchet Jack’s Sport Shop said Catfish are excellent on shad and live slicks. Crappie are fair on minnows with a slip cork rig and twister tails.
Terry Lock and Dam: McSwain Sports Center (501-945-2471) said the water is muddy and high and still very dangerous. There is no fishing on the river at this time.
Clear Lake: McSwain Sports Center (501-945-2471) said the water is muddy and high. Bream are fair in shallow water on crickets. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and jigs.
Lake Pickthorne: Hatchet Jack’s Sport Shop said bream are excellent on crickets and wax worms. Bass are good on spinnerbaits and top-water stick baits. Catfishing is excellent on nightcrawlers and chicken hearts.
Peckerwood Lake: Herman’s Landing (870-241-3731) said the water conditions are normal with a surface temperature of about 80 degrees. Bream are biting well on worms and crickets. Crappie are fair in deep water on minnows and jigs. Bass are fair on spinnerbaits. Catfishing is excellent on worms, liver and large minnows.
White River: John Berry of Berry Brothers Guides said water flows on the White have been significantly higher than the past weeks. As a result, it has not fished as well as it has in previous weeks. The lower flows have been around six generators with the higher flows being more like eight. With water this high, you will be required to fish from a boat to achieve any level of success. The upper river from the Catch and Release section at the base of Bull Shoals dam to Cane Island Shoals which is usually a hot spot has yielded few fish. Some anglers, however, have been successful. The key to success has been to use conventional high water techniques. The hot flies have been brightly colored San Juan worms (red, cerise, and fire orange and hot fluorescent pink) and egg patterns (pink, orange, tan, and red). To get the flies down use copious amounts of lead and a huge strike indicator to float all of this. I use at least 4X tippet and set the strike indicator so that the distance from the fly to the strike indicator is one and one half the depth of the water. If the water is ten feet deep the length of the tippet from fly to indicator will be fifteen feet. A rig this heavy and long will be a bit tricky to cast. I would suggest a fairly open loop and a heavier rod than normal (a fairly stiff six weight nine foot would work well).
Mountain River Fly Shop said summer temperatures, electricity demand and high water levels have seen plenty of generation on the White over the last week. Since we last reported the lowest generation level has been about 3.5 units, and most days by 10 a.m., there is about 15,000 cfs in the tailwater. Boat fishing is pretty much the only way to go. The worm bite continues even after the water is high, with Dynamite Worms, San Juans, and Bugskin Wigglers the pick. Color choices vary from the standard red and brown, but brighter hot pink, cerise and orange have their fans. The best of the drift fishing is coming in the morning on the more moderate flows, staying ahead of the dirty high water seems to be the key to staying on the best of the fishing. Some better fish seem to come on the rise, but the higher flow is very trashy and reduces your options.
Sportsman’s White River Resort said the water is high with 8 to 10 generators running. Trout fishing is very good on Rogues and Rapalas and drift-fishing with Power Bait. Walleye fishing is excellent. Some white bass have also been seen in the river.
Bull Shoals Lake: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 692.17 feet MSL.
Lake Norfork: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 577.16 feet MSL.
101 Grocery and Bait said the surface water temperature has been in the mid 80s. The best fishing has been early mornings. Striper fishing is good using down lines with 1-1 1/2 oz sinkers getting the live bait down around 20-30 feet deep in 50 feet or more of water. Some stripers are being caught on artificial bait also. Walleye fishing is fair on live bait and deep-diving stick baits. The walleye have been around 20 feet deep. Bluegill fishing has been great using redworms and crickets fished with a slip bobber around 20 feet deep in the coves. Largemouth bass fishing is fair. Smallmouth bass fishing is good. White bass fishing is slow. Crappie fishing is slow. Catfishing has been fair.
Norfork Tailwater: John Berry of Berry Brothers Guides said the Norfork has fished a bit better this week. While there have been periods of no generation at night, the better fishing has occurred in the morning when they have been running just one generator. In the afternoon, when they fire up the other generator, fishing slows a bit. Use conventional high water techniques and if you are not fishing Catch and Release consider using a dropper tied to the lead flies. A good choice for this would be a black zebra midge or copper john both in size 14. Several anglers have been observed using drag chains on the Norfork. This is illegal. The Norfork is a sensitive fishery and the use of drag chains could harm the weed beds which provide habitat and produce food for the trout. Dry Run Creek has fished well of late. There have been few youngsters taking advantage of this remarkable fishery during the last week. Now that the weather is warming up, this is a great place to escape the heat. The creek is always several degrees cooler than any other place around here. The hot flies this week have been sowbugs, worm brown San Juan worms and olive woolly buggers.
Mountain River Fly Shop said there has been some low water, but it’s all at night and over by 6 a.m. Hardly any anglers are fishing the area. There are few fly fishing guides tackling the high water. With the boat ramp at Quarry Park out of commission there are a lot of guides unwilling to risk getting stuck if the water drops out underneath them.
Beaver Lake: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 1,129.07 feet MSL.
JT’s Crappie Guide Service (479-640-3980) bass fishing has been good for smaller fish. Bigger fish are around, but a bit inactive. Small spinnerbaits fished in front of flooded brush have worked best. Small finesse worms rigged wacky-style have also produced. Crappie fishing has been best at night under lights. Horseshoe Bend and Edens Bluff have both been good spots. Catching your own small shad around the lights has been the best bait. Fish them down 15 to 30 feet. Walleye and white bass also have been caught. Bluegill fishing has been good during the day around rocks and docks with crickets. Catfishing is still good lake-wide on stink bait and liver. Striped bass have been scattered but Rocky Branch would be a good place to look. Trolling umbrella rigs with white curly tails can be productive.
Southtown Sporting Goods (479-443-7148) said the water is stained and high. Bream are biting well in shallow water on crickets and redworms. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs. Bass are fair early on top-water baits. White bass are biting well at night on flukes, live shad and finesse plastics. Catfishing is fair on trotlines and limb lines on live bait and liver.
Lake Fayetteville: Lake Fayetteville Boat Dock (479-444-3476) said water conditions are normal. Bream are fair on crickets. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs. Bass are fair on top-water baits. Catfishing is fair on any bait.
Lake Sequoyah: Lake Sequoyah Boat Dock (479-444-3475) said water conditions are normal. Bass are fair on spinnerbaits, plastic worms and minnows.
Sugarloaf Lake: Midland Minimart (479-639-9467) said the water is muddy and high. Bream are fair on worms and crickets. Bass are fair on minnows and nightcrawlers.
Lake Fort Smith: Jay Schneider at Lake Fort Smith State Park said bass are biting fairly well on spinnerbaits and minnows. Crappie are hitting in 10-12 feet of water on red/white tube jigs and minnows. The water clarity is steadily improving after the last flooding.
Lake Charles: Mike Wayer at Lake Charles State Park (870-878-6595) said catfish are the only thing biting right now. The water level is normal and the water is clear.
Spring River: Mark’s Fly Shop said fishing has been great this week. Water clarity has been good. Bait anglers have been seeing great results with Power Bait, shrimp, and worms. Caddis and mayfly hatches have been increasing during morning and evening hours. Trout tend not to rise on the Spring River, but when a good hatch starts, a proper nymph or emerger will do the trick.
Crown Lake: Boxhound Marina (870-670-4496) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on worms and crickets. Crappie fishing is good in 8 to 10 feet of water on minnows and jigs. Bass are excellent on top-water baits early in the morning. Catfishing is excellent in the evening on goldfish and chicken liver. Saugeye are fair on orange/red belly lures.
Lake Frierson:Lake Frierson State Park said the water is murky and at a normal level. Bream are biting well on worms and crickets. Catfishing is good on minnows.
Moro Bay: Moro Bay State Park said the Ouachita river is only a few feet higher than normal now and it is falling slowly. The bream fishing is the best it’s been in the last several years. Most fisherman report catching from 50 to 100 big bream on crickets in the bay. Some are also catching bream in the lake. Catfish have been hitting shad and bream on trotlines in the bay as well. Mostly blue and channel cats are being caught, but several nice flatheads were pulled in over the weekend. Crappie and bass fishing has been slow.
Lake Chicot: Bass Tracker Marine (870-265-5374) said the water is clear and is almost back to normal level. Bream are fair on worms and crickets. Bass are biting well early on spinnerbaits. Catfishing is good on soap.
Grand Lake: Koenig Bass Tracker Marine (870-265-5374) had no report.
Millwood Lake: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 259.65 feet MSL.
Millwood Lake Guide Service said the water clarity is 10 to 12 inches in the main lake away from current. The surface temperature is 77 to 86 degrees. Current in Little River is 1,171 cubic feet per second. Largemouth bass are excellent on jigs, 10 to 12-inch worms, buzzbaits, Bass Assassin Shads and topwater toads. Most bass are being caught from 3 to 9 feet deep. Jigs in black/blue or black/red, Bass Assassin Shads in salt and pepper silver phantom or baby bass, Trick Worms and Salty Rat Tails in watermelon-red flake, Topwater Toads, and big bulky 10-12″ worms in camo, grasshopper, plum, and blue fleck, continue working well. Siefert’s Buzz Baits, in Alewife Shad, Hot Firecracker, or Blue Glimmer, near newly emerging lily pads and hydrilla in 2-5 feet of the clearest water you can find near cypress trees and knees are drawing good reactions. War Eagle spinnerbaits in Aurora, Cole Slaw, and Hot Mouse colors are taking some decent keepers around flooded vegetation and cypress trees away from current of the river. White bass are decent with the consistent current in Little River between Jack’s Isle and Mud Lake, along Little River. Trolling with Rat-L-Traps and deep-diving cranks in Little River between Pugh Slough and Horseshoe at 10-15 deep are the best bets. The crappie bite has been consistent in Little River, but worse on the main lake since it stained up w/ the high winds and thunderstorms from Yarborough Point to Big Bayou Boat Run. The most consistent bite was on live shiners, chartreuse tube jigs and white grubs. Channel Cats from 3-8 pounds each are very good to excellent on chicken livers and hearts, cut shad or Charlie, on trotlines and yo-yos along the river and in oxbows hung from cypress trees in 9-15 feet of water. Bream continue to bite well along the banks on crickets and redworms around docks and cypress trees.
Cossatot River: Davy Ashcraft at Cossatot River State Park (870-385-2201) said bream are biting great on worms and crickets in 3 feet of water. The smallmouth bass are biting very well on green pumpkin finesse worms and crawdad Crankbaits around structure in the deeper pools at 4 to 5 feet of water. Black Bass are fair with some being taken on dark-colored finesse worms and grubs fished very slowly around deep structure. Most any grub or finesse worm fished around structure and drops will produce good bites. Catfish are good with some being taken on chunks of hot dogs; live perch baited on trotlines are doing good as well. A great deal of fish are being caught all across the park and as far south as the backwater of the lake. If conventional styles of fishing begin to fail you might want to give fly-fishing a try. Keep in mind that when fishing on Cossatot River the smallmouth limit is two and the smallmouth have to be at least 12 inches long. To experience the fishing on this river at its best, call Cossatot River State park Visitor Center to schedule a fishing Kayak tour.
Lake Columbia: Steve’s Marine (870-234-2222) said water conditions are normal. Bream are fair on worms and crickets. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs. Bass are fair on spinnerbaits. Catfishing is fair on worms and large minnows.
Lake Erling: Steve’s Marine (870-234-2222) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets. Catfishing is good on any bait.
White Oak Lake: White Oak Lake State Park said the water level is stable but the water is cloudy. There have been some bream and crappie caught on crickets and worms. Catfish are good on trotlines baited with prepared bait. Bass are slow.
Lake Greeson: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 546.32 feet MSL.
Darryl Morris at Family Fishing Trips said fishing on Lake Greeson is good. Crappie are holding shallower than normal for this time of year. Most are being caught 10 to 11 feet deep in 18 to 22 feet of water on bamboo and hardwood mats. Black bass are doing well early. Stripers are biting well at the lower end of the lake around 30 feet deep.
Lakeside Grocery said the water is murky and at normal level with surface temperature at about 85 degrees. Bream are biting well 5 feet deep on crickets. Crappie are biting well in 15-20 feet of water on minnows and jigs. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and plastic worms. Catfish are fair on trotlines and limb lines with live bait.
DeGray Lake: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 407.40 feet MSL.
DeGray One Stop (501-865-3511) said the water is clearing up with temperature in the 70s. Bream are fair outside the grass beds on worms and crickets. Crappie are biting well on minnows. Bass are fair on spinnerbaits and top-water baits. Catfishing is fair on trotlines with minnows.
Lake DeGray State Park said the largemouth bass are back, out in 5 to 20 feet. They are being caught on tequila sunrise, watermelon and pumpkinseed worms. Bream are on and around their beds they are hitting crickets. Larger bream are in 25 feet of water. The catfish are starting to come in and can be found from the bank to 15 feet of water. The hybrids are breaking, coming up and staying longer, mixed with black bass and white bass. The surface temperature is 82 degrees and warming.
Lake Dardanelle: Murphy’s Sporting Goods (479-229-3200) said the water is muddy and high. Bream are picking up on worms and crickets. Catfishing is very good on stink bait and nightcrawlers. They are also being caught snagging below the dam.
Blue Mountain Lake: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 388.33 feet MSL.
Booneville Bait said the water is high and murky. Bream are biting well on worms and crickets. Crappie are good around shorelines on minnows. Bass are biting well on worms and minnows. Catfishing is good on any bait.
Ozark Pool: Lakeside Food Mart (479-667-5155) said the water is muddy and high Bream are biting well on crickets. Black bass are being caught on spinnerbaits. A few catfish have been caught on shad and nightcrawlers.
Lake Ouachita: As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 577.61 feet MSL.
Larry Hurley of Poorman’s Guide Service said fishing is very good with a lot of action happening early mornings and a variety of fish busting the surface on the main lake. Many white are being caught on spoons and black bass and stripers are hitting spinnerbaits over the grass. After 10 a.m. the bite slows, but anglers can find a steady bite on 10-inch Berkley Power Worms around the outside edge of the grass near standing timber.
Dave Lindhag of Striped Bass Adventures (501-760-6474) said stripers have moved a little deeper than last week. A 5- to 7-inch shad weighed down between 20 and 30 feet deep and worked slowly around main-lake points is working well. Look for schools of fish on your graph and drop the bait right in their face. The fish are not chasing the bait very far from the school. Points 27 and 25 have been good producers lately. Slow-trolling live shad has worked well in front of Brady Mountain and Crystal Springs. The bite is mainly early and late in the day, with most fish being between 8 and 14 pounds.
Mountain Harbor Resort said the water is clear and the surface temperature is 74 to 80 degrees. Largemouth bass are biting well on Zara Spooks, Boy Howdies, buzzbaits, jerkbaits and flukes early in the mornings. Walleye are biting fairly well on spoons fished over brush piles on main-lake points. Stripers are fair on live bait. Top-water action has slowed, but a few can be caught on C-10 Redfins. Bream are biting well on crickets and worms in 10 to 20 feet of water. Crappie are fair over grass and brush in 16 to 20 feet of water. Minnows and crappie grubs are working the best. Catfishing is good on cut bait and live bait on jug lines and trotlines.
Lake Catherine: Shane Goodner, owner of Catch’em All Guide Service, reports the rainbow trout bite has improved in the last week. Fishermen are catching five-fish limits with the average size between 13 and 15 inches. These trout are healthy and thick as they feed heavily on threadfin shad. Entergy has incorporated the summer generation schedule and this has helped the bite considerably. Bank anglers continue to catch the most fish by using live bait. Nightcrawlers and redworms fished on the bottom with a marshmallow floater has been the most effective method. Wax worms and meal worms work well when the trout are short-striking. These methods offer the trout some variety from the huge schools of shad that inhabit the tailrace. Fishermen casting artificial lures are having little success as the trout simply have so much to feed on. The real key to catching trout in summer is to concentrate on cooler water closest to the dam and use live-bait rigs. White and hybrid bass action has been consistent as these fish chase shad during periods of generation and lay in the deeper pockets of water during the heat of the day. Live shiners floated under a bobber have produced many fish, but 1/8-ounce white jigs have taken the largest. The best times to target whites and hybrids is in the late evenings while the turbines are turning. Large stripers in the 20-pound range have been spotted chasing trout, but no schooling has occurred. This will take place next month and August.
Diamond Head Marina said the water conditions are normal. A few panfish have been caught on nightcrawlers.
Lake Hinkle: Bill’s Bait Shop (479-637-4719) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on crickets. Crappie are good on minnows. Bass are biting well on H and H spinnerbaits. Catfishing is good around the dam on shiners.
Lake Atkins: Lucky Landing (479-641-7615) said water conditions are normal. Bream are biting well on worms and crickets. Crappie are on minnows and jigs. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and crankbaits. Catfishing is good on worms and liver.
Arkansas River (Pine Bluff): River City Sporting Goods (870-534-8303) said the water is muddy and high. Bream are excellent on crickets and wax worms. Crappie are fair on minnows. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and lizards. Catfishing is good on cut shad, stink bait and worms.
White River: Triangle Sports (870-793-7122) said the water is murky and high. Paddlefish are being caught snagging around the dam.
Maddox Bay: Maddox Bay Landing (870-462-8317) said the water is stained and a little high. A few bream have been caught on worms and crickets. Crappie are fair on yoyos with minnows.
Bear Creek Lake: Arkansas Outdoors (870-295-4240) said the water is murky and high. All species are slow right now.
Horseshoe Lake: Local angler Clyde Gregory said the water conditions are normal. Crappie are biting well around piers on minnows and black or chartreuse jigs. Catfishing is good on stink bait and cut bait.
Island 40 Chute: Daily’s Boat Dock (870-739-3478) said the water is high. Catfish are the best thing going on any bait.