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Weekly Fishing Report Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Keith Stephens (501) 223-6342, e-mail: kastephens@agfc.state.ar.us This is the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission's fishing report for Sept. 17, 2003.

Fishing Tip: During the summer and early fall, some of the best times to fish are prior to cold fronts. The fish know well in advance that a storm is moving in so they go into a feeding frenzy.

CENTRAL ARKANSAS: Lake Conway: Bates Field and Stream said bream fishing is fair using crickets. Crappie fishing is picking up in the creek channels using minnows or jigs. Bass are hitting plastic worms. Catfishing is excellent using nightcrawlers or crappie jigs.

Little Red River: Lindsey's Rainbow Resort said the Corps of Engineers is only running one generator for about one hour in the afternoon. Fishing is good using nightcrawlers, wax worms, marshmallows or chartreuse Power Bait. Fly fishing is best with San Juan Worms, Egg Patterns or sow bugs. The best artificial baits are the Roostertail or the Bouyant Spoon.

Greers Ferry: Shiloh Marina said crappie are 30 feet deep by the creek channels and hitting minnows. When whites and hybrids are schooling on top they are hitting 2 inch white grubs, Hog Sticks or Boy Howdies and when they go deep they seem to prefer jigging spoons or minnows. Black bass are schooling and going to shallow water around the edge of the treelines off the main lake and creek channels. Catfish are being caught five to 15 feet deep on jugs baited with cut bait. Walleye are 15 to 20 feet deep being caught bouncing nightcrawlers off the bottom.

Harris Brake Lake: Coffee Creek Landing said bream fishing is very slow. Crappie fishing is good using minnows along the shoreline and off the docks. Bass are hitting spinner baits and spoons around the piers. Catfish are being caught with nightcrawlers off the banks.

Lake Overcup: Lakeview Landing said bream fishing is fair with crickets. Crappie are hitting minnows or white, chartreuse/red/white or salt and pepper jigs. Bass fishing is good using pink minnows. Catfish are hitting Catfish Charley and dog food.

Cadron Creek: Wooster Grocery said crappie are good and hitting minnows.

Beaverfork Lake: Wooster Grocery said crappie fishing is picking up using minnows. Bream fishing is fair with worms or crickets.

Brewer Lake: Overcup Landing said crappie fishing is still good around brush tops using small minnows and jigs. Bass are hitting flukes and pig and jig. Bream are hitting crickets and red worms. Catfishing is slow. Wooster Grocery said crappie are hitting minnows.

Toad Suck Lock and Dam: Bates Field and Stream said catfishing is fair with large minnows or cut shad.

Little Maumelle River: River Valley Bait said the river level is normal and the clarity is good. Bream and redear are hitting worms and red Poppers. Crappie fishing is beginning to pick up using minnows or jigs. Bass are hitting spinner baits or minnows. Catfish are still hitting anything.

Lake Cargile: Beeson's Grocery said bass fishing and catfishing are both good.

Lake Maumelle: Jolly Roger's Marina said black bass activity is fair to good from the weeds to 20 feet deep using crank baits and Shad Raps early, worms and jigs during the day and plastic Zoom worms and lizards and spinner baits after dark. Kentucky bass fishing has improved some using small jigs and worms 10 to 20 feet deep around structure. White bass fishing is still good in front of the marina, across and behind Big Island and east towards the dam from sunrise to about eight A.M. and from six P.M. until dark on black and white H & H spinners, CC Spoons and Near Nuthin's right on the surface. Catfishing is good using large minnows and prepared baits in the deeper water. Bream fishing is excellent with crickets.

Arkansas River: Charley's Hidden Harbor near Oppelo said white bass are schooling early and late and are hitting clear or blue Tiny Torpedoes or spooks when they are on top and bucktail spoons and Little Georges when they are down on the jetty tips. Whites have also been caught below the dam. Catfishing is good drifting in the channels with strips of skip jack. Bass fishing is good early using a jitterbug or buzz bait near a bank where there is grass. Later, move to inside of the jetty with white or chartreuse spinner baits. At mid-day, work the ends of the jetties with a shallow diving crank bait or jigging spoons. Bream are three to five feet deep hitting black Roostertails. Crappie are suspended over structure in eight to 15 feet of water and are hitting minnows.

NORTH ARKANSAS:

White River: Gaston's White River Resort said the river level is staying low and fishing is excellent. The best baits are the yellow and white Power Eggs, wax worms and corn. Fly fishermen are having the best luck using sow bugs, olive green Woolly Buggers or soft Hackle. The best artificial baits are #0 Comet, Aglia Gold Little Leaf Blade or the Black Fury Mepps.

North Fork River: Fly-fishing guide John Gulley said the river is low for about half the day. Fly fishermen are catching a lot of fish using gray or olive Midge patterns in size 18 to 26 and Woolly Buggers size eight to 12 in the morning and Sow Bugs and size 14 to 18 Scuds later in the day. The best lures for spin fishing on the low water are spinner baits, some spoons and olive, brown or white jigs. The best bait for the bait fishermen has been nightcrawlers, crawdad tails, corn and Power Bait.

Bull Shoals Lake: Lead Hill Boat Dock, Inc. said bream fishing is good using worms. Crappie fishing is good 20 to 25 feet deep with minnows. Kentucky bass are 20 to 25 feet deep around the rocky points hitting crawdads. Walleye are hitting Flea Flies and spoons. Catfish are hitting worms. Wilderness Trail said the lake level is at 649.24 feet, the water temperature is 78 to 80 degrees and the thermocline is still at 36 feet. Largemouth bass are on the move. You can find them from six feet deep at the back of the creeks to chasing shad on top water over the main lake channel. Spinner baits and buzz baits are working in the shallows and Zara Spooks, Spit'n Image Jr.'s and Chug Bugs are triggering the shad feeders. During the day switch to Carolina rigs with lizards or finesse worms in green pumpkin, watermelon red and watermelon colors. Smallmouth bass are up on the main lake points and in the creeks, they are holding on pea rock flats. The jig bite and tube bite is just starting to pick up as the smallies move in to feed on crawdads. Mojo and Carolina rigs are also catching some big smallies, tipped with brush hogs or finesse worms. Kentucky bass are traveling in schools on the main lake in search of shad. Main lake points and secondary points in the cuts or pockets are holding areas while they wait for the shad to move to the banks. Some Kentuckys will push shad up in the mornings. Pop R's and Zara Spook Jr.'s work well on the frenzy feeders. The Kentuckys under the shad will strike white or silver spoons and four-inch finesse worms on a drop shot rig. Walleye are also on the move toward creek points and feeding flats both in the creeks and on the main lake. They are in 30 to 40 feet of water holding over brush, trees, rock humps and balls of shad. Long liners are doing well on Reef Runners and Bill Norman DD22's in the 40 feet range and nightcrawler harnesses in the 30 feet depths. Vertical spooning is also paying off on walleye that are positioned on some sort of bottom structure. White, silver, gray and gold colors are all triggering some nice action. The best weights to use are to one ounce. Night fishing is pretty good for bass and walleye. Bass are foraging for crawdads and are striking Spider Jigs, tube baits and eight to 10 worms along chunk rock points and around brush piles. Walleye are feeding on pea rock flats and in areas where you have transition changes on the bank. The best baits are Rogues or split shot nightcrawler rigs.

Lake Norfork: Cranfield Junction Quik Stop said crappie are about 10 feet deep suspended above brush piles and are hitting minnows. Stripers are hitting spoons and live shad long lining. Bass are hitting spoons. A seven pound, 10 ounce largemouth, a four pound, five ounce smallmouth and a 3.85-pound Kentucky bass were all caught during a tournament held here on Sept. 6. Catfishing is good with rod and reel baited with nightcrawlers. Walleye are moving and a few are being picked up with spoons.

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS

Beaver Lake: Southtown Sporting Goods said crappie and a few white bass are being caught trolling with Hot'n Tots. White and black bass are being caught drop shotting fairly deep with tiny brush hogs or small finesse worms during the daytime. Bass are being caught on rocky points and bluff ends with vertical jigging spoons or heavy jigs.

Lake Fayetteville: Lake Fayetteville Boat Dock said the water temperature is 74 to 75 degrees. Bream fishing is fair using crickets. Crappie are being caught fishing five to seven feet deep in 12 feet of water with minnows. Bass are hitting assorted lures. Catfish are being caught using chicken liver or nightcrawlers.

Lake Sequoyah: Lake Sequoyah Boat Dock said bream fishing is good using worms or crickets. Crappie fishing is slow with a few being caught on minnows or jigs. White bass are starting to school and are hitting Roadrunners and Crappie Tots. Bass fishing is good with spinner baits, crank baits or buzz baits. Catfishing is slow using chicken liver or goldfish.

Beaver Tailwaters: Beaver Dam Store says stripers are hitting live shad from Point 5 to Point 8. A few anglers are reporting good action jigging with two or three-ounce slab-type chrome finished jigging spoons. Honey Creek is also reported to be holding some decent stripers as well. Crappie fishing reports have also been good using 1/32 ounce white jigs or small minnows fished about eight to 12 feet deep around cedar tops or boat docks. Black bass are hitting topwater lures in the early morning. Five to seven inch plastic worms in grape, black or red shad are also working well. Trout fishing is good at Bertrand access ramp, Spider Creek and Parker's Bend using micro jigs in olive, brown or ginger with or without a wax worm tipped on the hook about two feet deep on two pound test line. Colorado spoons and Countdowns in gold and black are working very well when the generators are running. Fly fishermen are having tremendous luck using size 14 to 16 soft hackled wet flies, Partridge and Pheasant or Partridge and Yellow fished just under the surface film. Grasshopper patterns are good on the warm afternoons before water releases; size eight to 12 in a Joe's Hopper; Bead Head Olive Hare's Ear nymphs, size 14 to 16 are doing the job fished on the bottom; Tan Elk Hair Caddis, size 16 is just right for dry fly action.

NORTHEAST ARKANSAS

White River: Local fisherman Jeff Moore said the White River at Batesville is at seven feet and clear. Trout fishing in the Guion area continues to be fair. Trout are being caught drift fishing with spinners tipped with corn, Power Eggs and worms. Anchor fishing with Power Eggs and corn is working when the river flow permits. Bass fishing on the White River continues to be fair. Largemouth can be found in and around the river grass, as well as, any brush or log pile. Largemouth are hitting top water lures in the morning until noon with crank baits, Sinkos and Texas rigged worms, and Gitzits being good baits for the grass. Smallmouth can be found in the shoals and around rocks and boulders. Smallmouth are being caught on Gitzits, Hula Grubs and small crawdad crank baits. Crappie and bream continue to be fair on crickets, worms and fathead minnows in the creeks and eddies along the river. Below Lock #1 white bass, walleye, and sauger continue to be caught in the eddies. Small jig and minnow combinations are highly effective for catching fish below Lock #1. Kentucky bass are being caught on high banks with Gitzits, especially if there is any rock present.

Lake Charles: Powhatan Landing said crappie fishing is good using minnows. Catfish are being caught using rod and reel baited with large minnows, rice slicks or goldfish.

Black River: Powhatan Landing said catfishing is good.

Spring River: Many Islands Camp said the river is floatable and the fishing is good. The best baits are nightcrawlers and bright orange Power Bait.

Strawberry River: Fish and Game Guaranteed Guide Service said the river is in excellent shape for floating. Smallmouth , largemouth and Kentucky bass are being caught using Flukes, Clown Rapalas and Senkos. Fish the current breaks around logs and boulders at the upper and lower end of the big eddies.

SOUTHEAST ARKANSAS

Lake Enterprise: Fred's Sport Shop said a few crappie are being caught with jigs. Bass are hitting floating worms. Catfishing is good running the streams with nightcrawlers.

Lake Chicot: Koenig's Bass Tracker Marine said bass fishing is still good using topwater baits. Catfish are hitting liver.

Grand Lake: Koenig's Bass Tracker Marine said catfish are hitting limb lines baited with worms or liver. Crappie are being caught trolling minnows or jigs.

Mississippi River: Koenig's Bass Tracker Marine said catfishing is good using worms or liver.

SOUTHWEST ARKANSAS

Millwood Lake: Millwood Lake Guide Service said the water temperature is 79 to 84 degrees, the lake level is at 259.47 feet and the water clarity is stained. Schooling black bass and white bass are excellent on chrome/black Cordell Crazy Shads, clear baby Torpedoes, silver Cordell spoons, chrome/black Chug Bugs or Zara Spooks early and late along the river and in the oxbows. Once the schooling bass subside, use you electronics, set to manual, with high sensitivity settings, to locate the huge schools of shad usually between six and 10 feet deep. They are hitting the chrome Cordell Big O or ounce Rat-L-Trap in chrome and blue, white or chrome and black. A Carolina rig or Southern Pro Fatbutt Tube in apple seed or pumpkin and chartreuse are still working in the deeper water in the river next to cuts and where the creek dumps into the Little River. Black and blue or pumpkinseed colored jigs with Gene Larew Hawg craw trailers or black and chartreuse or blue fleck 10 inch Berkley Power worms are working very well around cypress trees eight to nine feet deep. Blue cats are still being caught on trotlines, eight to 10 feet deep, along the river in current and on yoyos under cypress trees using catalpa worms, chicken liver or blood meal mixes.

Lake Columbia: Steve's Marine said crappie are hitting shiners and jigs at night. Bream are hitting red wigglers. Catfish are hitting goldfish.

Lake Erling: Steve's Marine said bream are hitting red wigglers. Crappie are hitting shiners and jigs. Catfishing is good using goldfish.

White Oak Lake: Charlie's One Stop said bream fishing is good using crickets. Crappie are hitting crickets and minnows. Bass are hitting spinner baits.

Lake Greeson: Lakeside Grocery, Motel/Bait Shop said the lake level is still dropping. Bass are starting to break in the early morning and late afternoon. A few bass are being caught at night using spinner baits and plastic worms. Catfish are being caught using nightcrawlers near the Little Missouri River.

DeGray Lake: DeGray State Park Marina said crappie are 18 feet deep around the outside edge of the moss and hitting minnows. Hybrids and white bass are schooling in the early mornings and late afternoons and are hitting Zara Spook Jr.'s, Roostertails and spoons. Largemouth bass are hitting flukes, worms and buzz baits around the banks in shallow water in the early mornings and late afternoons. Catfish are being caught using nightcrawlers, blood bait or stink bait in seven to 18 feet of water off humps or points.

Little Missouri River: Fly-fishing guide Jeff Guerin said the early morning water is quite cool, upper 50's, and pretty slick. Fish have been rising, but without the wind they were very picky. Griffith's Gnats are working well about 9 a.m. The Trough and Copperhead Crossing have been good spots when the first breeze comes down the river. Fishing is very consistent when the wind blows in the Catch and Release Area. Unlike last Saturday, when there were scads of fish in the Chute, there was barely a sign of a fish there this week. Plenty of fish can be found just downstream at the little bedrock drop-off.

WEST-CENTRAL ARKANSAS

Lake Dardanelle: Early Bird Outfitters said crappie are four to six feet deep and hitting minnows or jigs. Black bass are in the grass hitting white spinner baits, soft baits, jigs or swimming jigs. White bass are schooling in the middle of the lake hitting topwater baits. When they go down they are hitting spoons and white bucktails. Bream fishing is fair to good using crickets. Catfishing is excellent using stink bait, minnows or shad.

Ozark Pool: Lakeside Food Mart said bream fishing is fair with worms or crickets. Crappie fishing is picking up using minnows or trolling with crank baits. Black bass are hitting crank baits, plastic worms or spinner baits. Stripers are being caught below the generators with spoons or chrome or silver Zara Spooks. Catfish are hitting cut baits and minnows.

Lake Ouachita: Mountain Harbor Resort said largemouth bass fishing is slow to fair on main lake points outside edge of the moss-line with chrome, bone and clear/blue Boy Howdies and Zara Spooks, red bug, plum, grape and bloodline colored lizards and u-tail worms. Walleye fishing is slow with deep diving silver and black rogues on moss humps 20 to 30 feet deep. Striper fishing is slow. Bream fishing is excellent in the coves and main lake points 8 to 25 feet deep with crickets or worms. Crappie fishing is slow. Catfishing is good on trotlines and jugs baited with nightcrawlers, stink bait, live minnows and bacon. Water temperature is 85 to 89 degrees and the lake level is 576.04 and clear.

Lake Catherine: Dozhier's Bait Shop and Rainbow Landing said stripers, hybrids and some white bass are being taken around Thunderbird Beach and out from Camp Tanako using spoons, top waters and Flukes worked just under the surface. These fish are schooling and breaking fish can be spotted working it he dead timber along the shoreline. Bass are hitting Carolina rigged lizards and worms, spinner baits and deep running crank baits, with most of the action from Diamondhead launch ramp east to the state park. Bream are hitting crickets fished 10 to 12 feet deep off the rocky cliffs across from the sand bar. Walleye are holding in the area of Twin Creeks and going for silver spoons. Catfish are hitting dead shad and live shiners fished 10 to 12 feet deep.

Lake Hamilton: Dozhier's Bait Shop and Rainbow Landing said bass are going for spinner baits and Carolina rigged lizards with most of the action out of the main channel and in the larger coves and bays. Hot Springs Creek is reporting some fair action. Bream are deep and hitting crickets and red worms. A few crappie are starting to come in with the cooler nights. The fish are reported to be holding in 20 feet of water and going for small shiners. Catfish are starting to become active and are hitting night crawlers and live shiners fished 10 to 12 feet deep.

Lake Hinkle: Bill's Bait Shop said bream and redear fishing is good using worms. Crappie fishing is good with minnows. Bass are hitting topwater baits, plastic worms and minnows. Catfishing is fair.

Lake Wilhelmina: Rocky Store said bass are hitting minnows and black shad worms. Catfishing is good on nightcrawlers and chicken liver. Perch are hitting crickets.

EAST ARKANSAS:

Maddox Bay: Maddox Bay Landing said bream fishing is fair. Crappie fishing is picking up using minnows around the tops. Bass fishing is good with buzz baits or plastic worms. Catfishing is good using stink bait.

Midway Lake: Ed's Boat Camp said bream fishing is good using wax worms or red worms. Crappie fishing is fair to good around the cypress trees or in four to five feet of water using minnows. Bass fishing is good around buck weed or the piers using topwater baits. Catfishing is good on trotlines baited with minnows.

Bear Creek Lake: Six Rivers Bait Shop said bream fishing is good with worms or crickets. Crappie fishing is fair using minnows.

Johnson Lake: Six Rivers Bait Shop said crappie fishing is excellent using minnows.

Long Lake: Six Rivers Bait Shop said crappie fishing is very good with minnows.

Cow Bayou: Six Rivers Bait Shop said crappie fishing is very good using minnows.

Mississippi River: Six Rivers Bait Shop said catfishing is good using cut bait or rice slicks on trotlines and worms on rod and reel.

Lower St. Francis River: Six Rivers Bait Shop said catfishing is good using rice slicks or cut bait on trotlines or worms on rod and reel.

Horseshoe Lake: Local fishermen Clyde Gregory said bream are hitting worms and crickets in the cypress trees. Crappie fishing is good in the cypress trees or around the lily pads using minnows. Catfishing is good in the cypress trees with rice slicks.

 

 

 

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