The lake level is now 555.55 and they have cut down generation a lot. Guess they think the lake does not need to drop any farther. I disagree. The so called seasonal levels need to be reviewed or completely gone. Where did they come from anyway? They used to draw the lake down in the winter and prepare for the spring rains. Now they do not. How is that working out for them? Makes them look incompetent when they get tricked every year. The answer is "that is what the dams are for, to hold water". My answer is "hold the water at a lower level". I went out in the middle of the day and caught bass continuously for about two hours. I probably caught 25-30 fish on my grub and about 4-5 were keepers. I do not keep them anyway. It was fun. Many, many small fish are everywhere. Some crappie in the 10-11 inch range are being caught on brush but the schools are small. I do not know if they are roaming or just being caught out. I caught a 4-lb. channel cat on the grub and it was my largest fish.
Lake level is 555.71 and is dropping about 2-inches a day with limited continuous generation. Surface temperature is still near 80 and the main lake seems to be clearing a bit. I went out for about 1-1/2 hours and caught 6-crappie, two bluegill and two bass. No big fish. There are a lot of baitfish and undersized fish out there. It is to get cooler later this week. We are very dry. Newport is at 8-feet and they could be generating more. I would like to see some surge capacity. This is a good level for fishing though. Be carefull cutting points as debris is hung up on shallow main lake points where it has not been before from the high water. We are getting to have a lot of gar in this lake. You can drive or walk to the lake 1/3 mile, launch your boat, park and step on the dock with your free boat stall and still only pay $53/day. Why pay more?
One of srveral caught on the Bink's spoon this morning. Things are picking up.
Crappie are not big but are keepers. Released them anyway.
Mike Eakle caught most of the fish but i cannot drive his camera.
The lake level is 556.45 and is back to normal. There is no surge capacity for a big rain. Lake is still stained with the constant drop but is a good color for fishing. People are catching fish in Blackburns area of the lake but not a lot of big ones. Crappie are running from 9-11 inches and stripers are small and skinny. Walleye a numerous but many are short. You have to catch 5 or 6 to get a keeper. Small stripers are around the island and white bass are in Blackburns creek. Blackburns brush piles are all holding some crappie and bluegill. Fishing is getting better. Water temperature was 82 last evening. There are lots of small bass. The total fish population is excellent.
It may be the first day of fall but you would never know it here. Highs to be near 90 for the next few days. The lake is still dropping and finally broke 557 and is now 556.95 with both generators running at about 1/2 speed. I will not try to lure you here with reports of great fishing. A lot of small bass are being caught and a few crappie. Walleye fishing is fair on main lake brush at less than 30-feet near the bottom on a spoon. The striper class of 7-8 pounds seems to be the worst hit by the fish kill. It will leave a hole in the year they are susposed to be big. Many people were catching that size before the kill and now several hundred of them are gone at least. All other speces will do well with all of the cover after the flood and a low mortality rate. Scuba divers got very few with the reduced visibility and not nearly as many were caught in May and June as normal. Several small walleye were also floating in the dam area but none around here. The oxygen comes in with the river flow and the conditions get better the closer to the mouth of the river you get and it takes a long time to get to the dam. The flow caused by the generation is helping. This is about as poor fishing as I have seen the last part of September and it will not get better when the lake starts to turn in October. I bet I will be catching a lot of fish in November especially about Thanksgiving time unless something drastic happens. There are a lot of bait fish in the creeks and the small bass are feeding on them big time. You can catch some good fish if you know what you are doing but there will be a lot of smaller ones in between. The lake is perfect for boating and swimming. Learn how to spoon brushpiles for best results or cast or drift a tipped grub over them. Tom Kelly caught some good crappie and bluegill yesterday and put them in the pond. No big ones yet and not high numbers. 13-1/2 is the biggest one I have caught this summer and not very many of them. Mostly 9-11 inches. They are there though. Blackburns has several good fishermen in this week and we will see. The pool is open and the price is $53/day for a one bedroom cabin.
It rained hard for just a few minutes and then sprinkled later. We received over 1/2 inch of badly needed rain and it really greened things up. I went out in between and found the crappie in brush at 28-feet 8-feet down. Caught smaller bass, big bluegill and 10-crappie from 10-12 inches. No big ones yet. All went in the pond. I like catching those crappie. Lake level is now 557.79 and continues to drop 3-inches a day. Surface temperature continues to hang around 80-degrees and is good for swimming and boating. looks to be a good fall so far. $53/day for a cabin with a free normal sized boat stall. Please get your fishing licenses on line at Arkansas Game and fish website. It is pretty easy. We no longer sell them here. We sold them for over 20-years but were unable to cut through the government red tape to continue with their new program. It compares to the new boat registration rules. Come on down. It is still summer here. Pool is open.
Lake level is 558 and still dropping about 3-inches/day with both generators running about 1/2 speed. They need to get rid of seasonal pool levels and get politics out of dam management. I think they would keep Newport at 12 feet no matter what. They now use the flood gates as management tools even though the water is wasted and cost millions of dollars. Common sense needs to prevail. The old idea that the dams were for flood control first and recreation last went out the window with the incorporation of the worthless minimum flow law for the put and take trout. Everything is back to normal now after taking almost 5-months even though we have been in very dry conditions. You can drive or walk to the dock and step on. Glad to have parking lot and launch back. I caught 10 keeper crappie and three nice bass yesterday afternoon in about two hours. All went into the trophy pond. The lake surface temperature is 79-80 and the ambient tempereature is to be near 90 for the next several days. Our pool is open and our prices are low. Come on down. We are open all year and November fishing is some of the best. Blackburns is your fall foliage headquarters for Norfork Lake, Mountain Home and the Ozark Mountain Region.
Caught This Morning On a Bink's Jigging Spoon
Good fishing today. Caught limit of crappie, giant smallmouth bass and a nice catfish. All went in the pond. Level is 558.91 and dropping about 3-inches a day and the surface temperature is just above 80. Visibility is stained and brush piles are getting good. Lake is about 6-ft. higher than I would like it but is in good shape for fishing. I like a surge capacity in case of a big rain. Normal, what ever that is, is about 552 before they started messing with the numbers. Pool is open and we are on our winter rates here. $53/day for a one bedroom.
Lake level is 559.45 and continues to drop. We just got a few sprinles of rain and it is very dry. I went out for a couple of hours yesterday and the fish were biting. Caught catfish on the trot line, smallmouth bass in the buckbrush and crappie and bluegill in my brush piles. I limited out on crappie with the largest about 12-inches. Put some in the pond and give the rest to a friend. I have not killed a fish this year and have none in the freezer. The stripers in this area are skinny. At least they are not dying. The crappie are very healthy. A 13-1/2 inch one was caught by a new customer yesterday. If you are staying at a place where you are nearly the only customer you are paying too much and maybe in a duplex with no covered porch and also paying for boat stall. Drive on in here on your way home and check us out. You will not be disappointed. Our new wireless internet system is working well. It is 150 MB and costs $200/month and the customers really like it. They are streaming, whatever that is. The pool is still open. You will need it this weekend.90+ degrees. 870-492-5115 Lake is still stained and the visibility seems to change daily with no ryme or reason. Try that 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon in brush at 25-30 feet. I caught the crappie 8-ft. down. 1-bedroom cabins are $53/day.
Mike Eakle with a nice flathead for the pond.
Lake level is 560 and things are in good condition with beaches , launches, parking and day use areas in play. Very late though. Should have been done sooner. I think they would regulate Newport to 12 feet if the world came to an end. Dam management rules should be reviewed and changed. Brush piles are getting to be at a good level now and some fish are moving to them. Many small white bass are chasing shad in the creeks. The shad are small too. We are getting very dry here and need rain bad. Surface temperature is about 80 degrees but may rise a bit with ambient temperatures to hit 90 this weekend. Should be a good week for boating. Flatheads are starting to show up on jugs and trotlines on live bait part way back in the creeks. Bass are moving to the banks early and late . Smaller ones are being caught during the day. There are many walleye with most being undersized.
Lake level is 560.94 and dropping with both generators running about 1/2 speed. The lake is still stained but good for fishing. Fishing has not been the best lately but some good ones are being brought in. If you want stripers go to the dam with a net early in the morning. Big walleye often go downstream and deep until there is no oxygen just like the stripers and hang out with them. I caught a 10-lb. walleye in 90-ft. of water on a Bink's spoon a few years ago during the last fish kill. I really am sorry to lose these big fish. Hard telling how many sank instead of floating. Deep walleye and stripers are easily caught on a spoon in the hottest part of the summer but the organic material in the lake ate up all of the ozygen this year from the flood and killed them. When I went out yesterday the surface temperature was 81 degrees and the thermocline is at 28-feet. You can find it with a fish and temp or camera with temperature on it. The camera also shows you the visibility. Water clarity can be deceptive from the way it looks from the surface. I have had people report clear water and found no visibility 10-15 foot down and there is always a mud line just before the thermocline. Fish are often in or close to it. You can also go scuba diving and feel when the water starts to get cold. I have been diving for many years and rarely find the thermocline below 30-feet and never below 32. This happens when the surface temperature gets 90 or above. It has not done that this year. It should not drop anymore this season. I went to the place where I have been catching walleye for several weeks and they were gone. I did catch some good bass there though. White bass and hybrids are back in the creeks but many are small. Schools of shad are plentiful. I spooned a brush pile at 26-30 ft. and only caught small fish. There are lots of stripers about 6-inches long in Blackburns Resort creek area. Must be from this spring's stockings. The weather has been beautiful and our pool is open. Several guests are taking advantage of Blackburn's low prices. We will not charge you too much. A free boat stall comes with each cabin. Call 870-492-5115
Caught this Morning on a Bink's jigging spoon.
Lake level is 562.16 and dropping. We are getting dry again here. Last summer holiday is about over and day services on the lake are coming into play along with some campgrounds. Took since last of April to get the level down to manageable. People really missed the swimming areas this year but were able to go out on pontoons and swim off them. There are a lot of fish in this area of the lake at 22-26 feet and some brush piles are getting to be at the right depth. A am very sad about the striper kill down by the dam but have not seen any here. There are a lot of small walleye dying there also. Hard to tell how many sank to the bottom rather than floating. Dissolved oxygen is best the closer you get to where the river flows into the lake. It is about time to start catching some big flatheads. Starting today Blackburns has dropped their rates to $53/day for a one bedroom cabin along with a free boat stall. Up to 4-bedrooms are priced accordingly. Others charge from $80-to over $100 and charge for boat stalls and trolling motors on pontoon rentals and have no covered porches. You can save $ towards the rising gas prices. The weather is to get cooler for the next week and fishing will get better. Call 870-492-5115 We will not charge you too much and are open all year.
Catfish Too. All Released.
Nice walleye Dennis Byrd
Ed Smith with a nice walleye caught this morning. Ed is from Arizona. Released this and several more.