Steve "Scuba" Street's BLOG

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Norfork Lake Arkansas near Mountain Home in the Ozark Mountains Region Fishing Report and Lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental.

Mike Eakle with some good ones on the spoon.Image title

The lake level is 553.38 and has risen just a bit with absolutely no generation for the last 24-hours. We are now in December and still no sign of dropping the lake for the winter. It was sunny and warm with a high in the high 60's with no wind when I went out yesterday afternoon. I was targeting crappie on Blackburns brush piles and enjoying the warmth and being able to stay on the brush easily with no wind and getting plenty of vitamin D. I was using a Bobby Garland blue Ice jig on a 1/16th ounce white with red eye jig head and jigging straight up and down right in the brush near the bottom. The fishing was not fast and furious and nothing hammered or slammed anything or was in a feeding frenzy but several nice fish were caught until just before dark. There were no giant ones but most were in the 11-12 inch range with no short ones. More fish of other species were expected but only one small bass and one bluegill were caught. No Kentucky bass like I have been catching other days. The water had stained a bit with a lot of moss floating near the shore or attached to rocks and the brown cedar pollen was floating everywhere. You could see your lure down only about 3-4 feet even in the bright sunshine. The very low generation rate is not washing much away downstream and there is quite a bit in the windblown cuts. The surface water was 60 and then dropped to 59 after sunset. It has not changed much in several weeks Even if it gets warm it will not change much with the short days and cool nights.  I cannot report on other species now as I did not catch any yesterday. Things change almost daily this time of year with the cold fronts and a week old fishing report is no good. You have to be out there everyday. Fishing overall is just fair but the lake is in good overall condition and at a good level. Those striper fishermen better quit killing those small stripers or we will be another Lake Texoma with small fish and our fish are Marine Species and do not spawn here like they do in the Red River. I guess they will just keep hunting them down and killing them until they are all gone except the small ones which are stocked to the tune of well over a hundred thousand a year. I would like to see the limit lowered until the fish make a comeback if they do. I want to see it the way it was several years ago when people bragged about a 40-lb fish not an 8-pound one. The Game and Fish introduced a North Carolina strain of stripers in Norfork this summer in hopes they will not die off like the ones in the last several years. If this does not work I suspect they will stock more hybrid stripers and less ocean stripers. They will not find this out if people kill all of them off before they have a chance to grow. The results will take several years to analyze. Me, I will stick to crappie, walleye, bass, bluegill and catfish until this gets straightened out and quit fishing deep. Old habits are hard to die. 

Norfork Lake Arkansas near Mountain Home in the Ozarks Mountains Region fishing report and lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental.

Craig DeHoet with some nice ones.Image title

The lake level is 553.35 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday with about two hours of running one generator. They have now dropped the White River a Newport to a little over 2-feet and are letting it almost dry up in order to keep from dropping the lake for the winter. If they have a plan is is greatly disguised. I suspect they want to hold it up all winter and then when the spring rains come hold and hope again, blame it on the rain and say that is what the dams are for when it gets high. That is getting old. It was a beautiful day again yesterday when I went out in the afternoon. The other resort fishermen mostly went out in the morning and caught some nice fish including bass, crappie and walleye. I caught my self imposed limit of five crappie, a few very large bluegill and then went bass fishing and caught some nice Kentucky Bass just off the bank in about 12-ft. of water. The fish again started biting well at about 4:PM and quit just before dark at about 5:PM. It was slow before that. Right at sunset is the best time for me. We are to get warm weather with highs in the 60's to early 70's for at least the next 5-days with sunny skies and I like that. It was in the high 50's yesterday and the water temperature remained at about 59 degrees and it looked like it stained up at little but not much. When I came in there were huge bass, crappie and bluegill under my light on the dock. I feed them chicked feed pellets which sinks slowly and floating catfish food and they were swarming around it. It was fun to watch them. There were few boats out there in the evening but several in the morning. It was foggy this morning but it burned off just before 8AM. I have more plumbing to do today and then will hit it again this afternoon. There will be no price increases here at Blackburns this year and we remain the lowest priced major resort in the area but that has not stopped the improvements. Our repeat customers like that and we have a lot of them.You will like what you see when you get here and we will not charge you too much.      

Norfork Lake Arkansas near Mountain Home in the Ozarks Mountains Region Fishing Report and Lake Conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental.

The lake level is 553.32 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with 4-hours of running 1-1/2 generators. The White River at Newport is 2-1/2 feet and is about ready to dry up. It is good for wade fishing but not for boats. It is the same for Calico Rock. It was a beautiful day yesterday with an ambient temperature in the mid 50's and sunny with a south wind. I did see several boats out there between Cranfield Island and the campground in the middle of the lake striper fishing. There were a lot of bait fish out there but not very many fish. The ones that were caught were small and it was a shame to kill them but they just keep doing it. There are several in the 4-8 pound range but they are getting smaller and smaller with no time to grow. They are getting to be almost like the put and take trout in the river. Bink, Tom, Mike, Craig, James, John and Scuba Steve all caught fish but we were fishing for bass, crappie and bluegill. The water is clear and has cooled a bit but that will not continue for the next several days with warm weather scheduled. It does not matter to me what the weather is as long as the wind does not blow. I can dodge the rain. I keep trying to work the area between the brush and the bank in the evening for largemouth and smallmouth bass but am only catching Kentuckies. They are usually there by Thanksgiving but I am not finding them yet. The bait fish are there so it is just a matter of time. We put in a couple of trees under the dock and in front of it cut from my property and the fish are on them already. Blackburns has 28-acres and plenty of cedar trees which are the best ones. We also have the best resort, best prices and your first boat stall is frre with each cabin rented. We will help you catch fish.

Norfork Lake Arkansas Near Mountain Home in the Ozark Mountains Region fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental.

Two of the biggest crappie caught by Scuba Steve yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 553.40 and is down 1-inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running about 4-hours. The White River at Newport is 3+ feet and there is still no effort to drop the lake and we are headed for December. The lake surface water is hanging in there at about 60 degrees. A little lower early morning. The water is clear and you can see your lure down to about 5-6 feet when the sun is shining. I started out on a 30-ft. brush pile about 3:PM and it was windy from the south east. I started spooning near the bottom and caught three Kentucky bass and a bluegill in about an hour. No crappie. I could see them down there but no bites. I switched to a Bobby Garland baby shad and started fishing shallower. The crappie had moved up to about 9-10 ft. down and started to bite for about 30-minutes on the drop and then quit. The wind would slow for a couple of minutes and then gust up white caps again. My self imposed limit is five so I quit and came in. Usually I would work the bank at this time until dark but just came in instead. For the last several days the crappie had not been big (11-12 inches) but today they got bigger as the evening progressed until they quit. Shown above are two of the biggest ones. These are what I have been looking for. Bink reports that he is on the temperate bass of all kinds in a bay near his boat. He says large schools would pass under the boat and then when he would drop the spoon and catch one they would disappear again and he would move slowly with his trolling motor until he found them again and catch another one. They are not moving far. Some of the stripers are approaching 10-lbs but most are smaller. There is a distinct absence of large white bass. There are some but not nearly as many as a couple of years ago. He likes to catch them. I will stick to walleye, crappie, Kentucky Bass, Bluegill and catfish. He says he will start fishing for bass on creature baits soon when the water temperature gets to be about 57. We both have not been catching hardly any big largemouth but he assured me they are there and in good numbers. Smallmouth will start to show up also soon. Come on down to Blackburns and we will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. If you must pay more just stay here and give the difference to Disabled Veterans. They need it worse.   

Norfork Lake Arkansas near Mountain Home in the Ozark Mountains Region fishing report and lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service on his spoon. He was using the 1/2 ounce many-shad. Image title

The lake level is 553.48 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with two hours of running one generator in the evening. They just started running one last hour and there is no effort to drop the lake with the White River at Newport at 3+ feet when it should be at 12. The lake surface water temperature was just over 60 degrees and the water was clear on both the main lake and creeks when I went out yesterday. I went to a close Blackburns resort brush pile and caught several crappie in the 11-12 inch range, a few big bluegill,  and then switched to bass fishing at dusk and caught a few bass but they were just barely keepers and not worth a picture and were releasd immediately. I do not take pictures of small fish just to take one.  The results were the same as the day before with no changes. Bink is on the stripers and catching some pretty good ones everyday but not a lot. You have to know where and how. Fishing overall is just fair but crappie, bluegill, bass and stripers are the best bite. I am still catching a few walleye and catfish but not very big ones. Drop a spoon in 25-30 ft. brush near the bottom and you will be surprised what you will catch. Bink's stripers are in 45-50 ft. near the bottom part way back in a creek. I do not fish open water anymore but occassionally get into a school of mixed white bass and hybrids in the evening just outside brush piles on shad in 35-ft. of water on wind blown banks. Some crappie are coming up shallow in the late evening. I just bought 2-more king mattresses for cabins #12 and 14 yesterday from Furniture Depot. They are fine people and have the best selection in town and the best prices. We are still on our policy of continued improvement here at Blackburns without raising our prices. We are open all year and keep 5-6 cabins open and especially welcome Veterans and Police. We will help get you on fish and show you where our brush piles are. I wish more resorts would put them in. Fish habitat is important.   

Norfork Lake Arkansas fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 553.69 and is exactly the same as this time yesterday with 3-hours of running one generator. The surface water temperature was 62+ when I went out yesterday evening and the wind was blowing white caps from the south. I went into a north facing cut to get out of most of it and was using a Bobby Garland jig. The fish were biting slowly but steady with most being big bluegill and crappie. The crappie were not large but were all in the 11-inch range and the bluegill were as large as your hand. I ended up catching about 8-fish in an hour and 1/2 from 4-PM until dark. They quit biting just before dark. I took them to Tom Kelly's trophy pond and released them. It is now fully stocked with bass, crappie, bluegill, catfish and walleye for the winter. I always put in a bucket full of tuffies from Nabatak with the fish to feed them until spawn. Bink reports catching stripers everyday with the full moon in November being prime time for them. It is not easy with the reduced numbers but he knows where they are. Tom Kelly is catching some nice bass in Float creek and others catching crappie, bluegill and some channel cats. A few White Bass are with the stripers and hybrids. It is cloudy and warm today and I expect some nice fish to be brought in before the cold front comes through later. There is a good chance of rain this afternoon and night but not much total. November is historically the wettest month of the year here but we are more than 1/2 way through and not much yet. That could change with one rain. The lake is general is in excellent condition and the water is clear. You can see your lure down several feet in this area in both the creeks and main lake. Overall fishing is just fair but some nice fish are being caught every day but not high numbers. We continue to make improvements here at Blackburns but are are not increasing our prices. Some are. We do not want to charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake Condition and fishing report by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the spoon fishing with Bink's Guide service yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 553.61 and has risen 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with little generation. It is amazing how steady they can keep the level if they want to. Rules only seem to matter if they are trying to flood us out. It is a good level now though and I would like it to stay here all of the time. The lake is still turning over with the lake surface temperature dropping every day and is now 66-67 degrees in Blackburn's area. It is lower up river where the water is shallower. The wind is also dropping the surface temperature and stirring up the water. The visibility is worse in the creeks but they will also clear more quickly. The color has gone from stained green to just a darker color and bubbles are coming up in the shallower water. We are to get our first freeze in the middle of next week and the cold fronts just keep coming through bringing with them wind. It is to be nice today and tomorrow with highs in the 60's. Some White Bass abd Small Hybrids are schooled and have moved out in front of and around Mallard Point to the west. They always do this every year at this time but the schools are much smaller. The White Bass are decent size but there are not many of them. They will spawn in february and march and it is a shame to kill them as they are trying to make a comeback but some people need the meat. I saw no evidence of a fish kill this fall and I do not know if it was because the big fish are gone or most of the vegetation has already died with past floods and did not create a heavy oxygen demand. One thing for sure there was little effort to drop the lakes until the summer was over. I am still catching crappie, bass, bluegill and catfish on main lake points on brush but they are scattered and spread out all over the lake. No big schools. I have not caught a walleye in over a week and longer than that for a keeper.  The catfish are still on the same brush as the crappie but on the bottom. Let your spoon touch bottom and you will be surprised what you catch. It could be about anything. Fishing overall is just fair but you can catch some if you know where and how. Bink is out with some of Blackburns guests this morning and we will see how he does. I bet the red meat fish have slowed and he will be on something else. He takes about 100 guided trips out of Blackburns a year and the vast majority have a great time. I know I do when he takes me out to sharpen my fishing skills. It is usually this time of year but he has not called me yet. The fishing will get better as the lake cools and clears and that is coming soon. I would like to see a warm cloudy day with little wind but will take what I get. I went to the grocery store, filled my car up with gas and bought oil and a battery for a boat and cannot believe the price increases. They are big and everywhere except for Blackburns where you can get a one bedroom cabin for $59/day and a two bedroom for $77/day with three and four bedrooms priced accordingly. We will hold the prices as long as we can and your first boat stall is free. Stay at the best place and get the best price. Cannot beat that. November is shaping up for a good fishing month so far and is right on schedule. I really like smallmouth fishing and it is starting. Leave some of those white bass for spawn. No sense catching huge stringers of fish no matter what the legal limit is. I will miss Bob Knight. He was one good person and I did business with him for 27-years and listened to him on KTLO everyday. He had a vast amount of knowledge on many subjects.  

Norfork Lake Condition and Fishing Report by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

John Bornhop with a nice Hybrid.Image title

The lake level is 553.37 and has risen 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with less than 1/2 generator running for a few hours. Again, there is no effort to drop the lake. We have received over 2-inches of rain here at Blackburns since yesterday and it is still raining with no signs of stopping. The creeks are not running yet. It is cool and the wind is to pick up and get stiff again later today. These cold fronts and wind just keep coming through this time of year and that is why November is our rainiest month. It is getting a little early start this year after very dry weather this summer. The ground is getting saturated and if there is rain in the Norfork watershed in Missouri the lake will rise more quickly, especially if they refuse to generate. The surface water temperature is just under 70 degrees here on the main lake and it will start to turn over soon. The more quickly the ambient temperature drops the more quickly it will turn. The last few years it has been gradual but always seems to at least get started or even finished by the end of October. The water will clear after it finishes barring any big rains and the good fishing will begin. The full moon in November, which is the 19th, is typically a good time for striper fishing. It will be very interesting to see how this pans out this year. Last year the night bite for them feeding on the bank just at dark did not happen but it has many years in the past. This used to be a good time to catch the very large ones. I would go out on the shadowy banks in the evening and fish soft plastics for walleye and then switch to a stick bait as dark approached with good results. Things sure do change. The March night bite on the bank during spawn is not even happening much and it used to be the best time except for the top-water bite starting in April. I remember seeing acres of stripers, hybrids and white bass surfacing in April in Panther Creek in the mornings. Not so now. The best top-water bite now on Norfork is the bass with a few temperate bass mixed in.  I sure hope the stripers make a comeback and they would if they would not keep the water so high all summer and people would quit over-fishing and killing them.  I hope game and fish do not quit stocking them but they could. Walleye fishing is picking up nicely and there are a lot of fish just short of the 18-inch limit and should reach that length next year. It was cool and rainy when I went out yesterday and not much had changed. Fishing was fair with crappie, bluegill, catfish and Kentucky bass baing the best bite. I caught some for Tom Kelly's trophy pond, delivered them and went back to plumbing and moving in new furniture. We cannot wait for spring to make improvements here at Blackburns as the season gets very busy early in March and we are making a lot of them. We have installed kitchen cabinets, counter tops, air conditioners with heaters and many new mattresses, furniture and recliners. The people at Furniture  Depot are very nice, have high quality furniture, a good inventory and very good prices. I recommend them highly. We are trying very hard and are committed to holding the $59/day cabin rental price in the off-season but it is getting very difficult. Very difficult. We just do not want to charge our customers too much. You should just not do that to your friends. By the time most people fill up with gas and buy food there is just not much left and we want them to come here on vacation. We have been here for a long time and do not need much and spend almost all we make on improvements when we can get the stuff. Several resorts on Norfork are for sale but Blackburns is not. We want it to stay in the family for years to come and are proud of it.

Norfork Lake Fishing report and Lake Condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Scuba Steve with some of yesterday's catch. Image title

The lake level is 553.15 and has been within 1/2 inch of this level for nine days with one generator running for three hours. It would be nice if they would keep it stable in the spring for the spawn but fat chance of that. Hold and hope is the name and flood us out every year is the game. A lot could be done to prevent this if there was an effort and a reasonable plan. The lake surface water temperature was 73+ degrees when I went out yesterday and it was a bit windy as usual in the afternoon. It is calmer early before it warms and later in the evening after the heat of the day. The weather has been beautiful and the fishing is picking up a bit before the lake turn. We had divers in and they said the visibility was good in some places and poor in others. Poor mostly off mud banks and better off rocky ones. They found mostly crappie off brush and a few walleye but they were mostly short. No catfish. The theromocline was strill about 30-32 ft. with cold water lower than that. The lake turnover is almost always in October but the surface water temperature has to drop lower than the top of the thermocline for the layer to invert and we are not there yet. Crappie and bluegill fishing is the best now but trollers are catching some temperate bass as predicted but are dragging lures or live bait a long way to catch something. Some are near the bank at dark and before sunrise. Many species of fish are in open water on shad in the absence of numbers of large stripers competing for them.  If you are spooning brush in about 30-ft. of water it is hard to tell what you will catch. I am still catching small white bass accidently but very few larger ones. Blugill and crappie are on main lake brush with a few Kentucky bass. A few largemouth are on the bank but not many.  They are mostly in open water on shad and beating the bank is not producing much except smaller bass which are on minnows and fry just outside the dead buckbrush. It should get better for a few days before the turn if we do not get a big cold front. Bluegill like this full moon and they are biting and big ones too. It is nice to just be out there in the sunshine. Drop a small spoon in the brush and learn how to not get it hung up. Keep it straight up and down and do not drag it. If it is too windy change to a jig, go against the wind and use your trolling motor only as much as you need to to stay put. Turn off the spot lock. They wander around too much over the best areas. Crappie are easily spooked. If you cannot hold drift over the brush and use your trolling motor to go around and drift over again. Drop a marker buoy. If you see an unattended marker buoy just leave it alone. It belongs to someone and he will be back. Blackburns still especially welcomes Veterans and Police. You have a sanctuary and friends here.  

Norfork Lake Fishing Report and Lake Condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Image title

Don and Keith Katashuk with some nice ones.Image title

The lake level is 553.15 and has been the same for three days with very little generation. None today. The white River at Newport is 6-ft. The surface water temperature was back to 75 degrees this afternoon with an absolutely beautiful day. Sunny, light wind and 75 degrees. Blackburns had several fishermen out today and they did better than yesterday. Crappie and bluegill fishing is the best now followed by bass and catfish. Walleye have slowed down. Nothing is great but some are catching fish. The lake is in excellent condition for fishing and stained a little gree. More in the creeks. I though the Cystic boys would do a little better but 16-lbs is pretty goos for the middle of October. Better than the Phoenix last week. The lake is maintaining temperature so far and just dropping very slowly despite the very cool overnight lows. The sunshine helps. There should be no turnover before the Bass Cat next week and they should do well. Norfork is one busy lake. I caught some decent crappie and bluegill today with some throwback bass and it was nice out in the warm sunshine. Better than staying in the house and watching the kneelers with there political views on the back of their helmets. I miss baseball now that the Cardinals surrendered. The Dodgers were better anyway. Blackburns still has one bedroom open for Bass Cat. Call Debbie at 870-492-5115 before you pay more elsewhere. We have it all and at the best price. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.  Don and Keith Katashuk caught more fish than anybody here last week. Nice people. 

Norfork Lake Fishing Report and Lake Condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 553.14 and has risen just a bit with one generator running about 5-hours. The drought is over. We received a total od 3-1/2 inches of rain yesterday and so far today total and it is still raining. It was very dry and the creeks have not run yet but are about to. They are still holding the White River at Newport to 5+ feet and are evidently hoping the lake will get high again since they are doing nothing to stop it. Things sure have greened up and we have had enough. The cold front is following and the full moon is the 20th and it could make for some challenging fishing conditions for the Cystic Bass tournament tomorrow. It is to be sunny and cool. Those boys are up to the tough fishing conditions. I caught fish yesterday but no keeper bass. The fish were biting in the afternoon but it was very cloudy and I did not venture too far from the shed. Several very large bluegill, short bass, small white bass and a few crappie were caught. There is not much better fish to eat than a Norfork lake Bluegill and they are big. A thick slice of buttered bread, pepper and a slice of onion is all you need except for maybe a pale beverage. One sandwich is my limit (not).  It got black from the west just before 4PM and I came in about 5-minutes before it poured. They ask how I can do that almost every time and I do not carry a phone. I do not even know what an ap is. I have not moved into the 20th century yet and have no plans to do so.  We got an inch that time very quickly but not as fast as this morning. Fishermen went out again later and caught some fish before dark. The water surface temperature was 76 degrees even yesterday. We will see what the rain has done to it later. I could see my lure down 5-6 feet on the main lake and less in the creek.  Open water fishing is getting better and needed too. Overall fishing is just fair and is mostly feast or famine. Feast when you find some schooled fish and famine when you do not. Some are acting like they are loading the boat when in actuality are sometimes fishing for days to get some.  No report for days usually means no fish until they are finally found. It is not easy at this time and bass are moving out from the bank and brush to the open water on baitfish. It is good to see some white bass but there are not a lot. I wish there were more like it was. Big largemouth are scarce for me and crappie are getting about as bad. Red meat fish are starting to show up as predicted but I do not fish for them much. We will see how much the lake rises. I do not know how much rain was in the Norfork watershed in Missouri. Local rain does not raise the lake nearly as much. Things are a changin and we have not even had turnover yet. November looks good so far. The crappie that I am catching are deep near the bottom in over 30-ft. of water. Blackburns still has one cabin open for Bass Cat so call Debbie at 870-492-5115 before you have to pay much more someplace else. It will be fun to see the total fish caught tomorrow for the tournament and it is for a good cause. A very good cause. The lake is starting to rise more quickly now.

Norfork Lake Fishing report and Lake Conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide service yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 553.10 and is the same as it was at this time yesterday with 3-hours of one generator. They are doing a great job of holding the lake up as high as possible for as long as possible. That way if we get a big rain we will be nearly flooded again. For some unknown reason they like to keep it that way. It is at a good level now though. You can drive right to Blackburns Dock, launch there and step on, put your boat in a free boat stall and park your trailer in the trailer park. No need for two people or to go elsewhere to launch. Can't beat that and all at the best price on the lake. Some charge for boat stalls. We do not unless you bring the Queen Mary. Our one bedroom cabins are now $59/day and we are open all year. If the place that you normally stay closes for the winter you can stay here and resume paying more when they open back up. Bink found open water schooled fish yesterday as I predicted and did well. All temperate bass were together including some nice White Bass. That is a good sign. Some of the hybrids approached 6-lbs and the largest striper was nearly 10-lbs. Many were smaller. He had the boat in 65-ft. of water near a drop-off and the fish were suspended at 40-ft. I asked him if the schools that kept coming by were the same one or different ones and he thought they were different. He was using the 1/2 ounce white with red head spoon and vertical jigging. Some trollers should start catching some fish soon if they can find them. They are not easily found but he knows where the fall fish are historically located and where to start looking. I do not fish open water much but many do. It is a good way to catch some when other fishing slows, especially white bass. I wish there were more of them but at least some larger ones are starting to show. The ones that I am catching accidently are small. Bass fishing remains tough and the crappie have also slowed. Big bluegill are very good. For the last several days I have been going out for about 1-1/2 hours in the afternoon and catching about one Kentucky Bass, one or two crappie, four or five bluegill and an occassional walleye. Very few picture fish. It was more than double that a little over a week ago. Schooled fish are showing up around Robinson and Cranfield Islands but there are not a lot. Overall fishing is fair at best but good if you hit the right place at the right time which is usually about 7:15 AM. I am finding no top-water fish at this time. When I see schools of shad many of them have no big fish dogging them. Some do. Many bait fish continue to be on the banks part way backs in the creeks but the bass with them are hard to catch, at least for me now. It will get better. Much better. Surface water temperature is 76+ and will drop starting later this week end with highs to be in the 60's after the cold front. A big cold front. Lows are to be in the low 40's and we have not been anywhere close to that so far this year. Bring a coat. Blackburns has one cabin still open for Bass Cat. Give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115. 

Norfork Lake Fishing Report and Lake Condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental(click here for comments)

The lake level is 553.11 and is exactly the same as it was at this time yesterday with almost no generation. It has been a couple of weeks since they hit the power pool of 553.73 and they have not even come close to dropping the lake a foot despite the extremely dry weather. We have a good chance for rain the next few days and then much cooler weather and clearing skies for later this weekend. The lake surface water temperature was still 77 when I went out yesterday afternoon and the lake was in good condition The best bite is now early in the morning at about 7:30 AM and tapers off fast. The afternoon bite is poor. Overall fishing is just fair at best. It is a typical October. I caught four nice bluegill, one bass and one crappie in the afternoon in about 2-hours of fishing and I tried hard. The fish that I did catch were in shallow water at about 20-feet on or near brush. I tried all different depths. Some of our fishermen are getting discouraged but I cannot help them much. Get out early and graph brush piles and keep checking them out until you find schools of crappie. Bass will be with them and mostly Kentuckies. I am catching keeper largemouth only occassionly. Maybe the cloudy weather will help but the cold front and wind will not make things much better. Most of the fall foliage has blown off the trees and the next wind should finish them off even though it is over two weeks before the normal peak season. The colors look to be a dud so far. My burning bush and maple are not even bright red and are mostly brown. The cooler weather will drop the lake temperature on it's way to turnover but it has a few degrees to go. It will be a challenge for the Cystic fishermen this saturday but tough fishing brings out the best. If it were easy everyone could do it. Thai is why there are guides of which I am not one. I do not like to fish under pressure just for pleasure and that is what it is to me.  There is enough pressure in this world. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental(click here for comments)

Craig DeHoet caught a few more yesteday.Image title

The lake level is 553.24 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running about 9-hours. We did receive about 1/4 inch of badly needed rain last night but missed any severe weather again. We have been fortunate all year. A little dry is better than storms. They have been all around us. Southwestern Power Administration has been more reluctant to drop the lake than the Corps of Engineers but they are both run by the government so we should not expect much and we do not get much that is for sure. It is at a good level now though but not much surge for a big rain. If it could stay at one level this would be it for me. Blackburns Brush Piles are at perfect depths. It was windy yesterday and it continues today with the cold front moving in and the wind will shift to the west. It is to get into the high 60's for a high later this week. Most of the time the surface water gets into the high 60's before the end of October and the lake has turned making for good fishing in November. We will see what this October brings. The fishing has not been the best for a few days now and the surface water is still in the high 70's. People were in my pool yesterday. The wind is blowing off a lot of fall foliage and it does not look to be spectacular this year again. I am spoiled after living in Maine and witnessing the colors in that state, New Brunswick and other New England states. Arkansas can be good though but not every year. The colors here are mostly brown. yellow and just a bit of red but the lake side and country roads are always beautiful in the fall no matter how brilliant the colors. The wind will not help the fishing conditions and the cold front will not either. I am already getting several complaints about fishing and the turnover has not started. The turn does not bother me much since I fish mostly brush piles and fish do not stray too far from cover and food. I assume the shad will follow the plankton, which are unable to propel themselves and are at the mercy of the wind and most game fish will follow the shad. The rest will stay in cover with this year's bluegill, bass and creek minnows. Those are the ones that I will be looking for. When you find schools of shad near brush you usually have really found something no matter if the lake is turning or not. The best time for fishing in the fall is when the lake has turned and the water has cleared again which again usually happens in November. That is why I say November is a good time to catch big fish.  The full moon in November is the 19th and that should be a good time to catch the stripers that are left. It is not always so like in the early spring when they move to the bank at dark to spawn. In the fall they just follow the shad to the bank to feed. This does not always happen but attracks a lot of fishermen when it does or used to. Many striper fishermen are going elsewhere or switching to crappie and walleye. I am still catching fish but not as well as a week ago. I just enjoy being out there but do not like the wind. You can usually get out of it in certain creeks but the fish are not biting in the creeks very well. Go to the wind-blown banks and throw a crank bait.  The big question is: On Sunday Novemver 7th does the happy hour time change? I do not use the clock much. I did find a school of white bass but they were small in 45-ft. of water.

Norfork Lake Fishing report and Lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental.

Craig De Hoet with a couple of yesterday's catch. He is from Woodward, Iowa. Image title

The lake level is 553.33 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running about 1/2 the time. The surface water temperature is 78+ degrees and the main lake remains fairly clear and the creeks a little stained. Tne last of the Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional Championship people left the resort this morning and we were happy to have them. Nice group. Most liked the lake but were disappointed in the fishing. A total of 34 lbs. and 15 ounces three day total won the top prize of $61,000 worth of stuff. I expected more fish but the overall fishing was not nearly as good as a week ago. I forgot to ask about the big bass but it is not a part of their results.  Crappie fishermen still caught fish but not nearly as many and said they were all caught early and quit early. Nothing later in the morning. The places where I had been catching fish were empty and I had to work for everything I caught which was not very many. The warm weather is still bringing out the pleasure boats, pontoon boats dragging children and jet skis on the weekends. They better hurry and get them winterized before the cold weather gets here.  I hope the storm does not hit here tonight but we could use some rain. It does not look good for Oklahoma and Northwest Atkansas but that could change. I will triple tie everything down and tighten up the dock cables and hope for the best. It is very nice out today and several are out fishing.

Norfork Lake fishing Report and Lake condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental

The lake level is 553.45 and has dropped 3/4th inch in the last 24-hours with about 7-hours of running one generator in the afternoon. The White River at Newport is 6+ feet and dropping. We are to get some rain tomorrow night and hopefully the severe weather will miss us. It looks to go to the west so far.  We can use the rain. I waited until the bass boats were going in for the day before going out yesterday afternoon but there were still several pleasure boats out there and the wind did not lay like I had hoped it would. It was sunny with temperatures in the mid 80's with a surface water temperature of 78-degrees. The water looked like it had cleared a bit but it always looks clearer in the sunshine. I could see my lure down about 6-feet. I talked to Rob Grovengoed who was coming in with several nice crappie and he reported catching them on a Blackburns Brush Pile in 18-ft. of water. He is a good fisherman. I wanted to see if I could catch some bass after the big boys went in. The 2-lb. Kentucky bass had been biting very well for me for several weeks and I expected the same. Not. I fished with both the jig and spoon from 3:PM to 4:30 hard and only caught two.bass and a couple of nice crappie. They certainly had slowed down. Maybe that is why the leader of the Phoenix Bass Leagure only has a two day total of 24-02. I had expected more. Some reports of local people catching big largemouth were contrary to my results of only catching a few ot them along with very few smallmouth. Most of mine were Kentucky Bass. I did not go to the weigh-in but I suspect most of the fish were Kentuckies with the low totals. I had thought the top-water bite would also have been better but maybe the fog had some influence on that. All of the fish that I caught were in 26-ft. on brush with none in the deeper water. All of my fishing spots had boats on them earlier and that also may have been a factor. Just the finalists are out today with many people leaving that did not qualify. It should be a shootout with all others following the leader closely. It will be interesting to see what the big bass is. It will take only a couple of nice largemouth caught to win if things stay as they were yesterday but it could be much better with the high pressure being around for a while now. That is why you have to be out there everyday to write an accurate fishing report on Norfork. Things change quickly. The Missouri boys take over next saturday for the Cystic and I expect higher totals. Those guys know how to fish Norfork no matter what the conditions.    

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 553.51 and is about what it was at this time yesterday with reduced generation if that is possible. Keep that lake level as high as possible for as long as possible boys, and you are doing a good job. Just one big rain from being too high again with plenty of chances to drop the level. November is our rainiest month. The White River at Newport is at 7-ft. Go figure. The lake surface water temperature was 78 degrees when I went out yesterday and the wind was light. It is foggy this morning with calm winds. It is to get very warm later this weekend with storms predicted for Sunday night and rain chances continuing into next week. We could use another inch. 12-LB. 12-ounce leads the Phoenix first day. Several more had 12-lbs. Good luck Blackburns Guests. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service Yesterday on the spoon. The bass were hitting top-water early.Image title

The lake level is 553.54 and has dropped 3/4 inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running for about 9-hours. We did receive just at one inch of badly needed rain in the last day and a half total and it really greened things up. The lawn turns black with the dry weather and then turns green again right after the rain. We seem to get some right when we need it but not enough. It is good to go into the winter with some ground water. It never warmed up yesterday and the lake surface water dropped to 77-degrees but it is to be a nice weekend with highs near 90. It was very foggy early this morning but it has burned off now and the weather is gone. A lot of fish will be caught by the Phoenix Bass Fishing League today with the overcast skies early. The top-water bite should have lasted for an extended period of time. I will go out after they quit and weigh in. The crappie were biting pretty well yesterday as were the bass. I was using a small jig and then moved out deeper than the brush and marked some fish suspended about 10-ft. up from the bottom in 50-ft. of water. I switched to the spoon and dropped it right on there heads and caught a 5-lb. hybrid striper. I released him and dropped it again and caught about a 20-inch striper. I do not fish for red meat fish anymore so I moved after releasing him. We need to let them grow. I do not try and catch any of them intentionally. They need to grow and make a comeback in Norfork. I was very pleased to catch my usual bass and crappie and put them under my dock. The school is getting big again after getting fished heavily. White Bass are not nearly what they have been in the past. They usually can be caught almost at will this time of year but I am seeing very few. They are the go to fish when nothing else is biting but not now. It they are not catching them up north near the border now they are just not there or in very high numbers. I am catching nice crappie and bass on brush in 30-32 ft. of water near the bottom every day.  Some big bass are being caught on steep banks when the worm drops off the ledge into deeper water near 40-ft. I am seeing no fish more than 40-ft. down. Come on down to Blackburns and we will not charge you too much. You can still get a one bedroom cabin for $59/day and a two bedroom for $77. Three and four bedrooms are priced accordingly. A free boat stall comes with your cabin and all have big covered porches where you can set out in the rain and out of the sun and rig your poles. There are no duplexes and every cabin has outdoor plugins. Why pay more? I got my covid booster shot yesterday and everyone here has been vaccinated. I certainly did not do it because the government told me to but because I though it was the best thing to do. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Dylan and Wade Clevenger from Park Hills, Missouri with some good ones. They should be in the tournament. Good fishermen. Image title

The lake level is 553.64 and has dropped about 1/4 inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running about 4-hours. They are letting out about the same as is coming in from the river and holding the lake up as high as they can for as long as they can. They must not need any electricity anywhere. The Phoenix Bass Fishing League Regional Championship is set for Norfork Lake October 7-9 and there will be 400 boaters and co-anglers competing for $60,000 in prizes. They will take off at 7:AM on Thursday from Buzzard Roost Marina. The 7:AM starting time will let anglers get out just at first light and get into the top-water bass bite which is getting better every day. This is good for the economy and for area resorts. Blackburns is full this week with regular customers and the rest tournament fishermen pre-fishing. The crappie and bass moved back into the 32-ft. brush yesterday with some just outside a little deeper. The surface water temperature is still 77-78 degrees and dropping very slowly. We are to get some badly needed rain tonight and tomorrow and then sunny for the next several days. Both the main lake and the creeks are still stained a bit with the water clearer near the bank. Spoons and top-water lures are still the best with plastic worms coming in next. I am seeing very few red meat fish being caught. There is no peace and quiet on this part of the lake with boats everywhere. There are some big names in this tournament. Blackburns has plenty of boat and trailer parking, electrical outlets, two boat launches and the best resort with the best prices. . We are not crowded up on a hillside and are close to town, ding and shopping. Cystic next week and Bass Cat the next. Come on down. We will not charge to too much. You can even get pizza and sandwiches delivered to your cabin. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

 Greg and Randy Searcy from Spokane, Washington and Guthrie Center, Iowa with some of yesterday's catch. Good ones SGT. Major. We like Veterans. Image title

The lake level is 553.85 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation rates of 1/2 to one generator about 1/2 the time. The White River at Newport is 4+ ft. This is unbelievable. The surface water temperature was still 80 yesterday afternoon and the lake continues to be stained green and getting a little more every day. You can see your lure down just a few feet where you could see it several feet more. Crappie, bass, bluegill and catfish continue to be the best bite and I am seeing very few temperate bass brought in but I did get a report of an umbrella troller catching a couple of small stripers. There are a lot of bass and creek minnows on the bank and bass are moving in early and late to feed on them.  The fish that I see coming up on shad are mostly small bass. I am not catching any largemouth of any size but am mostly fishing for Crappie and Kentucky. I do not keep any largemouth or smallmouth anyway but like to catch them. There is a special place in me for a 4-lb. smallmouth and we have a lot of them in Norfork but I am not catching any of them yet but they will start showing up soon. There are more crappie in the lake than in precious years and I think I know why. Harvey Hall has died and Jay Smith has retired and they were the best crappie fishermen on the lake for several years. They both worked hard putting in their own brush piles after the ones put in by the Corps were neglected for a long time. The local Game and Fish Biologists since have put in and replentished many existing ones and that has really helped. I have been putting in brush piles on Norfork for 27-years for our customers.  I am not an advocate of high water but it does help the spawn if it does not come too fast and stay too long. The Game and Fish quit stocking crappie several years ago after the Black Nosed experiment. I am still catching several Black Nosed Crappie but not as many as a few years ago. Two were caught yesterday. Norfork is now a premier big crappie lake. I really enjoy catching those big black crappie. Kentucky Bass, crappie and catfish are all together at various depths on brush from 25-32 feet. One brush pile holds fish and another one is empty and then that changes and they are roaming. It just takes one gar to clear out an area. The lake overall is in excellent condition and it looks like our best chance of much rain is friday with chances for the next several days. We need it but without wind. I am only using spoons and crappie jigs with both working about the same. Jigs when it is windy and spoons when it is not. Creature baits and worms are catching bass on wind blown banks.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Darren from Macon, Missouri, Donnie from Shelbyville, Missouri and Ken from Washington, Missouri show off some of yesterdays catch. Nice fellows. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 554.30 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours with generation for about 7-hours with 1-1/3 generators. The White River at Newport is 5+ feet. I guess there is no need for electricity. The surface water temperature is about 80-degrees in the afternoons and the lake in general is in excellent condition. The thermocline is at 32-feet and that is about as low as it gets. The divers here are seeing at lot of fish at 28-32 feet on brush and on main lake points and both. The weather was beautiful and they had a lot of fun. Another group is diving but I have not had a chance to talk to them.  Blackburns has been full with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals in the area. If you are staying at a place where you are nearly the only customer you are paying too much. We have several law enforcement and Veterans staying here and we like that. They are always welcome. Other fishermen are catching walleye, bass, crappie, bluegill and catfish with very few temperate bass being taken. Bink is still on the walleye and they have moved out a little deeper just outside the brush suspended a few feet. I caught mine on a main lake point in 35-ft. of water about three or four feet from the bottom on a 3/8th ounce spoon. I know you get tired of pictures of my old mug with fish so I try to post only customers and fishermen reporting to Blackburns when possible.  A lot of fish are right around thermocline no matter how deep the water. The wind was light so I was able to keep it straight up and down. Bass and crappie were near but a little shallower. The crappie are from 28-32 ft. on top of brush. Bluegill are on every brush pile where the top of the brush comes closest to the surface. Many are under my dock. I am starting to catch crappie on the 1/16th ounce jig again but am trying harder on windy days. Catfish are showing up about everywhere and biting everything but not very fast. I caught a 5-6 pound channel on the spoon on the bottom yesterday. Not a picture fish. It is to get hot again early next week with highs in the 90's and Blackburns big pool is still open. We need more rain. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and your first regular sized boat stall is free. Can't beat that and a one bedroom cabin is $59/day and none of them are duplexes and all have covered porches. Two, three and four bedrooms are priced accordingly.   

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught Scuba Diving on Blackburns brush piles yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 554.51 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3rd generator running for about 7-hours. They shut down last evening and it is still down. The White River at Newport is at 6+ feet and about ready to dry up. They use what ever rules of management that fits them at the time. When it gets high they always say it is from excess rainfall and that is what the lakes are for to hold water. I maintain they are for flood control and there is a big difference. They are missing a good chance to drop the lake to the high 540's and try and keep it there rather than keepeng it one big rain away from being flooded. The surface water temperature was still 80.7 when I went out yesterday afternoon and is just under 80 this morning with the cool night of 45 for a low. It is to warm up nicely as the week progresses and get well into the 80's by weekend. Blackburns pool is still open. It was very windy with white caps and hard to fish all afternoon and was slow to lay down, variable and swirling. Usually I move into creeks to get out of it but there just do not seem to be very many fish back in the creeks.  I do not like fishing on windy days but that does not mean they are bad for fishing. I fish for enjoyment and it is not enjoyable for me to fight the wind. Blackburns has two groups of divers in and they are having a good time spear fishing. They report the thermocline is 32-feet and the visibility is 4-6 feet on the lake side of main lake points. They are fishing mostly for crappie and are doing well and say the conditions are much better than this time last year. They are also seeing many bass, bluegill and walleye. I tried walleye fishing and caught one but had a hard time staying on the brush and keeping my spoon straight up and down. It was in 36-ft. of water suspended about 4-ft. up from the bottom on a main lake point. I pride myself in not losing lures in the brush but when I lost my favorite one I switched to a Bobby Garland jig. It is difficult to spoon in the wind unless you are in open water on shad with no snags and you can let your spoon go a little sideways without snagging. I caught three crappie a couple of bluegill and a Kentucky Bass and came in. Conditions are much better this morning and I bet the walleye will be biting. We will see. Blackburns is full again starting tomorrow but have a couple of openings starting Sunday. Come on down we will not charge you too much. A one bedroom cabin is $59/day for two people and comes with a free regular sized boat stall. We do charge for pontoons and boats with towers because we have a dozen pontoons to rent and do not have space for people bringing their own unless we pull one of ours out. I did see a jet ski out there so it is not cold enought yet. It is like when you see a motor home pulling a car. The gas prices are not high enough yet but they are up over a dollar a gallon from this time last year. I liked it when we were energy independent. It is like having money in the bank and not being able to use it. The fuel has to come from somewhere. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some of yesterday's catch. Released under the dock.Image title

The lake level is 554.70 and has actually risen in the last 24-hours just a bit with very little generation. They are holding the White River at Newport to just over 7-ft. for some reason. I do not understand the reluctance to drop the lake at least to the high 540's but it is there for sure. The rule says regulate the level at Newport to 12-ft. I do not agree with this rule but they will not even do that. We received a little over one inch of badly needed rain last night and this morning here at Blackburns, with varying amounts in the surrounding areas. South of us got very little. There was about 1/2 inch in town. It is cool out now with a high in the 60's and the predicted cold front on it's way. It is to be in the 40's tomorrow morning and this is what a lot of people wanted. Not me. It is to warm back up to the 80's later in the week. Our normal high is 80 and low is 60. I will see what this is doing to the lake condition when I go out later. People just keep coming and it is very busy here at Blackburns with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals in the area. We have mostly repeat customers and do not want to charge them too much. The bass, crappie and bluegill are still the best bite now with a few keeper walleye and catfish being caught. Trollers are getting a few small stripers and hybrids but are dragging bait for miles to get them. I will let you know the conditions after I fish today. We have a group of good divers out there and will also get a report from them These cloudy skies will not help their visibility today any but it should get better later. The lake is at a good level now and is in great condition for fishing after this cold front is gone for a while. A full moon and cold front do not do much good at the same time but we will see what happens. I like a challenge.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle caught this one off Crappie Rock last evening.Image title

The Texas Boys, Jody and Wayne just left. Hope they come back soon. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 555.35 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 20-hours of continuous generation with 1-1/3rd generator running now that we have reached power pool and the Southwest Power has more control. The White River at Newport is at 7-feet but that should also rise. We sure could use an inch of rain. It is getting very dry and dusty. The lake surface water temperature was 83-84 when I went out yesterday afternoon and the water appeared clear on both the main lake and creek. We have several Scuba Divers coming in today and I will get a real report on the water clarity and thermocline. I have not had much time for diving for a while and have barely had enough for an hour or two of fishing it is so busy here with people taking advantage of the best prices on cabins and rental boats in the Ozarks. We finished installing new cabinets and countertops in several cabins until we run Lowe's out of them. We will resume when they get more in. The pool is sparkling and this is a good time to enjoy it. It is to get very cool the middle of next week with highs in the low 70's and lows near 49. That will be a drastic change but it has not happened yet. I am just going close to the dock and catching several fish everyday on brush. As the water drops they seem to be staying and not moving with the level. Brush in 29-30 ft. of water where to top comes closest to the surface seems to be where most of the fish are. Some are on top of it, some are in it and some are close around it. Walleye are a little deeper outside of the cover a few feet off the bottom. Tap the bottom with your spoon and snap it up about 5-6 feet and let it fall on slack line until your spoon touches and then repeat. I am not getting as many big walleye as a couple of weeks ago but still a few. Most are throwbacks. Most of my fishing is for crappie and Kentucky bass. They are not in a frenzy, on fire or jumping in the boat but biting pretty steady if you know how and where. I do not have to go far from the shed. There are several people releasing fish under the dock and the school is getting very large. There are a couple of trophy bass down there along with hundreds of big bluegill. The lake overall is in excellent condition for fishing, boating and swimming and the fishing is fair. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and your first regular sized boat stall is free. We still have a couple of openings for Bass Cat later in October so give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115 before you have to pay too much elsewhere. Way too much.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Wayne and Jody are guests of Blackburns and had fun fishing with Bink. We are glad to have the Texas boys. Nice fellows.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 555.66 and has dropped 1 inch in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3 generator running about 8-hours in the afternoon and evening. The White River at Newport is at 8-feet and they are trying to hold the lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible. I had a little over 84 degrees surface water temperature yesterday afternoon when I went out about 3:30 Pm and fished for about an hour. It was a little windy so I switched to a 3/8th ounce spoon in order to keep my line straight up and down and not snag. I prefer the smaller spoon in still water.  I went to a Blackburns brush pile close to the dock and caught four crappie and three bass in one hour and did not move. All were keepers but no very large ones. The crappie were about 11-12 inches and the kentucky bass were about 13-inches. I released all of them under the dock. I do not take selfies and I know you get tired of seeing the same old face so I try to show as many different people as possible. Some do not want their picture taken. I release almost all of my fish anyway except for a few that I get for people that love fish but cannot get out. I keep no big stringers of fish and quit when I get a few and prove I can catch them. It is fun to see how many different species you can catch in one day.  Bink is back on the walleye and found them deeper and suspended off the bottom a bit and some stripers and Hybrids are with them. Most are just outside of brushpiles rather than right in them. I was fishing in 28-29 ft. brush and the bass were right on the bottom and the crappie were on top of the brush and hitting the spoon on the drop. He is fishing around 40-ft. but catching different kinds of fish than I am. Tom Kelly has turned into a bass fisherman and releases all of his fish and is letting the stripers alone until they make a comeback. Mike Eakle fishes mostly for crappie bass and walleye and is also leaving the stripers alone. I also get several reports daily from other good fishermen. I miss Harvey Hall.The weather is to cool drastically in the middle of next week with a cold front coming through. We will see what it does to the fishing but I suspect it will not affect it too much. I did not see one jet ski out there yesterday. They seem to like to impress me by showing off for some reason. One of the reasons I moved here 27-years ago was to get away from mosquitoes. Yes our pool is open.


Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 555.76 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3 generator running about 8-hours in the afternoon and evening. They are trying hard to keep it above the power pool of 555.75 and it has now taken nine days to drop the last foot but it looks like they may have to let it happen. They dropped the White River at Newport to 5-ft. earlier and now it is at 10. It should be at a minimum of 12 but that is a rule only when they want it to be. They are missing a good chance to get it to the high 540's by spring and give us a little surge capacity for the spring rains. There is to be a master plan revision workshop for Norfork Lake on September 30th and October 1st. at the college and it is important for everyone to attend. Go to https://go.usa.gov/x7b9v for current information and comments. They need to know how we feel before implementing more government regulations on us. Some are good and some not so much. I found more walleye yesterday and they were suspended in 39-ft. of water just outside of brush on main lake points. They were at 32. I am still getting crappie and Kentucky bass in 32-ft. brush. Bink has moved out into deeper water near 40-ft. and is now catching some temperate bass and walleye. The hybrids are pretty good but the stripers are mostly small with the largest 7-8 pounds.  Catfish are with the crappie but on the bottom. Not much has changed since yesterday and the surface water temperature is still 82-degrees and the lake is clear both main lake and creeks and in excellent condition for about everything. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

This guy did not stay at Blackburns and paid $25/day too much for his duplex cabin with no porch and also paid for his first boat stall. Image title

The lake level is 555.84 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3rd generators running about 6-hours. The White River at Newport is at 10-ft after dropping to 5-ft. With the power pool level approaching it has taken 8-days to drop the last 1-ft. When 555.75 is reached it should drop faster as the other government agency, Southwest Power Administration, takes over some of the generation scheduling. Surely they need electricity somewhere. We are at a good level now but it would take just one of these tropical storms to go north of Texas, sweep across Oklahoma and get to us and fill us back up. A little surge capacity would be nice. The surface water temperature is still at 82-degrees and dropping very slowly. The ambient temperatures are to be in the mid 80's for highs and mid 60's for lows with nice weather for the next week with little chances of rain and a perfect time for a trip to Norfork. The lake in general is in excellent condition for Boating and swimming. Fishing overall is just fair but some nice ones are being caught everyday. Largemouth and Smallmouth bass fishing is picking up after Kentucky Bass carried most of the load for a few weeks. Catfishing is also getting better on jugs and throw lines out of main lake cuts on live shiners and bluegill. Smaller Channels are biting cut bait and a few Blues. You have to use live bait to get the flatheads. Three to four inch bluegills are the best. You have to be in a place away from the gar if you can. If I catch one gar I am gone from that place. Bait up just before dark to keep the turtles and herons from getting your bait and get out early again just at first light. I am still catching crappie in the 11-12 inch range on Blackburns Brush Piles in 32-ft. of water on the spoon at the top of the brush on the drop. Blass and Walleye are deeper near the bottom with most walleye being short now. Walleye fishing peaked over a week ago but some keepers are being caught along with several throw backs.  It is surprising how many catfish are being caught on the spoon right in the brush. I do not troll but some are catching some small stripers dragging Berkley or Rapala crank baits in 30-ft. of water and also a few largemouth Bass. Harvey Hall showed me how to catch bass in the hot weather in late summer. He hooked on a big ole Bomber crank bait that would dive down about 25-ft. and troll in the creeks channels bumping the bottom. He liked Briar Creek the best. I was surprised how man big bass he caught. For the people that like to drag things around give it a try. I am catching no big top-water fish but mostly smaller bass coming up back in the creeks both at sunrise and sunset. If the weather stays warm October fishing will be good for bass until the turnover. There are several Bass tournaments on weekends almost the entire month of October and Blackburns is almost booked up with fishermen taking advantage of the low prices here. You can get a 1-bedroom cabin for $59/day and we are close to the tournaments take-off and closest to Mountain Home, dining and shopping. We have plenty of parking and you are not huddled up on a hillside and do not have to go somewhere else to launch. Give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115 before they are all gone. Try a plastic worm just outside the brush for bass. By the time you get a crank bait down deep enough you are out too far from the bank. Float creek is a good place to start. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 555.92 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running about 1/3rd the time during the day. The White River at Newport is at 6-ft. and about ready to dry up. The surface water temperature is 82-dregees and dropping slowly with the ambient temperatures remaining near 90 during the day and dropping to about 70 at night. The weather has been perfect except that we are very dry and the lake is in excellent condition for boating and swimming. Fishing has remained about the same with a mixed bag of fish being caught. Catfish, largemouth bass and Bluegill are getting better and Walleye and Temperate Bass are slowing and crappie and Kentucky Bass are about the same with a few Smallmouth being caught.  Tom Kelly reports catching some nice bass in Float Creek on a plastic worm and Bink is catching about everything on his spoon. I dropped spoon sizes down to 1/8th ounce with 4-lb. clear line and am getting better results. It just takes it longer to go down and is harder to keep straight down but is getting better results than the 3/8th ounce for me now. It is also more difficult to tell if it is hung up on itself so check frequently. Most fish are in three different places. One being on 30+ ft. brush, two being on the bank in the evening and three on top both early and late outside brush and part way backs in the middle of the creeks.  Many top-water fish are small but are fun to catch and release. I am seeing no temperate bass coming up. They are catching many very nice sized bluegill off my dock. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and our big pool is open and sparkling. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 556.02 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running less than 1/2 the time. They are trying to keep the lake levels up as high as they can for as long as they can and have almost let the White River at Newport dry up. It is now at 7-feet. I know of no rule that says regulate the White River at Newport to 7-feet in September but rules do not matter unless they want them to. We are at a good level now but are just one big rain away from being too high again and it is happening all around us and we have been lucky to avoid one. We are still very dry and can take a couple of inches if it does not come too fast. The surface water temperature is 82-degrees and dropping very slowly and the lake is in excellent condition. Fish are not "stacked in" anywhere but the same places seem to be holding some fish. The old phrases that I do not use like "on fire" "stacked up," "in a feeding frenzy" are not the case here now.   I am catching some everytime I go out but some days are better than others. I keep trying my usual Bobby Garland jigs, grubs tipped with minnows and slip floats with minnows and they just are not working. About the only thing that works for me is the spoon. You have to drop it right on their heads and get reaction strikes because they sure are not hungry with all of the bait fish around. All of the fish that I am catching are very fat. The walleye usually slim down this time of year after being deep and lethargic all summer but not this year. They have remained relatively shallow near the thermocline and have all of the oxygen and food they want. The same thing with the temperate bass. I do not expect a significant striper kill this year because of this and the fact that most of the ones that usually die after a high water year (the big ones) are already gone. I will be the first one to admit I am wrong if dead stripers start floating all around the lake. I hope it does not happen. The people that are still fishing for them are dragging umbrellas, live bait and Rapalas and are having a tough time. Spooning for walleye was doing well but not so much now. The big ones have moved but I have not gone looking for them as I am happy to just catch crappie, bass and catfish close to home. I go through a tank of gas in about a month and my old boat sucks it up pretty good. Fishing is just fair but steady and the best places are main lake points and secondary points with 30-ft. brush. Give a place that marks fish a chance and do not just fly in there, fish for 10-minutes and fly back out. Fish are spooky. Let them calm down. Use light clear line and 1/4 or 3/8th ounce spoons and coast into the brush slowly and minimize the use of your trolling motor. If you put your trolling motor on anchor and have it struggling to stay in the same place and running all of the time the fish will spook and not bite. I cannot afford that feature anyway. I spend all of my money on resort improvements.  It might work for deeper fish that are feeding in open water on shad later in the year when the water is choppy but not now. Take it easy and give the places holding fish a good chance to start biting. I can always tell when a person will not catch fish when they say "I threw everything in my tackle box at them and they still won't bite". You have to use what works and stick with it and try about one different thing at a time if it does not work. If you keep changing when they start biting you will have the wrong thing on. You do not need a big tackle box for Norfork. Just the right stuff. I switched to the 1/8th ounce spoon and 4-lb. test line in 34-ft. of water and started catching more fish this morning in brush and did catch one keeper walleye. Top water fish were coming up but mostly small bass. I cast the spoon at them. I will try the spitin image for a bit tomorrow. It works better for bass than the spook. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 556.20 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday with no generation. The White River at Newport is dropping like a rock and is now below 11-ft. The so called 12-ft. rule does not apply when the power pool is approaching. They are missing a good chance to drop the lake. It is at a good level now though and I wish it would stay that way. Both the main lake and the creeks are clear from the surface but are still cloudy until you get below the thermocline. This is normal for early September but it will get better as the water cools. September and October are an excellent time for Scuba Diving. I usually quit for the year just before Halloween. The lake surface water is 83 degrees and dropping slowly with the cooler nights and shorter days. The normal high is now 82-degrees and the normal low is 60. Fishing remains about the same with walleye getting harder to catch especially the bigger ones. Bass, crappie, bluegill and catfish are the best bite now and some trollers are catching a few small stripers. Some fish are suspended in a little deeper water just outside the brush but most are still in the 30-ft. range wheather suspended or near the bottom. I am having my best luck in brush at 32-ft. of water but am catching some bass in shallower brush in the evening. Main lake points are the best. Many fish are also under docks in the shade. The weather has been great and the lake in general is in very good condition. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 556.20 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours. They quit generating last evening and have not started back up. We are approaching the power pool of 555.75 and they do not want to get there for some reason. They like to keep control and also keep the lake one big rain from being high again. We are very dry and need some rain. The lake is clear again after the holiday and the surface water temperature is 83 degrees. The warm weather and low prices after the summer are still bringing people out to the lake. We are full here at Blackburns and have six boats rented today but have openings starting tomorrow. You can throw all of the past away predicting what will happen according to business and lake traffic. I thought Covid and high water would slow things down but it has been a record year and I have been here for 27 seasons. We took a couple of days to put in new counter tops and cabinets in cabins 5, 12 and 14 and they filled back up the next day. We will resume when Lowe's get more in. Like everything else they are back ordered. This is an economical time to visit Norfork Lake and Blackburns and take advantage of the best prices in the Ozarks. Our pool is still open and it is nearly full as we speak. The weather is great, the water is warm and clear and the price is right. Fishing has changed a bit. Walleye are slowing down except the smaller ones which are schooled where the big ones used to be. The big ones have moved. and may be suspended in deeper water but at the same depth. I have seen this happen before. Much has changed with the absence of the big stripers and there is less competition for food. Many schools of shad do not have any game fish dogging them and are schooled tight. I have never seen more bait fish as I have seen now. I have seen more shad before but not nearly as many fingerling bluegill, bass and creek minnows. They are everywhere. Trollers are catching and killing some stripers in 30-35 ft. range but they are small and about 5-6 lbs. I do not expect a striper kill this year mostly because they did not go deep to find an oxygen bubble and the oxygen stayed good in the 30-ft. range and also because the big ones are already gone. It will take several years to get them back and it will not happen if they keep killing the ones that are just starting to grow and the absence of the 2020 stockings due to Covid. That class is non-existent. A private person did stock a few thousand but nothing compared to a normal year.  The crappie that I am catching are all good sized and all on brush ranging from 27-33 feet about 20-25 ft. down. Kentucky bass and catfish are on the bottom in the same brush. Some bass are on shad back in the creeks in the evening and others are on the bank on other bait fish. Big Bluegill are under docks and biting crickets. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 556.35 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running about 1/2 the time. It is getting close to the power pool of 555.75 but at least 5-feet higher than we would like it for the time of year. November is out rainiest month but we are very dry and can take quite a bit without any problem as long as it does not come fast. The lake has cleared quickly after the holiday and is in excellent condition for fishing. It will be hot this weekend with sunny skies and we have several boaters coming in to enjoy the rest of the summer. The surface water temperature is 84 degrees and good for swimming. Blackburns is on our winter rates and you can get a nice cabin for $59/day. I am going out fishing in the evenings after the work is done and catching fish every day. They are not on fire or in a feeding frenzy but if you spoon or drop shot brush in 32-35 feet of water you can catch fish. Mostly crappie, bass and catfish now. The walleye have slowed a bit with mostly throw backs being caught but just a few keepers. The fish coming up are just outside the brush and are chasing shad out of the cover and are mostly bass. I am not seeing any temperate bass being caught except for an occassional White Bass. I usually catch a few stripers accidently spooning this time of year but not this year. Drop a spoon in 30-35 feet of water in or near brush and you will be surprised what you catch. There are a lot of baitfish out there competing for your lure. Kentucky bass are in a little shallower brush near the bottom and the crappie are above the brush and hit the lure on the drop.  I am seeing no fish in open water. People dragging Rapalas are catching a few bass but they are small and they are burning up a lot of gas. Crankbait fishermen are catching a few beating the banks. Bluegill fishing is good on crickets under docks. I am catching no small crappie and all are over 11-inches and the Kentucky Bass are 12-13 inches and fat. The few largemouth that I am catching are throw backs with few keepers. The guys fishing the nightime tournaments are catching some though. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's spoon yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 556.53 and has dropped 2-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running about 1/2 the time. The surface water temperature has dropped to 84 degrees with the much cooler nights with lows in the high 50's. The lake is clearing quicky after the holiday churning and the boat traffic is way down especially after 5:PM. Evening until sunset is my favorite time to fish but not necessarily the best for catching fish. The best bite continues to be from about 6:30 AM until about 10:AM. There are more shad showing up and there is starting to be a top-water bite at sunrise but mostly bass. I am fishing brush in 32-35 feet of water using the 3/8th ounce Bink's spoon and catching several different varieties. Bass, especially Kentucky bass, big crappie, bluegill, some walleye but several are throwbacks, and surprisingly several catfish. The bite is not fast but steady and you can have a lot of fun. The big schools of shad have relatively few predator fish with them with most of the big stripers gone and much fewer White Bass. The high fishing pressure has also reduced the number of Hybrid Stripers. I wish more of them were stocked. None were stocked last year due to Covid and there will be no class of 2020. The fish that reproduce naturally, except for the White Bass, are flourishing. They should come back on their own. Norfork is full of fish and they are getting bigger with less competition for food. It is to get hot again this weekend, with highs in the mid 90's and several people are taking advantage of the summerlike weather and low prices on cabins and boat rentals here at Blackburns for a last hurrah. You can get a one bedroom cabin for $59/day. There are several fishing tournaments in October and it is filling up fast like never before. Come on down to Blackburns and we will not charge you too much. We especially welcome Veterans and Police. Everytime we get a cabin open here we are making improvements. We have bought Lowe's out of counter tops and cabinets. The big pool with slide is open and sparkling clean. You will like what you see when you get here.  I am not happy with the high gas prices and wish the country was energy independent again. Cranfield is the best beach and has the best facilities of anywhere on Norfork Lake and is very close to Blackburns. Bidwell and Panther Bay are also good and close. We are in the center of everything including fishing and the closest majot resort to town while still being in the country on 28-acres. I consider a major resort to be one with it's own dock, launch and pool. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon. Image title

Released under the dock.Image title

The lake level is 556.77 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating last evening and have not started back up yet. The surface water temperature was 86 last evening when I went out and there were just a few boats . It was very peaceful and the wind layed about 6:PM. I was spooning brush piles and the fish were not biting as well as yesterday. I caught one catfish, one bluegill, two Kentucky bass and four nice crappie and was fishing hard for about three hours. That is as long as I have fished in weeks and it was very nice. Perfect weather. All fish were caught in 27-32 feet of water on brush. I did see more schools of shad but there were no fish on them. Some bass were coming up later in the evening. The lake is in excellent condition going into the fall but needs to drop several feet for surge capacity. We are approaching the power pool of 555.75. It is to get very warm again this weekend with highs in the mid 90's.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Scuba Steve with a few of yesterday's catch on the spoon.Image title

The lake level is 556.89 and has dropped 2-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 2/3rds the time. The lake surface water temperature is between 86 and 87 degrees and is cloudy with all of the holiday boat traffic. I thought the lake boat traffic would clear out last evening with most people leaving but I was wrong. It was not heavy but enought that it was not pleasant trying to fish main lake points with all of the waves. I moved into a main lake cut out of the traffic and found some nice fish. I caught three big crappie, three keeper Kentucky Bass and a walleye in about an hour and came in. The crappie were in 30-32 feet of water on top of brush hitting the spoon on the drop and the bass and walleye were a little shallower in 26-ft. brush on the bottom. I was using the 1/4 ounce Bink's Spoon white with red head and a black dot on 6-lb. clear line. Boat traffic is less now this morning with mostly fishing boats and I will give it another try later this afternoon when I get my work done. Fishing is really pretty good for the time of year, water temperature and amount of bait fish out there. More and more bass are coming up in the creeks every evening. I released all fish under the dock and the school is getting big. They are going through a lot of feed but are getting help from the turtles. The children really have a lot of fun catching the fish. I will try casting the crappie jig today again but have not had very good luck with it yet but will when the water cools and the fish get shallower. The Kentucky bass bite is excellent now and they are big and fat and hitting the spoon in the brush. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 557.16 and has dropped 3+ inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running most of the time. The power pool level is 555.75. The surface water temperature is 87-degrees and the lake is clear from the surface but cloudy down to the 30+ foot thermocline. The creeks are stained a bit but a good color for fishing. The lake in general is in good condition but will be better after the boat traffic from the holiday goes away and the lake clears up again. It has been a very busy holiday and I am glad it is over. Let the fall fishing begin. September continues to be a busy month here at Blackburns with the price dropping as of today to $59/day for a one bedroom cabin and a free stall for your fishing boat. I will miss the jet skis and Queen Mary boats and the big wakes. Lake of the Ozarks is a very good place for them. They like them there. I tried to take my bass boat up there once but it would not go. Spooning continues to be the best technique but the brush is getting shallower and the fish are moving a little deeper. Find brush in 32-35 feet of water on the main lake. Blackburns has several of them at that depth. Trollers are catching a few stripers but they are small and getting smaller and smaller but they keep killing them. I expect to see fewer striper guides on the lake next year. Walleye are replacing stripers as the go to fish on Norfork but bass, crappie and catfishing is still very popular. There are a lot of big bluegill out there and they may be the best eating. White bass fishing is coming back a bit but is still not near what is was a few years ago when you could almost catch them at will. There is a lot of bait fish especially near the bank near cover. Some fish are coming up back in the creeks in the evening, mostly bass and mostly small. Try a creature bait or worm in the buckbrush in the evening at sunset. I see some bass fishermen using buzz baits back in the creeks but I do not use them so I cannot report on their success. I am a grub, spoon, jig, spitin image and jerk bait fisherman with a spook now and again. Call Debbie at 870-492-5115 for a reservation. We have the best prices on the lake. The weather looks to be great for at least the next week. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday on the spoon. Image title

The lake level is 557.45 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours with generation a little over 1/2 the time. They seem to generate pretty hard one day and drop off the next. We received about an inch of rain last night and it was badly needed. It greened things back up but the rain scheduled for today has moved to the south. The weather has cooled to the mid 80's for highs and High 60's for lows. It is to get to 59 early this week for a low. I am ready for things to slow down after this last summer holiday but the phone just keeps ringing with people taking advantage of our low boat rental prices and $59/day cabin rentals starting Tuesday. We have several good fishermen in and they caught some nice fish yesterday. Bass and walleye are the best bite right now and almost everyone is using the jigging spoon. Crappie and bluegill are next with a few catfish thrown in. The surface water temperature is 85-degrees and the lake is at an excellent level and has a good color for fishing. The fishing will get better and better as we go through September and into October until the turnover and then will drop off a bit but not stop and then get better again into the winter as the lake clears again. Thanksgiving is an excellent time for fishing as is all winter. Blackburns is open all year. November is our wettest month.I catch my biggest crappie from November through February. March can be an iffy month with a couple of cold fronts coming through a week and then the mid April top-water bite starts. I am ready. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. We especially welcome Veterans and Police and have a lot of them as customers.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday and this morning on the 1/2 ounce Bink's Many Shad Jigging Spoon. Image titleImage titleImage title

The lake level is 557.54 and has dropped over 4-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running continuously. We are now less than 2-ft. from the power pool and about 6-7 feet higher than we should be for this time of year but we are not at a not bad level. I would like it to stay at this level all the time.  It just does not allow for any surge caused by big rains which have been happening all around us. It will be interesting to see what they do as the power pool level gets closer. They typically slow down generation when this happens but you cannot tell. They do not report to anybody and have no accountability. The did reassess how Beaver Lake was to be managed taking into effect how the population has increased in the area and the economic impact if the lake got too high and decided tp keep the level lower. This will result in more water going into Table Rock which ultimately goes into Bull Shoals. They already do not let Table Rock get too high because of the economic impact to Branson. This leaves Bull Shoals and Norfork to hold the bag. We need to speak from a unified voice but nobody seems to care. The town is full, the lake is full, the parking at the ramps is full, the resorts are full for the holiday and they just keep coming. About every vehicle in town has a boat hooked to it. The fishermen that went out yesterday and this morning early did well. The spoon is the lure of choice and 32-35 ft. of water on main lake points is the place near brush or right in it. Trollers are getting a few small stripers and white bass but not many. Bass, crappie, catfish and walleye are the best. It is hard to troll brush but shad are easily found but hard to keep alive. It is going to be a hot day with highs in the mid 90's. I am ready for Tuesday and the start of fall fishing and peace and quiet. Blackburns rates go down to $59/day for a one bedroom cabin and a free boat stall then. You cannot beat that anywhere and our big pool with slide is open. Why pay more? Stay here and give the extra money to Disabled Veterans. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 557.92 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with much less generation. The surface water temperature is 87-degrees and the main lake is clear near the surface and cloudy a few feet below and the creeks are stained a little green. The lake is in very good condition for boating, swimming and fishing with most day use areas back to normal. Swim beaches are open in Bidwell, Panther Bay and Cranfield along with most camping sites. Some camping and beach services do not have all facilities restored completely but it is much better than just a few days ago. Parking and launching are normal and need to be if the town traffic is any indication of the upcoming boat traffic. If you are planning on fishing get out there at dawn and fish until the traffic gets too bad on the lake. Do not count on being able to go out in the evening until Monday when they start to go home. Every thing that will float will be out there starting today and the boats are getting bigger and bigger. Have a lot of patience at the launch sites Saturday morning.   We could get some weather Saturday night and Sunday and it is to get hot. It will not be condusive to tent camping. Almost everyone is full so there will be no place to go if you get rained out. I hope everyone has a good time and gets through this safely. Fishing is the same.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 558.09 and has dropped 4-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running most of the time. It has taken three days to drop the last foot. The last summer holiday is upon us and it looks to be very busy. We are full here with several boats rented and Debbie reports getting about 100 phone calls a day with people looking for cabins and boats. The big boats will churn up the water all weekend but it will clear again rapidly after the holiday. The creeks have turned green for some reason after being clear for several days but this changes for no apparant reason, sometimes daily. The surface water temperature remains about 87-degrees and the overall lake condition is excellent for boating and swimming. It is to get hot again later with a good chance of rain on Sunday and then get back into the 80's next week. Our normal high is now 85-degrees. The overnight lows are getting lower and are now in the mid to high 60's. We could use a rain badly but not all at once. An inch would be fine. We have dodged all of the severe weather and big rains so far and I am thankful and count my blessings. We have some good fishermen in this week and I will report their findings. I will sit this one out and only join the crowd if I have to. I am looking forward to Tuesday. For those coming and have not been here for a while be carefull out there. Things are much different and the lake level is down 15-feet from it's high in May. The Shore Patrol will be out in big numbers and that is a good thing. Fishermen get out early before the big boats take over and drop the spoon in 30-35 ft. of water on main lake points with brush. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 558.46 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with a little less generation than the day before. We are at a good level now but have little surge capacity for a big rain which is going on all around us. We are still very dry. It is to be warm with highs about 90 for the weekend with chances of some rain but mostly sunny. It looks to be a good weekend for the last hurrah for most non-fishermen. I do not have time for much fishing now as we are trying very hard to get the resort ready for Labor Day. The yard is being mowed, the pool is sparkling and we are fixing as many things as we can with just a few days of not being full. We have been very busy since March. Many other improvements are being made as we speak. They start piling in again starting tomorrow. We will have it as nice as possible for you when you get here. I was getting a rental boat ready for the weekend and took a little ride to check it out and also check on lake conditions. The surface water temperature was 87 degrees and the water was pretty clear from the surface. More and more wood is showing near the shore so do not assume things are the same as when you were here before. More swimming areas and beaches are open now as are launching areas and parking. Bidwell, Cranfield and Panther Bay all have good swimming beaches and Cranfield has the best overall facilities. They have not had much time to get all of them completey redone since the high water but they are much better than before when swimmers were clogging up the launching areas and there was no place to park. High water does not affect resorts as much as day use areas and campgrounds but it is not good for anyone. We will see how far they drop the lake before they quit. The current power pool is 555.75 and they are reluctant to drop below that and turn some of the control over to the Power Authority for some reason. One goverrnment agency is in competion with another one for control. We have several very good friends in Louisiana and wish them the best. Hot weather and no power is not a good combination. Blackburns has $59/day cabins in just 6-days so give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115 before they are all gone. We have the best resort and the best prices in the area. We will not charge you too much. Bink reports still catching a mixed bag of fish in 30-35 ft. of water on his spoon. Not much has changed recently.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the spoon. Image title

The lake level is 558.74 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3 generators running continuously. They took the White River at Newport down to 8-ft. to try and keep the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible but are bringing it back up now. It clouds up at the heat of the day about 3:PM everyday but not much happens. We are still very dry here. It looks to be mostly sunny and warm for the rest of the week and good weather for the holiday weekend. Blackburns is full then but have openings for just after that when the prices drop to $59/day for a one bedroom cabin. The lake traffic will slow way down then and fishing will get better and the peace and quiet will get a lot better. This is an excellent time for a visit and the lake is in good condition. Get out that 3/8th ounce spoon, white with red head, and drop it in and around brush piles in 30-35 ft. of water. Several different species of fish are there and are being caught everyday. I am too busy to get in much fishing, as I am sure most resort owners are, but get out for about an hour after the work is done and spoon for a bit and am catching fish everyday. Mostly walleye, crappie, bass and bluegill with a few catfish thrown in. That is all I fish for anyway. Most all fish are released under my dock and the school is getting very big.  I guess if I had more time for fishing I would not be doing my job very well. My time will come this fall and winter. In the mean time I have several good fishermen reporting to me everyday. I know you do not want just my picture on there all the time but I do not take selfies anyway. I am ready for fall fishing. I do not look for a striper kill this September and sure hope there is not one. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some of yesterday's catch released under the dock. He knows where Blackburns Brush piles are located. Image titleImage title

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The lake level is 559.03 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/3 generators running most of the time. It looks like we will miss the storm all together. We did receive a very little rain yesterday afternoon. It was spotty with some areas close getting a pretty good shower and almost none here. We are to get a little more this afternoon and then mostly sunny throught the holiday weekend with highs in the high 80's. The lake looks to be in excellent condition for boating, swimming and fishing. Blackburns remained full until this morning with several boats rented. We have just a few in now and will reload starting thursday for the weekend. They just keep coming. Usually there is a slow period between when school starts and Labor day but not this year. More and more launching, parking, swimming areas and camping spaces are opening up everyday for day use areas and things should be about normal. It is just too bad that it has to happen at the end of the summer but the high water sure has not hurt the resort business. It has been as busy as I have ever seen it in 27-years. We have all had our Covid shots here and sanitize every cabin after every use. All cabins are individual with no duplexes and no common porches. All of our cabins have covered porches to get out of the sun and rain. You will have no trouble social distancing here. Our winter rates start next week  and you can get a cabin for $59/day for two people with 2,3,4 bedrooms priced accordingly. You can save hundreds of $ by staying here. Our big pool remains open until it gets too cold to swim and your first boat stall is free unless you bring the Queen Mary and require me to pull out one of my rental pontoons of which we have 11. I do not have much time to go fishing but am catching fish everytime I go. Bass, crappie, walleye, bluegill and catfish are all biting if you know where and how. We work hard putting in brush piles for our customers and they are starting to pay off now and will be better after the holiday. Spooning in brush in 30-32 feet of water is still the best early with some nice bass being caught near the bank in the evening.The holiday boat traffic will churn up the lake but it will clear again soon after they leave and the fall fishing will start. I am ready for that. People are catching fish everyday now though. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mixed bag caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 559.31 and has dropped 3/4 inch in the last 24-hours. They quit generating yesterday for 16-hours and have just started again. It looks like the track of the hurricane is going to go east of us and we may miss everything except a few showers tuesday. It looks like it will hit the Houma, Louisiana area, go through Monroe and skirt southeastern Arkansas and turn east through Tennessee. We have friends in all of those areas and wish them well. This is not going to be good especially areas that have just been devastated. They have had big rains and the ground is saturated and expect many trees to uproot causing power failures for extended periods of time. It is expected to start in an hour or so. Everyone not affected should count their blessings but can expect gas prices to rise quickly. Off-shore oil comes right through this area. I had 89 degree water in Blackburns creek again yesterday with just a little less on the main lake. It looks like the heat will diminish with highs to be in the mid to high 80's for this week. The heat has been relentless this month and it usually subsides about the middle of the month but not this year. The lake is in good condition for fishing, boating and swimming and looks good for the upcoming holiday weekend. Fishing remains the same with most species being caught and most on the spoon. The lake is full of fish and fishing will get better and better as the water temperature drops. We will see what the generation schedule is with the hurricane but I suspect it will be slowed way down. We will be ok unless we get a big rain but can take quite a bit with the dry conditions as long as it does not come too fast. We are in good shape now but are on the borderline. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 559.40 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running continuously. They seem to be alternating continuous one day cutting back a few hours the next in orger to keep the White River at Newport at 12-feet while dropping Bull Shoals as fast as they can. They need to do that as it has been very high all year and has been used as a holding pond to keep Table Rock low and protect Branson Landing. We have dodged heavy rains ot they weould not have been able to accomplish that and we all would have been high until winter. As of now the hurricane seems to be going east of us and just affecting northeast Arkansas. This could change but we could get some rain out of it next week. Tennessee, which has gone through some terrible rain, looks to get much more. I wish them the best. We are dry and could take a couple of inches with no trouble. I had an 89-degree surface water temperature in Blackburns Creek yesterday and 88 on the main lake. Our normal ambient high is 86 and drops fairly quicly as we get into September. I am finding several nice bass on the banks part way back in the creeks on bait fish which are everywhere. The rest are mostly on or near brush in the 30-ft. range. Very few are in deep open water. They have all they need in 30-ft. Oxygen, thermocline, cover and feed are all there. Creature baits and spoons are the baits of choice. Plastice worms are also working.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 560.21 and has dropped over 3-inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running most of the time. More and more access and parking are opening up every day and we should be normal by the Holiday barring any big rains. This does not mean we are at a normal water level though and are still about 8-ft. high of where we should be this time of year.  Surface water temperature is 86-87 degrees and appears clear from the surface but visibility is not good under water. If you are scuba diving stay on rocky points on the main lake. Fishing remains the same with the high pressure and sunny skies and waning moon. Live bait trollers are still killing limits of small stripers while cutting their own throats. They are getting smaller and smaller but nobody seems to care. I guess they will just move on to another lake and clean it out also when finished with this one. I am only finding crappie on a few brush piles but they are nice ones. I try and limit my catch to three or four and then move on and bass fish. Bass and catfish stay alive much better for release than crappie and walleye. Keep spooning the 30-35 ft. brush piles and then move back in the creeks with creature baits in the evening for bass. Listen to KTLO 97.9 FM at 8:45 AM on thursdays (tomorrow) for "Live in the Boat" by Bink's Guide Service for a lake condition and fishing report in real time. He will let you know what is happening and give you the tip of the week straight from the Lake. He fishes only atrificial bates and you do not have to get up at 4:AM and try and net shad, keep them alive in hot weather in a round tank, have a half dozen rods in rod holders, down riggers, planer boarts, balloons and troll all over the lake. Just get a 6-1/2 ft. medium heavy rod with 8-lb. test clear line, a good baitcaster or spinning reel and a few spoons and head out. You will catch more and more fish as your spooning technique improves. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 560 74 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running continuously. It took four days to drop the last foot. The lake was pretty busy on the weekend but slows way down during the week with school started. Several are trying to take advantage of the sunny weather even though it is now hot again. They like the last of summer but the lower boat traffic. The lake and a swimming pool are the best way to beat the heat. The lake is in excellent condition for boating and swimming and several campgrounds and beach areas are opening back up and more should be available by Labor Day unless we get a big rain and conditions remain the same as they have for several weeks. Big rains have happened all around us and we have been very fortunate to have avoided them. Whie being very dry we have received just enough to keep things green. Everything is in good condition here and we would welcome your visit. Two weeks from today the last summer holiday will be over and fall fishing will begin with most boats being fishing boats. The time around Thanksgiving is always a very good time to fish Norfork Lake. The morning bite remains the best but some fish are starting to feed on shallow shad in the late afternoon and evening. A mixed bag of fish are being caught and overall fishing has held up despite the hot weather. Spoon in and around those 30-35 ft. brush piles on both main lake and secondary points touching either the bottom or top of brush. Cast the spoon if you see fish coming up and hop it back to the boat keeping it from sinking as much as possible.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with his two biggest ones caught yesterday. Image title

Thhe lake level is 561.07 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with much less generation. The lake remains in good condition for boating and swimming. It looks clear from the surface but the visibility is not so good under water especially on mud banks. There remains significant boat traffic on weekends with the summer weather continuing with no sign of going away with hot temperatures to continue at least all week. It is to be sunny and hot with highs in the mid to high 90's all week withj little chances of rain. The large crappie are biting pretty well for this time of year as are bass and bluegill. A few walleye, hybrid stripers, white bass and small stripers are also coming in. They just keep killing those small stripers and bragging about it. Many fish continue to hang out in brush in 30-35 feet of water near the thermocline during the day and bass are still coming in shallow to feed on creek minnows, bass and bluegill fry and shad in the evening. Bait fish are everywhere and nothing is hungry. Spoons are the best bait but you can get some bass trolling a big old bomber deep diving cranbait in the middle of the creeks like East Pigeon and Briar and letting it bump the bottom. Big bluegill are biting on crickets over brush and under docks. I am having very little luck using jigs and live minnows on crappie for some reason and am catching almost everything on spoons right in the brush,  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught earlier this afternoon. The school of fish under the dock is getting bigger and bigger. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 561.22 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with 1-1/2 generators running continuous. The surface water temperature is 86 degrees and just right for swimming and boating. I went out in the middle of the day for an hour and fished one brush pile in 30-ft. of water and caught four nice crappie, a kentucky bass and a short walleye all on the Bink's Spoon. Most of them hit on the drop right at the top of the brush. It was cool and cloudy today but has cleared off this afternoon. It is to be sunny and very warm for the next week. We received a few showers the last coupole of days but they did not amount to much except to keep everything green. Things are getting back to where day use areas are starting to open up and the lake should be in excellent condition for the Last Holiday of the season. Summer is still here though and shows no sign of going away. I usually catch more crappie on the Bobby Garland jig this time of year but not now. Also live minnows on slip floats are not working for me so I just stick to the 1/4 or 3/8th ounce spoon. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the Bink's Spoon in 30-ft. of water. Image title

The lake level is 561 78 and has dropped almost 4-inches in the last 24-hours with about 1-1/2 generators running continuously. The surface water temperature remains in the mid 80's and is perfect for swimming and boating. It is to get warmer amd warmer until this time next week when it is to get in the high 90's again. It has been cool and cloudy the last couple of days. The thermocline is about 30-feet, the best oxygen is near 30-ft. and some of Blackburns brush piles are at 30-ft. and I wonder what depth and where to fish? Drop a Bink's 3/8th or 1/4 ounce white spoon in and around brush piles and you will catch bass, crappie and walleye. Let your spoon drop to the bottom , crank up about one turn and snap your spoon up about 3-4 feet and allow it to drop on slack line. Wait until your lure goes all the way down and the line is straight down before snapping up again or the spoon will hook itself on the line. Learn what it feels like when your line is fouled on the spoon or you will be wasting your time. If it does just reel up and shake your lure a few times and it will straighten itself out.  Do not allow your spoon to drag sideways or drift. Go against the wind with your trolling motor to keep your line straight down. If you try and troll with a spoon it will have a life expectancy of about 10-seconds. When you are spooning in brush sometimes the brush feels just like a bite but do not set your hook until you are sure there is a fish on it. The treble hook will keep the fish on there as long as you do not allow slack in your line. Then set your hook. All of this you miss if you just troll a crank bait plus you will miss a lot of fish. I am not seeing any shad in open water any deeper than 35-ft. no matter how deep the water is. Crappie all die when brought up from this depth and I quit fishing for them after catching three or four. Some very nice ones are being caught and I am catching very few throw backs otherwise I would not fish that deep. There is still a bass bite in the evening when they go near the bank to feed. I am using a soft plastic with no weight on a worm hook. There are a lot of bait fish there. Come on down to Blackburns Resort and Boat RentaL We will not charge you too much and our big pool with slide is open. Compare prices before you make a reservation and then give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115. Summer is not over yet. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Susan Elyea from Gassville fishes off Blackburns Dock. Image title

The lake level is 562.05 and has dropped a little over 3-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 3/4ths the time. It has been a cool cloudy day with light rain but not much so far. It is really greening things up. Summer is not over and it is to get into the high 90's again later next week. I guess I will believe that when I see it but it could happen. The weatherman is never wrong. The Striper Club sent out a diddolved oxygen report and it showed good oxygen at 15 and 30 feet. That explains why many of the fish are at those depths. I do not expect much of a striper kill this year for two reasons. First, the dissolved oxygen has remaind good all summer and they did not go deep like normal. Most of the BOD is gone from the lake and a lot of the wood has died from previous high water years resulting in less decaying wood.  I am actually surprised of the amount of green buckbrush still left after the water has receded. Second, the most susceptible fish to a kill are big stripers and they are mostly gone. I like to be positive and this could be a good year for striper growth and the stocking program has resumed. It would be much better if people would quit killing the future by taking the small 5-9 lb. fish. Old habits are hard to break and very few people seem interested in having the big ones return. Kill a 5-lb. striper and cut out the red meat there is just about 1-lb. left. The larger crappie have been biting pretty well lately and even the trollers are picking up a few. They are in about 29-32 feet of water near the bottom and are biting the spoon best. They all die when coming out of 30-ft. of water especially when it is so warm so I quit after three or four and leave the rest. Taking pictures of huge striingers of any fish just make people look like gluttons. Walleye and bass stay alive better and I have been catching several of both and releasing them under my dock. The school keeps getting larger and larger. The children just love fishing down there and have a lot of fun. The surface water temperature was 85 this morning and the lake remains clear looking down from the surface but the visibility is not good at the thermocline and just above it. Find brush in about 30 ft. of water and drop a spoon. Many fish are there and you could catch about anything. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 562.70 and has dropped about two inches in the last 24-hours with several hours less generation. The cooler weather has dropped the surface water temperature a couple of degrees to about 84 and the water is still clear. Spooning is the best now with walleye, bass and small stripers in the 6-7 pound range being caught still in 30+ feet of water near or in brush. Not much has changesd except the overall fishing is still just fair but some nice ones are being caught every day but not a lot. The early morning bite is the best but some crappie, bass and bluegill are being caught in the evening in front of brush near the bank on soft plastics with no or very light weights. There are a lot of baitfish there and the gamefish are moving to them as the sun goes down and the shallow surface water cools a bit. After the early morning bite the fish move back into the cooler deeper water as the suns comes up. We have received 35.35 inches of totasl moisture so far this year with an average of 45.30 for the year. They certainly cannot blame heavy rain for keeping the lake levels up as high as they have for so long. We received about three inces of that last week and it all sunk in as we were so dry and could use some more. The grass has really greened up after the last rain and Blackburns big yard looks beautiful again. We still have a couple of cabins open for the Labor Day and a couple of pontoons for rent. We had a group cancel yesterday. Call Debbie at 870-492-5115 as they will fill quickly. No sense paying more elsewhere unless you just want to or have too much money.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 562.91 and has dropped over 4-inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. It is the fastest drop of the season but it still took almost four days to drop the last foot. It is amazing what can be done if they want to. It does not need to drop any faster but should have started much sooner. This 12-ft. rule for the level of the White River at Newport is stupid when the minor flood stage is 23-ft. They need to drop the lake to the mid to high 540's in the winter and let more out when they can in the spring and summer and not just hold. Nobody is asking to flood anybody out down stream but to manage the level better and not just hold water up until it is nearly going over the spillway. All lakes should have the same priority and not just keeping Table Rock low and protecting Branson Landing. It did not bother them to take away 1.75 feet of storage capacity for the minimum flow law that made it madatory to release water into the rivers for the put and take trout. This also forces discharge no matter how low the lakes go but that has not been a problem for many years. All they have to do to keep the lake from getting too low is quit discharging. The inflow from the Norfork River is ample to take care of the Mountain Home city water supply. That does not sound like flood control to me but it does help the rivers from drying up and promotes economic activity. They did an economic study of the benefits from the rivers to justify the minimum flow law and the same needs to be done to ascertain the economic benefits from the lakes. I suspect it might be much higher. Bass fishing is picking up as is crappie. Catfishing is only fair but some nice bluecats are being caught. Not nearly as many channels are coming in as in previous years.  Bluegill fishing is good with some very big ones being caught. Some stripers are being caught but they are getting smaller and smaller with people still killing limits of them. Taking pictures of small dead stripers is like holding a sign saying I am trying to eliminate striper fishing on Norfork.  Walleye fishing has dropped off a bit but Bink is still catching them. September fishing looks to be excellent so far once the last holiday of the summer is over. The surface water temperature is 86-87 degrees. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Scuba Steve with some of the best ones caught yesterday. All were released under the dock.Image title

The lake level is 563.20 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with about 18-hours of generation. I do not know what to report about last night's rainfall. The weather watcher on Mallard Point reported 0.8 inches. KTLO radio reported over 2-inches and Tom Kelly reported 3-inches at Rolling Meadows about three miles away.  My rain gauge has been accurate for several years and I dumped it yesterday morning and had 4-inches in it this morning. That is all I can say. The creeks did not run but the road was partially washed out to the dock. All I know for sure is that it was a blessing and did not hurt anything. We needed it so badly but it rarely happens in August. I had to check out a boat yesterday about noon so I took two fishing poles with me. One had a Bobby Garland Blue Ice on a 1/16th ounce jig head and the other had a 3/8th ounce Bink's Spoon white with red eye and a black dot on the back. I went to a close brush pile known to hold crappie and cast the jig for about 20-minutes with no takers. The water was 28-30 ft. deep and the brush came to about 10-15 feet from the surface. We put several trees in there last winter from my property which borders the corps property. I then switched to the spoon right in the brush near the bottom and caught three nice crappie and two bass and came in after a little over an hour. There was nothing dramatic and the fish were not in a frenzy and my pole was not bent double and I did not lose any big ones but caught some nice ones.  We are so busy here at Blackburns that I cannot go fishing for very long and still run the business properly even though I have the best employees ever.  My time will come later after things slow down, if they do. We have been very busy since March with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rental in the area. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and especially welcome Veterans and Police. I have had a few encounters with the police but do not blame them and am smart enought not to resist arrest and pull a gun on them. Things work out better then for everybody.    

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 563.40 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with the same generation. We received 0.6 inches of badley needed rain here last night and it could rain more today and tomorrow. It was spotty and there was none downtown. It has cooled down with temperatures to get into the high 80's for a few days before a warm up again. It looks to be a busy weekend here on the lake with several people taking advantage of the last of summer before school starts on Monday. There is one more holiday in about three weeks and then the fishermen can take over the lake again. The lake level remains high but more and more land is showing everyday. 560 seems to be the magic number where most places have all services back but it does not leave any room for rain and could come back up. Just Ask Olatha, Kansas who just got over 8-inches yesterday. Glad it was not here. The clean up on the campgrounds will take some time and they are not in a hurry to do that with the summer ending and then just flood themselves out in the spring. I camped in a tent when I was in the Boy Scouts, again when in the service, bought a pop-up camper later and a motor home after that and a resort after that. No more camping for me. I am not much into pulling trailers anyway. I have 30-boats and rent one when ever I go any place else which is not often. Everything I want is right here on Norfork Lake but we have about all of the boat traffic we need here and do not need to try and get more people to visit. I would not live on Lake of the Ozarks if you gave the whole place to me and I could not sell it. I am all for some growth but this place is about as big as it needs to be. There will be more fishing boats out there now that the excessive heat has broken, the lake has dropped and the brush piles are coming into play for the fall. The fishing looks to be very good if things keep up as they are. Norfork Lake is clear and is full of healthy fish and they have plenty of baitfish to eat and game and fish is doing a good job of keeping it this way. Normal stockings have resumed after covid stopped them last year. We have all had our shots here at Blackburns.   

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 563.93 and has dropped a little less than 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 3/4ths the time. This is a pretty fast drop and it took four days to drop the last foot. It is very hot and dry but this should break a little this weekend with a 40% chance of rain and temperatures to drop about 10-degrees. Our normal high now is 90 degrees and has dropped one degree from it's high of 91. More and more brush is showing up on the shoreline and both the creeks and main lake remain clear. The surface water is now in the high 80's and is still rising again with the ambient temperature approaching 100 degrees. The lake is in good condition for both boating and fishing. The grass is turning brown and we really can use some rain. We could take a couple of inches of slow rain with no problem.  The dog days of summer end today and they are just about right on that, maybe just a couple of days off. I have to move my dock out again with the dropping water. It is important to not let your floating dock get grounded on the shore. Keep it floating or a wind will break off your walkway or bend or break your dock. We need the lake to drop four more feet to have normal services and no steps to the dock. At this rate it will happen before Labor Day unless we get a lot of rain and that does not look likely. Bass, bluegill, and catfish are being brought in everyday. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 564.44 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation a little over 2/3rds the time. The hot weather is back and is to continue through this weekend and it is raising the lake surface temperature again to the high 80's. The creeks are clearing for some reason and a lot of the green stain is gone but that changes almost daily. The main lake remains clear. The dropping water is exposing more snags everyday and more of the brush near the shore is showing up. We just has a customer trying to get home late in the dark and tore the bottom off his pontoon. If this happens to you call Harold's welding. I suggest not being out after dark as the lake is changing everyday. The prop repair man is doing a brisk business and those fish finder transducers are not cheap. I will not fish a strange lake after dark anymore but seldom leave Norfork. No need to. The fishermen here are catching bluegill, crappie, bass, catfish and a few walleye. Several fish are about 30-35 feet down no matter the water depth. Look for cover.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some of yesterday's catch fishing Blackburns Brush piles. We work hard to put them in and they are paying off now. Image title

The lake level is 564.81 and has dropped a little over 3-inches in the last 24-hours with the same generation. The surface water temperature is 86 degrees and the water is clear for this time of year. There is still quite a bit of boat traffic out there especially on weekends but the number of fishermen is increasing. Most of the fishing is also about the same with one exception. The crappie are schooling more and have moved to the brush piles with the dropping water and are in a little less than 30-ft. of water. 1/4 ounce spoons are working the best but Bobby Garland jigs and slip floats with minnows are also catching some. They are in their normal places but have moved in a little earlier than before. September looks to be good crappie fishing but it is pretty good right now. Bluegill fishing remains very good as is the size. Most crappie are over 10-inches but not very many big ones yet. There will be. The lake turnover in October does not affect crappie fishing much and it gets better as the water cools. We typically get a little bumb in the lake level in November, which is our rainiest month of the year and they keep the White River at Newport still at 12-feet. Winter is the best time to catch the giant crappie and I only fish brush piles for them and bass at that time. Thanksgiving is usually prime time for both. Main lake points and just around the points in and next to brush in a little less than 30-ft. are all holding fish. It is very dry and we need some rain badly. The weather is to get well into the 90's this week but typically cools off after the middle of August. We will see. We need the lake to drop five more feet to get back to a good level but that does not allow for any rain. A level of about 548 going into the spring would be nice but fat chance of that. They like about 555 so we are just one big rain from getting right back to where we were. Just holding water is not flood control but nobody seems to care and are getting used to mismanagement. it is a good thing we have been dryer than normal this summer or it would take them until winter to just get it down a bit. It has not hurt the fish population any though and for most species it is as high as I have ever seen it. Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals so come on down. We will not charge you too much. Veterans and Police are especially welcome. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 565.08 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 2/3rds the time. The same amount of generation is dropping the lake faster now as the level gets lower. It needs to drop about 5-1/2 feet to get most places back to a near normal as far as facilities are concerned. It will take a lot of work to get the campgrounds and swim beaches back into shape even when they are out of the water. They have just been submerged for too long. Cranfield, Bidwell and Panther Bay are the best beaches in the area with the best facilities when the water level is normal but just dropping the level does not make that happen. It takes a lot of work for the clean up and restoring the electricity and they are not in a hurry to do that especially after the summer season is over and school has started. Most of the time in the last several years they just let the level go back up in the spring anyway. Walleye, bass and bluegill fishing remains the best with a few catfish, hybrid stripers and small stripers being caught. There is a lot of competition for your lure with bait fish being everywhere. Creek minnows, bass and bluegill fry and shad are in high numbers. Nothing is going hungry. I started putting some brush piles in at lower depths the last few years with the new policy of holding the water level up so high and they are paying off now with some of them at about 30-ft which is perfect and at or near the thermocline where a lot of fish are located. Spoons, Bobbly Garland jigs and live minnows on a slip float are all working. Dragging diving crank baits and live bait around is catching some fish but you have to go a long ways to catch much and some days nothing. Overall fishing is fair and the lake is in good condition with a surface water temperature of 85 degrees. Some big bass are part way back in the creeks near the shore on baitfish in the evening. Morning bite at about 6:AM is the best. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 565.91 and has dropped a little less than 3-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 2/3rds the time. They quit all night and start up again in the morning. It took a little over 4-days to drop the last foot. The high was 573.11 in late June and has dropped an average of two inches a day drop since then. It is going faster now with the bowl getting smaller but the generation time is about the same most of the time. We have received below average rainfall since then. Bink reports being out everyday for the past several weeks and is catching a mixed bag of fish using the jigging spoon in the area of the thermocline at around 30-feet. Bass, walleye, good sized hybrids, white bass and small stripers are all being caught. He is using the 1/2 ounce Many Shad and Arkansas Shiner spoons and is using no other baits. He has caught several today as we speak. He is the only one that I know catching big walleye. Bluegill fishing is very good off docks, around willows and main lake cuts on the 1/8th ounce spoon using 4-lb. clear line. Crickets are also working but the spoon is also picking up some crappie. The lake surface temperature has dropped a bit to about 87 but will go back up with ambient temperatures to get near 100 by Monday. Blackburns big pool with slide and baby pool is very busy and is the center of the action. Volleyball, soccer, table tennis, shuffleboard, basketball, teather ball and horseshoes are all going continuously. It is fun having a big, green, flat playground and not huddled up on a hillside. You do not need tents here as all cabins have big covered porches. We have a couple of openings for next week so give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115. The children will have a lot of fun and meet new friends. Yes we allow fishing off the dock and have a lot of fish there and the children can feed them and the many turtles. Blackburns is the fun place and especially welcome law enforcement and veterans. You will be welcome here and we will not charge you too much. Most of our customers are repeat and are considered friends. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Dave Titus with a nice bass released under the dock.Image title

The lake level is 566.14 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in 24-hours with more generation. They started earlier and stopped later. The lake is 7-feet lower than it's high of 573.11 on June 22nd. It needs to drop another 7-feet to be at a manageable level and 12-1/2 feet to get to power pool. Below 560 we start to get normal launching and parking back but leaves no room for any rises.  We have had below average rainfall since June and they have done a very good job of holding the level up as high as they can for as long as they can. We have had wonderful weather for the last few days but that will end by the weekend with highs to get back in the high 90's. The days are getting shorter and at least it does not stay as hot for as long. When the overnight lows are only about 75 degrees you can expect it to get hot. The surface water temperature has dropped to the high 80's and the lake is in very good condition. There is still time for a stay at Blackburns before school starts. People ask me many times what are the best eating fish from Norfork lake? Walleye, crappie and bluegill are the best followed by Kentucky bass and flathead catfish. Everything else is still good out of this clean water, but not as good. The lake stays clean most of the time because of the rules concerning the land around the lake and continuous inflow of clean cold water from the Norfork River and when there is generation clean water is coming in from the north and exiting from the dam. The other is the buffer zone surrounding the lake. There are no row crops, cattle confinements or houses with septic tanks causing pollution of pesticides, herbicides and other wastes. Also there is no clear cutting of trees just for a lake view causing erosion. All of these things make the area lakes special. I do wish the dam at Dawt Mill was still there on the Norfork River. People are catching several nice bass and big bluegill here with just a few walleye and Hybrid stipers coming in. In years past there were always big stripers caught in August but none so far this year that I have seen. I do not fish deep in summer though. Come on down to Blackburns where you can social distance, cook out and have food delivered and we will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Rum Binkley can teach a lot of us how to do a better job of Spooning. She can do it with a rod in both hands and hardly ever misses a fish. Image title

The lake level is 566.39 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24 hours with generation about 60% of the time. The lake surface temperature has dropped just below 90 degrees again with the cooler nights. It has to be really hot to keep it above 90 degrees but ambient temperatures in the mid 90's are coming back again late this week and early next week. This is normal for late July and early August. They are typically the two hottest weeks of the year. I do not complain about the hot weather as I have had my share of cold weather living in Minnesota and Maine. Cross country skiing, snowmobiling and ice fishing does not interest me anymore. Neither do black flies and mosquitoes and the absence of these is one reason why I live here in Northern Arkansas. The Purple Martins have left the area for the year and I miss them already. I love hearing and watching them and they keep the flying insects in check. We keep getting more each year and I keep adding houses. Blackburns is an official Arkansas State Bird Sanctuary and have many birds and houses of all kinds. Their feed bill is more than my grocery bill but I do not mind. Blackburns is full again this week with several boats rented but have a few openings for next week. There is still time for a short vacation before the children start school so come on down. We will not charge you too much.  Fishing has not changed except the top-water bite is scarce now and you cannot depend on it. Spoons are the best bait  and trollers are having a hard time. I do not do trolling and do not get much kick out of dragging several lines with rods in holders  using either live bait or crank baits. They miss too many fish and you do not feel the bite or set the hook at the right time. I can barely drive one rod without getting into trouble.  You can lose fish jigging the spoon also if you do not know the right technique. Drop the spoon to the bottom, crank the spoon up two feet per reel turn, depending on the datio, most are 2-1, to the desired depth. Crank your drag down tight. Snap your line up three to five feet and allow it to drop on slack line. Do not snap it up higher than you can set your hook even if they hit at the top. Many beginners do this. Set the hook good as stripers have a hard mouth. I have had several big fish come loose in the net when the line went slack even after I tried to set the hook and brought them in. After the hook is set loosen the drag quickly, keeping your thumb on the reel and then adjust as to the size of the fish. You cannot do this with the rod in the holder and this is why trollers miss so many fish and good spooners do not. It does take some practice but is worth it as we spoon for much of the year. It takes more practice to not lose spoons when fishing in brush but I will go into that some other time. I seldom lose spoons unless I hook another line than has been broken off and is still hung up in the brush. That is very hard to get out especially when the guy that lost his lure in the first place used heavy line or braided line. I never use braided line on Norfork even in stained water. I just put on 4-lb.clear flourocarbon on my crappie reel, 6-lb on my bass and walleye reel, both bait caster and spinning, and 8-lb on my bait caster for striper and hybrids. I feel more confortable bringing in a big fish on a baitcaster for some reason. Bink uses a little heavier on his bait caster and I used to but most of the big stripers are gone. I seldom get broken off, amost never. I only use a swivels on spoons to keep the line from twisting and no snaps. Everything else I tie directly to the lure. Re-tie after each walleye. Also Northerns but we do not have them here. Blackburns continues to be the headquarters for Veterans and Police and especially welcome them here. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 566.61 and has dropped a little over 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. They quit all night and generate all day. The shallower brush piles are starting to hold some crappie and Kentucky Bass and they are hitting small spoons Under docks and the old shore line before the water rise is holding a lot of baitfish. Small shad a little over an inch long are everywhere as well as bluegill and bass fingerlings. There is plenty of food for the game fish. Bass fishing is still the best both early and late but more and more crappie are being caught. The only stripers that I see caught are very small. Walleye fishing has slowed a bit and catfishing has not been as good as in previous late spring and summer.  The hot weather has broken for a while with the cold front. We were to get rain last night and this morning but got very little. I had 0.2 inches. It is cloudy now but is clearing out. It is to remain in the 80's for several days with temperatures to get back into the 90's by weekend and hot again next week.  Average rainfall for both june and july are a little over 3-1/2 inches each and we have received about 1/2 of that. It is dry and the grass is starting to turn brown. August and january are our driest months and November is our wettest. I had a lake surface water temperature of 92-yesterday in Blackburns creek. It does not usually get higher than that ever. The lake in general is in good condition for both fishing and boating. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 566.75 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. They quit in the evening and start back up in the morning. They are running Bull Shoals hard and there is no wade fishing on the White River. It is very dry here but it is supposed to rain tonight and a chance tomorrow morning with dry conditions and much cooler after today. It is hot today and near 100. Blackburns had several good fishermen in last week and they did well. They mostly fished for bass but caught a few crappie and walleye also. We will see what the next batch brings. The surface water temperature is right at 90 and that is normal for the last day of July. The water remains clear and several fish are at or around the thermocline at about 30-ft. The old shoreline before the water rise is getting closer to the bank and there are a lot of bait fish in the shallow water drawing predator fish about sunrise and sunset. The high water has made for an abundance of bait fish including small bass, bluegill and shad. They are everywhere where there is cover. September with the cooler weather and lower water will make for some good fishing. I have to go down and move the dock out. That is different for a change. It has been a long time since I have had to do that. Blackburns remains very busy with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals in the area. We have many repeat custmers and do not want to charge them too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spon yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 567.41 and has dropped about two inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. The White River at Newport is below 12-ft. and was below 11-ft. yesterday. The lake surface water is in the high 80's and rising with the hot weather. It is to get to 100 degrees tomorrow and continue for the rest of the week. We keep getting scattered pop up showers about every day in the heat of the day at about 3:30-4:30 PM and some have some wind and causing white caps for a few minutes and then they are gone. Fishing is the same. The thermocline is dropping, the water is heating but the clarity is about the same. Some bass are chasing shad early near the surface part way back in the creeks and feeding near the bank late evening. Walleye are on main and secondary points in 30-35 ft. near the bottom on the spoon. Bluegill are under docks and shallower brush on jigs, crickets and red worms. I am not seeing as many catfish being caught as usual. It may get better as the moon gets smaller but they do not like dropping water. When you find schools of crappie they are mostly small but the loners on brush can be very large. Dog days of summer are here. 

Norfork Lake fishing Report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon. Image title

The lake level is 567.59 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are holding Table Rock at below power pool, dropping Beaver Lake slowly, Norfork a  little more and Bull Shoals quickly while holding the White River at Below 12-feet. Bull Shoals is much more above power pool than the rest of the lakes and needs to be dropped but there is no reason to hold for so long in this dry weather. We should all be back to normal by now with proper management. July is almost over and the weather is hot with highs to be near 100 for later this week. This always happens the last of July and first of August. At least we can swim in the lake, in the pool or get out of it in air conditioning to beat it. When it is cold there is not much you can do. Fall will be here before you know it. I am not a fan of winter but the fishing on Norfork Lake can be the best in winter. That is when I catch the giant crappie and bass. Thanksgiving and after makes for some good fishing and the big boats are off the lake and the fishermen are the only ones out there. Peace and quiet. The lake level is usually about right for the brush piles to be in play after being held up all spring and summer by the incompetant lake managers. My Dog Toby is very smart and could do a better job. The lake surface water temperature is in the high 80's and should reach 90 by next week. The water remains clear on the main lake and a little stained in the creeks but is overall in excellent condition. We need the level to drop about 8-feet to be at a good level and at less than 2-inch drop/day it will take until mid September to get there if it does not rain much unless they quit holding and that is not likely. It could go faster if it stays dry. We will see what August brings. Fishing is the same except the thermocline is dropping, the water temeptature is rising and the fish are going deeper but the bass are still feeding in the buckbrush on the spring spawn which is now about 3-inches long for bass and bluegill in the late evening. Spoons during the early morning and saltcraws and worms late evening.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink's Guide Service. Image title

The lake level is 567.74 and has dropped about 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. There were a few campers at Cranfield Campgrounds yesterday but none of the other facilities were open. The beach is still flooded and it needs a lot of cleanup. During normal times it is one of the best beaches on the lake with a nice playground and bathrooms. The launch with courtesy dock, ample parking, handicapped fishing dock, pavilion and play ground are just around the corner. It is also close to town. It is almost a crime to keep it flooded all summer most years. We do need different lake level management but still they keep coming. It would be interesting to see what happens to tourism if levels were at a good level meaning between 552 and 559. The lake surface temperature is rising with the hot weather and will continue to do so for at least the next week. It is to get close to 100 ambient temperatures later this week. The water temperature is now 87-88. The main lake is clear and the creeks are stained a little green and just right for fishing. Bink reports catching a lot of fish yesterday but they switched to the 1/2 ounce Arkansas Shiner spoon from the Many Shad. It is white with a brownish head and I use it a lot. It depends on the time of day, water clarity, amount of sunshine and depth as to which spoon they like the best. One of my favorite for all around use is the white with blue back. For size I use the 1/8th ounce for 20-ft. or less, the 3/8th ounce from 20-25 ft., 1/2 ounce for 25-35 ft. I fish crappie a lot and bringing them up any deeper than that kills all of them regardless of size. I do not fish deep for stripers in the summer but the 1-ounce spoon gets down there faster. The lighter the line the better for the spoon action. I seldom us more than 6-lb. and always use clear line, either flourocarbon or monofiliment. Flourocarbon has worse memory and monofiliment stretches more. Flourocarbon is getting better every year. I never use braided or colored line and only use a swivel on spoons to keep them from twisting. Never a snap. The less hardware the better in this clear water. The big fish in this lake are line shy. I even do not use a clear light leader on heavy line. It is like your lure is tied to an anchor rope. Try using 4-lb. flourocarbon clear line tied to a 1/16th ounce white with red eye jig head and a Bobby Garland Baby Shad Blue Ice crappie jig and cast it past a brush pile and let it sink into it and see what happens. I think your crappie fishing will improve.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday. 1/2 ounce Many ShadImage title

The lake level is 567.87 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with gneration about 1/2 the time. It has taken over six days to drop the lake the last foot even with the dry conditions. They are doing a great job of holding the lake level up and now have the White River at Newport below 12-ft. to continue to do so. We are still over 14-ft. above power pool which is 553.75. It ised to be 552 before the minimum flow law took away 1.75 ft. of flood capacity for the put and take trout on the rivers to help economic activity at the expense of flood control.  It needs to get to below 560 to get parking, launching, swimming camping and marina access back to normal. At this rate it will take until the middle of september to do so if it does not rain much. The lake surface water temperature is rising with the hot weather and is now between 87 and 88 degrees. It should hit 90 by the end of next week. It always does in early August. Some fish are continuing to bite with the late evening bite for bass on worms and saltcraws and the early morning for walleye, bass and white bass the best on spoons. A few hybrids and stripers are coming in but not a lot. Trollers are not reporting which means they are not catching much. If they were there would be pictures of dock floors full of dead stripers. Blackburns has several good fishermen in now but most are catch and release. Catfishing is slow but will pick back up after the moon wanes. Bluegill fishing is good and big ones too. Most crappie coming in are small with a lot of throw backs. The lake is in excellent condition but still high. It is a typical late july but the water is much clearer than in previous several years since they started holding the level up so high for so long in the name of flood control when it is not flooding.     

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday. Nice one.Image title

The lake level is 568.05 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with no generation since last evening. Not much has changed except the full moon and dropping water levels has slowed catfishing down and helped the big bluegill fishing. Mix this with high pressure and overall fishing is not the best. Walleye continue to bite on main lake points in 30-35 feet of water near the bottom on the 1/2 ounce spoon and bass are feeding on crawdads in the late evening near the shore in their normal summer places. A few white bass and largemouth are coming up early for about five minutes if the shad are shallow. It is just a matter if you happen to be on the right wind blown banks.  There is no per say top-water bite like in early may. Go out early, take the middle of the day off and go out again in the evening for best results. If you happen to see fish come up and you have no top-water lure handy cast your spoon just past them and hop it back to the boat keeping it from dropping too fast. A 3/8th or 1/2 ounce works the best. One ouncers are too heavy and sink too quickly. Bink is on the walleye and is using the 1/2 ounce many shad spoon in a little over 30-ft. of water near the bottom. We continue to be very busy here at Blackburns with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals in the area. Sorry we do not allow dragging anything behind our boats, except our ski boat and it has a three day minimum, or taking them out after dark. Neither of these were working out for us. You can stay here and rent boats from a marina if you want to do that. They do not mind. Otherwise we have 30-boats to rent but you have to be staying at Blackburns to rent one. It is a Corps Of Engineers rule not mine. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Image title

The lake level is 568.19 and has dropped about 1-1/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are doing a great job of holding the lake up as high as possible for as long as possible and if they work harder on this they can keep it up until past Labor day. That would be an accomplishment considering the dry conditions. Think what they could do if we got rain. They might be able to continue until next year. We received a nice shower yesterday afternoon with a pop-up of about 0.2 inches and it was just enough to keep things green. The smoke from Oregon is keeping things looking foggy and cloudy looking. As reported before, you can expect the hottest time of the year with temperatures to reach almost 100 to be the last week of July and the first week of August and it looks like we will not be disappointed again this year. It is to get into the high 90's later next week. It has been a very confortable summer so far this year with just enough rain to keep the grass growing. Our big flat playground here at Blackburns is still very nice as is the whole valley.  Bass, walleye and bluegill continue to be the best bite now with crappie and catfish following. Just a few red meat fish are being caught. The water surface temperature continues to be about 85 degrees and the thermocline is about 27-28 ft. Trollers are dragging live bait and diving crank baits and catching a few early bass but not much else. Spooning is the best now during the day for walleye, crappie and bass and casting worms and saltcraws to the steeper banks with ledges in the late evening is good for bass. Crappie fishing has slowed especially for the big ones. The lake overall is in excellent condition but the public launching and parking on the weekends is congested with the high water. During the week it is fine. One more holiday left and the fishermen can have the lake back. The summer has gone fast but there is still a lot more to come. Not long before school starts. It has been the busiest year ever so far here at Blackburns.

Norfork Lake fishing Report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 568.64 and has dropped about 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. The surface water temperature is still in the mid 80's and the water is clear and is in excellent condition for boating and swimming. The best bite right now is bass in the late evening and walleye in the morning. The walleye are in their normal summer locations and are in and around the thermocline near the bottom. They are roaming and are mostly in pairs. Look for brush in about 30-ft. and fish all around it with a jigging spoon. The east side of flooded Robinson Island in the big rocks is an excellent place. Try main lake points and just around them on the inside first. Crappie are there also and are biting Bobby Garland Jigs and live minnows on a slip float. Fish the main lake willows and boat docks for big bluegill with crickets and very small jigs and spoons. The 1/8th ounce Bink's Spoon works well.  The live bait trollers continue to show off dock floors full of dead small stripers and they are getting smaller and smaller with the larger ones getting more and more scarce. They are killing themsevles out of business about like buffalo hunting but stripers and hybrids cannot reproduce in our lake and are all stocked. I want striper fishing back like it used to be when 20-pounders were common and 30-pounders were not uncommon. It will never happen with over-fishing and continued high water for extended periods of time. Maybe the new bloodline brought back from North Carolina with help. I hope so. The biologists are trying hard. 

Norfork Lake fishing Report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 568.77 and has dropped a little over an inch in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. We did get a small shower yesterday but not much. They are doing an excellent job of holding the area lakes up as high as they can for as long as they can. It has dropped a little over four feet since it's high earlier but we are now about 2/3rds through July and school will start soon. I had a water temperature of about 84 degrees yesterday and the water was clear with a thermocline in the mid 20's. It usually gets to a little over 30 by August but not much lower. Blackburns has a mixture of families, people looking for real estate, people just wanting to get out of the city, boaters and fishermen. It is a diverse group but a big one. Out pool is about the busiest place on the lake but it is big enough to handle several.  The weather has been great with just a few pop up showers but the chances for rain will diminish starting today and it is to get in the low 90's again near the weekend. Good boating and swimming weather for the rest of the week. Bink is still on the walleye and the bass fishermen are doing well in the evening. Not much is changing with water temperatures remaining the same and the water clarity continues to be good. Public launching and parking remains congested on weekends but is not bad during the week. There were a lot of boats out there between the bridges yesterday and it is the busiest place on the lake. It can also be the windiest. Come on down to Blackburns. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday morning.Image title

The lake level is 568.87 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with just a little less generation.  It has taken a little over four days to drop the last foot. We received a little more rain yesterday and brought the two day total to about 1.2 inches. It was enough to keep everything green and not affect the lake level much. Blackburns has the biggest green level playground with many activities for the children in the entire area. They can not only look at it but use it. If you miss your basketball shot it does not roll down a cliff. Our big pool is 30x60 with a baby section and a slide and is next to the pavilion with shuffleboard and ping pong. No need to bring a tent with you for cover against the sun and rain because all of our cabins have big covered porches and you can have social distancing as all cabins are individual with no duplexes. All cabins are sanitized after every use.  Our 18-stall dock is in a sheltered cove good for kayaking and fishing.  You can launch right here and park your boat in a free stall and then there is plenty of room for trailer parking. No need to go elsewhere to launch requiring two people. Make sure you check to make sure the place you stay has a dock, pool, launch and boat rental. Many do not. Blackburns has all of the above and still has the best prices. We have several good fishermen in and it will be interesting to see how thay do fishing. Most of our guests have just been boaters with families lately. We like them too. Bink is still on the walleye and catching some everyday. Crappie fishing is just fair and stripers are a little slow. Several of the crappies are small. The old shoreline before the water rise is in about 18-ft and there are a lot of fish there in the evening feeding. Before and after that they move out in or in front of brush in 30-33 feet of water suspended at the thermocline which is about 26-27 feet. Spoons are the best lures then. Minnows on slip floats dropped just above the tops of brush piles are best now for crappie. Big bluegill at hitting crickets off docks. Bass and walleye fishing is the best at this time. The lake in general is in excellent condition, just too high but much better than a few weeks ago. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service. That is one good picture. Image title

The lake level is 569.05 and has dropped 1-3/4 inch in the last 24-hours with generation about 80% of the time. We received about 3/4 inch yesterday morning about 10:30 AM and it rained hard for several minutes and then quit. It was badly needed and really greened things up again. It all sank in and settled a lot of dust. We are below average rainfall again so far in July. The lake is in very good condition and the main lake is clear with the creeks stained a little but also clear near the shore. The surface water temperature remains between 85 and 86 degrees. More wood is showing up everyday near the bank with the dropping water level and people are still hitting stuff with their boats going too close to shore. The floating debris is almost gone. When dragging those overweight children around on chaise lounges it is best to stay in the main channel. I guest skiing is a lost art and requires too much effort but you do not see much of it anymore. Fishing remains the same and is normal for the middle of July. Walleye and bass fishing is the best with some stripers being caught and killed fishing deep. They are still getting smaller and smaller. The striper guides are going to have to learn how to catch bass, walleye and crappie or go out of business if they keep this up or try to convince people that a 6-9 pound striper is big.The high water and low oxygen levels in August and early September are not helping things any either. Typically we get the hottest time of the year the last week of July and first week in August when the ambient temperatures get to near 100 degrees and the lake surface water gets to 90 degrees. So far we have not been near that. The Norfork Lake Striper Club has a dissolved ozygen meter and give periodic reports on levels. It is good information and lets us know what to expect as far as striper kills are concerned. Some places near the dam go to zero or nearly so and the fish there move north, go dormant,die or all of the above. It is not a pretty sight to see them floating. Some of this is also caused by fishermen trying to release small ones after being brought up out of deep water. They may look ok and swim away but will die later due to the stress of being caught and the water temperature near the surface. The answer is to not fish in deep water. I do not know the % that float or sink but I suspect the sinking ones are a lot more. The Game and Fish did resume normal stockings this year after being unable to last year due to Covid. It will take a few years to get the big ones back even if they would quit flooding the lake every year and holding it up all summer. I wish they would change the legal limit to two stripers and hybrids total. What is legal is one thing and what is good conservation is another. All of the species of fish that reproduce in Norfork Lake are doing well except the White Bass and they are starting to come back after the kill-off a couple of years ago.  They used to be plentiful and were the go to fish when people could not catch anything else but not anymore. They will be back though. A lot of things have changed the last several years with the lake level management refusing to adapt to the changes. They still think it is 1960 but that is what happens when you let governmnet run things. They move slowly. Very slowly. The exception here are the biologists at Arkansas game and Fish, especially local, that care a lot about the lakes and fisheries and work hard to make them the best they can. I really appreciate them.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 569.49 and has dropped a little less than 3-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 80% of the time. They could have done this all along if they wanted to without hurting anybody. The surface water temperature is 84-85 degrees and has been fairly stable for quite some time. The main lake is clear and the creeks vary from clear to stained almost daily. Any debris is mostly stuck to the bank now with the dropping water but now some wood that was submerged is starting to surface. The lake has dropped about 3-1/2 feet from it's high earlier this summer. The lake overall is in good condition. Scuba divers are getting both crappie and walleye. Bink is really on the walleye in just over 30-ft. of water on the bottom with a jigging spoon. Trollers are getting some stripers but they are getting smaller and smaller. Overall fishing is just fair but some are being caught everyday. We are to get rain starting tomorrow and continuing until early next week but not a lot. We sure can use it. The weather has been beautiful and people are having fun. Blackburns big swimming pool with slide is the busiest place in town. Everyone here at Blackburns has had their Covid shots but if you have not you can social distance here as all of our cabins are individual with no duplexes or common porches. You do not have to get close to anybody. Veterans and police are especially welcome here. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing out of Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental with Bink's Guide Service. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 569.74 and is dropping a little more with generation most of the time. The surface water temperature is 86 degrees and the weather has been beautiful. It is to get warmer for the next couple of days and then another good chance of rain for the weekend continuing until early next week. The last time this was predicted we got nothing. It is very dry here and we have received below average rainfall for the last two months. The main lake looks very clear from the surface but there is a mud line right around the thernocline which is normal for this time of year. A lot of fish ar at this depth of about 26-feet. It is a good place to look for walleye, bass and crappie. Others are deep, schooled and suspend about 60+ feet down in 100ft. of water.  People are still fishing for the deep stripers and killing all of them. Several in the 8-9 pound range are being caught. It would be good if this water level would drop soon and allow the bigger ones that are left to grow for next year. The ones being caught now are getting smaller and smaller. This is being caused by over fishing and high water levels for extended periods of time causing very low oxygen levels. Maybe the new strain of stripers brought here from North carolina by Game and Fish will help them survive better. They are doing the best they can. Bass and walleye are the best bite now with a few big crappie and bluegill being caught. Catfishing is fair on live bluegill on drop-shotted jugs and throw lines. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570 even and has dropped two inches in the last 24-hours with about the same generation time. It took over six days for the lake to drop the last foot. At this rate it will be late October before we reach the new power pool of 553.75. It was 552 before the worthless minimun flow law for the put and take trout on the rivers took away 1.75 ft. of flood capacity and changed the way the percent of flood storage is calculated resulting in less being discharged. It may go faster as the lake draws down the bowl resulting in quicker drops with the same amount of generation. This is all predicated on the assumption that we do not get much rain. It has been very dry the last couple of months.  One big rain in the Norfork river basin could change all of this. Never the less the lake is in good condition for boating and swimming and mostly just campgrounds, swim beaches, launching and parking being affected.  It makes it tough for the day users but people staying at resorts not so much. Some resorts have more parking than others and better launching facilities. During the week things are not so crowded. Blackburns still has two cabins available for Labor day weekend . We were full but had cancellations. We are normally the first resort to fill up with people taking advantage of the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals. Many of our guests are regular customers and we do not want to charge them too much. Veterans and Police are expecially welcome here. The lake remains clear with a surface water temperature of 85 and most of the debris is sticking to the windblown banks with the dropping water level but it is still a good idea to check out the area carefully before you drag children through it. A few logs are starting to appear that were once submerged. The lake is down about three feet from it's high earlier. Fishing remains the same with a thermocline at about 25-ft  with several fish at or around this level. Spooning is the best fishing technique but bass fishermen are catching some good ones in the evening on salt craws. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Blackburns new friends caught some good ones fishing with Bink's Guide Service this morning. We will see what the rest of the group does tomorrow. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.12 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. The surface water temperature is 85 degrees and the water appears to be clear from the surface but the visibility is not good at the thermocline at 25-feet. Divers are getting some nice walleye though.  Some bass are schooled up on shad in open water and are the best bite now, followed by walleye and a few stripers and crappie. Bluegill are still under docks and around willows on the main lake. Spoons are the best bait but trollers are catching some also. I do not troll and I like to feel the initial bite and set the hook, not just pick up a rod out of the rod holder. I can barely handle one rod at a time but do not miss very many fish. If I drug around 6-8 lines I would have everything messed up. The weather has been very cool for July and is pleasant. It is to get hot again later this week but not a lot of chance for rain. The lake is in excellent condition for swimming and boating and Blackburns has another group of nice people.  We like that. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.35 and has dropped about 1-3/4 inch in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. The new news is we missed the storm and rain. We got nothing. It went way south of us and left us dry. I went down and triple tied all of the boats, tightened up the dock cables and lowered the bimini pontoon tops and am glad I did not need to. There is a good chance of pop up showers today but it is much cooler. It is to get hot again later this week with highs in the mid 90's. 90 is the normal high for this date. We need some rain badly. The lake is in good condition and clear despite the high level with a surface water temperature in the mid 80's. It is usually 90 by the first of August. The thermocline is at 25-ft. and the visibility was not the best there. There were some fish that came up this morning after the low pressure moved in and were sporatic so still keep a top-water lure handy. If not, throw that spoon at them and hop it back keeping it from sinking rapidly.  Striper fishing was a bit slower for the bigger fish but some were still caught about 50-60 feet down. Many other species are in 30-ft. near brush. Bass are still coming to the old shoreline to feed in the evenings. Some very large crappie are being caught on the spoon also in 30-ft. This is not the best time for fishing but you can catch some good ones if you know what you are doing. They are catching a lot of nice bluegill off the dock with a few crappie and catfish. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.55 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. We are to get rain late this afternoon and tonight with wind. It could be significant. We need the rain but they can keep the wind. It is getting dry and dusty. The normal high is now 90 degrees and the surface water temperature is still in the mid 80's with clear water on the main lake and the creeks varying from day to day from very clear to stained a little green in the shallower water. The old shore line from before the spring level rise is now at about 18-feet and you need to be deeper from that when swimming from a boat to prevent jumping into brush. All beaches are well under water and there is no sense going very far from where you are staying to swim or boat as there is not anything different to see and you will just burn up high $ gas. No alcohol regular gas is now over $3 per gallon in town and much higher at marinas. I like to use premium unleaded no aclohol in my boats but wow does it cost a lot just since the election. People are excited to get out on the lake when they first get here and run all over the lake and drag everything they can hook up to. Then they fill up with gas, get a big suprise, and then go into coves and tie up and swim around the boat. It happens over and over. I still advise to not boat after dark especially in high water. I am not allowing any of my rental boats to be out after dark or drag anything. If you want to do that, other boat rental places may allow it and you can stay at Blackburns and rent boats somewhere else. We certainly do not mind. It is best to check prices first so you do not allow wants to exceed budget. Not much has changed as fishing goes but the fish are going deeper as the thermocline drops and the water warms. It is a typical July. I have to go to the dock and tighten the cables and triple tie the boats. They are saying 100% for the rain chances and it is clouding up already. Some nice fish are being caught everyday but there are not a lot of fishermen. Most are families enjoying the lake and our big pool with slide. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink's Guide Service.Image title

The lake level is 570.71 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with a little less generation. If it does not rain much and they keep up this stupid lake management we should be at normal levels by October. Then they will not draw it down in the winter and we can begin high water again with the spring rains. Hold and hope. Sounds like a government plan to me that really wants launches, parking, campgrounds and swimming areas covered with water and then blame it on rain. The only thing that makes things work now is a drought. This is not going to change until people really start complaining to their congressmen. There are some people that this does not bother much and continue to support the current rules. It is not a matter of whether you flood out the farmers or the lake, it is a matter of smart management. My dog is smart and could do a better job.  I am so tired of people saying that is what the lakes are for to hold water. The lakes are for flood control. Smart flood control. They give you a choice of how do you want your steak, raw or burned, and have people take sides. It should be medium. The government just reacts to problems by saying they will do a study and then three or four years later they start the public comments to test the waters. This is how they do everything. We are years away from any changes if we start now. I am not sure why the creeks go from very clear to stained overnight with no changes in weather. The main lake is consistenly clear and has been for several months and the creeks change almost daily but it does not hurt anything. Some days I can see near the bottom at my dock which is in a little over 30-ft. of water and some I cannot see down 3-4 feet. There are a lot of fish under there though. Fishing has not changed with the stripers deep and the walleye in 32-ft. of water on main lake points. Crappie are under docks and on mainlake dropoffs near any wood. Bass move into the old shoreline in the evening. Big bluegill are also undwer docks and under main lake willow patches. This is all normal. Water surface temperature remains at 85 degrees. The lake overall is in good condition.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.85 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. It took 8-days to drop the last foot with almost no rainfall and dry conditions. The bowl is getting a little smaller and the level should drop more even though they do not generate more. The lower it gets the faster it drops. The very top is the hardest part especially when there is no effort to drop. The surface water temperature is 85 degrees and the lake is clearing after the holiday traffic. It is as clear as it has been in years. If the lake level gets into the 550's it looks to be very good fishing in the fall when the brush piles get back to the right level. I started putting in brush piles shallower a few years ago when they changed the water level management and started keeping the lake flooded all spring and summer.  There is a limit to how effective this is when the level of the old shoreline is in 20-25 ft. of water and there is cover everywhere. I like to put in cover on main lake points on rocky banks with no buckbrush where the fish can get to deep water quickly. Walleye and crappie like that. Stripers are mostly on shad but also like just outside brush on drop-offs. Stripers are now in deep water, over 100-ft., suspended 60-80-ft. down and can be caught on 1-ounce spoons. Walleye are on main lake points in 32-ft. of water near the bottom and are also biting jigging spoons. The Game and Fish made a run to North carolina and brought back 220,000 fingerling stripers to stock. One third of them have gone in Norfork. Maybe these fish will be more suitable to high water and low ozygen level in the summer. I hope so. Those guys really care about the area lakes and do a great job. A lot of people like to catch stripers and come here just for that. It would be nice to have the numbers of 20-30 pounders back to where they were. Instead, they just continue to kill smaller and smaller ones and convince people they are big when they are not. I do not fish for them in the summer when they are deep as all of them die and releasing them does no good. Crappie are showing up under docks in the shade as are big bluegill. Some big crappie are just off steep banks on the main lake at the drop-off. It is a typical July for fishing. Bass are coming into the bank in the evening to feed on this year's spawn and can be caught on spinner baits, swim baits, salt craws and crank baits. Plan on losing some lures in the brush. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink. There are still a few left but people just keep killing those small ones and bragging about it. Image title

The lake level is 571.03 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. They are holding the White River at Newport to below 12-feet when it should be at 14-ft. Minor flood stage there is 23-ft and they are protecting nobody from anything but are doing a great job of holding the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible. At this rate we will be at 561 or better by Labor Day and still be 7-8 feet above power pool by then if we do not get much more rain. We have been fortunate to have had below normal rainfall for several weeks and it is getting dry and dusty. Bull Shoals had a drowning and Norfork had a bad wakeboard accident yesterday so be carefull and do not go out after dark and check out the area before you start dragging people with your boats. There is still some debris but not a lot. The water is clearing quickly after the holiday churning and is in good condition with a surface temperature of about 85-degrees. The weather is to get into the low 90's today and mid 90's later this week. Typical July. Normal high is 89 and low is 67. The lake traffic is still right up there and most of the better resorts are full. At least the ones with docks and swimming pools.  The town traffic is very busy and you can avoid most of it by staying home from between a little after 4:PM and 5:30 Pm. They are peddling those little cars very fast along 62 and the bypass during those times just like the big cities. It certainly is not like it used to be. I do not think we need to recruit any more tourists or more people to move here. I used to know almost everybody in town and now can go into Walmart and not see anybody I know. What a change. Highway 62-412 was a 2-lane road by Blackburns corner and I hardly had to stop for oncoming traffic before pulling out. Now it is five lanes and sometimes requires a long wait. The was no bypass and all traffic, including big trucks, had to go through town. Traffic is getting bad despite all of these so called improvements. My property tax has increased three fold and sales tax has increased dramatically. I guess that is progress. I am not sure I like progress very much but there is no better place to go. Things will get better come late fall and winter when I can fish every day. That makes things better. A lot better.  At least for me.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.19 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. They are holding the White River at Newport at below 12-feet despite the dry conditions. The lake is clearing already after the churning on the extended weekend. It will be fine in a couple of days. It is to get hot starting tomorrow and will be typical July weather. The lake surface water temperature is in the mid 80's and the normal ambient high is 89 degrees and we will be ahead of that for the next several days with just a little chance of pop up showers in the heat of the day. Blackburns is full of nice people and it looks to be a good week. Only one more holiday to go and then the fishermen can have the lake back. The lake is getting busier and busier every year and the boats are getting bigger and bigger. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service.Image title

James with some nice White Bass. They are starting to make a comeback and I am glad. People like to catch them and they are not stocked. Image title

The lake level is 571.35 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. The White River at Newport has dropped to just below 11-feet and nobody knows why they continue to hold the area lakes up for so high for so long for absolurely no reason. It is dry here and nothing close is anywhere near flooding. Someone needs to be held accountable and be removed from their position. It was as busy as I have ever seen it on the lake this weekend and continues to be so. It will be over by this evening and we can expect another onslaught for Labor day with all of the calls for boats and cabins coming in. Everyone seems to have money and willing to spend it. The Mountain home ecomony is flourishing and sales tax revenues are setting records every month. Town traffic is like a big city.  I cannot imagine what it would be like if the water was not high and the campgrounds were all open and the gas prices were not so high. They have gone up about $1.20 per gallon since the election.  People are making the best of it and having fun despite these headwinds.  There is still some debris out there so be carefull and boating after dark is not recommended but mostly the lake is in good shape and will clear again after the boat traffic slows down this evening. Fishermen going out in the early morning are still doing pretty well. Stripers, hybrids, walleye, crappie, bluegill and catfish are all being caught every day. The surface water temperature is still just over 84-degrees and should rise as the ambient temperatures rise into the 90's later this week and the weather looks good so far. Our pets have come out from under the bed finally and I am glad the fireworks are over for another year. They do not like them and are scared and they lasted well into the night. I doubt the people shooting them had to go to work this morning. We do.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

James and Mike caught some good ones yestersay. Bink is now on the walleye.Image title

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The lake level is 571.51 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 70% of the time. They have now dropped the White River at Newport to less than 12-feet and have done a great job of holding the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible. They have now held them past the 4th of July and are going for labor day. Great managers. We should put them in charge of the post office. If we keep getting lower than average rainfall they may have to completely dry up the White River to keep holding. You would think they need electricity somewhere in the southwest power administration's grid. Guess not. It is a plastic river anyway and has no flow except for the mimimum flow for the put and take trout, which took away 1.75 feet of flood storage, if they quit generating. We need the government to take over more stuff. The town and lake is more crowded than I have ever seen it in 27-years. Trucks and trailers were parked all the way to highway 101 from the Panther Bay boat launch. I hope the peole ramming the jet skis clear back in Blackburns creek right in front of the dock are safe. I was afraid they would hit the no wake buoys as they went flying by. The people that went out fishing yesterday before the onslaught did well on spoons and swim baits. Walleye are showing up as predicted as are stripers, hybrids, crappie, bluegill, catfish and bass. Check out the points in front of middle pigeon and east pigeon creeks in 20-25 ft. of water. The water surface temperature is still about 84 and the water is cloudy after being churned up by all of the boats. It will clear up again about July 7th. The weather has been beautiful and Blackburns has a very nice group of people in again this week. We have been culling them for 27-years now and almost all of the not so nice ones have moved on and replaced. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Here we are the 3rd of July already. The town filled up last night and many more are coming today. Traffic is congested and everything is very busy. Launching ramps are crowded with limited parking and jet skis and big boats are everywhere. I thought Lake of the Ozarks had all the big boats but some are now migrating to Norfork. It is like they are playing tag with no wake buoys and seem to see how far back in the creeks they can go and how many docks they can wake. Everyone seems to have a lot of money and are willing to pay the high gas prices, at least for the first day until they remember how much it costs to fill up and then there will be a lot of them tied up together in the creeks with the music playing battle of the bands. Looks like fun to me but I am too old and will stick to just fishing and surrender the holidays. The lake level is 571.64 and has dropped about 1-1/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 60% of the time. They are doing a great job of holding the White River at Newport to 12-ft. and keeping the area lakes as high as possible for as long as possible. Campgrounds are very limited with water over most of them. It is best to stay at a place where you can launch your boat and keep it in a dock stall until ready to leave or rent one that comes with a stall.  The weather looks to be great with light winds and temperatures in the low to mid 80's and sunny. I hope everyone has a good time and stays safe. We will see what Monday brings.  If you are in a fishing boat and see a big boat with steep sides and a tower on top turn and get away from it as soon as possible. They will swamp you. They make big wakes.  Things are changing here at Mountain Home and Norfork Lake. I hope it is for the best. Business is good but that is not everything. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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Caught yesterday fishing with BinkImage title

The lake level is 571.74 and has dropped 3/4 inch in the last 24-hours with generation about 70% of the time. We received about 0.8 inches of badly need rain yesterday and it was cloudy and came slowly and all of it sank in with no wind. We were a little below average for rainfall for the month of june and there is no reason  to keep the area lakes up so high for so long. They must just like it that way. Just a couple of feet drop would do a lot of good but they refuse to do so. Fishing was a little better with the clouds  and cooler weather yesterday. The surface water temperature is still in the mid 80's and it looks to be very nice weather for the holiday unlike Memorial Day. If the number of phone calls for cabins and boat rental is any indication, it will be very busy on Norfork lake. The traffic in town is already building and it is like a big city at around 5:Pm. Not much has changed with regards to fishing and the main lake is very clear and the creeks vary day by day but are mostly clear. The boat raffic will churn things up and drop clarity, especially on mud and gravel banks. Diving conditions will get better after the holiday and things have a chance to settle out again. I am ready for the 4th to be over already. Better get out there early and get a stall somewhere to park your boat or otherwise you will be going a mile to park your trailer and a long wait to launch. Things will be better Monday morning. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 571.98 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 2/3 the time. The surface water temperature is in the mid 80's and the water is clear. Fishing overall is just fair with the stripers going deeper and the top-water bite slowing way down in the morning. Some fish are on the shallower brush piles, some on main lake points at the 23-ft. thermocline, some on the old lake shore before the rise, some in open water on shad and some stripers just on the bottom doing nothing and a few bass coming up at sunrise for just a bit. Catfish are biting on limblines, jugs and trotlines back in the creeks on live bait. Bait up just before dark to keep the turtles and herons from taking your bait. Cut bait is cheap but is not catching much. It looks to be very busy out there this week and I will be glad when it is over. The lake is in good condition for boating, swimming and fishing but the high water will make it tough for day users. Launching, swimming, camping and parking will be severely restricted. It is best to stay at a resort and use their dock and parking whether you rent a boat or bring your own. Make sure the place you stay has a swimming pool, dock and rental boats. Many do not. Some try to pretend they have boat rentals but are just actually sending you to a marina and have none. Many others do not have a dock and also send you to a marina to park your boat. You have to be careful.  There will be lots of law enforcement out there and needs to be to keep everyone safe. Do not come on vacation and leave on probation. Many have.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday on the spoon.Image title

The lake level is 572.14 and has dropped about 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are still holding the White River at 12-ft. stubbornly at Newport and have missed many chances to drop the area lakes. We are below average rainfall for June. We have been in a pattern of warm sunny days with pop up showers during the heat of the day. Just enough to keep things green. It is hard to believe that the 4th of July is this weekend and it is only about six weeks until school starts. Town traffic is building already and it looks to be a very busy week. People are tired of being restricted because of covid and are really wanting to get out of the city and away and Norfork Lake is a good destination. Overall fishing is not the best now but several temperate bass are being caught both by trollers and spoon fisherment in 50-80 ft. of water. All fish caught in this manner die after being stressed by fighting in warm water and coming up fast out of deep water with low oxygen. Bass fishing is just fair as is the crappie bite. Catfishing is a little better as is bluegill fishing. Usually some walleye are with the stripers in deep water but that does not seem to be the case now. Some are being caught off main lake points at the thermocline which is about 23-ft on the spoon but not a lot there either. There is just a lot of bass fry and other bait fish in the cover on the old shoreline at about 20-ft. so game fish are scattered out all over with lots of cover and food. Usually stripers and walleye are caught regularly in the heat of the summer deep as the water temperature gets into the high 80's. It will be interesting to see what happens this year. We will see what july and august brings. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Nice group of fellows staying at Blackburns and fishing with Bink's Guide Service. Caught this morning on the spoon.Image title

The lake level is 572.35 and is dropping a little less than 2-inches in a 24-hour period with generation over 1/2 the time. It is dry here but we have a good chance of rain for the next several days. The surface water temperature is in the mid 80's and the water is clear. The top-water bite early for bass and a few hybrids continues a little but does not last very long. After than go to the jigging spoon. Not much has changed as far as fishing goes but the lake gets busy on the weekends and will be very busy with the holiday coming up. I will be glad when it is over and then on to Labor Day. This year is going very quickly and it has been very busy so far. The area is thriving and people are really anxious to get away after being cooped up because of Covid. We have all been vaccinated here and hope you have also. We need to get it behind us. Prices are really going up on everything. Gas, lumber, insurance, taxes, fuel, food, appliances, boat parts and about everything else are making it hard to hold them low but we are doing everything we can here at Blackburns to try and keep our repeat customers and friends from paying too much while still making improvements. You can still expect to see the $59/day one bedroom cabins again this fall after Labor day for as long as we can possible hold them. Other people are steadily raising.  The lake in general is in excellent condition despite the high level and clarity remains very good for swimming and boating and fishing. Early bite is the best and at least the moon is getting smaller. People are catching a few nice crappie, several big bluegill and a few catfish along with the small stripers, a few hybrids and several bass. It is a typical late june fishing. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 573 even and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours with a little more generation. They have not generated since last night. It is dry all around here and there is no concerted effort to drop the area lakes. There is no flooding anywhere near here. One inch per day just does not get it. We have had beautiful weather but that could change with a chance of rain and thundershowers starting about thursday and continuing until about tuesday of next week. Nothing looks serious so far. The lake is in good condition for boating, fishing, diving and swimming and is very clear. Stripers, bass, catfish, crappie and bluegill are all coming in every day but not a lot. The early morning bite is still the best and is over about 9:Am. The surface water temperature is in the early 80's. Stripers are going deeper especially the larger ones that are left. Other fish are on the main lake points and also on the old shoreline in cover. If they keep the lakes high in the vegetation all summer I anticipate another stripers kill with the oxygen depletion in late august and september. If they continue to to allow the lakes to stay high for so long like they have for the last several years it is almost not worth it to stock stripers anymore. Hybrids can handle the stress better. Walleye are getting a little scarce but divers are seeing them on main lake points in 17-22 ft. of water. Big schools of bass fry are in the cover and are everywhere and that is good. Everything is good overall here except for launching and parking and it will be a mess on the 4th of July at the launches that are still in service. I will not be out there that weekend unless I have to. We are getting about a hundred calls a day for people wanting that weekend. I certainly do not have time to go fishing but want to very bad, especially diving.  I have to rely on the good fishermen and divers that give me a report daily and I have some good ones.  I will be out there when things slow down.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.11 and is up just a bit from this time yesterday. There was a little generation yesterday afternoon and we recieved about 0.7 inches of badly needed rain. It all soaked in and came slowly. It is cool this morning with temperatures in the high 50's and is to be a very nice day. It is to warm up and be sunny for a couple of days and then get hot again with rain again later in the week and during the weekend. Everything is fine here with the lake in good condition except for the high water restricting launching, parking and swim areas. They just will not let hardly any water out. Fishing is fair early at first light for top-water and then jigging spoons deep after that until about 9:AM. The larger stripers are deep. Some bass can be caught on the old shoreline in the brush and crappie and bluegill are under docks and around the main lake willows. Catfish on Jugs and limblines are fair on live bait. Not much is changing except the stripers are going deeper and the water surface temperature is at about 85 degrees. The lake is not nearly as busy during the week and it is a good time to go out there and avoid the weekend crowd. Sorry we do not allow tents, campers, fireworks and camp fires here at Blackburns. Others do and you will be happier there if that is what you want. Only resort guests are permitted to rent boats. That is a Corps Of Engineer rule. I do not know where it came from but special interest must be involved somewhere. Wow it is busy here.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.11 and has risen a little less than 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with minimum generation. They continue to hold the White River at Newport to around 12-ft for no reason. The other area lakes are dropping slowly. It is very dark out with thunder and light rain so far today. It is very dry and we can take the expected nearly one inch without any trouble. Sunny skies and cooler weather is scheduled for tomorrow with warm coming again for the weekend with more rain. There is absolutely no reason not to be generating more. The water is clear and warm and people are enjoying the lake. It was busy last weekend and looks to continue through the summer. Blackburns has a couple of cabins available for Labor Day and the same for the Bass Cat Tournament in October. Better give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115  to book you place to stay. Bink reports his fishing day is from 5-9 AM with one to two hours of top-water bite early and then the stripers are going deep near the bottom in 60-80 ft. of water. The bigger fish are deep. Walleye are near the thermocline is 20-23 feet of water near the bottom on main lake points and are roaming in pairs. Crappie and bluegill are under docks and catfish are biting on live bait on jugs and limb lines. Bass are on the old shoreline in cover and on shad in open water. The 87-degree water is making fishing conditions like the end of July. We were behind on the calendar with water temperature and are now ahead with the dry hot weather. Normal high is 85-degrees.  The lake overall is in good condition and is just high. Too high. The dam managers need to be fired and incarcerated. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 573.06 and is the same as this time yesterday with very little generation. It is dry here and not much inflow coming in from the Norfork River. They are dropping all of the other area lakes but still refuse to drop the stepchild Norfork while holding the White River at Newport to right at 12-feet for absolutely no reason. The lake remains clear with a surface water temperature in of 86-87 degrees. We are to get some badly needed rain tomorrow and cooler weather after that. The normal high is 85. The boat traffic is increasing as we approach the next holiday and a busy one is expected. We are getting about 100 calls a day for people wanting boat rentals and cabins for the weekend. Even the resorts with no swimming pool or boat dock are going to be busy. Blackburns is the first resort to fill up so if you are looking to come to Norfork for Labor Day now is the time to reserve so you can get the cabin and boat of your choice and not be disappointed and have to pay much more elsewhere and take left overs. Not much is changing as far as fishing goes except the fish are going deeper and the top-water bite is getting shorter. A lot of fish are under docks and on the old shoreline with the bass fry in cover and the rest are on shad in open water. Some bass are around the bridge piers in the shade but that has always been the case and has been for years. It is the place where the guides that fish this area go to last before they come in. I do not fish them much but they do hold fish. I put brush around the first one from the west as you come under the 62 bridge by boat from the north. It holds big bluegill and walleye. I put a place to tie off but someone broke it off. There is a hole around the bottom of the pier where the dirt has washed away and fish like it there. The walleye are not big but the bluegill are. They are killing a lot of stripers and they are getting smaller and smaller and it is sad to see that but the other fish are all doing well and the white bass are making a comeback. There are a lot of fish in Norfork but the boaters dragging stuff and jet skis are taking over for the summer. Watch out for dive flags and give them a wide berth. (Especialy mine) and do not use them as targets as some jet skiers do. There is room for everybody out there.    

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.06 and is up just a bit in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They are dropping Table Rock and Bull Shoals a little while holding the White River at Newport to just over 12-feet and mostly keeping the drain plug in Norfork. It is getting very dry here and our next chance for rain is on Monday with more sunshine and dry conditions after that and a little cooler. We just need to keep away from the storms.  This holding and hoping is now borderline criimal incompetence and the only thing keeping them out of trouble is the dry conditions. They like to keep the levels just one big rain away from opening the flood gates and keeping the swim beaches and campgrounds flooded all summer. I am sure some people in the Southwest Power Administration service area could use some electricity somewhere. The same people running the dam management must be the same people running the post office and the Veterans administration. We need government in charge of more stuff. I talked to some divers yesterday and they said the lake was as clear as they have seen it in years and the visibility was good. A lot of fish are in the 20-ft. range just above the thermocline. The surface water temperature is 86 degrees. There is still a little debris out there with a few logs floating so watch out. It is a good idea to not be boating after dark. The lake overall is in good condition and people are having a lot of fun. Fishermen are still catching top-water fish at first light for a couple of hours and then spooning main lake points after that until about 9:Am and then takng the middle of the day off and then going out again in the evening. Not a lot of people are fishing during the day at least the ones staying here at Blackburns. Most are enjoying the lake and the big pool and having family time with their fathers. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink. Image title

The lake level is 573.04 and is rising slowly with not much generation. All of the other area lakes are dropping slowly. They now have the White River at Newport at 12-feet and are stubbornly holding up Norfork. These boys know no other policy than hold and hope. It is getting very dry here and I have to irrigate. Take the plug out boys you have done enough damage. The lake surface water temperature is in the mid 80's and the thermocline is dropping to the mid 20's with cold water under that. A lot of fish are at or near that depth and near the old shore line. The lake is about 20-ft. high.  Some crappie and bluegill are being caught but stripers and bass are the best bite early on top-water. They start early and quit early. This bite will diminish as the fish go deeper in openwater. Some walleye are at the thermocline near the bottom on main lake points and some are with the shad. It seems more walleye are on shad than before with the absence of the big stripers. Same goes for crappie. The fish change when the striper numbers are lower. Also there are not nearly as many shad due to the kill this winter. More died than I originally thought but they will come back fast as the threadfin spawn multiple times a year. There are bass fry everywhere and they have a lot of cover to survive. Bass numbers and size continue to increase on Norfork. There are more 5-6 pound bass showing up than I have ever seen. A lot of crappie were caught this spring but there are plenty more. People trolling for stripers caught several of them accidently when the lake was not so high. They are scattered and not easily caught now. Some very nice catfish and bluegill are being caught back in the creeks and off docks. A lot of people are getting sunburns out there so take precautions. It is July weather in the middle of June. Come on down to Blackburns. We will not charge you too much. We have plenty of parking and covered porches are very important now. Be sure you ask if places have a boat dock and pool. Many do not. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.02 and is still rising slowly with just a few hours of generation. It is getting dry and they are doing a great job of holding Norfork Lake up as high as possible for as long as possible. Congratulation for allowing it to get to 573. I was not sure they could make it but they are determined.  The White River at Newport is holding at 13-ft and minor flood stage is 23-ft. Go figure. They could drop it anytime they wanted.  All of the other area lakes are dropping slowly. The main lake remains clear and the creeks vary from stained to clear almost daily. The surface temperature is now 85-degrees and just right for boating and swimming. The best bite continues to be early for top-water fish and then switch to jigging spoons and hit the main lake points. The thermocline is 22-ft and will continue to drop until it reaches about 30-31 feet with the hot weather. It seldom  goes much deeper than that. There are always some reports of it going to 40-45 ft. but I have been diving Norfork for 25-years and have never seen it that deep. They are just looking at their fish finders and thinking the line they see is the thermocline. You have to have a camera with water temperature or a fish and temp or go down there to tell where it is.  Walleye will be on the bottom at or near it now but some will go deep and stay there with the stripers. People are now quoting the article written by Game and Fish that is is good for the lake to kill stripers. What I read it to say was they all die when coming up from deep water so do not cull and just keep your first three and do not keep catching and releasing them They may look ok when released but are severely stressed and die later. The old tale of venting them does not work. It allows them to go down right then but they later die. If you are a meat hunter fish for them in deep water. If you are a sportsman do not. They do not dress out very well anyway after the red meat is cut out.  I would like to see the limit dropped to two until the big ones come back, if they ever will with the continuous over fishing and high water. It looks to be a busy summer and it has not officially started yet. Debbie is getting over a hundred calls a day so if you do not want to pay way too much elsewhere better book at Blackburns now. People are hedging and then the cabin is full when they finally make up their minds. We want everyone to be happy and enjoy their vacation and do everything we can to make that happen. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. I certainly do not have time for fishing or diving now but I get reports daily from some good fishermen and divers. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught by Mike Eakle.Image title

The lake level is 572.98 and has risen 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with just a bit of generation. Not enough to even take care of the normal summer river inflow. The rule is: Regulate Newport to 12-feet, (nobody knows why there is this stupid rile) If the four-lake system is has 70% or more flood storage in use (we are way above that) regulate to 14-feet. It is now 13-feet and was 12-ft. yesterday. I have to irrigate my garden and the roads are dusty and they are still holding and hoping and trying to hold the lakes up as high as they can for as long as they can. The rules were made during the Harry Truman and Dwight Eisenhower administrations and must be cast in stone forever. No need for review as long as the tax revenue keeps coming in. It is hot and dry and it looks like it will stay that way until about next Monday. It is great for boaters and swimmers with highs in the low to mid 90's and the lake is in good condition despite the high level. I want to go diving but it is just too busy here but we still have one cabin open for rent. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. The early morning top-water bite for hybrids, small stripers and bass is pretty good but is over by about 6:45 AM. When they go down move to main lake points and get out the jigging spoon. Take the middle of the day off and then go out again about 6:PM until sunset. Morning bite is best. We do not fish for fish deep here as we release most fish and they all die coming up out of deep water. What our customers do is up to them but a big bluegill fillet on a couple of pieces of buttered bread with a slice of onion and some pepper is not bad though. The surface water temperature is about 82 degrees and just right for boating, swimming and diving.  Give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115 and she will try and work you in best she can.  Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental best place best price closest to Mountain Home, dining and shopping on 28-acres with a flat green valley with big playground and large pool with slide.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 572.94 and has risen about 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with very little generation. The White River at Newport is now at 13-feet and still they keep the drain plug in. They have also cut way back on the discharge there. We are to have very little chance of rain for the next week and it is hot about everywhere so they surely must need some electricity somewhere but the policy of hold as much as they can is still in effect. We only had a 10% chance of rain Friday evening when we got 1-1/2 inches and that and 1/2 inch more is all we have had for the month of June and it is 1/2 over. Let some water out boys. The ambient temperatures are to be near 90 for the next week with a lot of sunshine. Good lake weather. The main lake is clear and the creeks are stained a bit and the surface water temperature is 82 degrees. This is the first day of spearfishing season and I wish them well. I would love to go but it is just too busy here. The lake is in the best condition for diving in quite some time. There will be plenty of time for me later. You can get both cabins and dive boats at the best prices here at Blackburns and Scuba Doo dive shop is only 1/2 mile away. We are located in a good diving area and close to everything including shopping and dining. Other places you need to pack a lunch and take a lantern to just get there. Very few good places are available to dive from shore due to high water and to do any swimming for that matter. You need to swim off a boat, off a dock or in a pool. We have all three here at Blackburns. Early top-water bite is still the best and then a jigging spoon next. Several small stripers are being caught and a very few in the 15-lb range. The thermocline is at 22-feet and a lot of fish are around or near that with some bass shallower, especially in the evenings. Catfishing on limb lines and jugs is only fair. Bluegill and crappie off docks is fair. Crickets for bluegill are best. Look for willow trees on both main lake and creeks and fish around them. Spoon main lake points.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Use the spoon after the fish go down.Image title

The lake level is 557.90 and has risen a little less than one inch in the last 24-hours with just a few hours of generation in the afternoon. They are approaching that magical 14-ft. level on the White River at Newport and maybe they will pull the plug for a little bit now. Probably not. They are determined to hold the leves up as high as they can for as long as they can. If they did drop it a little the 12-ft. rule would go into effect further slowing the discharge. That way the level can stay high until the fall no matter how dry it gets. Good plan. Sound like it was made in the 1960's. Gas prices are rising nicely also and getting up there where they should be. It is to remain very warm for the next several days with a high pressure staying over the area and there is very little caance of rain. That 10% chance Friday night got us pretty good though. The surface water temperature has climbed to 80 and it was in the high 60's during Memorial day only a couple od weeks ago. The lake in general is in good condition for both swimming and fishing and the top-water bite is best early just at sunrise. If you are boating just stay in water over 25-ft. to avoid juming off into brush. Anchor in creeks and have a good time. If you tie off on a tree or try to go to the bank you will be on the old shoreline. Better to go out further. If fishing, go out early, take the moddle of the day off and then go back out about 6:Pm and fish until sunset. The evenings are wonderful and pleasant after the sun sets. There is a lot of fun to be had and Blackburns has the best prices on everything. Come on down and we will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 572.84 and has risen about an inch in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They are doing a great job of holding all the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as poissible and increasing the chances of one big rain in the watershed in Missouri taking them over the dams. Good plan. We received 1.5 inches of rain Friday evening in a very short time with a storm with wind. The power was out for a period but is restored now. Several big trees were down in the area around here but fortunately none here at Blackburns. Our beautiful valley is pretty well protected but we do have big trees and it is still a concern. The higher elevations got it the worst.  Local rains do not have much of an effect on lake levels. We have now received just over 2-inches in the month of June. I was just about to start irrigating but no need now. It was getting dry. I have not had time to go fishing but Bink is catching some nice stripers both on top-water and deeper on spoons after they go down. People are also catching bass and crappie off the dock and in Blackburns creek and around Cranfield Island. There is a lot of cleanup going on in the area and people are busy. No shortage of firewood. It is amazing how some people are not concerned about anything except them selves and being inconvenienced. I am just thankfull that I know of nobody being injured in the storm and count my blessings. The electric company worked hard restoring power and called in help from other co-ops. Maybe they should have called in a little more but it was hard to access the damage until Saturday morning and you know how hard it is to get hold of a real person on Saturday morning around here.  Everything is fine.

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 572.47 and has risen about 1.3 inches in the last 24-hours with four hours of generation. The White River at Newport is dropping like a rock and there is no good reason for holding the area lakes this high. We have had just over 0.6 inches of rain so far this month and are one third throught it. The White River is miniscule compared to all of the rivers going into the Mississippi and the area lakes should not be punished because the delta is flooded. It is alway flooded. Everything from the Rocky Mountain to the Appalachians goes into it. Should we hold all the dams? Water released from here takes four days to get to the entrance and cannot catch up to what is going directly into it. 572.47 is starting to hurt. The dams are meant for flood control not just to hold water. It is a good thing it has been fairly dry here but it looks like they actually want to take all of us right up to where they are lapping over the spillway and then release and flood everything downstream.  If some of the rain that has fallen in southern Arkansas came north this last week as predicted that is where we would be now. People learn how to react to hardships but this is not necessary with a decent plan. Hold and hope is not a plan. This is not new and has been going on for several years with nothing being done. You cannot let the government run anything. It is very warm now and the lake surface water temperature is rising rapidly with the warm nights and is in the high 70's. It is very good for swimming. Boating and fishing conditions are good with the best bite being early for top-water for both bass and stripers. Jay Smith took some of our customers out crappie fishing and they did well. He is a good fisherman and a good fellow. Fish are scattered and some are moving into open water on shad and more are on the old shoreline. There is a lot of cover. Look for top-water early and when they go down get out the spoon and vertical jig for them in 20-25 ft. of water. Stripers are going deep after they come up. They do not have to break the surface for the top-water lure to work. It can call them up from several feet if you know where they are. It is warming fast now and the fish will go deeper and deeper as the water warms. Look for pictures of dock floors full of small dead stripers soon when they fish for them deep. They all die when they come out of deep water.  The numbers are going down and down but people just keep killing them. Bass fishing is just fair except for the early top water. Bluegill and catfish are pretty good. Bluegill like the full moon, catfish do not and it is the 24th this month. Come on down to Blackburns. We will not charge you too much. It is to be rain-free for the next week with just a chance of showers. That is good. Make sure your cabin has a covered porch and your resort has a pool. If not. Not so good.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 572.35 and has risen 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running for several hours. Beaver lake is dropping very slowly and remains about 1-1/2 feet from breaching. The rest of the area lakes are rising slowly with dry conditions for the first part of June. There has been very heavy rain south of us and is creating flooding conditions. It was very good that it did not get here as predicted. The lake is clearing more and the surface temperature is rising into the upper 70's. There was a good top-water bite yesterday with people catching fish of all species. Several fish are moving out into open water on shad and trollers are catching and killing a lot of small stripers. It looks like they want to eliminate all of them from the lake so they can go someplace else and decimate another one. At least the normal stocking program has resumed and a new batch will start after the Game and Fish did not stocking any last year because of covid. The high mortality rate due to over fishing and high water seems to affect the bigger ones more than the smaller. People are getting used to catching fish in the 5-9 lb. range now and have forgotten what it used to be like when a 30-pounder was fairly common. At least the bass, crappie and walleye population are very good. The bluegill are very large and plentiful. Catfish are biting on limb lines and throw lines on live bait. The weather remains cloudy and dreary and is to get very warm later this week with highs in the early 90's. The lake overall is in good condition for boating and swimming as well as fishing. Weekend day users are crowding the limited launching and parking and the swim beaches are all gone. It is best to swim off a boat, dock or in a pool and go during the week. The hot weather will bring them out. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 572.26 and has risen 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running for a few hours in the afternoon. They are doing everything they can to keep all of the area lakes up as high as they can for as long as they can. The water in both the main lake and creeks is clear with visibility down several feet. Surface temperature is about 77 degrees and should rise with warm nights and daytine highs near 90 later this week. This is a normal June except for the water level and this is getting to be regarded as normal. People are trying to get used to being flooded but should not have to. This is just an example of poor government management. The heavy rain predicted has not materialized and we have had only 0.6 inches in the last several days but it has been very cloudy. If the lake would drop just three or four feet it would really help things out a lot but fat chance of that with the plug in the drain. Fishing has slowed a bit but some fish are being caught you just have to work for them and get out early. There is still some top-water bite but not as much as it should be. Lots of bait fish are on the old shoreline in ample cover and should have a good survival rate. Blackburns still has the best price on both cabins and boat rentals and has the biggest pool with slide. Check out our prices before you spend too much elsewhere. What you save here could easily pay for your fuel prices even as high as they are. They are up over a dollar since the election. You can watch the birds and other wildlife while setting out on your covered porch in your individual cabin and swim laps in our 30x60 pool. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Some of yesterday's catch.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 572.09 and has risen over two inches in the last 24-hours with a few hours of generation in the afternoon.  So far so good with the predicted heavy rain with just a very little so far. Most of it is going south of us. The lake remains clear and the creeks are clearing again. It is to get very warm later this week and the lake surface temperature is rising to about 76-77 degrees. Many people are swimming in both the lake and pool. The cloudy weather is making for better fishing most of the day. On the sunny days the bite was stopping at about 10:Am  but we are not having any of those for a while. People caught crappie, bass, bluegill, walleye and catfish yesterday out of Blackburns. For several people it was their first time on Norfork. Some very nice catfish were caught on limb lines and jugs. They were using live bluegill. Othere were fishing both main lake points and part way back in the creeks using spoons and swim baits on the old shoreline which is between 20 and 22 feet. Top water is the best right at sunrise for about an hour and then go to the main lake points with a 3/8th spoon for larger fish and old shoreline in 20-ft. for numbers. Several big fish have moved out of the brush.  Cloudy weather is good for top water and it last longer. This is typical early June fishing. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide service Yesterday. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 571.72 and has risen 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with a little generation in the afternoons. All of the area lakes are rising at about the same rates except Beaver which is about stable after they closed the spillway gates. It is still 1-1/2 feet from breeching. It looks like we have a good chance of rain starting this evening and continuing through most of next week. The surface water was 77 degrees in Blackburns Creek yesterday afternoon and 74 on the main lake this morning. It was foggy early but it lifted after sunrise. Fishing was slow Thursday, got a little better Friday and was better again this morning. Walleye, catfish, white bass and smaller hybrids were all biting along with some smaller bass. The bite starts before sunrise and continues until about 10:AM and then quits. The moon is not big and the cloudy skies and warm weather should make them bite a little better during the day. Full moon is the 24th and will make for good bluegill fishing.The lake is a little cool for swimming but more and more are doing it now daily. Blackburns pool was full yesterday. It is very busy here and there is not much time for fishing but there are going to be a lot of them out of here this week. Day users should make plans to get out during the week if possible or launch early. The ramps are very busy weekends with long lines and remote parking. It is not conducive to handicapped people. You have to swim or take a boat to the handicapped fishing dock at Cranfield and the courtesy dock is gone due to high water and it is not getting any better. We can no longer launch here at Blackburns but do have parking near the dock and ask that locals use public areas. Our guests are now launching at Panther Bay and no trailers are allowed at the dock. The lake in general is in good condition and is pretty clear, just high. A little higher will not hurt things much unless we get a big rain all at once.  It looks to be a very busy summer with people wanting to get out. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide service yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 571.24 and has risen 4-inches in the last 24-hours with just a little generation in the afternoons. The surface water temperature has dropped to about 71-degrees but should rise with the warmer weather starting today. This has been a very cool spring with well below average temperatures. The normal high is 81 and low is 60. They are still running Beaver Lake hard and have spillway gates open. It is 1.2 feet from breaching. Table Rock is 9.6 feet, Bull Shoals is 6.8 feet and Norfork is 8.7 feet. All of the area lakes are now one big rain away from trouble but none is in sight. There is just a steady rise except for Beaver which cannot take any more. Day users and campers are in for some disappointments and others some inconvenience on launching and parking. There are no public swim areas open and the old shore line is now over 20-ft. deep. It is best to swim off a dock, boat or in a pool to avoid the brush. Lake access is getting more and more difficult and some courtesy docks are pulled out. Do not expect any relief soon. The lake itself is in good condition with no brown water and just a little debris on wind blown banks that is coming loose from the rising water. Fishing has not been affected and good fish are being caught everyday. Many are on the old shoreline in 20-25 ft. of water and are biting swim baits, top-water lures and spoons. Catfish are hitting limb lines and throw lines on live bluegill. The big bluegill fishing is getting good off docks and if you can find willows. June 11-13 is free fishing weekend and you do not need a fishing license to fish then. It is a good time to get people interested in fishing for free.  

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.87 and has risen over 5-inches in the last 24-hours with about one inch of total rainfall. The creeks run very slowly and there was runoff from the hillsides but nothing big. They are generating just a few hours in the afternoon and allowing Norfork to rise. They also closed the spillway gates on Table Rock but are still running Beaver hard into it and also have spillway gates open to keep the water from going over them. It is only one foot away. Bull Shoals will now not rise so fast but it is running out of room. Bull holds the most water but is also the slowest to drop if it ever does. It will be in the fall before things get to where they should be unless we have a drought all summer.  It is now a balancing act to keep from opening spillway gates on Norfork and Bull Shoals and flooding out the White River below while holding and hoping. The only thing that keeps them from holding more are dam capacities.  There are no management strategies at all. Fishing remains good with most species biting well. Bass, bluegill and small stripers are best. Top-water early and then go to swim baits about 10:Am. 

Norfork Lake fishing report and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 570.44 and has risen over 2-inches in the last 24-hours with a little generation in the afternoons. They are running Beaver and Table Rock hard with spillway gates open on both and really filling Bull Shoals quickly while keeping the plug in Norfork most of the time allowing it to rise with the normal river inflow. It is very dreary and rainy now and is to continue this way for several days with a flash flood watch into tomorrow. When Bull Shoals gets full they will have no place to put anything and will then continue to hold and hope and juggle to try to keep any lake from going over the dam. I hear over and over that is what the dams are for, to hold water. I thought they were for flood control and minimum flow for the put and take trout on the rivers but it is just for holding by their own admission. My official rain fall for the month of May was just over 7-inches when the normal is just under 5-inches. That is not enough to be in the shape we are in but it was higher in other locations. At least we did not get it all at once and the rise has been gradual since late April. The lake clarity is still pretty good and so is fishing especially in the morning. The water did stain up last weekend with the boat traffic but not nearly as much as normal. It was pretty busy Sunday and Monday.  Small stripers and bass are the best bite now with bluegill and catfish not far behind. Several brush piles are too deep with the water in the 570's but fish are in front of them in 20-30 ft. of water with many coming up early. A lot of fish are being caught. The surface water temperature remains in the low to mid 70's and it should rise with the ambient highs to get back to normal which is 80 later this week. Nightime low average is 60.  Top water bite is the best by far but slows way down just after or near 10:AM. Use a top-water lure even though you do not see them surface as it will call them up from several feet. Work points. After that use a swim bait on the old shoreline in brush for about everything. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 567.97 and is dropping between two and three inches everyday with generation most of the time. The surface temperature was 85 when I went out yesterday and the lake seems to be cleraring a bit but the visibility is still not good. Patton at Scuba Doo Dive Shop reports the thermocline is 28-feet. I started spooning a main lake point near the resort and caught about a three pound Kentucky Bass right away and then nothing. I moved inside the cove side of the point in the shade and caught some very nice Warmouth on a Bobby Garland Baby shad. I then went to another main lake point and started spooning again in 23-feet of water and caught three walleye and came in. I was still using the 1/2 ounce Bink's Many Shad Spoon. I do not know why the walleye are at 23 when they are usually right at the thermocline near the bottom. Maybe just because that is where the cover is located on the old shoreline buckbrush. All of the fish were caught near some kind of structure. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Biggest striper of the year caught on the Bink's spoon.Image titleImage titleJerry and Lucy Swink with a nice walleye.

The lake level is 568.22 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation most of the time. The lake is still stained and the surface temperature is 85 degrees. Jerry and Tina Swink caught some nice walleye on their first trip to Norfork. We hope they liked it here. Nice People. I took an hour off after checking out a couple of rental boats and took Bink's and Mike Eakle's advice on where the fish were. They told me to go to main lake points and work them with a jigging spoon at 23-feet. I put on a Bink's 1/2 ounce Many  Shad Spoon and went to a very close point to the resort. I caught three warmouth some nice bluegill and a bass and then moved. When they say 23-feet they mean 23-feet. I caught no fish at 21-feet and none at 25-feet. 23-feet is where the old shoreline buck brush is located  I then caught three walleye just before the rain. I came in and took all of the fish to Tom Kelly's trophy pond. People are catching a lot of big fish out of it and I have to keep it stocked up for them. I do not have a lot of time for fishing right now with Blackburns being so busy but it was nice to be out. My time will come.Fishing will just get better and better until the lake turns sometime in October and then keep getting better again. The lake is still in excellent condition for swimming and boating but needs to drop a few feet for day use accessibility. At least Blackburns has no diminished services including launching but we still have to park the cars at the dock on the road and walk down steps to the dock. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

All of these fish were caught on The Bink's Spoon yesterday and today in 23-ft. of water on main lake points.Image titleImage titleImage titleImage title

The lake level is 568.84 and is dropping a little over 2-inches in 24-hours with generation about 2/3s of the time.  They are holding the twin lakes up as long as they can while reducing the White River at Newport to 11+ feet for no reason. The lake is stained and you can see your lure down about three feet. Bink, James Soltysiac, Mike Eakle and Tom Kelly are catching some nice fish everyday. They are using the Bink's Jigging Spoon on Mainlake points in 23-feet of water and catching crappie, walleye and bass in the mornings early. Over 1/2 of the walleye are short but some nice ones are also being caught.  Tom is also using the split tailed worm for bass. The lake continues to be busy and the very warm summer conditions continue amd the ;ale surface temperature is back up past the mid 80's. Things are looking good here at Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental. Come on down and check us out and we will not charge you too much.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service.Image title

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The lake level is 569.26 and is dropping a little over 2-inches every day with generation about 2/3s the time. The lake became stained a few days ago and remains so. You can see your lure down about three feet. The lake surface temperature has dropped to about 85 degrees with the cooler weather but should go back up with the hot ambient temperature starting tomorrow and continuing into next week. We have passed what is normally our hottest time which is the last of July and the first week in August. We seem to get a rain right when we need it to keep things green but no extra. The lake is in excellent condition for boating and swimming but still too high for beaches. Some more boat launches are opening up and more parking for day users but it is still crowded on the weekends. 560 level is about optimal for the lake level but at this rate we will not get to that until a couple of weeks after Labor day. It does not leave much surge capacity for a big rain though. Trollers are getting some stripers on live bait deep but have to work for them and most are not very big.   Some are in 70+ feet of water and are lethargic. Some walleye are with them but most of them and the bass are just outside of the old shoreline in about 23-25 feet of water near the bottom and around the thermocline. The best bite right now is the bluegill and some of them are very large. They are fun and good eating. The children love to catch them. A few crappie are under docks but the bite is slow at best. Fishing will now get better and better until the lake turns in October and then get good again. I catch a lot of big fish around Thanksgiving and throughout the winter when the lake is lower and my brush piles come back into play.I hope they draw the lake down this winter and not hold it up into the mid 550's going into the spring. That is proven not to work but you cannot let the government run anything.We will be ok no matter what they do it just makes it more difficult. I have not seen the lake so busy after the first week in August in years and they are still coming.  The county sales tax revenues are at record levels with the town crowded with visitors. Come on down to Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental and we will nor charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday. Image title

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The lake level is 569.88 and has dropped a little over 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 2/3 of the time. I am really glad to break the 570 level but it is not near enough. 560 is a very good level for about everything but does not leave much room for spring rains.  We did receive about 1-inch total last week with several showers. When the rain chances were 100 and 90% we got nothing and when they were 10% it rained every day. There was no wind or lightening and we needed the moisture badly. It is good now. Things have really greened up again nicely and the gardens are doing great. We are getting some very nice weather with highs near 80 and lows in the high 50's and that is rare for early August which can be the hottest time of the year. It has been a good summer weather wise and we have avoided all severe weather so far. It is to warm back up this weekend but people are really enjoying the weather and the lake. It has been the busiest that I have seen it in many years despite the covid and the high water. People just want to get out and appreciate being able to social distance in both their cabins and on the water. Blackburns has rental pontoons available from $105 to $195/day and from 24-30 feet long and bass boats too. We do not allow any drag toys or grills on any boats but our marina friends do if you feel the need to. Ours are for fishing, swimming and cruising only and we have trolling motors on several of them. Check them out on the rental boat section of Blackburns web site. The water surface temperature is still about 87 degrees and is in very good condition for boating and swimming. Fishing is just fair except for the very good fishermen who really know how to fish this lake. Bink is still catching stripers and walleye (870-499-7384) and Tom Kelly and Mike Eakle are catching bass on shakey head worms and split tailed worms. The thermocline is dropping and is now outside the brush line making it a bit easier for divers to spearfish but the visibility is not the best. I will have to wait a couple of weeks or more for the business to slow down before I am able to go.  It is best in September and October anyway after the very early season. I get a lot of walleye and crappie in October. If you are staying in a duplex with no coverd porch or in a place with no pool or a very small one stop by Blackburns Before you leave and check things out. I think you will like what you see. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday. Nice fish.Image title

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The lake level is 570.24 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. We did receive 1/2 inch of badly needed rain yesterday but missed almost all that was predicted.  The surface temperature is 87 degrees and the lake is in good condition for boating, swimming and fishing although it is still too high for beaches and the parking for launching is still limited on weekends. The boat traffic is still relatively high for the first part of August and people are really enjoying the lake and are happy to just get out. It has really been busy here at Blackburns with people taking advantage of the best prices on the lake for cabins and boat rentals. The big pool with slide has been very popular with the children really enjoying swimming in it and also off the dock. Bink has been catching walleye and stripers on his spoon and Tom Kelly, Mike Eakle and the Sims boys have been catching some nice bass and a few walleye. The split tailed worm, shakey head worm on a jig head and grubs are the best for bass. Fish early, take the middle of the day off and hit it again in the late afternoon for the best fishing. Use light clear line and work the main lake points from the shore to about 23 feet. Bink is catching his stripers deep. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.74 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They are in a pattern now of shutting down all generation at night and starting it back up in the morning and keeping the White River at Newport at 12-feet at all costs. That way they can keep the area lakes as high as possible for as long as possible. At this rate if will be at 563 by Labor day Weekend if it does not rain and we have not had much of that. Not much else has changed except the bass fishing has gotten better. People report catching several good bass on main lake points at about 20-feet with a few walleye thrown in. The are using plastic worms and jigs. The lake surface temperature is still in the high 80's with the lake in excellent condition for boating and swimming and Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and boats and the biggest pool with slide. All cabins have covered porches and  are individual with no duplexes. We have 300-Meg wireless internet and are closest to Mountain Home, dining and shopping. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with a nice one caught and released last evening. Image title

The lake level is 571.24 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating all night and then start up in the morning to hold the White River at Newport to 12-feet at all costs despite the need for electricity and the very dry conditions with no areas even close to flooding. It is cooling off a bit this week with very good chances of rain for the next few days. We certainly need it. Things have been green and lush all year but are starting to dry up now. A good rain would really help green things up again. Bass fishermen are catching some good ones on plastic worms with the best bite being in the evenings. Bink is catching some nice stripers deep on his spoon and the children are catching crappie and bluegill off the dock. I feed them there and they are easily caught. They love watching the turtles. Some catfish are being caught on jugs with live bait. With the lake dropping watch out for exposed wood where it was not in sight before. The lake is changing daily but conditions are good for boating and swimming. Fishing is just fair but the good fishermen are catching fish every day. The surface temperature is still in the high 80's and the visibility is not the best for diving but looks clear from the surface. The drop in the lake is opening things up but needs to drop just a few feet to really do some good for launching and parking. The lake is as busy as I have seen it in years on the weekends.  Almost like it was in the early 90's.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's guide service yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 571.66 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating all night and then start up again early morning and are holding the White River at Newport to 12+ feet. The lake looks clear from the top but the visibility is not so good at the thermocline which is 22-23 feet. Bass, stripers and bluegill continue to be the best bite but a few catfish are showing up. Fishing is poor during middle of the day but that is always the case in the last part of July. The stripers are deep and most of the other fish are still in the brush on the old shoreline which is 20-ft. under water. Conditions are good for boating and swimming and the surface temperature is in the high 80's. It is to cool off with better chances of rain later this week. Call Debbie at 870-492-5115 to get into the action. We still have the best prices and the largest pool. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with a good one.Image title

The lake level is 571.92 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating at night and start again in the morning to keep the level up as high as they can for as long as they can while we are in very dry conditions and the areas where the electricity is sold is experiencing high temperatures requiring lots of electricity. In the spring when the rains come they open the flood gates and waste the water.  Go figure. Sounds like bad management to me. Where did this 12-ft. rule for the White River at Newport come from?  Nobody seems to know but it sure is followed closely and at all costs. Things should get back to normal after labor day unless it finally rains. Everything is still very busy with people really wanting to get out even for a short time. The lake surface temperature is in the high 80's and the lake is in good condition for swimming and boating. Tom Kelly, Binks and the Sims family are all catching fish everyday but overall fishing is just fair. Get out early, take the middle of the day off and go put about 5:30 PM and fish until dark. Bink is using his spoon for stripers deep and the rest are catching bass on plastic worms. Blackburns does not not now allow any dragging of anything behind any of our boats except for the ski boat and it has a three day minimum. You can stay here and rent a boat from one of our marina friends if you need to drag something. It was just not working out for us. We have many boats for just everyday use of cruising, swimming and fishing.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Fishing with Bink's Guide Service Wednesday. Image title

The lake level is 572.14 and has dropped 2+ inches in the last 24-hours. They have reduced the discharge of the White River at Newport to hold the area lakes up as high as possible and the level is 12+ feet there now. They just had to get down to that 12-ft. level for some unknown reason. It is a good thing we have had almost no rain for over two weeks or the level would not have dropped at all. We are dry here. Things are starting to open up a bit though and a couple of feet drop would really help things. We are still about 20-feet higher than it should be for this time of year which is 552 no matter how they have manipulated the numbers in the last few years. I still do not know how they calculate 70% of flood storage but it sure is not how it used to be done. How can 572 be below 70%. Nobody knows. It clouds up almost every day in the afternoons during the heat of the day but we have received very little rainfall. Blackburns has some good fishermen in now and they are catching a few fish but not anything to brag about. Mostly bass. Bink is catching some stripers deep on his spoon and divers report the visibility is not very good and they are not doing the best getting walleye.  They are seeing some large crappie though. The lake looks clearer from the surface than it actually is at the 23ft. thermocline. It will push down steadily as the water warms to about 30 feet. Swimming and boating remains good but there are no swimming areas open and you almost have to swim off a dock or boat to keep out of people's way trying to launch a boat. Blackburn's big pool with slide has been very busy and people are swimming and fishing off the big dock.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday and today on his Jigging Spoon. Image title

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The lake level is 573.49 and has dropped a little over 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with intermittant generation. They are turning Norfork generators off and on to to keep the White River at Newport at a little less than 14-feet for some unknown reason. It is a good thing it has been dry and no rain for over a week or it would not drop at all. We have a chance to get a little today and then remain hot. We could sure use it. The lake in general is in good condition but is changing every day with more formerly submerged brush and logs exposed. Another two or three foot drop would really do a lot of good for day use and parking and launching. They are starting to open up now but has taken a long time. They just refuse to let much out but the need for electricity in the southwest is the driving force. If they would run both generators on Norfork continuously it would drop 3-1/2 inches per day. It will drop faster as the bowl gets smaller. I have not been fishing but Bink is really catching some nice stripers in about 90-feet of water on the bottom on his spoon and bass, catfish and bluegill fishermen are doing pretty well. It is a typical mid to late July fishing season. Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental has a one bedroom cabin open next week and a few more starting in August with the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals. We cannot guarentee a boat stall for one or two day stays at this time and do not have one for anybody bringing their own pontoon that cannot put the top down until we are able to pull boats in and out more easily. We also do not recommend pulling any drag toys with our pontoons and do not allow any dragging or towning anything with our bass boats. They are not made for it. Sorry.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 574.16 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours.  They shut off the generation in the middle of the night to keep the area lakes as high as possible for as long as possible. It has not rained for over a week and it is getting dry again here and it is warm and to get warmer. The lake surface temperature is in the high 80's depending on the time of day. The lake has cleared all week and we will see what happens after the weekend boat traffic. The thermocline is dropping and is in the low 20's and the visibility is 5-7 feet depending on what day of the week.  The shoreline in the creeks is very clear. Not a lot of people are fishing now with most boating and swimming. The fishing clubs with the weekly tournaments  are doing well on bass with limits in the teens. Bink is catching stripers and bass on his spoon. Crappie are scattered but some are being caught. Catfishing on jugs is working pretty well with live bait. Bluegill fishing is excellent off docks and on the old shoreline on worms and crickets. Some big ones are being caught. Get out a little before 6:Am and fish until about 10. Take the middle of the day off anf go out again about 5:PM and fish unril sunset. As the lake drops more stationary brush is being uncovered and you have to be carefull. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 575.09 and has dropped a little over 1-inch in the last 24-hours. They cut off generation for several hours last night to keep the lake from dropping. They are trying to dry up the White River at Newport. We did receive about 0.4 inches of rain yesterday.  We seem to get some about when we need it to keep things green. It is to get very hot next week. I went out to check a boat and took along a pole in the middle of the afternoon and fished for about an hour. I caught two crappie, one bass and a bluegill on the Bobby Garland baby shad in 14-20 feet of water in the brush back in a creek. The surface temperature ranged ftom 88 to 86 and I was surprised to see how clear the water was. I released them under the dock. It was nice to be out even if for a short time. The boat traffic was medium.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service. Image title

The lake level is 575.21 and has dropped three inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. They have slowed the discharge way down on the White River at Newport and the level there is 13+ feet when the minor flood stage is 26 feet. Why are they trying to hold the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible when we are dry? There is no threat of floods anywhere near here. You cannot let the government run anything. There is some very good news. The Arkansas Game and Fish were unable to stock any stripers or hybrids in Norfork this year due to social distancing but the private sector has stepped up. We usually get 154,000 fingerling stripers each year. I want to thank Keo fish farm for donating 23,000 stripers for stocking Norfork. It will prevent a complete void for the class of 2020 in the years to come. With people killing so many small stripers in the 5-10 lb. range it will surely help. I do not know why meat hunters want to kill them so bad. After the red meat is cut out they do not dress out very well. The daily limit needs to be cut to two per day. I do not fish for them at all during the summer as they all die when brought out of deep water. Venting does not help as some people say and they do not survive in a live well.  The surface water temperature is in the mid 80's depending on when you are out there and clears up nicely during the week and clouds up again with the weekend boat traffic. Blackburns has a few openings on both cabins and boats this summer and have the best prices. You do not have to bring tents or umbrellas to give you shade and get out of the weather here as all cabins have big covered porches and you can social distance with no duplexes. Call Debbie at 870-492-5115. No we do not rent jet skis and yes you do have to rent a cabin here to rent a boat. Another stupid government rule not mine. We do not suggest dragging tubes at this time as the lake has been high for a long time and some debris is water logged and just under the surface and hard to see. Save the children and lower units. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

James and Mike are catching some good ones.Image title

The lake level is 575.60 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. The surface temperature is about 87 degrees, the thermocline is just over 20-feet and the visibility is about 5-feet. It clears up during the week and clouds up with the boat traffic on the weekends. Walleye fishing is the best now but bass and crappie are not far behind. Most fish are still scattered near the thermocline in the brush where they have cover and food. There is lots of both there. Look for secondary points just inside the main lake and drop the spoon about 20-ft. down. I have been too busy to dive so far this year but Patten from Scuba Doo Dive shop just up the road from Blackburns wrote an up to date diving report on this site today.  I just got it posted. Just another reminder Bink's guide service has his "Live in the Boat" fishing report and tip of the week on KTLO 97.9 FM at 8:45 AM on Thursday mornings where you can hear exactly what is happening on Norfork lake. Both of these are good sources of information. Maybe the best. Get out at first light which is before 6:AM and fish until about 10AM. Take the middle of the day off and go out again about 5:30 and fish until sunset. Jigging spoons are the best along with spinner baits and paddle tailed grubs. Tom Kelly is still catching good bass on his split tail worm. The stripers that are being caught are deep and lethargic and you have to drop the spoon right on their head. Blackburns still have a few openings due to cancellations and you might be able to take advantage of the best prices on both boats and cabins on the lake by calling Debbie at 870-492-5115. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Some Nice ones caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday morning.Image title

The lake level is 576.41 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with intermittant generation. They are holding the White River at Newport at 14+ feet at all costs. Minor flood stage is 26 feet. I took a boat ride from Blackburns Cove to Cranfield Island and then to the 101 bridge and back and saw no debris in the water. The lake surface temperature was 85 degrees and the lake in general is in good condition for boating and swimming. I was surprised at the number of boats out there for a Thursday. The town is full this morning. I wonder if the people that operate the dams know the economic impact and revenue the lakes bring to the area or even care. They flood their own campgrounds and swimming areas and do not have too. We received 1.2 inches of badly needed rain earlier this week and it really greened things up and made the gardens grow fast. It all soaked in and the creeks did not run but it came down fast and had some spotty wind. We were dry. Keep your eyes to the west and north west in the afternoons and watch for black clouds, especially in the heat of the day which is about 3-4:30 PM. They do not last long but it is not good to be caught between the bridges at this time which is the windiest part of the lake. Tom Kelly caught some nice bass yesterday and Binks caught some nice stripers on his Many Shad Spoon. It is so busy here that I have not had any time to go fishing or diving. There will be plenty of time for that later. I have not seen this amount of boat traffic out there in years. People just want to get out. Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental still has the best prices on both cabins and boats and your first regular sized boat stall is free and all cabins are individual units with no duplexes and all have covered porches.  You can social distance here and the children can have fun on the big playground and pool with slide. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 576.65 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with intermittant generation. They now have the White River at Newport to 14+ feet and are determined to keep it there for no reason except to keep the area lakes up as high as possible for as long as possible. I have been too busy to go fishing or diving but took a trip to check out the lake. Almost all of the debris has stuck to the bank now in this area now that the lake has dropped three feet from it's high and the lake in general is in excellent condition for swimming and boating. The surface water temperature is 84 degrees and the lake is clearing. That should stop with the high boat traffic this weekend. They really churn up the water. The level just has to drop a few feet now to really help access and parking. They could have done this a month ago. It has been very dry here and I am irrigating. Bink is catching stripers and bass and Tom Kelly is catching bass. The fishing is slow during the middle of the day and early morning is the best time. Fishing will get better as the thermocline drops and the lake level drops and the old shoreline is the same as the thermocline. It is now about 21 feet and the visibility is about 5-feet before the weekend gets here and then it drops with the boat traffic. Give Debbie a call at 870-492-5115 to check if we have last minute cancellations for both boats and cabins. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with a nice one caught and released last evening.Image title

The lake level is 577.53 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with intermittant generation. They have dropped the level of the White River at Newport and reduced the discharge there to try and hold the level of the area lakes as high as possible for as long as possible while reaching their goal of 14-feet there. They are at 14+ feet now and for absolutely no reason. Minor flood stage is 26-feet. They would really like to take it to 12-feet but the lakes are over 70% full. The lake surface temperature is in the mid 80's depending on where and what part of day. A lot of the debris that was blowing with the wind and water logged has stuck to the banks but there is still some out there and I do not recommend going out after dark for your own safety and damage to your boats. It is hard enough to see them in the day time. There is no good reason to be out there after dark anyway. Bink is catching stripers and bass on his spoon and Tom Kelly is catching bass on his split tail worm. I went out again for a few minutes and got a couple of crappie on the Bobby Garland 2-inch Blue Ice jig. Kids are catching bluegill and catfish off the dock on worms and crickets. I could see my lure down about 3-4 feet but have not been diving to give a real visibility report. You cannot do this until you are actually down there. I talked to Patton Trevor at Scuba Doo dive shop and he said there were walleye at 18-19 feet and he could see about 5-feet and spearfishing was just ok but people were getting fish. The lake in general is in good condition. Blackburns has the largest pool with slide, largest green playground with the most things to do for children, largest pavillion and all cabins have covered porches with no duplexes so you can social distance, most boat rentals and all at the best prices. You can still drive to the dock, park and step right on but our launching is gone. We have the best overall set up.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 578.10 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. The surface water temperature is 82 in the early mornings and 84 in the afternoons. Visibility is about 5-feet and the lake is clearing the further we get from the weekend. The higher than normal boat traffic on Friday afternoons, Saturday and Sunday really churn up the lake and create large launching and parking problems. The lake clears a lot from Sunday night to Friday  Watch for the guard rails across the launch at Panther Bay. There is really room for only two boats at a time for launching and that is if you stay close to the courtesy dock. Take off boat covers, load the boat, Put in plug , take off transon savers, put key in boat before blocking the launch and things go pretty smooth. I took a boat trip from Blackburns to Cranfield Island and then to the 101 bridge and back and the lake was in good condition. The debris is starting to stick to the shore with the little bit of drop in level. A few more feet drop would really do some good but they show no willingness to do so. Get that level down at Newport to 14-feet at all costs for no reason. Fishing has been about normal for the end of June and people are catching bass, walleye, catfish, bluegill, stripers and hybrids. If there is a top water bite it will be early before and just at sunrise. After that look for stripers off steep banks about 30-40 foot down and drop a Bink's Many Shad Spoon on them. Others are trolling umbrellas and still others are using live bait. Crickets off docks for big bluegill are catching some nice ones. Check out main lake and secondary points in 18-20 feet for walleye. Many fish and bait fish are still in the brush and it extends out to about 27 feet.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with one nice smallmouth caught this morning.Image title

The lake level is 578.36 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. The White river at Newport has dropped to 15 feet on it's way to 14 feet for some unknown reason except to hold the lake levels up as high as possible for as long as possible. It was 579.44 a month ago and we have received little rain. At this rate we will be back to normal in the fall of 2022 unless the rules are changed. It is raining now and we need it badly. This will green things up and make the gardens grow. It looks like most of the storms are going south of us. It was a busy and beautiful weekend and most people had a lot of fun. That is the way we like it. The lake was sure busy also and the traffic in town was like a holiday weekend. Most fishermen are catching fish. Tom Kelly is using his split tail worm, Bink's his spoon and others a spinner bait. Stripers are moving to deeper water but are in the Bidwell area early in 30 feet of water. Tom Stanton is catching them there every day. You just have to get the bass out of the brush at 20-feet near the thermocline. Things are good here at Blackburns and people are taking advantage of our low cabin and boat rental prices as well as their first regular sized boat stall being free. The pool is big with slide and all cabins have covered porches. We do not charge for trolling motors on pontoons. We just had two 2-bedroom deluxe cabins cancel starting the 4th of July for the week so call Debbie at 870-492-5115 for details. I sure hope we can fill them. These last minute cancellations hurt and they always want their deposit back. It costs us three times as much as the person cancelling and the summer is short. We would much rather you show up than keep your deposit and set empty.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 578.53 and has dropped about an inch in the last 24-hours with generation most of the time. They are keeping all of the area lakes about 1-1/2 ft. from going over the spillway while dropping the White River at Newport to 15+ feet on their way to 14. I suspect the C.O.E. hates all lake people and thinks it is funny to have the campgrounds flooded for many months at a time for no reason and not having any beaches and few launching, parking and swimming areas.  Several good fish were caught yesterday and this morning With stripers, hybrids, bluegill  and bass being the best. The surface temperature remains in the mid 80's and the water clears during the week and then gets churned up on weekends with the higher than normal boat traffic. Bink, Tom Stanton, Tom Kelly and Mike Eakle are all catching fish and good ones too. Tom stanton is trolling umbrellas, Tom Kelly is working a worm and Bink and Mike are spooning and fishing top water early. All methods are working. Get out early, take the middle of the day off and then go out about 5:PM and fish until sunset for best results. There is still some debris out there moving with the wind so be catrfull and do not go out after dark. It will stick on the bank if they ever let water out. Just a few feet would really open things up but fat chance of that.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bink with a good one yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 578.66 and they have run both generators for 24-hours straight to drop the lake 2-inches. We are to have a good chance for rain the next few days and we need it.  It is very dry and it has not rained for 12-days. The lake surface temperature is 84 degrees and the water is pretty clear and getting clearer. We are expecting a big crowd on the lake this weekend and we will see how the water gets after that. This is as crowded on the water as I have seen for years. People are catching fish everyday with bass, walleye, stripers, hybrids and bluegill being the most. Not much has changed the last few days and we have been very busy here at Blackburns. The pool has been the biggest attraction and it is good that it is so big. The children love the slide. If you stay someplace else make sure you ask if they have a pool.  Several do not and some are small. Also ask if they have a dock and is fishing is allowed off the dock. Sorry we do not allow fireworks here. Fire hazzard and insurance does not cover fireworks. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with a nice one caught this morning.Image title

The lake level is 578.86 and has dropped about 1-inch in the last 24-hours with very limited generation. The White River at Newport is now at 17-feet and still dropping like a rock and headed for 14-feet. This is just plain stupid. We have had no rain for 11 days now and are very dry and they still refuse to drop area lakes. The surface water temperature is now in the early 80's in the mornings and mid 80's in the afternoon. The lake is clearing nicely but we will see what the weekend churning brings. There is still some big debris out there but not nearly as many. The lake level has been stable and the changing in wind direction just keeps moving them around. Some nice fish continue to be caught in the early mornings and late evenings. Bass, walleye, stripers, hybrids and bluegill are all coming in. Keep working the 20-ft. range for most fish and 80-ft. range after top water is over for stripers and hybrids. Fishing is about normal for Mid to late June. I have not had a chance to go Scuba Diving yet but the divers that I am talking to are getting walleye in the 20-ft. range near the bottom but the visibility is not very good. We are full here now at Blackburns with people taking advantage of our low cabin and boat rental rates and getting their first regular sized boat stall free. We have a couple of openings next week though but are getting about 100 phone calls a day for the 3rd and 4th of July.  It does not work out very well when a holiday falls on a weekend. We are only allowed to rent boats to resort customers by law.  Sorry. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught this morning on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 578.97 and is remaining constant as all of the area lakes are about one foot from going over the spillway. It has not rained for 10 days and it is very dry. They are dropping the level of the White River as fast as they can and it is 18-feet now and they are hell bent to get it to 14-feet no matter how high the lakes are. This is crazy. Let some water out boys. You have shown us what you can do if you want to. Why does it matter if Newport is 24-feet or 14 feet. It does not hurt anybody. The truth is they would like it to be 12-feet but the lakes are too high. Who ever made these rules should be drawn and quartered. They are probably dead already anyway since they were made so long ago. Change the rules and quit holding and hoping. The surface water temperature was 82 early this morning and the lake is clearing. We will see what the weekend brings. I have not seen it so busy here in years. People really want to get out and I do not blame them. People are catching fish. Work the main lake points and secondary points in the creeks from as far as you can cast to the bank and work out to 25-feet.  The thermocline is 19-20 feet and there are a lot of fish there. The stripers and hybrids are feeding on crawdads early and then moving deep after sunrise. Spook for top water and spoon for deep water. Walleye are coming in and good ones too. A 22-inch one was caught yesterday morning. Catfishing is picking up and bluegill are biting off docks on crickets. The lake is big but in good shape. Just not a lot of stuff to do off the bank and day users are clogging up the boat launches on weekends. You can swim off our dock, in our big pool with slide or off a rental pontoon. There are no beaches and very few places to get to shore. Many campgrounds are under water. Most resorts have no diminished services except for launching but there are some good places for that just not many.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Top water bite this morning.Image title

The lake level is 578.98 and is the same as 24-hours ago.  They are letting out just enough to balance the inflow of the river while dropping the White River at Newport  as fast as they can for absolutely no reason. If they would just drop the lake a few feet it would do a lot of good but they will not. It is a good thing it has been very dry. You cannot let the government run anything. The surface water temperature is 84 degrees and the lake seems to be clearing just a bit. People are catching fish on top water early and then the stripers and hybrids are going deep but the walleye and other species are hanging around the thermocline at 20-feet in the cover. Spinner baits are working as are 3-inch flat tailed grubs on a jig head. A lot of fish are on points in 19-23 feet. You can swim in our big pool with slide, off our dock or off a rental pontoon. There are not many other options and Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental have the best prices on everything. Why pay more unless you just want to? Sorry, you have to stay at the resort to rent one of our boats. C.O.E. rule not mine. Stupid rule based on politics. Absolutely no reason for it also. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service.Image title

The lake level is 579.02 and has come up just a bit in the last 24-hours with reduced generation. We have had no rain for a week and it is getting dry. I am having to water my garden. They are dropping the White River at Newport like a rock in order to keep the area lakes as high as possible for the longest time possible. At least they showed us what they can do when they really want to or when the levels at both Table Rock and Bull Shoals were lapping over the spillway because of the policy of hold and hope.  If they drop this level to 14-foot as they did before and as prescribed by the antiquated rules of operation, it is time to really demonstrate our displeasure unless you really like this. The lake surface temperature is in the low 80's and is just right for swimming. You can swim off one of Blackburns Rental Pontoons, off our dock or in our big 30x60 pool with slide. The visibility has deteoriated with the high boat traffic and is about 5-feet at the thermocline which is at about 19-feet. There are fish everywhere at this depth where they can get in and out of the warm water and still have cover, crawdads and baitfish. There is still a top water bite most days early for both bass, stripers and hybrids and then the red meat fish go deeper and can be caught on a spoon. I am getting my Scuba gear ready but am waiting to see if the water clears a bit before I go. It is very busy here and we like that.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 579 even and has come up just a bit as they quit generating last night. The surface temperature is in the early 80's and rising and the clarity is not very good with all of the boats churning up the water.  It is very busy out there. I picked up a boat that was being serviced and went to Panther Bay to launch it. I saw one truck blocking the road loading up all of their stuff, another blocking the launch area removing their cover, one that had launched but forgot to put in the plug and pulled out again blocking the launch to drain the boat, one that lost her boat keys after launching the boat, one that would not start and was blocking the courtesy dock and another that was on fire and needed an exringuisher that finally pulled out. I waited about an hour and finally launched. People really must want to get out there for a day use bad. The whole thing was a cluster bomb. The lake was very busy though and I was happy to get out of it. There is still some debris out there and I do not recommend being out after dark.  People have just been pent up too long and want to get out. Scuba Spearfishing season starts tomorrow and I am usually excited but will wait for the thermocline to get out of the trees. A lot of fish are in the 20-ft. range and I do not like jumping down into brush and locust trees. You will have to jump into about 40.ft. of water and work your way in and maneuver around the stuff. If you go in off rocky bluffs there is no brush but not very many fish either. We will see what happens. Watch out for dive flags and give them a big birth. The main thing is to be safe while having a good time. Fishermen are getting stripers and bass on top water most days just about sunrise for about an hour and then the fish are going deeper to about 80 feet and are being caught on a jigging spoon. Catfish are biting on live bait on both limb lines and jugs and bluegill and a few crappie are being caught off docks. Trollers are catching a few red meat fish with live bait after they move off the bank and out of the brush. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 579.52 and has dropped about 3-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and enough spillway gates open to equal about 1-1/2 more generators. It was windy and cool yesterday but is beautiful today and it should continue for several more days. When I went out yesterday the surface water temperature was 79+ and the creeks were stained and the main lake is not nearly as clear as it was. I could see my lure down about 2-3 feet. I saw very little debris in the Blackburns Creek area. I worked a Bobby Garland Baby Shad as close to the shore as I could get back in Hensley's Creek and caught a couple of nice crappie and a bass. Bink reports that he is still catching some stripers and hybrids on top water early some days and then going back out to about 80-foot and dropping a spoon. They are going deeper and deeper as they always do in the summer. There is no size limit now and all of the fish will die when you bring them out of deep water so just get your limit and quit. Venting does not work.  It lets them to be able to go down but they die anyway. I do not fish for them when they are deep. I still see pictures of dock floors full of dead small stripers and people think they have accomplished something. They have not. The only thing that is being accomplished is that a big striper was 30-pounds and now it is 15 and we will pay for it later since none were stocked this year and they do not reproduce in fresh water. Fishing overall is just fair but some nice bass are being caught as are catfish on jugs and limb lines. Big bluegill are biting off docks on crickets. Watch out for Box Turtles on the roads and help them cross in the direction they are heading. They are getting ready to lay their eggs. Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental still has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals and your first regular sized boat stall is free. You can practice social distancing here.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 579.53 and has risen about 8-inches in the last 24-hours. We received 3.2 inches of rain last afternoon and night but had very little wind. They have some spillway gates open. The creeks run pretty hard for a while but have slowed now.  It is sunny and beautiful now with high pressure having moved in for several days.  Everything is very green and the garden and grass are really growing. There is a top water bite most days for bass and stripers early and then they are going deep. I have not went out on the water yet today but will let you know when I do. Not much has changed. What you see is what you get for quite some time. It could be a lot worse. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 578.86 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday with generation about 1/2 the time. We are expecting a rain from the tropical depression moving north but we are dry and can take a couple of inches if it does not come too fast. More than that would not be good. It is a good thing we have only received about 0.2 inches in the last 10-days. The water surface temperature is about 80 and is good for swimming and boating. The creeks are stained a bit but the main lake is pretty clear.  The new news about fishing is that the stripers and hybrids are moving out into deeper water as they always do in the summer. The hotter it gets the deeper they go. Get out your 1-ounce Bink's Mini Shad Spoons and look for top water early and then move out to about 80-feet of water and look for them and drop the spoon on their nose. Bluegill are biting off docks on crickets and catfish are biting on limb lines and jugs with live perch. Bass are hitting top water early and then going down into the brush. Fishing overall is fair but some good ones are being caught every day. There is a little debris in this area but not much. Watch for water logged wood just under the surface and do not go out after dark. The prop repairman is doing a good business. You can swim in Blackburns big pool with slide, off the dock or off a rental pontoon. There are no beaches or places to go to the shore and launching is limited as well as launch parking. Sorry.  Most resorts have no diminished services except for launching but many of them do not have launching anyway. It will have to drop about 5-feet for me to get mine back and I do not see that happening anytime soon.  Panther Bay is not very far away and is a good place, just very busy on weekends.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Carl caught his first keeper Norfork Lake walleye on a spinner bait yesterday.Image title

Mrs. Binkley knows how to drive that spoon. Caught this morning.Image title

The lake level is 578.89 and has come up just a bit last night when they shut off all generation. They just started them back up last hour. We will see what the tropical storm does to us. I pretty much predicted that last week but nothing is for sure as far as the weather goes. It would be nice if we only got an inch or two as we are dry but it is slow moving and could be much more. We are fortunate that we only have had about 0.2 inches in the last 10-days. The weather has been great and we have been very busy here at Blackburns.  That is the way we like it. People have been pent up for too long and just want to get out. I had an 80-degree water temperature yesterday and the main lake is clear and the creeks are stained a bit. Fishing has been fair with the morning top water bite being the best. Here is what I am finding: Go part way back in the creeks on secondary points and fish top water until the sun has been up for about an hour. Switch to a 3-inch white paddle tail grub on a 1/4 ounce jig head. I like white with a red eye. Fish that while setting in about 30-ft. of water casting in between the brush as close to the bank as you can cast with out getting hung up. Do this for about another hour. Next move out to deeper water and look for scattered fish suspended 35-45 ft. and drop a spoon. You will catch temperate bass and black bass. Take the middle of the day off and go out about 5:PM and fish until sunset. Carl Scott from Texas caught a nice walleye yesterday on a spinner bait. Go figure.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the Bink's spoon. Rum reports they were full of crawdads. No shad. This indicates they were feering near the bank. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 579.02 and has dropped a little less than 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours. We have received about 0.2 inches of rain in the last 24-hours and just enough to water the yard and garden.  It was getting dry. It will get sunny and very humid later today. We missed the bad weather again this morning and it went just west of us in the Springfield and Bull Shoals area. We do not need any big rains and I am a little concerned with the storm in the gulf right now moving north after landfall.  It will do it,  it is just a matter of where it goes. The lake is very clear now but there is still some debris floating around out there. The old shoreline is now 25+ feet deep and that is where the fish are early. Bink reports the fish he caught yesterday were full of crawdads with no shad in them. He is using a white paddletail swim bait 3-inches long, topwater spook and his jigging spoon exclusively now. The fish are on top or in the brush early feeding and then moving to deeper water. This is when he is switching to the spoon. The surface temperature is about 78 degrees and there should be a thermocline forming at about 20-feet if it has not already. I have not been diving yet but it always does this about the first week of june. It has been too busy here for me do do much of anyrhing but work but I go out for a few minutes a day to check out condition and fish. People are taking advantage of the low cabin prices as well as the largest selection of rental boats in the area. You can just drive here to Blackburns, drive to the dock and get on your rental boat and be done with it. Forget all of the other stuff. No finding a place to launch, parking for your truck and trailer, floating around the launch waiting to pick up passengers and doing the same thing to get out. It almost makes it not worth it, especially for a day or two. I just do not like to pull trailers. Remember Blackburns still has the best prices and your first boat stall is free. If you insist on paying more you can stay here and give the difference to th disabled Veterans. We like them. Personally, I would not stay in a place that does not have a covered porch to get out of the rain or sun. It is hard to grill in the rain with no cover. Pizza and sandwitches are also delivered here but we are also on 28-acres in the country but close to town. No sense driving 20-miles to get to town unless you just want to. You can stay here and rent a boat for about the same price as renting a boat elsewhere. You have to stay here to rent a boat. C.O.E. rule not mine. Stupid rule. No grilling on our boats. My rule. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 559.06 and has dropped about 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. All area lakes are about 1-foot below going over the spillway with no rain for the last week.  It is getting dry here but we may get a little rain this afternoon and then not much of a chance for another week. I hope the new storm in the gulf does not hit land, go north and sweep across to the east like some of them do. We do not need a gully washer. It will take over a week if this happens, and we would be in better shape to take it with the ground drying up fast. The lake is getting very clear again but there is still some debris floating around out there. Be careful dragging overweight children around in chaise lounges and do not go out after dark. Some of them are barely submerged and hard to see. No sense getting hurt. They are in one place one day and another place the next and are floating with the wind. The surface temperature is in the high 70's and should hit 80 in the next several days. The fish are still mostly at or near the old shoreline and are from the bank to about 25-ft of water. There are a lot of baitfish in the cover. The top water bite is still the best early for both bass and red meat fish. Fishing overall is just fair but some nice ones are being caught everyday. Get out early, take the middle of the day off, and then go out again about 5PM and fish until sunset. Use clear light line (6-lb.) and take off all swivels and hardware and tie directly to your lure. No spider line or steel leaders. Work the banks part way back in the creeks and set your boat in about 25-ft. of water and cast to the shore and allow to sink slowly with a light leadhead with jigs, creature baits and other soft plastics. Have a clear spook ready early sunny mornings for top water. The clear one sparkles in the sunlight and attracks the fish. Otherwise a white one also works on cloudy days. Fishing off docks during the day with crickets is working well for big bluegill. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 579.40 and has risen 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. Norfork has about 8-inches before it goes over the spillway. Both Table Rock and Bull Shoals are running over the spillway now. Dam management 101 teaches do not let the water goes over the spillway. I wonder if anyone managing the level has taken 101. They are to open spillway gates on Table Rock at noon to continue to overflow Bull Shoals. The White River at Newport is at 25.5 feet and 26 feet is flood stage. They have really gotten themselves in a bind. They want to hold and hope more but there is no place to hold. I suspect their next move will be to shut Norfork down until it is over the spillway also. At least the weather is to be beautiful with no rain in sight.  That is all that is saving them. It looks like the rivers will be flooded as is the farmland downstream and the area lakes will remain full.. At least they held off doing this until the crops were planted and up where it will be doing the most damage.  If they can take the White river up almost to flood stage now, I wonder why they cannot do it in the fall, winter and spring before the crops are planted? Just sayin. Get rid of the 12,14,18 feet stupid rules. The lake is still clear and is in good condition. There is a little debris out there but not bad. I do not recomment tubing or going out after dark. Some wood is water logged and just under the surface out of sight. This is changing daily even though the level has been pretty stable. The wind direction is responsible for this. One day north and one day south. The surface temperature is in the mid 70's and good for swimming. There are no beaches but you can swim off Blackburns Dock, in our big pool or out on the lake off a boat. The water is not dirty away from the bank. Blackburns is probably your best option for dock access, and vehicle and trailer parking. You can park at the dock and step right on but cannot launch here. No trailers at the dock. If you rent a boat, it is easy. If you bring your own boat, not so much. The boat launches are very crowded especially on the weekends and vehicle and trailer parking is very limited. We have plenty of that here at Blackburns and are not crowded up on a hillside. A lot of fish are still on the old shoreline and from the bank to there. Keep your boat in about 25-feet and cast to shore part way back in the creeks using creature baits and soft plastics. There is a top water bite some days at sunrise but not every day. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 579.21 and is starting to rise just a bit after they closed the spillway gates. They did start the other generator. Norfork is 9-inches from going over the spillway, Beaver is 2-inches, Table rock is 3-inches and Bull Shoals is lapping over and is officially 1/2 inch from breaching. They are trying desperately to keep Bull Shoals from going over but are getting out of options. Do not, I repeat do not believe the weathermen. They have been wrong 85% of the time.  The White River at Newport is now over 25-feet and 26 feet is minor flood stage.  It is a very good thing we did not get the rain as predicted. The weather has been great. I went out for a little while after getting my work done and found the following in this area: The surface temperature was 75 degrees in Hensley's creek and I could see my lure down about 6-feet. Blackburns creek was stained a little more but still a good color and I saw very little debris.  There should be a thermocline forming soon if not now and the fish will move to just above or just below that. It should be from 17-19 feet to start with and get deeper as the water warms. Our normal high is 80.  I have not been Scuba diving yet to find out. It looks like I will have to jump into deeper water to avoid the brush and then work my way to the edge of it.  A lot of brush is just outside of the old shoreline which is 20+ feet.  I saw some top water fish at about 5:30 PM and caught some bass and a small hybrid. All fish were released on site. The crappie that I was looking for were gone. A big black rain cloud was building up from the west so I came in. It did not amount to much and looked much worse than it actually was. We got about 1/10th out of it. The best bite now is the early morning top water bite on spooks and then switch to a swim bait. It is time to start spooning again or at least try it. There is lots of cover and bait fish and the fish are scattered and roaming. I have not been catfishing but there are lots of jugs and limb lines in the area. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink the last couple of days. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 579.08 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running and all spillway gates open 6-inches. All area lakes are now less than one foot from going over the spillway and the White River at Newport is 25-feet. 26 feet is minor flood stage. They opened bull Shoals flood gates earlier and are really letting a lot of water out of there. They are only a couple of inches from going over.  They have really done a good job of holding and hoping and allowing the crops downstream to all be planted and up. Now everything is at max. One medium rain will really put them in trouble. About everything that can be done has been done here when we reached 579.74 earlier and were 3-inches from going over. Blackburns probably has about the best set up even though we have lost our ability to launch here for now. You can drive to the dock and there are just a very few steps to get on. No trailers at the dock allowed. We have parking at the resort.  Panther Bay is the best place to launch now. The lake is clearing again after the busy holiday weekend churned it up a bit. We have not have had very many quick level rises this year and the lake in this area has remained very clear. It has just been a steady rise with no fall or winter drawdown by our dam managers. After the next two days of rain, it is to be sunny for almost a week. We will see what that brings. The weather man has been wrong about everything so far so there is no sense in fretting. Just go fish until it rains you out. We seldom get washed out for the whole day. I was a little surprised about the boat traffic for the holiday but everybody seemed to have had a good time. It was very busy here at Blackburns with lots of boats rented and all cabins full. People were taking advantage of the best prices on both boats and cabins on Norfork lake here. The big pool was very busy as was the slide. I have a lot to do but will try to get in a little fishing and let you know. Bink is catching some good fish every day. There are a lot of shad about 1/2 inch long that spawned a few weeks ago under the dock and they are bringing a lot of game fish with them. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught off the dock last evening.Image titleImage titleImage title

The lake level is 579.62 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running and all flood gates open 1/2 foot. The weatherman completely botched the forecast for this weekend so far and it has been beautiful. It rained friday morning and since then it has been great. The lake was as busy yesterday as I have ever seen it. People are just wanting to get out and I do not blame them. I do not personally like crowds much but am glad they are all having fun and are safe. I had some 70's degree water in the creeks. The lake in this area is in good condition with some debris. You have to watch for partially submerged wood. Fishing was good off Blackburns Dock with walleye, crappie, bass, catfish and bluegill being caught. Every one seems to be having fun. The big pool has been busy.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's this morning.Image title

The lake level hit 579.44 earlier this afternoon and a lot has happened since then. We received 3-inches of rain last night and the creeks were running hard. Then later another front came through with one more inch of rain and the water was heading over the spillway. They then started one generator (everything was shut down until then) and a little later opened all 12 spillway gates 1/2 foot. This is about 6,600 cfm spillway and 2,900cfm generation for a total of 9,500 cfm with is just over an equivalent of  3-generators. This is enough to keep the level from going over the spillway but not drop very much. We will see what they do when this slug gets to Newport. It is not up to 26-feet there yet which is the minor flood stage. With all of the lakes nearly full they have gotten themselves in a bind. If they just keep Norfork barely from going over the spillway and hold Bull Shoals more, the results will not be good. The motto of hold and hope is not working. On a positive note at least it has brightened up and the sun is shining now and Blackburns big pool is open and ready for use. You can still drive to our dock and park there but there is no launching or no trailers allowed at our dock. You must launch elsewhere (we are using Panther bay) and drive your boat to our dock. It is between one and two miles. If you are in a big group please consolidate and drive a minimum number of cars to the dock. There is no place to leave our dock in a boat and pick other people up elsewhere or have non-guests meet you at the dock. Day use people are going to have it tough if you are not staying at a resort. We have absolutely no place for locals looking for a free place to swim or kayak. Sorry but that is the way it is. I am not going fishing until the weekend is over so I can not help you much in that area. The surface temperature is about 66 degrees. The launches will be full so be prepared to park far away and wait to put in and take out your boats. There is no public swimming available but most of the better resorts have pools and you can also swim off their docks if they have one.We have both.The water is clean and clear away from the bank.  If and when it rains we have a big pavillion with ping pong and floor shuffleboard. We have all individual cabins with no duplexes so you can social distance and all cabins have big covered porches. You will find out why that is important when you do not have one.  No tents here .  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 578.64 and has risen 5-inches in the last 24-hours with just a few hours of running one generator. It is a good thing it has not rained for five days. They have now cut the White River level at Newport to below 24 feet and must think we are not going to get much more rain this week.  I hope so. The government always knows the right thing to do and I put myself completey in their hands. I just hope we do not end up like Michigan. It might hurt the farmers. The lake surface temperature just will not get out of the 60's and is a little cool for swimming.  At least for me. The children do not mind. People have been pent up and are anxious to get out.  It looks to be a busy weekend and we have been receiving hundreds of calls for reservations but have been full for a couple of weeks. I assume most resorts are the same since there are very few government campsites open. The lake is in pretty good condition and the main lake is clear and the creeks stained a bit but not bad at least in my area . I have not been north of Cranfield and have no reason to go there. There will be no fishing for me until at least monday afternoon and will leave the lake to the amateurs. I still have not figured out what good a jet ski is for except to teach young people how to abuse equipment and ram everything. There is not much chance you will get me on one. They seem to want to show off and see how close to fishing boats they can get. When I was diving once, there were two of them trying to see if they could go by my dive flag and grab hold of it while going right over me. It was a good thing I did not have to come up. My fishing tip for friday afternoon, saturday  and sunday is to wait for tuesday. Bink is still catching some good top water fish early and then spooning for bass later. Mike Eakle, Tom Kelly and Rob Gravengoed are all catching good fish. The Davis boys were but just left. Make sure the children all have life jackets on and the others all have one on the boat. There is some debris in this area so do not go out after dark.   There will be plenty of law enforcement out there. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Davis caught three fish on an A rig at the same time yesterday. That is Image titleBackburns dock behind him. He is here with his brother Don. Kenny could not make it. Sorry.

The lake level is 578.18 and has risen 6-inches in the last 24-hours. They have dropped the White River level at Newport to 24-feet.  When the lake was 580 and was lapping over the spillway in 2008 they opened all of the gates and flooded everything below. They found some river docks and boats in Calico Rock. How was this hold and hope protecting the farmers?12 years later and they have not learned their lesson.  It was a really good example of minimum flow at it's best. With rain in the forecast we will see what happens. The local head of the Corps says there is nothing to worry about so we should trust the government to take care of us. If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor and if you like you insurance you can keep your insurance. You can still drive to the dock at Blackburns and take just a few steps to get on the dock and park here but can no longer launch here. You can rent a boat and not worry about it. I put several boats in the dock before the rise closed the launch.  They have done about all they can do to us. The only thing stopping them from holding and hoping more is the level of the spillway. Dam management 101, do not let the water go over the spillway. The surface water temperature is 66 degrees and this is as cool a spring as I can remember in over 25-years and very slow warming up. Our normal high is 78 degrees. I do not know what the change in level has done to the bass spawn but it could not have been good. The main lake is very clear and there is less debris in this area than before. The creeks are stained a bit and are a very good color for fishing. Crappie fishing is fair if you know where and bass fishing is the same. Top water bite for red meat fish is pretty good most days early but many of them are small. Remember there is a 20-inch limit on stripers with a three fish daily limit and a 6-fish possession limit. This includes hybrids but no size limit on them. The resorts are mostly all ok but the day use people will have difficulty finding camping, launching and parking. There are no beaches. You will have to swim off a dock, off a boat or in a pool.  Things will be very crowded with locals trying to get their boats in the water for the first time. Just be patient, do not go out after dark and  be safe. I am fortunate that I do not have to have a calendar tell me when to go fishing. Do not come on vacation and leave on probation. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 577.62 and has risen 10-inches in the last 24-hours and shows no sign of stabilizing. The rise has slowed since it has not rained for 24-hours and should not rain until later this week. You cannot expect it to lower anytime soon since they raised the level of the White river at Newport to 24.57 feet which is still below the minor flood stage there which is 26 feet. They could have done this since last fall after harvest. The head guy at the Corps of Engineers says there is no chance of the lakes going over the spillway and the dams are doing what they are susposed to do. He said they will continue to hold and there is plenty of room. If they do have to open the gates when the levels are breeching the spillways and flood the rivers he and all others should be fired for incompetence. The lakes will continue to rise just from the river inflow no matter if it rains or not just more slowly if it doesn't because of the White river level does not allow for much if any discharge from the lakes. This just shows they can operate at just below minor flood stage if they want to and hold and hope is no plan. Top water bite continues to be the best now in the early AM and bass fishing in the old shore line is next. Some crappie are being caught but not as many.  They are moving with the water rise and harder to find. Catfishing is fair on jugs and throw lines.  You have to move your throw lines and trotlines almost daily. The main lake is still clear and the creeks are stained a bit. The surface temperature is in the mid to high 60's and has not changed much. We got our pool pained and resurfaced and will start to fill it tomorrow after the paint cures. Now to mow the yard and keep moving the dock three times a day. We will be ready for you when you get here.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 574.60 and has risen about 20-inches in the last 24-hours. They are running one generator a few hours in the late mornings. It is raising about one inch per hour now.  We received two inches of rain yesterday and last night, one inch the day before and 1/2 inch the day before that. It is to clear out this afternoon and be nice for the next several days. They are still holding the White River at Newport to below 18-feet at all costs.  All of the area lakes are rising. I waited until about 4:Pm to go out yesterday to dodge the rain and fished until about 6:PM and got in just as the rain started again. The creeks are running pretty hard now and they are staining up a bit. I was amazed how clear the main lake was. I could see my lure down at least 12-feet on rocky walls. The surface water temperature was actually higher on the main lake than in the backs of creeks. It was 66 in the creeks and 69 main lake. I was casting a crappie jig over brush in 18-20 feet of water and letting it drop slowly back in a creek where the south wind had been blowing into.  No bites for about 20 minutes and then they bit for another 20-minutes. I caught eight crappie and all of them were keepers. I then moved into the main lake where there were big logs near the surface. Bass were in front of the logs in about 17-feet of water just out of eyesight. I caught no fish in the clear water where i could see the bottom even though I was staying as far away from the bank as I could cast. Several Kentucky bass that were barely keepers were caught and one nice smallmouth.  All are now under the dock.  The high water is not affecting fishing much but there is an increasing amount of debris in the water with the creeks being the worst. You have to watch out.  If you go fast you will hit something.  If you go out after dark you will for sure. Early topwater is the best bite for bass and red meat fish and jigs over brush for crappie are the best bite. I am finding no crappie in water over 25-ft and a lot of fish are about 12 feet down suspended in 17-20 feet no matter where you are. If the fish do not come up in the morning use a swim bait with little or no nose weight. I like the hook rigs with the barbs that go through the nose and the hook comes up through the bottom and is barely exposed where the fluke or bass assassin is cut out. White color is working pretty good four or five inches long. The straight tail works best for stripers and hybrids and the split tail best for bass. Some people use the paddle tail, I do not but they work also on a jig head as do creature baits. Gitzits are working for bass on beds in the creeks.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle from O'fallon and Bob Musser from Antioch, Illinois caught a nice variety this morning and released them under Blackburn's dock.Image titleImage titleImage title

The lake level is 572.65 and has risen almost 11-inches in the last 24-hours with no current generation. We received 1/2 inch of rain last night and the creeks are running but not hard. The lake level continues to rise. They are frantically trying to stop Beaver lake from going over the spillway with flood gates open. It is just a few inches from doing so.  Dam management 101, do not let the water go over the dam. Maybe the governement needs to realize it rains in the spring here. Duh.  This is even causing Table Rock to rise which is taboo. Bull Shoals is taking the brunt of the mismanagement on the chain of Lakes with Norfork being the neglected stepchild, not hooked up with them, and being the victim of the hold and hope philosophy of water management. With all of this crises they have been able to keep the White River level at Newport to below 17.5 feet when the minor flood stage is 26-feet. It is even below the 18-foot level which is mandated. It is almost like the whole place is run by idiots and nobody wants to do anything about it. Draw the lake down to the 540's in the fall and winter, let as much out to keep it there without downstream flooding for as long as they can should do the trick. Do not quit generating everytime it rains would help too. There needs to be accountability or nothing will be done. My Dog Toby could do better. The lake surface temperature is about 67 degrees depending on where you are. The rain should stop Sunday sometime and be sunny for several days with little chance of rain. Top water fishing is still the best for small stripers (less than 10-lbs) with hybrids and bass being the best bite. The stripers are getting smaller and smaller with way too many being killed. Many bass are spawning but many are also coming up in the early morning. Bass spawn way up into summer on Norfork. There is more debris showing up being washed from the bank with the water rise so be carefull. The lake is still clear and in overall good condition just bigger. As of today we are no longer able to launch here and are sending people to Panther Bay. You can still park your trailers at the resort and drive to the dock and park. Please do not clog the dock area up with trailers. I am still catching several nice crappie and catfish with a few top water bass thrown in. There are no diminished services here at Blackburns except for launching. Many places do not have that ever anyway. Day use areas will be very crowded with very little camping and launch parking available. Fishing has not been affected much if any.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's guide Service on Top-water. Nice fish.Image title

The lake level is 571.81 and has risen 6-inches in the last 24-hours and there are no generators running or spillway gates open. They are keeping the White River at Newport at 18-feet at all cost. Beaver Lake is less than a foot from going over the spillway. They either have to let some water out or really cause a lot of problems. Newport's minor flood stage is 26-feet and they could have kept it at just below that for months but refuse to do so. Nobody is asking to dry dock the lake in the winter or flood out farmers anytime but just good management techniques that do not hurt anybody. These stupid rules were made decades ago and need to be reviewed. Campgrounds, launches, marina access by land and parking for day use people are affected the most. I did see some debris when I went to Briar Creek crappie fishing yesterday. It came loose with the last rise when they shut down discharge. Be carefull when being out in the dark or do not go out then. The water itself is very clear and clean. Top water bite just at sunrise continues to be the best bite for hybrids and bass. Crappie are fair in 20-feet of water back in the creeks on cover. Look around and you will find schools of them. There is a lot of cover and the fish are not everywhere. Catfishing is fair on jugs and throw lines. I found 70 degree water in some places yesterday. Bink is on the top water fish as are Mike Eakle and Tom Kelly. One month until spearfishing season opens for divers. We will finish painting the pool early next week and start filling it. If you have a need for sand, we have a big sandpile by the pool. Otherwise it will be scarce all summer as well as swimming areas. You can swim off our dock here at Blackburns or in our big pool or off a rental pontoon. You are not out of options.  You may not mind paying for boat stalls, (your first one is free here) but you cannot social distance in a duplex and it is days like today where you really appreciate a big covered porch. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

A giant smallmouth caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday on top water. Image title

The lake level is 571.24 and has risen 8-inches in the last 24-hours with no generation. Yes, they have shut everything off in their quest to Keep the White River at Newport at 18-feet at all costs. The minor flood stage there is 26 feet. Beaver lake is about ready to go over the spillway and they are in a panic there with several spillway gates open. It is not where we are but how we got there. Mismanagement. The warm weather is now here and the lake surface temperature is rising and is now in the high 60's. The water is still clear and the bass are on the beds. The best bite now is early morning top water with some in the evening. Hybrids and bass are mostly what is coming up. If people keep killing those red meat fish (temperate bass) there will be none left. There were none stocked this year. The white bass are making a come back but are not near the same as before the fish kill last year. There are plenty of shad in the lake though. The flathead and smallmouth bite is winding up but some nice ones are still being caught but not nearly as many. Channel catfishing is picking up. I am still catching some good crappie on brush in 20-feet of water near the old shoreline. People sight fishing for bass on beds are doing well. It looks like summer is here and there is to be several days of sunshine early next week and we can finish painting the pool. It will be open before Memorial Day. The lake in general is in good condition.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Guess what. The Corps of Engineers have closed the spillway gates on Norfork Dam and increased the discharge out of Table Rock to maintain it's normal level. They have increased the discharge out of Bull Shoals but not as much as they are putting in and it is rising. This is all in anticipation of the upcoming rain and them keeping the White River at Newport at 18-feet at all costs for absolutely no reason. These management practices are getting almost criminal. Branson is not even very much open. All of the lakes except Table Rock are sure to rise.  Let some water out boys. You have had eight months to do so. Enough incompetence, I am about as sick of you as the virus but still nobody does anything about it. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some of yesterday's catch. Released under Blackburns  dock after pictures. Tom is a good fisherman and conservationalist. Image title

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The lake level is 570.14 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with the same discharge of one generator and two spillway gates open one foot. It is stable with no rain and rises when it rains. It is equal to about 1-2/3 generators. They have dropped the discharge of the White River at Newport drastically and the level there now is 17.4 feet which is actually lower than the prescribed 18 feet. They are doing all they can to keep the levels up as high as they can to keep the beaches, launches, campgrounds and parking at a minimum all summer for absolutely no reason.  I must have forgot to tell them it rains in the spring. We have a good chance to have rain for about the next week with cool weather until later part of the week. The surface temperature was 67 when I went out yesterday and the water was very clear. I saw several bass on beds and the crappie were on brush at about 20-feet. None were in the deeper water. I caught a couple of small stripers and released them immediately. If people keep showing lines of dead stripers on docks they are cutting their own throats.  We used to catch 30-lb. ones regularly and 20-lbs was common now a 15-lb.ers are rare. A 10-lb. striper is not something to be proud of, throw them back. It does not make you look good to kill them. The striper guides had better start learning how to catch crappie if they want to make a living if they keep killing red meat fish. None were stocked this year.  Tom Kelly brought in some nice fish yesterday and released them under the dock. Catfish, crappie and bass were all caught. Fishing overall is pretty good if you know where and how. I caught some good ones in the middle of the day. The lake is in good condition and we have no diminished services here at Blackburns and still have the best prices. $59/day for a 1-bedroom and 2,3,4 bedrooms are priced accordingly with a free stall for your boat. It is not a dead end with no parking to our dock. We sometimes do not have stalls available for one night stays though but you can still launch and park here unless the lake rises more. Some good fish are being caught here every day. Bass, crappie, catfish, hybrid stripers are the best with the hybrids being caught on top water early mixed with the bass. The weather continues to be cool so far. The normal high is 76 but it has struggled to be in the 60's.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The Gerigs from Towanda, Illinois caught some nice ones yesterday fishing with Bink on top water.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.21 and has been the same for over 24-hours with the same discharge. The level of the White River at Newport has now been reduced to below 18-feet and the discharge there greatly reduced. This is not only crazy but stupid. We have to get some one with a brain managing the dams. People talk about the high water being money in the bank for the power company and the corps, if so, why do they bypass the generators and open spillway gates and get nothing for it. The excuse all fall and winter was they were doing maintenance on the generators. Are they not working now? The minor flood stage is 26-feet at Newport and the only rule should be let out as much water as you can without reaching that level and cut all of the other junk until they get down to the power pool.  They have the technology to do it. If they do not I will help them.  As long as people put up with this mismanagement it will not stop. The cool weather has kept the surface temperature in the low 60's and does not have much chance of rising in the next several days with the very cool nights. The lake is very clear. Bass are now moving to the beds and the sight fishermen are catching a lot of them on gitzits back in the creeks. The smallmouth bass fishing has slowed but not stopped and so has the flathead fishing. Channel cats are now moving back into the creeks also. I found a big school of crappie back in a creek in 18-feet of water on wood but only about 1/2 of them were keepers. Red meat fish (mostly hybrids and small stripers) are hitting top water most days now just at sunrise. Get out there before 6:AM and work the clear spook if it is sunny. It glistens in the sun and the fish really go after it. Bass too. The walleye are still roaming with the bait fish and have not moved to the flats yet.  When the thermocline forms they will be in 16-20 feet of water in or just outside brush on main lake points. I am ready. Debbie, Casey, Abbey, and Donna worked hard on the pool yesterday and got aboit 1/2 of it painted and we will start filling it after the paint cures. It is a big pool (30x60) and you can swim laps in it and it also has a slide. Many pools around here are 20x30 and ours is three times as big. You can social distance in it. Things are looking good here and people are really wanting to get out of the house and get outside. I am fortunate, I can do that everyday and am thankful for it. Compare prices before you book.  You can save a lot of $ here without sacrificing any quality. I really dislike paying for boat stalls do you?

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service Yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 570.22 and has risen 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with the same amount of generation and spillway gates. It is stable now.  They have achieved their goal of dropping the discharge of the White River at Newport  and lowering the level to just over 18-feet as predicted. They are doing their best to hold the lake levels up as high as they can in order to stay just one big rain away from going over the spillway and then flooding out everything down stream when it happens. Hold and hope is the motto, stupidity is the game. It is sunshine and cool today with a high pressure having moved in. The wind shifted to the north yesterday and was very breezy. It is better now. It layed about 6:PM last evening. The main lake had white caps on it most of the day. The first day after a cold front is not usually the best fishing but I will give it a try anyway. There was an early morning top water bite yesterday but after that it was hard to get out of the wind.The lake is clearing again after the rain and the sunshine should help. More rain is scheduled for next week. We will see. It is to be cool and everything is slow warming up. The surface temperature was 64 this morning with not much chance of it increasing any time soon. When it changes I expect it to go directly to summer. Bink caught some good top water fish yesterday and is out with a Blackburns customer again today.  Hope they do well. Bink can do it if any body can. I do not like to fish in high wind but it is sometimes good fishing. It is not fun for me to fight it. Blackburns has a few openings and the one bedroom cabins are still $59/day and come with a free boat stall. Cannot beat that. We have birds, wildlife and flowers everywhere. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 570.16 and rising with 1.3 inches of rain last night and the creeks are running but not fast. It does not help that they have cut the discharge way back on the White river at Newport trying to reach their stupid rule of 18-feet.  They are almost there. They would like it to be 12-feet but the lakes are all full except for Table Rock which is just a bit over power pool. I wonder why. Other people should wonder why also. The creeks are stained just a little green and the main lake is clear. Water surface temperature is 65-degrees and is not likely to rise with very cool weather for the next several days.  I was working on stuff on the Resort yesterday afternoon when it clouded up and also warmed up. There was a light wind from the south and a low pressure front was moving in. These are the conditions that I look for. Get out there and fish until it rains you out. I went to one of my crappie places out of the wind and started casting my Bobby Garland Blue Ice jig over brush and letting it sink. One bass was caught but no crappie. I was too shallow as the back of the creek was full of cover.  Moved to exposed wood in 18-feet of water and repeated. Caught a 12-inch crappie and then nothing for a few minutes. Then they started to bite. In less than one hour I caught and released about 20-fish.  None great big but most in the 11-12 inch range with a few shorts. I caught six more keepers for the folks in cabin three for supper and came in. I left at 4:Pm and was back by 5:20 as it started to rain. Usually I also use a two inch twister tail tipped with a minnow but did not have to. Norfork lake is a good crappie lake with big fish.  I just did not catch any big ones yesterday but some nice keepers. I will tell you where when you get here. Cabins still start at $59/day and your first boat stall is free. Cannot beat that. Come on down.  The money you save can be donated to the disabled Vets if you must pay more. Things are slow warming up.

Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental Aerial

Dock in a sheltered cove.  Good for canoeing and kayaking.  Fishing too. Close to three marinas. You can drive down a gently sloping road 1/3 mile to the dock and launch. Image title

Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental. All individual cabins with big covered porches and no duplexes. Good for social distancing. Large green flat playground with pavillion and
the largest pool in the area. Best prices on cabins and boats. Why pay more? Your first boat stall is free unless you bring the queen Mary. Lake of the Ozarks likes those. Image title
Image titleImage titleEvery roof is new. No leaks here. 28 acres to roam.Image titleImage titleImage titleBig dock with different sized stalls. Your first normal sized  one is free

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mark Aesehleman and Molly with a nice flathead. Image titleImage titleSonny Ealke with some good ones. The Soltysiacs can catch them too. Image title

The lake level is 570.12 and has been stable for 24-hours with the same amount of discharge.  They continue to drop the White River level at Newport on their quest for 18-feet.  It is now 19. With this amount of discharge you cannot expect the lakes to drop very much or very fast. What you see is what you get. The level has not affected Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental much and we have no diminished services. You can still launch your boat and park your trailers here without going to some remote areas that are very busy with day users. It makes it handy for single fishermen or couples that do not launch boats very well or drive trailers and unload them by themselves and then have to pick up the boat driver at the dock.  You can drive 1/3 of a mile down a nearly flat road, launch your boat, put your boat in a free stall and park your trailer in our parking lot and be finished until you leave. We are not huddled up on a cliff with restricted parking and a dead end road to the dock with little space for parking and turn around with no launch. All of our cabins are individual with covered porches and we have no duplexes that do not allow for social distancing. You can be in your own cabin and be a safe distance from your neighbor and the children can play in our big, flat, green palyground with lots of outdoor activities. We have restricted the numbers of people that can use the game room at a time but have ping pong, shuffleboard and other games under the covered pavillion. Our big pool will be open as soon as we get it painted and filled. It loks to be a good year and the lake is high but is in good condition for fishing and boating. You can still get a cabin for $59/day here at Blackburns with a free stall for your normal sized boat. Best prices anywhere. Best place, best price, closest to Mountain Home dining and shopping and you can get food delivered. Why pay more unless you just want to? Crappie fishing is pretty good with fish in the backs of creeks on wood about 12-foot down. Catfishing has slowed a bit but I am still getting some. There is a top water bite some days but not every day. The fish are still in the same places but do not come all the way up. You can use a spook to draw them up or cast a swim bait with little or no weight on it. Bass and crappie are together and walleye a little deeper. The water surface temperature is still 66+ and slow to rise and the lake is clearing again after the rain.  It is sunny and beautiful today. The yard is mowed, the flowers blooming and the place looks good, come on down.  You are all welcome and the price is right. You can make your stimulus check go far here at Blackburns and get out of the house. We have a good set up here and all cabins are sanitized after every use. We have good rental boats at fair prices. Yes we do have 300 Meg internet.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

We just received about 1.3 inches of rain in just a few minutes and the creeks are running hard and the lake is rising. It has lightened up a little and the rain has slowed way down. This will brown up the creeks considerably but should not affect the main lake much. We will see. I will check things out in a few minutes. It is time to let some water out boys.  The rain really came down there for a while but not much wind. Typical May weather wilh a couple of cold fronts moving through a week.It just depends on where they meet the high pressure where the severe weather hits. We have been very fortunate so far. Maybe I can catch a flathead and a couple crappie.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with a top water striper this morning. Released.Image title

Jeremy Deardoff with a good one.Image title

The lake level is 569.93 and is fairly stable with the same discharge of one generator and two spillway gates open one foot. It has risen a little over one inch in the last 24-hours and we received about 1-1/2 inches of rain in the last two days with more on the way. They have dropped the White River at Newport to 19+ feet as predicted on it's way to 18-feet. This is so stupid. The area lakes will be high for most of the summer unless someone at the Corps of Engineers get a brain which is not likely except for Table Rock which they religiously keep at power pool at the expense of everyone else.  Especially Bull Shoals which is very high. It is all about the money and antiquated rules of operation.  They have had all fall and winter to drop the lakes but refused to do so. There is a top water bite most days early if you know where to go. Sometimes they do not surface but are shallow and you can call them up with a spook or use a swim bait with no weight to get down to them. Creature baits and worms are working for smallmouth and Kentuckies with gitzits for bedding fish. Some crappie have spawned and some are spawning and some are still staging.  I am really surprised about how many have not spawned yet for this time of year. There are some really big ones. The lake is pretty clear and the surface temperature is in the mid to high 60's depending on where you are. A lot of fish of most varieties are on shad and roaming in 18-25 feet with walleye just a bit deeper. I tried for walleye on the flats by Cranfield Island but they were not there yet. Throw lines are working best for catfish with flatheads still being the best. Fishing overall is fair with some good ones being caught every day. The lake overall is in good condition.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 569.72 and has risen 3-inches in the last 24-hours and is still rising with one generator running and two spillway gates open 0ne foot. The lake surface temperature is in the early 60's but should warm with the weather getting into the 80's soon. We need some over night lows in the 60's.  It is a beautiful day today with sunshine but a little wind. I am still not seeing many bass on the beds yet and with the clear water near the shore I should be seeing a lot of them in the creeks. Some of the ones thet I am catching have red tails though.  Some of the crappie that I am catching have not spawned yet and it is late for them. There is plenty of wood for them at the shoreline and the level has not varied very much in several weeks with the Corps struggling to drop the lake.  A lot of them are still chasing shad. Most of the white bass are small (about 8-9 inches) but a very few of them are bigger. Not nearly as many as compared to the past. Same for big stripers. Not the same for the smallmouth bass though. Many are in the four pound range and there are a lot of them.  Norfork is now a very good smallmouth fishery. Walley fishing is picking up and about one in three are keepers. The top water bite does not happen every morning but is pretty good when it does and several bass are mixed in with the hybrids and stripers. I am releasing all stripers on site and allowing them to grow and not fishing for them in deep water.  Look for them when the sun just starts to come up over the mountain. Before that you can call them up with a spook if you know where they are and know how to work the spook correctly.  After that a lot of fish of all kinds are in 15-16 feet of water near the bank part way back in the creeks. In the evening I like shadowy banks the best before sunset. The middle of the day fishing has not been good for me. Overall fishing has been fair but smallmouth and flatheads are the best. When a low pressure is moving in stay out there until it rains you out. That is the best time to be out there no matter what time it is. May first is coming and we will see how they manage the White River at Newport then. I sure hope they do not regulate it to 18-feet but you cannot let the government run anything. The rules have not changed with the times. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 569.46 and has risen 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with almost 1-1/2 inches of rain last night. The creeks ran but have slowed now. They did start up the one generator but closed two spillway gates.  The discharge is now about 1-3/4 generators.  The lake is still rising. They are running Table Rock hard and are really filling up Bull Shoals to keep the landing at Branson normal.  May ist they are to lower the level of the White River at Newport to 18 feet. We will see. If they do it will take months to drop the lakes to normal. They like to hold and hope and keep just one big rain away from being forced to let it all out.  It sure has not affected fishing though as smallmouth bass, flatheads, crappie and Kentucky bass continue to bite and the lake is getting very clear. I saw some debris that has washed off the bank with the lake rise back in the creeks but nothing big. I do not recommend being out after dark. The surface temperature is still in the early 60's but should rise with the ambient temperature to get into the 80's soon. The bass are ready to get on the beds and some crappie have not spawned yet. Several very large crappie are being caught. Many fish are in about 15-ft. of water near the bottom. We caught three very nice flathead today on throw lines baited with perch. I do not bed fish for bass but if you do gitzits work well.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Smallmouth, crappie and flatheads are the best bite. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 569.18 and has remained stable for the last 24-hours but they shut off the one generator earlier this morning.  They must be expecting some rain and are trying to keep the level as high as they can. They are running Branson hard to keep it at power pool and trying to keep the White River at Newport to 21-feet like predicted. We will see if they drop the level to 18-feet May 1st. If they do they should turn in their operators card and let my dog Toby run it. I guess it is fun for them to keep almost everything just one big rain away from disaster while protecting Table Rock and then go home and laugh. Hold and hope. We are to get at least an inch of rain tonight and then warm and mostly sunny for a few days. The lake is still slow warming but is now in the early 60's depending on where you look. The lake is clear and I still have seen very few bass on the beds yet. I do not do sight fish for bass on beds but many people do. I caught some big fish yesterday both crappie and bass and they were all in about 15-ft. of water near the bottom. I was casting the grub to the bank and letting it sink while using a slow retrieve. They all hit hard at just about the same depth. You can see your lure down about 6-7 feet and it is totally clear to the bottom near the bank. I was fishing the creeks near Blackburns where the wind had been blowing into. I fished for about two hours and caught four big fish. The fish did not bite at all during the middle of the day but started about 5-PM. The throw line produced two big flatheads on perch.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The flathead are still biting on throw lines. Caught last night.Image title

The lake level is 569.21 and has risen a little over one inch in the last 24-hours. This is the third day in a row for a rise but it has not been much. There is still one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot for a total discharge of a little over two generators. Just when it starts to drop a little it rains again. The water surface temperature is hanging in there at just below 60 and has been very slow to rise this spring. The smallmouth bass and flathead bite continues as does the crappie. I am catching some very nice crappie near brush in about 25-feet of water 10-feet down on a jig and live minnows on a slip float. Just cast the jig over the brush and let it sink while working it just a bit. Kentucky bass are there also. There is a top water bite some days for red meat fish and bass but the stripers are small. (7-10 lbs.) Striper fishermen are going to have to learn how to fish crappie and bass if they do not quit killing these small ones. Especially since none were stocked this year. Some good hybrids in the 6-8 pound range are being caught. The larger white bass are scarce. It is sunny and nice with light wind today and there should have been a top water bite.  I have not been out yet. It is to rain a bit early this week but several dry days in a row are after that. A few walleye are with the smallmouth bass. It was very windy and hard to get out of it yesterday but is much better today. Some nice fish are being caught every day and the lake is in good condition and pretty clear. You can see your lure down 5-6 feet depending on the color.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Smallmouth Bass fishing out of Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental On Norfork lake Arkansas in the Ozark Mountain Region.Image title

The lake level is 569.11 and has risen one inch in the last 24-hours with the same discharge and about one inch of rain. At least they did not stop generation when it started raining like they usually do.  The creeks run just a bit but the lake is still clear. The surface temperature is about 60 depending on when and where. Smallmouth bass are the best bite now with a top water bite for red meat fish and bass some days about 7:30 AM. Bass can come up any time. Some nice walleye and crappie are also showing up. It is taking it a long time to warm up here and I still feel there is a good chance to go straight to summer when it does. Our normal high is 72. Get out and fish top water early, switch to 3-inch worms and creature baits for smallmouth, take the middle of the day off, go out about 4:30PM and continue bass and crappie  fishing until sunset. We are catching good fish every day and the lake is in good condition. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday morning on top water. Image title

The lake level is 569.03 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours. The discharge rate is the same and they are still holding the White River at Newport at 21 feet. They are to drop it to 18 feet May 1st. If they do that they are not just incompetent but idiots. They enjoy keeping the lakes very high and just one big rain away from opening up the spillway gates and flooding out everything below. They would rather do that when the crops are planted and up rather than in the fall and winter. As long as Branson is protected, everything is fine. The level is not affecting fishing but has limited access for day users. I was amazed how clear the lake was when I went out yesterday. I believe the creeks are clearer than the main lake. The surface water temperature was just over 60 and there were several boats out despite the wind. It was hard to get out of the wind with it coming from the north west and swirling. I used both the grub and minnow and the Bobby Garland blue ice jig. Both caught fish. The crappie were spawned out females with one about 16-inches and the bass were mostly 13-inch Kentuckies. I was casting part way back in the creeks behind the brush piles and letting the lure sink into the brush. They mostly hit about 8-12 feet down over 25-30 feet of water. I caught seven crappie and four bass and came back in. It is to rain some for the next several days but should not rain us out very long. Flatheads are still biting on throw lines baited with perch and there was a good top water bite for red meat fish just after 7:AM. Limb lines are not producing very well as it is hard to keep the turtles off them. You have to bait up in the dark and run them often to get fish.  I am really sorry they are not stocking stripers and hybrids this year but the safety of the AGFC is more important. It just had to happen just when the numbers of big fish are down and they were needed to get the population back up for the future. The big White Bass population is also down. Bass and crappie population is not. Walleye is just about the same. Good fish are being caught everyday.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 569.10 and has dropped one inch in the last 24-hours despite almost one inch of rain. They are still running one generator continuously and have four spillway gates open one foot and are holding the White River at Newport at just below 21-ft. This should put us at power pool after July 4th if it does not rain much. Hold and hope.  Not much of a plan. The new news is that there will be no striper and hybrid stockings this year due to the AGFC practicing social distancing. We want the employees to be safe but are sorry the fish will not be stocked. It is time the limit on these fish was reduced to two fish daily limit and four fish possession until the numbers and size improve and have fishermen practice catch and release much more. Killing these fish is like destroying the future.  The lake surface temperature was just under 60 in the creeks when I went out yesterday and just as soon as it warms up it cools again. This has slowed the top water bite also. Bass fishing is fair to good as is crappie fishing and catfishing is fair. Smallmouth fishing is best. Most of the fish are in from 20-35 feet of water suspended in the creeks and in the creeks that the wind has been prevailing for several hours. We are getting cold fronts a couple of times a week and they really hurt fishing.  It gets better and better until the next one comes along. It looks like the weather will just go from cool to hot with little spring. Our normal high is 72. At least the severe weather has kept away so far. They did not stop generating when it rained yesterday. They usually do. Keep that river at Newport at 21-feet at all costs now that Branson is normal?

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some of yesterday's catch.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 569.21 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot for a total discharge of a little more than two generators. They are adhering to the 21-foot level of the White River at Newport rule and it is now below 21 feet. It should have stayed at 24 feet and allowed for the lakes to drop more quickly especially after they now have Branson at power pool while the rest of the lakes are much higher. It is all about the money and politics. Do not expect much wade fishing on the White River anytime soon. The lake surface temperature was in the mid 60's yesterday when I went out and the lake is clearing nicely everyday. Trollers are starting to pick up some smaller stripers (6-10 lbs) in about 35-ft. of water just outside the old shoreline. Pictures of dock floors full of small dead stripers is not impressive and just shows how people are willing to cut their own throats to kill fish. If they do not quit, the large striper population will not return to the lake as it was a few years ago. The limit needs to be cut to two fish/day and four possession limit. The Smallmouth bass bite is  good and the walleye and crappie are getting better. The flatheads started biting again yesterday on throw lines but limb lines are not producing much as of late. This is a typical spring on Norfork Lake but the top-water bite is slower than normal. The lake is in excellent condition and the weather is getting better but more rain is likely in the next few days but should not be a wash out. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught and Released yesterday.Image title

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The lake level is 569.39 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with the same amount of generation and spillway gates. They have lowered the level to 21-feet on the White River at Newport as predicted so do not expect any big changes in any of the lakes except fot Branson which is approaching power pool. Bull Shoals is very high but can hold a lot of water. They are to lower the level again at Newport on May 1st to 18 feet and if they do that the lakes will remain high for a long time. We are to get more rain tonight but the rain is not the problem. It is 75 and sunny now. The lake is really clearing and the surface temperature is really rising fast now with the sunshine and warmer nights. Especially in the creeks which are shallower. I had between 62 and 65 in Blackburns Creek yesterday. The bass will move to the beds soon. Smallmouth bass are still the best bite with some big ones being caught. Some walleye and crappie are with them. Flathead fishing has slowed a bit but some are still being caught. The lake is generally in good condition for fishing especially in this area. use the 3-inch worm and creature baits and work the old shoreline and you will catch fish. It is 75 and sunny now

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bink is on the Smallmouth bass. Image title

The lake level is 569.65 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24 hours and the water surface temperature is still at 59 degrees. It will not warm up much with these very cool nights. The lake is getting very clear and you can see down about 5-6 feet. Smallmouth bass fishing is the best right now with kentucky bass next. Some flatheads and a few keeper walleye are also showing up. Crappie are back under docks. Brush piles are mostly too deep for them with all of the natural cover with the water in the trees.  The top water bite is slow coming this year but is happening some mornings with mostly small white bass and bass. Go back into the creeks that the wind has been blowing into and work the bank from as far as you can cast to the shore to about 35-feet.  If you see a school of fish outside the brush drop a spoon. Use 3-inch worms on a jig head or creature baits for about everything. Get out early, take the middle of the day off, and go out about 5:PM until almost dark. No sense fishing in the dark. Keep a spook ready for any top water action. Good fish are being caught every day.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Scuba Steve and Tom Kelly with some good ones. Released under the dock.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 569.83 and has dropped a little over two inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot which is aqual to a little over two generators. We received about 0.7 inches of rain last night but most of it sunk in with little runoff.  The creeks did not run much.  The surface temperature is 59 degrees and is slow rising with these cool nights. They have dropped the White River level at Newport to 21-feet as predicted  and should have kept it at 25 feet. The lakes receding rates will now be mitigated and will be alternating with the priority of keeping Branson from flooding. One big rain will force them to open gates and flood everything down stream. Hold and hope is the motto, flooding is their game. How long will they keep these prehistoric rules of dam management? Draw down in the fall and winter to the high 540's, keep it there as much as possible by releasing as much as possible until the level at Newport is just below minor flood stage is the answer. If they continue to drop the lake at this rate and we get no more rain it will be the end of June before we get to power pool. Not likely.  They now have gauges and computers where they can manage the levels much better than when these rules were first put in place. The fishing is pretty good now for bass and catfish with smallmouth bass and flatheads being the best. Several crappie are being caught off the dock. Some walleye and smaller white bass are being spooned up just outside the old shoreline in about 35-feet of water and smallmouth are biting the three inch worm on a jig head shallower.  Several kentucky bass are way back in the creeks in 12-feet of water. I am not seeing any largemouth bass on beds yet. The lake is clearing nicely and is a good color for fishing in this area. The lake overall is in good condition.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bryan and Jeremy Deardoff with some good ones.Image title

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The lake level is 570.26 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot. This is equal to a little over two generators. It was windy from the south when I went out yesterday and the surface water temperature was 59 degrees.  It just will not warm up.  We need some overnight lows to be in the 60's. It is better than snow which a lot of people are getting.  I am not planting my garden yet even though I want to. We are catching fish everyday but the cold fronts really slow them down. Bass, catfish, crappie and a few walleye are the best bite now. Fish are not coming up everyday like they normally do after the 15th of April but do some days. The bluegill bite is picking up and some are very nice size. They are mostly under docks. Trollers are having a hard time trying to get fish out of the brush and when you do not hear from them for a couple of days they are not catching much. If you have a good fish finder and troll around for enough miles you will catch some though especially if you happen across a school. Our normal high is 70 and normal low is 48 but we still could get another frost. A few flatheads are showing up on limb lines and smallmouth bass are improving every day.  Overall fishing is just fair.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide service yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.41 and has dropped a little over an inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and three spillway gates open one foot.  This is equal to two generators. The lake is clearing after the rain and runoff and the surface temperature is hanging in there at 60. The lake is in good condition but needs to warm back up. There were big schools of shad fry under the dock yesterday and they were very small and had just hatched. We caught our first flathead and that is a good sign. Bass and catfish are the best bite now with a few spawned out crappie showing up.The smallmouth bass bite is improving and a few walleye are being caught. Most fish are either in or just outside the old shoreline in the brush. Every thing has a lot of cover and a lot of feed but some good fish are being caught everyday mostly in the creeks. Some fish are suspended in 30-35 feet back in the creeks near brush in the old creek channel. I do not know why. Must be some bait around there somewhere or shad after plankton since they are in the creeks that the wind is blowing into. I have not seen much top water action the last couple of days. Just a few small bass. Warmer weather will put the bass on the beds.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.52 and has risen almost 2-inches in the last 24-hours. The new news is that they are still running one generator continuously and  have opened up three spillway gates 1-foot and that is equal to almost exactly two generators. That should drop the level just a bit depending on the rainfall if they continue. The rules say they are to regulate the White River at Newport to 21 feet starting tomorrow if the lakes are over 50% full but that would be a decrease from the 24-feet they are trying to do now. If they do follow these guidelines they will keep all of the lakes just one big rain from them being in trouble and then opening the gates and flooding everything downstream after planting.  Hold and hope is not a solution. Get the levels down. That number goes to 18 feet on May 1st and there is no way they can drop the lakes at that level except slowly even if it does not rain, which it will. Fall and winter is the time to draw down the levels but they just will not do it. Taking 1.75 feet of flood control away from the lake for the rivers minimum flow did not help anything either. That sure dispelled the idea that the dams were just for flood control and not for recreation. At least the put and take trout have plenty of cold water with low oxygen to keep the rivers running. There will be very little wade fishing again this year on the rivers. The level on Norfork has not varied very much the last few weeks and it has been good for the crappie spawn. There is plenty of wood near the shore for them and cover to protect them. This will make good crappie fishing  for years to come. We will see what happens to the bass who are getting ready to get on beds. Walleye and White Bass are finished. The surface temperature was in the high 50's early yesterday morning and just at 60 in the afternoon. It is to get much warmer starting tomorrow. The normal high is 70 and the normal low is 46. The lake is starting to clear again after the rain and the lake overall is in good condition for fishing. I am catching some big fish every day. Mostly bass and catfish and a few crappie. I am not fishing for them now though but will soon after the fry starts showing up. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Some of yesterday's catch.Image title

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The lake level is 570.38 and has risen a little over 2-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously. Beaver lake is 1-1/2 feet from going over the spillway, Norfork 9 ft., Bull Shoals and Table rock are both 13-ft. It looks the the dam managers are one big rain away from getting into trouble. Hold and hope all fall and winter and then use the predictable spring rains as an excuse. Something has to change. If they had drawn it down to 548 we would be in good shape then. Blackburns and fishing are not affected much until it gets several feet higher and we lose our launch but we do not lose dock access. The water surface temperature was almost exactly 60 when I went out yesterday and the creeks were light brown again from the runoff. We received about 3-inches of rain the last two days. It did not affect the fishing as we caught several large bass and a couple of nice catfish. I was going to go crappie fishing in Pigeon creek but it was just too cold with the north wind. I stuck in Blackburns creek.  The high only got to 49 but it is to get into the high 60's and low 70's later this week. The fish are still on the old shoreline in the brush. I will try a spinner bait today with the water color change.  It was getting very clear but not now. It did not affect the main lake much but I am not fishing there.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental (click here for comments)

Ryan is busy releasing the fish out of the basket caught today after pictures. The Grand Kids learn early how to catch and release here. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.16 and is rising with almost 2-inches of rain last night and them shutting down the spillway gates. One generator is still running. The level has come up about 4-inches in the last 24-hours.  It rains in the spring boys just in case nobody told you. I did not want to surprise you.  It is not where we are but how we got here. They had all fall and winter to lower the lakes and did not do so. Now it is back to hold and hope and then flood everything out down stream. We will see if they follow the outdated flood control release rules again this year.  Nobody seems to care enough to change them. The creeks run pretty good earlier this morning but have slowed way down now. Fishing has not been affected and the rising water has helped the catfishing as well as the waning moon and the early top water bite is still very good for many species and they are mostly in the same places. Bass fishing is still the best with fish coming up early and then going down into the brush on the 3-inch worm. Some red meat fish are with them and a few spawned out crappie. The pretty stable lake level for about the last two weeks has made for a very good spawn for them. A couple of large stripers have been caught recently but not even near the numbers of a few years ago. I hope the people catching them are not celebrating killing them. They are few.  White bass numbers are also way down but the Hybrids are about where they have been and are holding the others in there. I am surely glad they did not quit stocking them as was proposed. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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James and Mike caught some good top water fish this morning.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 569.81 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with the same amount of generation and flood gate releases that have been going on for a week. We received about an inch of rain last night and this early morning but the creeks did not run. The lake is dropping again after the rain. We are to get more rain and then a cold front is coming in and we could get some frost.  Especially in the low areas near the lake. This seems to always happen in April and that is why I do not plant my garden until early May no matter how warm it gets. The lake surface temperature is in the low 60's and dropping.The top water bite has really picked up after most of the threadfin shad have spawned and the plankton, shad and fish have moved to the wind blown creeks near the old shoreline in the brush. A high percentage of the fish are in 20-ft. of water or less. Actually most of them are in 12-feet or less but may follow your lure out before biting. The lake has cleared a lot so I have quit the spinner bait for a while and am using the spook and spitin image top water lures to call them up or cast to them when they come up. The rest of the time I am using the grub and minnow or the 3-inch green worm on a 1/8th ounce lead head. Any heavier and they sink too fast and get into the brush.  You have to learn to count down and just keep your lure just above the brush or you will get snagged all the time. You can make your worm almost weedless. There was a good top water bite for bass this morning and the shad were coming uip everywhere in the backs of the windblown creeks. Some stripers, crappie and hybrids are with them. Catfish are biting fair on limb lines baited with perch if you can keep the kentucky bass off them. I have not caught a flathead yet.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught this morning. More too.We are releasing most fish except for the catfish.Image title

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The lake level is 569.97 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open 1-ft. The lake is clearing nicely and is a perfect color in Blackburns area and too clear near the dam for fishing. Most of the fish are still in the brush near the old shoreline and have plenty of cover.  The threadfin shad have spawned and the fish have plenty of feed too. Shad are flitting around everywhere. Walleye, crappie, bass and red meat fish are all in the same places. The bluegill moved in under the dock and the catfish started biting immediately.  They always do that. The top-water bite is in full swing now so get out early.  The 3-inch plastic worm is working best when they are down and the clear spook and spitin image when they are surfacing. The  Smallmouth bass bite is really picking up. Some crappie have spawned, some are spawning and some are on the beds. Some spawned out females are very big. I have not seen any fry yet but they should show up soon. Carp are spawning in the very backs of the creeks and it is a good time to bowhunt them. I am not finding any bass that have spawned yet but they are close but the water temperature has dropped to 62-63 and will cool off more with this long lasting cold front moving in and lows are to be in the low 30's and highs in low to high 50's.. We are to get some rain the next couple of days and it is thundering now. This is a typical spring for fishing but has been just a bit slower warming up.  The lake is a little high for some boat access but has not affected fishing much except the fish are harder to get out of the cover. Overall the lake is in excellent condition and we are catching fish everyday.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

James Soltysiac with some good ones caught this morning. Under the dock they go except for the catfish.Image titleImage title

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide service yesterday on top water.Image title

The lake level is 570.22 and has dropped three inches in the last 24-hours with one generator and four spillway gates open one foot. It is to rain later this weekend and early next week. It has cooled of a bunch with highs yesterday in the high 60's, today low 60's, tomorrow 50's. The surface water temperature in the creeks has dropped a bit but it is in the mid 60 on the main lake. The top water bite is on now and a few big stripers are being caught but not near like in the past. I hope they are getting released. They almost all live when caught in shallow water. I am releasing a lot of nice bass under the dock but do not fish for stripers much. I am releasing all crappie caught now immediately as the males are guarding the nests and if you catch them off the bluegill eat all of the eggs in about two minutes. Trolling all over is not my kind of fishing. I like to cast for them with artificial bait if I fish for them at all. A lot of people like to fish for them though and it takes the pressure off the walleye, crappie and catfish which I like the best. Bass are the staple on this lake when the others are not biting. Fishing is improving as the moon wanes. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

George fishing in the trophy pond. He loves to fly fish for bluegill so I put some big ones in for him. Image title

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The lake level is 570.48 and has dropped about two inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot. That is about all they can do for now as they are determined to get Table Rock down to normal at all costs. The lake is clearing and is in excellent condition for fishing but it is a little tough to get the fish out of the old shoreline and the brush. The crappie that I caught yesterday had spawned and the bass are getting ready. I had a 69 degree surface temperature in Blackburns creek yesterday and people were swimming in the lake. I will go diving when it hits 70 though but I have an 8-mil wetsuit with hood. It looked like the threadfin shad had spawned and I look for the top water bite to really get started in earnest soon.  It had been sporatic. The full moon and the dropping of the lake level slowed fishing a bit but we still caught some good ones. All of the bass and crappie were released under the dock but the catfish were released in a skillet with some fried taters and mushrooms. Norfork lake catfish are really good and flatheads are the best. I have not caught any of them yet though but I bet I will. Just a few more days and I will be walleye fishing. Life is good. People are catching some very nice fish out of Tom Kelly's trophy pond and we like that.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 570.85 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously and four spillway gates open one foot. It is equavilent to about 2-1/3 generators. We will see if they follow the dumb rule of dropping the level at Newport to 21-feet if the lakes are 50% full on the 15th of this month.  That is also one of the problems. They changed the way the 50% is calculated resulting in the lakes being held higher, and implimented the minimum flow law.  They both took away flood capacity. I wonder if the rivers are getting enough minimum flow now. There will be no wade fishing for quite some time. The bass and catfish are still biting pretty good in the backs of the creeks and some walleye have moved back down river after spawn. The bigger crappie have spawned but I see no evidence of any fry yet. The surface temperature is still in the low 60's but should rise fast on the spawning beds with this very warm weather. Another cold front is moving in after that with highs in the low 60's, that and the full moon and the lake dropping will not do the fishing any good. I am just not seeing much top-water action yet. The lake is clearing nicely and the brown water is almost gone and is a good color for fishing. The lake in general is in good condition. I am catching some good fish every day.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Released under the dock.Image title

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink's Guide Service.Image title

The lake level is 571.03 and is dropping very slowly. The new news is that they now have 4 spillway gates open one foot and along with the one generator running continuously should start to drop the level a little quicker. The total is equal to about 2-1/3 generators. This is good and the fish are biting. I am just fishing for bass and catfish now until the crappie spawn is over. It looks to be a very good one. I am releasing all of the bass under the dock until they get on the beds and then I will quit fishing for them. I found just a few mushrooms yesterday and they should really pop up with the temperatures to be in the 80's for a couple of days before the next cold front comes through. We are located very low here at Blackburns and it is conducive to late frosts so I will wait several days to plant the garden.  It is ready though. The grass is growing very quickly  as are the flowers. Tom Kelly reports that people are catching some very good fish out of his trophy pond. That is what we wanted. One lady said she caught the biggest crappie she has seen in her life. This is a good time of year and it is good to just be out there. We are working hard on the resort making improvements and will paint the pool soon. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Several of these were released under the dock.Image title

These go well with mushrooms and fried taters with onion.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 571.06 and is exactly what it has been for the last 24-hours with one generator running and two spillway gates open 1-ft. I crappie fished for a while just to confirm that the big ones are spawning and the males are in front of the nests getting ready to guard them. Everytime you catch one the bluegills eat all the eggs right away so it is important to release them immediately and let them get back to their job if you care about them. Just give them a few days and then catch them. The big females will be hungry after the spawn and easily caught. The males will protect the nests until the eggs hatch and  the fry can get away on their own. It is good that they have a lot of cover and the lake level is not varying a lot during this time. If all of the males are not caught while guarding the nests we will have good crappie fishing for a long time. What is new is that the catfish have moved back into the creeks and are biting well on bluegill (perch) on limb lines. We caught several yesterday and some nice ones too. The catfish are now biting better than the bass which are getting ready to spawn. We also caught and released several bass under the dock. The bass spawn well into the summer on Norfork depending on the variety. The cold weather slowed things down a bit but with temperatures in the 80's early this week the spawn will be in earnest and the mushrooms will come out on the sunny banks. A few are already here. The water temperature was in the high 50's yesterday but will get back to the mid 60's with the upcoming warm weather. The lake is still clearing slowly and is a good color for fishing in most places. You can still social distance here at Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental. All cabins are individual with no duplexes and have covered porches. No need to get close to anybody and the price is right. We did not raise our prices last month for the fishing season and you can still get a cabin for $59/day for two people and your first boat stall is free. Check prices before you book. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with a good one. It is now swimming under the dock.Image title

The lake level is 571.05 and has been stable for several hours with one generator and two spillway gates still open one foot which is equivalent to about 1-1/2 generators. This is about the same as the inflow from the river and is doing nothing to drop the lake. The surface temperature is in the early 60's depending on where you are and this very cool weather will not do anything to help that or bring out very many more mushrooms.  The bass are biting better than the catfish on limb lines baited with bluegill and the bass continue to be the best bite.  Almost all of the fish are near the old lakeshore in the trees and buckbrush in 0-20 ft. of water, as is the bait and they are hard to get out of there. They have plenty of cover, food and the warmest water and have no reason to move anywhere except to spawn and guard the nests. Bink continues to catch some nice hybrids both day and night. Tom Kelly is using his whacky worm near the bank and catching some good bass. The Landry boys and Joseph Cueno just left and did pretty well on bass. Glad to have them. We will see what happens to the top-water bite with this cool weather. I am not going to plant my garden right yet but the grass is really growing and flowers and trees are blooming. Blackburns is still the best place to social distance and Debbie is sanitizing cabins after every use and the lake has low boat traffic. No reason to get close to anybody and the price is right. Why pay more? 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Ryan Landry with a good one.Image title

Caught Fishing with Bink's Guide service.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 570.93 and has been stable for about 4-hours.  The new news is they have supplemented the one generator with two spillway gates opened one foot which is equivalent to a little over 1/2 of a generator. A lot of fish were caught yesterday by Binks, Tom Kelly, Mike Eakle and other Blackburns guests. We have several fishermen in and I did not get a chance to talk to all of them. I set out a few limb lines last night and we will see if any catfish are biting. I cannot see under the dock well enough to tell if the bluegill are there but I am baiting with them from Nabatak. They are just the right size. Mike caught some mushrooms yesterday and these two usually go together. Spring is here and so is the cloudy rainy weather. About two low pressures and one cold front comes through a week with just a few days of sunshine. It is to cool down for a couple of days and then warm back to 80. The full moon is the 7th and catfish do not bite well in the full moon and even less if the lake is dropping. That has not been a problem so far. We will see. As soon as the water starts to warm a cold front comes through and stops it. Bink is catching fish both day and night and good ones too. Come on down to Blackburns.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. The Landry boys and Joseph Cuneo from Houma, Louisiana are catching some very nice bass. They are good fishermen and nice people. We will have to dodge showers for a while but should not wash us out. You can fish close to Blackburns dock and duck into the dock when they start. This is the way to social distance. Better than sitting on the sofa.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

One big Hybrid caught fishing with Bink's Guide service. Image title

Joseph Cuneo is also from Houma.Image title

Dustin Landry from Houma, Louisiana with a good one. He is fishing out of Blackburns Ranger rental boat.Image title

The lake level is 570.87 and has risen about 3-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running. We are to get some rain for the next 2-3 days. Some big bass have moved to the backs of the creeks staging for spawn.  Several are being caught in Blackburns Creek on worms, spinner baits and gitzits.  The water is not clear enough to sight bed fish and that is good. I do not kill fish in the spring except for maybe a catfish or two.  I am going to put out a few limb lines for catfish and see what happens.  It is just about time.  There is just a short window from the time the catfish move in and the gar take over and they leave. This is big flathead time with channel cats a little later. Bluecats are usually the biggest in this lake but I like the others the best. Flatheads are the last fish to spawn in the lake. Fried potatoes and onions, Fried flathed, fried mushrooms may be a heart attack in a skillet but they sure are good. You can fish and hunt mushrooms in the woods here and still social distance. This is a fun time of year. It is to get back into the 80's later this week and that will bring out the morels for sure. Blackburns is getting calls asking if we raised the rates the last of March. The answer is no. Some do, we do not. You can still get a one bedroom cabin got $59/day for two people. All cabins are individual, with no duplexes and have covered porches. You can social distance between cabins. We do not charge for your first boat stall but we do for pets. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and fishing is getting better every day with the top-water bite beginning. Many fish are in the brush near the bank. Keep a spook or spitin image ready for when they come up.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 570.62 and has risen about 5-inches in the last 24-hours.They shut off all generation last evening and started one generator early today. They are still running Table Rock balls to the wall with all generators running and 10-spillway gates open. They are trying to get it down to power pool no matter what it does to Bull Shoals,which is holding their water. Protect Branson Landing at all costs. It is all about $ and politics. Maybe someone will listen about dropping the level in the fall and winter and reevaluating the rules of generation. We need to unite everyone and speak with one voice.  Depending where you are in the county, the rainfall in March was about 2-1/2 inches above normal. Normal is about 4.5 inches for the month. We have had no big rains in the county for several weeks.  The weather is beautiful today and it is just about time to put in some limb lines for catfish. I will do that tomorrow when Nabatak delivers the bait for the resort.  We keep live bait on hand all year here at Blackburns. The area is so lucky to have such a good wholesale bait and tackle supplier as Nabatak.  They have good inventory and prices and the best service. It is about time to mow again for the third time.  Everything is green and flowers and trees are blooming all over. Bink reports catching some big hybrids this morning  on top-water.  True top-water not just calling them up out of the brush. I caught some nice bass yesterday and released them under the dock on the 3-inch worm. Things are ready to break loose. Learn how to work that spook by walking the dog and keep it handy. The lake is clearing and is in overall good condition but there are a few logs in the main channel and you have to watch for them. April is here and fishing will get better and better as the water warms. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. Compare prices and call Debbie at 870-492-5115.  All of our cabins and boats are ready to go. Water surface temperature is in the high 50's on the main lake and early 60's in the creeks depending on where you are and what time of day it is.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.21 and has risen just a bit, (less than an inch) in the last 24-hours with one generator running and three spillway gates open one foot. It would have dropped if it had not rained about one inch last night.  The creeks run just a little. I went crappie fishing yesterday with mixed results. First I went to East Pigeon and only caught one fish on the bank.  It was very large though. I expected more but could not get them to bite.  There is just too much cover and bait. I could not get anymore so I went to Middle pigeon towards the back and fished around the docks. The fish were biting well there on jigs and grubs but were mostly small. They were at all different depths but the water needed to be over 20-ft. deep.  Caught about 20 fish and only five were legal. All were released. Only one small bass was caught. The water was a perfect color there and was more brown as you got nearer to the main lake. The water temperature was 62 back in the creek and high 50's on the main lake. The shad should be spawning but I did not see any top-water all afternoon and evening. I saw just a few boats so it was not hard to practice social distancing. I did not get within a quater of a mile from anyone. It was a beautiful day with light wind from the south and it picked up in the evening and the fish started to bit better. Will try again later today. There still have not been a positive test for the virus at the Baxter Hospital.I have not seen a better place to quarantine than Norfork Lake and Blackburns resort. You do not have to get close to anyone and you can get an individual cabin with no duplexes for $59/day. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 570.15 and has risen three inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating last evening but the new news is that they started up one generator earlier this morning and opened three spillway gates one foot which is about equivalent to another generator. Since then the level has been stable. I sure hope they keep this up. We are over 50% full so they should at least for a month barring any big rains. If that happens they will be forced to. Another thing: Binks said he has dropped the jerk bait as of yesterday and has started using the spook in the old river channel even though he does not see any top-water fish. They are shallow and he is drawing them up but they are almost only bass. Usually when this happens you catch a lot of white bass too but not now. He and I both are really getting to think for sure that most of the white bass are gone. Every once in a while we catch one that is not small but not often. We will know this for sure when the top-water bite starts in earnest. If they are not there then they are gone. I guess more died in the fish kill last year than was previously thought. I know that is the case with the big stripers. Bass fishing is by far the best bite now. The lake is clearing and is a good color for fishing in most places. There has been one positive test for the virus in the county but none in the hospital as of yet. You can come on down to Blackburns and social distance. The lake is sure not crowded with a surface temperature ranging from 57-60 depending on where you are. I am heading out to try to find some crappie for our guests. I will try east pigeon first. Blackburns resort and Boat Rental still has cabins for $59/day. Not bad. Why pay more? Compare prices and then call us. If you must pay more, stay with us and give the difference to the disabled vets. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on top-water fishing with Bink's guide Service Yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 569.85 and has risen 4-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They quit generating last evening, shut off Norfork, opened spillway gates and run all generators on Table Rock to protect Branson and are pounding Bull Shoals Hard with Table Rock water.  Cool weather has returned and the highs are to be in the 60's for several days which is more seasonal. The surface water temperature is all over the place and very different in the shallow water from the main lake. The main lake also varies depending on where on the lake you are. Most of it is still in the mid to high 50's. Some of our guests report an early top- water bite for bass and that is good. Bink caight some good ones too. The full blown top-water bite usually gets here by April 15th and looks to be about on schedule. It started raining when I was going out yesterday so I did not go but it turned out to be not much. I had to wait on guests to get here to check out rental boats.  It is sunny and about 60 now and looks to be a nice day. The sunshine is good for lake clearing and we have not had any runoff here for several days. There are a lot of fish out there and most of them are on the old lake shore around the buckbrush. I will do a little exploring today and let you know. Keep using the jerk bait early and then switch to the 3-inch worm on a jig head and a spinner bait. Keep a top-water lure handy when you see fish surfacing. Either a Spook Puppy or a Spittin image. Practice learning how to walk the dog well. It is very important this time of year. Fishing is picking up if you know how. Please release as many fish as you can during this upcoming spawn season. Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and rentals boats. Some raise their prices in the spring but Blackburns does not. Compare prices and give us a call. Your first boat stall is free and we have 28-acres to roam and we are not huddled up on a steep hillside with little parking or go down a cliff to get to the dock. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 569.46 and has risen 4-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously. The brown water is clearing and is about the color of the Northwestern Ontario lakes. Remember that the clear water is not always the best fishing. I like a bit of green stain that you can see your lure down about 3-4 feet. Bink likes a more of a brown stain with green mixed in. We both agree that we do not like chocolate brown with no visibility. Too clear of water is just as bad. People may want the clearest water for swimming and boating but that season is not here yet. We did have some people swimming off the dock Thursday.  When the shad spawn and the top water bite starts it will make no difference what color the water is, just where the bait is.  High water does not hurt fishing just changes how you fish for them.  It pretty much forces trollers to change their methods and learn how to really fish. People taking pictures of dock floors full of small dead fish and bragging about it should take off their cold weather gear. It was 90 wednesday, 86 Thursday and 80 Friday and is 70 already today with cloudy skies. Most of the fish are still on the old shoreline just above the buckbrush as is the bait. There are reports of water clearing in the Udal area is good news for us here.  One bass fisherman told me yesterday that he was catching  15-20 bass a day on a swim bait but several of them were small. That is the same for me. Jerk baits, 3-inch worms, soft plastics and spinner baits are catching about everything. I have had no reports on the night bite yet but will let you know. I do not fish after dark much anymore especially when the lake is changing almost daily with the rise and I can barely find my spots in the daytime.  I have not caught a fish on a spoon in almost a week. I am heading up into east pigeon to look for some male crappie staging on the bank. Could be time. I need some more fish under the dock. It is to get windy later this afternoon. Things are about ready to break loose. Tom Kelly found some good water in Diamond Bay and caught some nice bass on his whacky worm. We are mowing the grass for the second time now and flowers are everywhere. The swallows are back and the Purple Martin scouts were here a few days ago and left. I sure hope they bring the whole clan back with them. We have a lot of wildlife here at Blackburns. Everything is pretty much on schedule. There was a case of the Virus reported yesterday in Baxter County but it was not in the hospital.  Arkansas reports on what your address is not where they found it. You can social distance here and we will not charge you too much. If you are in town, stop and check us out.  You will like what you see. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some good ones released under the dock yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 569.08 and has risen 6-inches in the last 24-hours with just one generator running part of the time. It look like a litte more rain is coming later this weekend and the first of next week. Not too much though. There was a lot of drying yesterday with temperatures approaching 90 degrees with a light wind. It is to be 80 today with temperatures in the high 60's after that. The brown water seems to be settling in this area as it heads south. The bass fishing is hanging on with many fish in the pre-spawn feeding mode in the old shoreline over the buckbrush. The water temperature is warming rapidly depending on the depth of the water. It is all over the place. 50's some places and 60's other. Get out early with a jerk bait and then use a spinner bait or 3-inch worm over the submerged buckbrush in the creeks. You can catch about anything. Fishing is not the best right now but good fishermen are catching fish.Catfishng looks to be good soon. Baxter County still has not had a positive test and Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental continues to be the best place to social distance. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 568.57 and has risen about 9-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running just part of the time. They have spillway gates open on both Beaver and Table Rock and are really blasting Bull shoals and using the hold and hope theory on Norfork. They should have been regulating to 24 or 25 feet at Newport all winter. When are they going to change this? It would not hurt one thing. I went out yesterday afternoon to check things out and do a little fishing. The lake is brown from Missouri to past the 62 bridge and then pretty much stays in the river channel to where you turn off to Fall and Panther creeks. It is spread out wide between the bridges. Fall and Panther are both in excellent condition as is Float creek. Panther is a good place to check for topwater fish after the shad spawn. I fished Float creek for about an hour with a 3-inch finesse worm and caught three bass and a crappie. The fish are on the old shoreline. The buckbrush is under water several feet and also several feet from the bank and that is where the fish are. All kinds including bait. Bink reports getting out early with a jerk bait and then later switching to the 3-inch worm on a 1/4 ounce jig head. No color needed on jig head but a green worm works nicely. I use a 5/16 but he catches more fish than I do.  I have guests also switching to a gold single spin when it is windy. All are working. Trollers are having a hard time because it is impossible to troll where the fish are. At least most of them. They have to really fish now if they want to catch anything. Binks also reports the night bite for stripers will start soon. Just use the same jerk bait and turn it into a suspending crank bait. The only difference is how you fish it. Stay as far from the bank as you can cast and cast to the bank. Using a suspending lure, crank it down about three or four turns and reel slowly to the boat. Make sure your lure runs true. If it pulls off to the side you will not catch anything. Some people cast parallel to the bank but I do not. Fish for walleye with a soft plastic until after sundown and then switch to the lure before dark.  The male crappie have moved to the creek banks to prepare for the spawn. There are plenty of places for that now and they are scattered all over the place. Tom Kelly reports catching bass and walleye south of Robinson Island on his finesse worm. I sure have some good people helping me with this report and good fishermen too. One person cannot go out a few times a week and write an accurate report. Other news: Baxter County still has not had a positive test for the China virus and people are coming to Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental for social distancing and taking advantage of the best prices on the best cabins in the area. Come on down we will not charge you too much. We have 300 meg internet and two computers in the game room and food delivery to your cabin.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 567.79 and still rising with very little generation. Better let some water out folks but what can you expect from the Corp when they cannot even get their own website up and running. Hold and hope is just not working again. We need a new plan but they are not accountable to anyone. You cannot let the government run anything. The VA is getting a whole lot better in the last two years though. I do not have to drive to Little Rock anymore and they have a very good Doctor here in Mountain Home. On another positive note, there still has not been a positive case of the China Virus here in Baxter County and people are practicing social distancing here at Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental where you can roam 28 acres and fish on a big lake, stay in an individual cabin with no duplexes and not get close to anybody. All cabins are sanitized after every use. It is to get very warm here starting today with highs in the 80's tomorrow and it looks like spring is here finally. Time to plant the garden. The lake is not clearing very rapidly from the quick rise last week but there is good colored water starting near Robinson Island and south. Float Creek is a good place to start. People are catching bass in the brown water though and good ones too. Smallmouth are showing up now and a jerk bait and spinner bait are the best. I will look for some crappie later today when the work is done. We are busy here and we like that. The lake surface temperature is about 56 and you can see your lure down about three feet out of the brown water. There are a lot of fish in this lake. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. Compare prices. You can launch here now.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Marty with some nice ones. Welcome back.Image title

Caught fishing with Bink yeaterday.Image title

The lake level is 566.47 and has risen about 8-inches in the last 24-hours. We received a little less than one inch of rain last night and this morning and more is on the way. They are generating very little except for the lake by Branson and Beaver and they are sticking to the 21-ft. rule on the White River in Newport at all cost. I suppose they will just hold and hope and wait until the crops get planted and come up and then flood everyone out downstream like they usually do. Dam management 101: Do not let the water go over the spillway. We will see if they can get that right. They decide how much to let out.  God decides how much to put in. The lake surface temperature was 56 near Blackburns when I went out yesterday and a little lower downstream. The brown water extended from Missouri to just south of the 62 bridge and then it was just stained a green color. I could see my lure down about three feet. Zero feet in the brown water. The creeks are running now. I was determined to find some crappie but was unable to do so. Then I went bass fishing. I caught a few on the jerk bait and switched to the gold single spin and caught more. No picture fish. Binks caught some hybrids and bass and some of our guests caught some big bass. The carp are moving to the back of Blackburns Creek to spawn so catfishing will not be far away. They spawn at a water temperature of about 70 but it does not take long to get there in the shallow water. They must know something is happening. When the small bluegill move in under the dock it will happen and the bass will start making beds. The very warm weather starting on Thursday should get everything going. The shad will spawn and the top-water bite will begin. That is the easiest time to catch bass and red meat fish. There still has been no cases of virus in Baxter County as far as I know and people are taking advantage of the best individual cabins on the lake at the best price to social distance. It is a good thing we have covered porches this morning. Everyone is setting outside waiting to go fish. Check price and if they charge for first boat stalls and then call us. You can save a lot of $ here at Blackburns resort and Boat Rental. It is nice here anbd the price is right.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bryan Deardoff with some good ones. He kept a few and released the rest.  Some were deep hooked. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 565.29 and has risen 1-ft. in the last 24-hours with very limited generation. One generator running less than 1/2 the time. The water surface temperature is in the mid 50's depending where you are. The rapid level rise from rainfall from Missouri Thursday caused the creeks and main lake channels to turn brown but did not hurt the fishing. Any debris is small.  Bass were surfacing chasing shad last evening in Blackburns Creek but most fish were near the bank in the buckbrush and being caught on spinner baits and jerk baits. Some fish are way back in the creeks in the warmer water. The female crappie are still pre-spawn feeding on brush and the males have moved up into the shallow water in the creeks. I am catching all females  (big ones too) and they are full of eggs with blood lines and just waiting for some heat to go to the beds. I am releasing dozens of them under our dock after pictures. I bet they will move to crappie rock brush after they spawn.  Remember when you fish the banks that all of the males will be guarding the nests after the spawn and if you catch them off, the bluegill eat the eggs faster than you can kiss a duck. Turn some back. It has been a long winter but not very cold but has been slow warming up. It snowed once and did not cover the ground. I like that. Winter fishing has been very good this year and I have caught some very large fish. I would really like it if the striper fishermen would quit killing all of these small fish. People now think a 15-lb. striper is big where just a few years ago a 30-lb one was big. People taking pictures of dock floors full of dead small stripers are not impressing anybody. I have released all stripers and hybrids for over two years and do not fish for them where they are too deep to survive. Venting does not work. They can go down for a while but die anyway. They need to lower the limit to a combination of two stripers and hybrids from three and stop culling. They do not dress out very well anyway after the red meat is cut out. It is rainy and cold now but I will go out and let you know what is happening. It is very busy here and I have a lot of work to do.  All of the cabins are open now except one and they are working on it. Come on down and practice social distancing. We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. There is $1.64 gas just up the road near the Dollar General. The girls are disinfecting all cabins after each use and Baxter County still has not had any positive cases that I am aware of. I cannot think of a better place to be than Blackburns Resort. You can save at least $25/day to stay at the best place. Now than Cardinal baseball is not on I am forced to fish more. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 564.37 and has risen 2-1/2 ft. in the last 24-hours. It has risen 9-1/2 feet from the winter low of 554.85 a couple of weeks ago. I sure wish that they would have pulled it down to 548 like thay should have.  They are running one generator for a few hours and nothing for several hours. This last rise caught me by surprise as we only received about 1/2 inch of rain here on Thursday night but I woke up to a big surprise of almost a 4-ft. rise.   They must have received some high local amounts in the watershead somwhere though. The Mountain Home area has missed most of the heavy rains this winter with most of them going north into Missouri. The local rains do not affect the lake much unless the creeks run. The ground is saturated now and almost all water runs off. I have been busy moving the dock and have not had any time to go fishing since Thursday. The crappie and bass were biting well then. Blackburns has several cabins full now with people social distancing here. I know of no cases reported in Baxter County yet. The top of the flood pool is 580 and we are 15-1/2 ft. from that. You can stay here in your own private cabin which is sanitized after each guest and go on the lake and fish and not get close to anybody. We have 300 Megs of internet and reaches all cabins and no cabins are duplexes close to your neighbors. You first boat stall is free. I will get you a fishing report as soon as I can. Blackburns has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals on the lake. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. You can launch your boat here, park the trailer in the lot and go fish in a matter of minutes and have low boat traffic. No need to go any place else. Everythig is fine here.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

There they go.Image title

He just holds up a few at a time to not hurt themImage title

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Tom Releasing Bass under dock.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 559.28 and rising with one generator running part of the time. It has risen 4-1/2 feet in the last several days and still rising with the creeks running. The main lake is stained green but not too bad. I had a 58 degrees water surface temperature when I went out yesterday. The crappie were biting so I caught about a dozen and put them under the dock. Some of these are very nice fish and appear to be staying there. They will move to the bank soon, spawn and go on Blackburns Brush piles. That is the plan anyway.  Tom Kelley also caught some very large ones and released them with some good bass under the dock. Tom is a very good fisherman, sportsman and conservationalist. Remember folks that the possession limit on all fish is twice the daily limit. For stripers that is six and that is in conjunction with hybrids. The law has been known to watch the internet and check people's freezers who are trying to fill them up so please do not kill too many fish. This is spawning season and it really hurts the fish except for the stripers and hybrids which are semi-put and take. Nobody is impressed with how many you kill. You can practice social distancing here at Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental with all individual cabins with no duplexes and you do not have to get close to anybody. There still has not been a case reported here in Baxter County as of this morning. Debbie, Casey and Nancy sanitize all cabins after every visit and you can go out on the lake almost by yourself. You can get pizza and sandwiches delivered here and pay on line and not get close to the delivery man. You can even buy your fishing license on line and down load it on your phone. The Dollar store is just two miles down the road and the first hour they are open is reserved for seniors. They and Walmart are stocking the shelves every day which is only three miles away. We have 300 Meg internet if you feel the need to work out of your cabin and have two computers in the game room for your use. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. Your first boat stall is free. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service yesterday and several bass also. The jerk bait is working now. Image title

The lake level is 557.98 and has risen about a foot in the last 24-hours. They closed the spillway gates and cut back to one generator just a few hours a day and switched all of the generation and spillway gates to protect Branson and keep that lake at power pool. Just when you give them a compliment thay never cease to disappoint and prove their incompetence. They have had all winter to drop the lake and now the spring rains are here. This is a surprise only to them. I guess we are back to hold and hope.  What a motto. The lake is at a good level but more rain is scheduled for the next several days. So far it has been a typical March. The lake surface temperature is 52 degrees but should rise with the warmer temperature forecasted starting now but the lows are still in the 30's later this week. The walleye and white bass are spawning and are close to the bank in about 20-feet of water and are hitting jerk baits. Trollers are catching bass and small stripers (in the 6-12 lb. range). The pre-spawn bass are big and I wish people would not kill them. Pictures of  dock floors full of small dead stripers and bass are not impressive. Bass are not stocked and are the go to fish on the lake when others do not bite. I caught some very large crappie and a few nice bass yesterday and released them all under Blackburns Dock. This looks like a good spring for fishing and Blackburns has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals on the lake.  Your first boat stall is free. We have been open all winter and we are ready for you. This is a perfect place for social distancing and Baxter County has had no cases yet. Come on down.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 555.63 and has risen over nine inches in the last 24-hours and is still rising despite both generators running and 5-spillway gates open 1-foot. If they had shut everything down like they usually do during a rain we would have been right back where we were. Good thing.  We received 1-inch Thursday, 0.8 inch Friday and 0.8 inch Saturday. None today but more is coming next week with good chances almost all days. The creeks run fairly hard but were not raging. The very backs of the creeks are brown again. This is a typical March with some warm weather and cold fronts with wind moving through a couple of times a week. 70's one day and a windy 40 the next. Every cold front slows fishing way down and it gets better and better until the next one comes through. With the water rising the lake surface temperature has dropped to the low 50's. Grass is growing, flowers blooming, dogwoods blooming despite the lows getting in the 30's at night and highs in the low 40's. April gets a lot more stable with better fishing. I caught a few fish yesterday but no picture fish. Bass, crappie and a couple of bluegill. Reservations are really starting to come in with people taking advantage of Blackburns best prices on both cabins and boat rentals and the first boat stall being free. Some are even mentioning social distancing and no crowds and are cancelling their reservations to Disney World and theme parks with lots of people. All of our cabins are individual with no duplexes and you do not have to be close to anybody. It does not hurt young people to get outdoors for a change. Blackburns has 26-acres to roam and a nice dock to fish, play and swim. Biggest pool in the area open before Memorial day. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with the fish of the day. It was also released. One nice crappie but not very many.Image title

The lake level is 554.85 and has dropped 4-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running and five spillway gates open one foot. It is equal to about three generators. There is no reason to stop this as the White River at Newport is only 19-feet so far. With the storm on Thursday we went from 82 degrees ambient in the afternoon to 50 yesterday afternoon and a little cooler than that today. We received about one inch of a mixture of rain and hail in the rain gauge thursday and another 0.8 inches as of this morning of just rain. It is raining now with more to come. At least they did not quit generating like they usually do when the spring rains begin. I just hope they do not just take it down to 553.75, which is the power pool, where the Corps of Engineers cede the power to the electric company. They need to keep going down to 548 to make room for the spring rains. The lake is in excellent condition now for fishing and boating. The cold front slowed fishing yesterday but some good ones were still caught but not very many. All worked hard for what they caught. The numbers were way down. It was cloudy and misting rain most of the afternoon but not bad enough to bring people in. The water surface temperature dropped to 52 on the main lake and 53+ back in the creeks. The ice cubes had something to do with it. It is the third time I have seen hail here in 25-years and was the largest and lasted the longest. It did not seem to hurt anything here though. I heard it did in Missouri. This will put back the threadfin shad spawn some and the top-water bite with the cool weather seceduled until next week. Nobody that I know of are catching stripers at night yet but it will happen. There just are not that many big stripers. If people keep killing 6-12 lb. ones there will not be any left at all. The hybrid population seems to be about normal though but not that many are stocked. The stripers and hybrids do not reproduce in our lakes and are what we call semi-put and take.  Most of us here at Blackburns are releasing all hybrids and stripers on site but there is no rule to make us do so.  I would like the limit to be reduced to two per day and four possession limit imposed until the numbers come back. They are fun to catch. It looks to be a sit out on the porch and rig poles and arrange the tackle box kind of day but I will be out there if the rain slows.  I do not have far to go and can duck back in the dock quickly.  These cold fronts turn fishing off as much as anything I know of but this too shall pass. I am happy just to be able to be out there. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught and released yesterday in about 2-hours.Image titleImage titleImage title

The lake level is 555.58 and has dropped about 5-inches in the last 24-hours.  They are still running borh generators continuously and have 5 spillway gates open 1-foot . The total is about the equivalent of three generators. This is really good news and the lake is in excellent condition for both fishing and boating.  The other news is that the lake surface temperature is rising rapidly. I had over 57 degrees in the back of Hensley's creek yesterday in the shallow water of about 18-feet. More good news. The fish are biting. I went out for about two hours yesterday and caught all of the fish I wanted. White Crappie, Black Crappie, Black Nosed Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Kentucky Bass and bluegill were all caught. I do not fish for red meat fish much but caught about a 5-lb. Hybrid accidently. It was released on sight and the others were brought to the dock for pictures and released. I have released a lot of fish under Blackburns Dock lately. Big ones too. I do not like to kill fish in the spring. Tom Kelly's trophy pond is completely stocked now and they are catching good fish out of it.  That is what I wanted. Most of the rain has missed us so far as has been the case for over a month. We are in good condition now but it would be great if this continues. You can come to Blackburns and experience social distancing and have a fun vacation no matter what is happening in the cities. We have 300 meg internet so you can work from here too.  All of this for the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals. Your first boat stall is free and we have no duplexes and all cabins have covered porches. You will see how important this is when you stay someplace without them. If you must pay too much, just stay at Blackburns and give the difference to disabled Veterans. Debbie, Casey and Nancy are working hard to get all of the cabins ready for you and they really look nice. You will like what you see when you get here and we will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday.  More too. Image title

The lake level is 556 with both generators still running continuously and five spillway gates open one foot. This is almost like three generators. It dropped 5-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. It rained a little early this morning but not much. Rain is predicted for the next 2-3 days. I had a 53+ degree water temperature in Blackburns creek when I went out yesterday and just under that on the main lake. It was crappie fishing day with bass fishing tomorrow. I like both the same. The lake level is perfect for fishing and boating now and the water is still stained but clearing. it is clearest near the shore. Blackburns brush piles are at a very good depth now too. The 1/2 ounce Bink's Many Shad is now my favorite lure. Fish after fish were caught on it on brush at 30-ft. I can only hold up six without hurting them and putting fingers in the gills. The ones in the picture  and several more were released under Blackburns dock. They all swam right into the school but I am not sure if they will stay there. They are down there somewhere. Lots of fish are under the dock but the small bluegill have not moved in yet.  When this happens the catfish will start biting and the bass will make a nest. I do not bed fish. It is getting near spawn time and this is the best time to release. A few of the fish were white crappie and very large. Other people caught some nice bass so I know right where to go today to get pre-soawn bass. They are on the same places every year. It is good to have fishing pick up again. Early March is a challenge so you have to go out everyday and work for them.. That is fun too. I like to catch fish when nobody else does but most people are catching some now.  Trollers are catching some fish but are burning a lot of gas. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

New news. They have opened up five spillway gates one foot now to supplement the discharge on Norfork. This is good news. I hope they keep it up. Get it first here. Looks to be a good year. Come on down. No need to get on a cruise ship, airplane or be in a crowd. Your children can have fun here for much less$. We have 300 meg internet, beautiful country, big clean lake and good fishing and water sports. Biggest pool around with slide and the best prices.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 556.93 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with borh generators running continuously. They have dropped the White River at Newport to 20+ feet and we have until April 14 to get it down before the stupid 14-ft. rule takes effect. If they keep going they could drop it to 548 by then depending on the rainfall. That is what they need to do to insure we have the capacity to hold spring rains and keep the level good.The 14 and 12 ft. White River rules at Newport need to be reviewed and changed. They should be raised to 18 feet. We are at an excellent level right now for all lake activities. Fishing is getting a little bit better with trollers picking up a few more red meat fish but they are small and need to be released no matter what the rules are. If not the size will continue to go down for the stripers. A big one used to be 30-lbs but now the newcomers think a big one is 15-lbs. Pictures of dock floors full of dead ones are not impressive. It just shows people are willing to sacrafice future for meat.  Hybrid fish are about normal and the white bass are coming back but most are small. I am sure glad they did not quit stocking the hybrids. I am releasing all stripers and hybrids no matter their size. Some shad are still shallow and near the bank. Bass are under them and some good ones too. Others are in 50-70 feet suspended with some on the bottom. It is almost time for the night bite for stripers with the stick bait. It is very important to make sure the bait runs true before it gets dark. If it pulls off to the side you will catch nothing. This spawn sinulation starts sometime after the 15th of March and continues until the full moon in April which is the 7th. After that when the threadfin shad spawn, which is a water temperature of about 58 degrees, the top water bite will be in full swing for both bass and temperate bass (red meat fish). You have to work hard for good fish now but some are being caught. Lake surface temperature is just about 50 in the main lake.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some good ones. He had to work hard for them though.Image title

The lake level is 557.77 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. The surface temperature was just about 50 when I went out yesterday but I found 53 in the very backs of some major creeks. The threadfin shad start spawning at about 58 degrees and that is when the top water bite will begin in earnest. Shad spawn on the surface.  There are a lot of shad shallow now for some reason and have some fish feeding on them but mostly open water fish are scattered and deeper. It is hard to find a big school of them and then stay on them   The lake is clearing and is clearest near the bank. Big Creek was still a little brown but a good color for fishing. The brown is gone in Blackburns area but is still so in the Red Bank area. I tried open water fishing with little success and then went bass and crappie fishing. Float creek is a good place to start. Look for brush in 35-feet of water and be prepared to work hard for them. Fish have moved in under my dock but we mostly save them for children learning to fish. I feed them every day and have new brush there. The weather has been good but got a little windy yesterday afternoon. I cannot predict when things will happen (nobody can) but i will be out there when it does and you will be the first to know. Mike Eakle caught some good ones on the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon and I am still using the 2-inch grub for both bass and crappie. The first two weeks of March is always tough but if trollers find an active school of fish the action can be fast for a few minutes and then nothing for hours. You only hear about the time they find fish and not when nothing is caught for days. There are a lot of big crappie and bass in this lake. Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and rental boats and you first boat stall is free. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some very nice ones. Caught on the Bink's spoon.Image title

The lake level is 558.18 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. The surface water temperature is 50-degrees in the afternoon and the lake is clearing. Fishing is getting better and crappie are starting to bite on brush piles. Tom Kelly and Mike Eakle caught some good ones on our new brush. I am still bass fishing and am looking for shad blown up into main lake cuts and shallow. The bass are on the bottom right below them. Good ones too. The white bass are biting in open water but they are small and there are a lot of them. The weather is good. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much here at Blackburns. Compare before you buy. It is nice here and the price is right. Very nice. We are working on improvements every day. Debbie, Casey and Nancy are working very hard.  Scuba Steve not so much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 558.24 and is going up just a little.  Both generators are still running. We got no rain here but they did just north of us in the Norfork basin. The surface temperature was 49.5 and the ambient was 74 when I went out yesterday with light wind. I tried for crappie on a slip float with no luck and then switched to the grub and minnow. Nothing for a few minutes and then the wind came up and the skies darkened and the bass started biting about 4:PM. Big ones too. They were on the bottom in about 14-15 ft. of water in main lake cuts. I caught two about 4-5 lbs. and some smaller ones. I fished two like places facing north just off the main lake with the same results. It just goes to show you to fish until it rains you out with the low pressure moving in. The fish were very fat and healthy as are all of the ones that I am catching. All were released but two were put in Tom Kelly's trophy pond. Blackburns is doing a lot of improvements and getting ready for spring. You will like what you see when you get here. We still do not charge for your first boat stall and you can save a minimum of $25/day on cabins with no lowering of quality. Why pay more? No duplexes, all cabins are individual and all  have covered porches. We are a bird sanctuary and have lots of them. Deer come to our feeders daily. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. We opened up four more cabins yesterday and now have 10 open. That is not a lot but the rest will be opened as soon as I am sure winter is over.  Right now it looks like it and the fishing is getting better. I have been here long enough to not to try to predict the future. Bink caught some good open water fish yesterday. He is catching them everyday on his many shad spoon.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Casey Denham with a couple of good ones. Image title

The lake level is 558.44 and has dropped three inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. At this rate we will be at 548 in 42 days if they do not stop generating and it does not rain. That would be the middle of April which is planting season. It is also top water fishing on the lake which is the easiest time to catch fish on Norfork. Just get a Zara spook or spitin Image and learn how to drive them and get out early. The fish will be shallow and it is a good time to release them to grow. Especially stripers The surface water temperature was 49 when I went out yesterday and it was a beautiful day. I found some water over 50  when I came in. The water is clearing and you could see your lure down about 4-feet and it was stained green. We went open water fishing and looked in three places before we got them to bite about 4:Pm. Bait fish and game fish were everywhere in 55-70 feet of water but would not bite very well. The third place they were biting.  We ended up catching about 35 fish, releasing all of the hybrids and stripers but keeping a few white bass. It is good to see their numbers coming back but they are not very big. I was using a 1/2 ounce white Bink's spoon with a red throat and caught a few fish. Switched to the 1/2 ounce Many shad and now it is my favorite lure. Caught fish after fish until 5:Pm. No picture fish though.  Others caught some nice crappie but had to work for them.Slow, slow and slow until they bite for about 5-minutes and quit again. They were full of eggs and some even had blood lines and all were female. No males. The walleye have me ghosted. Some bass are on the bank but not many and most are small. They bite best early morning. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught some pretty good ones yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 559.25 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. We received about 0.6 inches of rain last week. The water is still brown in the Red Bank area but is clearing out near Blackburns in both the creek and main lake. It is kind of a greenish color. You can see your lure down about 2-feet.  The surface temperature is 48 and has been for several weeks. Fishing is not the best but trollers are catching a few fish in open water but it is taking them a lot of time to get them. They go out and catch some and then you do not hear from them for several days because they are not catching any. Bink is on other open water fish with his spoon but is still disappointed in the size. You have to catch a lot of fish to get a big one. He is catching a lot of fish though. I am bass and crappie fishing. Crappie are on brush at 25-feet but are very hard to catch. They do not bite for hours and then bite fast for about 5-minutes. I caught some good ones yesterday but had to work for them. The bass that I am catching are on the bank but are mostly small. They are in the buckbrush. March can be tough fishing with all of the cold fronts moving through. Wait for the low pressure and fish until it rains you out and then after the high pressure moves in wait a day or two and they will start biting again. The first day of sunshine has been slow. We need the lake to drop to the high 540's before the spring rains come. They better keep generating or they will be opening gates whether they want to or not. The water level does not affect fishing much except when it comes too fast.  Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals and your first boat stall is free. All cabins have covered porches and none are duplexes. Why pay more? I will show you where the brush piles are when you get here.  We have some good ones. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 559.58 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. The surface water temperature is 47 and the brown water is going away and changing to green. You can see your lure down about two feet. There were fishing tournaments out of most of the area major marinas yesterday and boats were everywhere. The bass were biting better early and late with slow fishing in the middle of the day. Many short fish were caught. The people that were staying here at Blackburns caught some fish but not a lot. I talked to fishermen on the lake and they had the same report. I was the only one that I saw fishing brush and most were working the bank. I caught 3-nice bass and two crappie and that was all. No picture fish. The crappie were 11-12 inches. It was slow for me but the weather was nice. Just a bit windy but not bad. Bink reports catching a mixed bag of white bass and hybrids in open water 60-70 feet of water suspended. We were both spooning but he did better than me. His fish had moved again but he found them. I did not find very many but was happy to be out. Open water fishing is the best if you can find them and stay on them. Not many big fish but a lot of bait with nothing chasing them. Striper simulating a spawn next at night and top water after that. Early March not always the best fishing. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 560.68 and has dropped less than 1-inch in the last 24-hours with generation continuous but sometimes dropping to one generator. I caught more white bass and small stripers in 70-ft. of water 40-50 ft. down with the 1/2 ounce spoon but decided to try crappie and basss fishing again. It was in the 40's with light rain and then the sun came out. I caught some pretty good crappie on the grub and minnow on a new brush pile in 25ft. of water 12-feet down. Fishing is picking up a bit but some people that have been here since last friday caught their first fish today and that is not very good. They wanted stripers but had to settle for some crappie. They said they could catch crappie anywhere but it took them a while to find these.  The white bass are small but some pretty good bass are near the bank. It is hard to find a keeper striper but that should pick up soon.  Surface temperature is 46+ and the lake is trying to clear but is slow doing so.  Normal ambient high is 52 and it is struggling to get there. It is ok as long as the wind is low. it is nice to just be out there.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 560.77 and has dropped just a bit since yesterday. At least they started generating again after two days of nothing and letting the lake rise as high as they can. Saturday I went crappie fishing and caught nothing so switched to the grub and went for bass. I caught three with one being a good one near the bank shallow near deep water.  Yesterday I went fishing with Bink's Guide service. We went open water fishing and looked for fish in different areas before we found them. They had moved back to where they were for two months before they left. They were in in 70 feet of water any where from on the bottom to 30-feet down.  When we found them in 30-feet they bit but the ones on the bottom would not. 50 ft. and up they were feeding and below that not.  The shallower the better. We found huge schools of bait fish with temperate bass with them. We kept a few medium sized white bass for a neighbor that just got out of the hospital and released the rest. I was still disappointed in the size of the stripers but happy to see the white bass population on the increase. The white 1/2 ounce spoon with red throat was the best. We went into big creek and the water was brown, which is usually a good color for fishing but caught nothing. Found lots of bait fish with nothing on them.  Tried good brush piles and still nothing.  I am catching very few fish on brush. Open water fishing is the best and bass fishing on the bank is second. Not much else. I called people wanting to come fish to stay home for a while until things pick up. One came anyway and is experiencing tough fishing. He usually always catches fish. This is not unusual for late February and early March but I almost always catch big crappie at this time but not now. It should get better by the full moon in March which is the 9th for the night bite for spawning stripers and walleye fishing usually picks up by then too. The old days when there was a walleye run up the river in late February to spawn has been greatly diminished for some reason. The white bass that we caught had no or very little eggs but were very healthy. The surface temperature was 47 and the water color was stained green south of the bridges to the dam but brown in the major creeks. I caught bass in brown water but nothing else. Dodge the cold fronts and the first day after high pressure moves in. The weather was very nice with light winds that picked up a little about 3:Pm and a high of 57.  Good for spooning.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 559.69 and has raised about one foot in the last 24-hours with little generation. It looks to go over 560 again and winter is passing. I guess they will continue to hold and hope and then open spillway gates and waste free water. Hold until the crops are planted and up and then flood them out when they are left with no choice. It is not what you do when you are in this situation but how you got here. Do not get here. This is to be the coldest night of the year and then warm way up later this weekend. Surface water temperature is holding in there at 47+ degrees and the main lake is clearing with the creeks muddy. The temperate bass have been in the same places for about two months and continued the pattern of feeding shallower early and then moving to deeper water on the flats in 50-70 feet of water, but have recently moved. I will have to find them again. There are reports of them being in Bennetts but I do not fish that area much. The brush piles are getting too deep again but we anticipated this and put some new ones shallower. Some bass are shallow on the bank early and late. Fishing is not the best but trollers are finding some fish after many miles of dragging live bait and umbrellas. It is a good thing that we have hybrids as big stripers are getting more and more scarce. If people keep killing them this trend will continue.   I do not do troll but prefer spooning. I will take a day off and then look for them in float creek on secondary points just outside brush in the clear water when it warms a little. Ambient temperatures tend to vary widely this time of year but we get several good fishing days. Just fish around cold fronts.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 558.70 and has risen 1-inch in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. We received about 1-1/2 inches of rain in the lst 24-hours and the creeks are running pretty hard and the lake will rise more causing the lake to muddy up in the back. The main lake is finally clearing with the big rain several weeks ago. The surface temperature is 48 and is dropping very slowly. The ambient high is normally 50 now and I do not expect the water temperature to drop much more expecially with the highs to get into the 60's this weekend. Open water fishing is best right now on the spoon but you have to spend more time looking than fishing. I am not catching much on brush piles. Fishing overall is fair to poor but some fish are being caught. Better than staying on the sofa. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 558.71 and has dropped just a bit in the last 24-hours with more generation. The winter is slipping away from you boys. If you cannot manage it in the winter you have no chance in the spring. We need to be at 548 now. We have more rain on the way. It was near 50 degrees and sunny with no wind when I went out yesterday. I first tried open water fishing and found fish in 60-70 ft. of water suspended at varius depths. A couple of stripers in the 8-9 lb. range were caught on the spoon but no picture fish. I then went to a couple of brush piles and it was worse. Just small bass. The surface water temperature was 49 and the brown water seems to be clearing a bit. I am not suggesting people take a long trip to get here fishing now.  The open water fish are hit and miss and bass fishing is slow and crappie fishing is just fair. The moon is big and is not helping anything.  You have to look hard to find feeding fish and people are fishing for a couple of days before they find any. It will be just a few days before they start and I will let you know. It is not good to fish all day and catch 2 or 3 fish but that will get better. It alway does this at this time of year. The lake is still in good condition but we do not need it to rise any more. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 557.48 and has risen 5-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours.  They have shut the one spillway gate but still have both generators running. We have received over 2-1/2 inches of rain in the last two days and it is raining right down now. The creeks were running heavily yesterday morning and are still running but not as fast.  I did not go fishing yesterday but several of us went out Monday and caught some nice fish. The surface temperature is still in the high 40's.  We were mostly fishing the Float creek area but Bink reports people catching red meat fish in Bennetts. I do not fish that area much because the crappie are smaller there than here but it is a good place especially in the spring. The visibility is often not the best there for diving until fall.  I do not go farther than I have to but often do not have to go more than 1/2 mile. The open water fish are shallower early, feed and then go to about 60-feet of water 50-feet down. It is to be cool for the next couple of days and then warm up a bit. I will let you know what is happening. I have a lot of good eyes out there. We are getting a lot of reservations now so give Debbie a call to reserve the cabin and boat of your choice and prevent disappointment. We will not charge you too much and your first regular sized boat stall is free. Our new brush piles are holding a lot of fish.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

James Soltysiac with a big Hybrid caught on the Bink's spoon. Image title

John Bornhop with a big fat one.Image title

The lake level is 557.05 and has dropped 4-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously and one spillway gate open 2-feet. The water surface temperature came up to over 49 yesterday evening in the sunshine and more back shallow in the creeks. The brown water is not clearing very well but you just have to go south of the 62 bridge to get out of it. I tried fishing in it to see if i could catch anything and  could not. Went to the stained green water and caught fish. Others caught bass, walleye and crappie on the spoon and an other caught bass dragging a football jig in 25-ft.of water. Some temperate bass were caught in open water in 60-ft 50-ft. down on the spoon. It was very warm with ambient temperatures in the 70's with light wind. I have been out there every day and the weather has been great. Several fishermen left but we still have a couple left. Everyone had a good time or said they did. Blackburns has all of their brushpiles put in now and they are holding fish. We will show you where when you get here.  It looks to be a good year for boating and fishing. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and are making a lot of improvements. People like our 300MG internet and first boat stall free. You will too. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some good ones.Image title

The lake level is 557.40 and has dropped 4-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously and one spillway gate open 2-feet. The lake is at a good level but needs to be at 548 going into the spring rains. It looks like the water in this area is clearing a bit but it could have just been the bright sunshine. Fishing slowed with the new high pressure as it always does but will get better through the next low pressure until the next cold front or high pressure. It looks like a cold front will be here later next week. People caught some good fish though but not nearly as many. Tom Kelly, Mike Eakle, James Soltysiac, John Bornhop and myselt put in brush piles yesterday for our other customers and we have some good ones. We fished before and after. It was a beautiful day and is better today. We were mostly spoon fishing brush. Wish you could have been here. February is now here and Debbie is getting a lot of phone calls for reservations. Give her a call to get the cabin and boat of your choice. It looks to be a good year for fishing and boating and we will not charge you too much and your first regular sized boat stall is free. A lot of improvements have been added so far. Come on down and check us out. There are a lot of big crappie in this lake. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

We both caught some good ones but Darrel caught the most. He always does. Image title

The lake level is 557.75 and has dropped 4-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously and one spillway gate open 1-foot. They closed one yesterday. The surface temperature is 48 degrees and the fishing conditions are good south of the 62 bridge. There is still brown water to there and it is not settling out very fast. Some fish are biting in it though. Mostly crappie. I went open water fishing with Bink yesterday and we caught some very nice fish. All temperate bass and some nice ones too. All fish were released on site. The fish were in 40-ft. of water early feeding and then moved to 60 and the bite slowed but we still caught some. It was cloudy all day and the sun never came out but the wind was calm. It was a very nice day with a lot of fun and then I went out to put brush piles in for our customers. We have some very good ones and they are producing fish. Open water fish are the best bite now but crappie are close behind on brush. One nice walleye was brought in. Every one was using a Bink's spoon. We have several good fishermen in now and they are all catching fish. We are open all year and have the best prices. Some will be watching some kind of game and I will be fishing. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

My best fish yesterday. All were released.Image title

The lake level is 558.38 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators still running continuously and two spillway gates open 1-ft. The surface temperature is 48 degrees and we received about 1-inch of rain in the last couple of days. It has been cloudy, cool and rainy. Tomorrow is to be in the 50's and then warm up from there. I spooned brush over by Robinson Island and caught a few crappie, bass and bluegill. I checked the flats in front of Mallard and found some open water fish. They were bass, hybrids and white bass. All were small except the largemouth and they were on scattered shad anywhere from 50-70 feet of water 50-feet down. I was using the 1/2 ounce Bink's spoon white with red throat in color. The only thing good about the weather was the wind was down and you could stay on the brush and shad easily. Blackburns is open all year and have several good fishermen coming in today.  We will see what happens. I guess the high generation is keeping the brown water from settling but it is easy to find clearer water. None of it is clear. The most I can see my lure down is 3-feet but I have not gone south of Robinson except fishing with Bink. He is on the open water fish. I have been doing the fishing report since 1997 when my friend Gary Sperry died and was asked to take it over. Now several newcomers are writing one and I guess emulation is the sincerest form of flattery. My motive is to keep existing customers abreast of what is happening here at Blackburns Resort and let them know the lake and fishing conditions. I am either out there fishing or diving almost every day, pretty much know where the fish are and put in lots of brush to enhance the fishing for our customers. The more you fish Norfork the better you will get at it.  It is not easy but you have accomplished something when you learn how and then you will catch fish almost every time. There are a lot of fish in this lake. Do not throw everything in the tackle box at them but just use what works. It is not very many things.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some good ones caught in float creek on brush. Image title

The lake level is 558.68 and has dropped a little over three inches in the last 24-hours with both generators still running and two spillway gates at one foot. It is down two and one half feet since it's last high a couple of weeks ago. The surface water temperature ranges from 48 to 49 depending on whether you are in the sun or not. Not much sun yesterday with a cold damp day with light rain. It is a cloudy day today also. We have been fortunate that all of the weather has kept north of us this winter and there is no frost in the ground . It is to get very warm later this weekend. The lake is very slow to clear up after the big runoff last month. I would have though it would have dropped out by now. You have to go to about Robinson Point to find clear water and it is not nearly as clear as normal, what ever that is. Fishing goes from fair to poor for brush fishing but is much better for open water fishing after you find them. They are still at about 50-feet no matter the depth of the water. The size is not the best though but good numbers. Release the fish and let them get bigger. They grow very fast. The 1/2 ounce white spoon is the best. Crappie and bass fishing is fair but some big ones are coming in. Call and get your reservations in to get the cabin and boat of your choice. It looks to be a good year for fishing and boating. We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

George says the pond is producing. Image titleImage title

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The lake level is 558.95 and has dropped 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously and two spillway gates open 1-ft. The surface temperature was 49 degrees when i went out yesterday.  It was a beautiful warm day with sunshine and light wind after the heavy fog burned off. I caught bass and crappie on the spoon in brush at 25-30 ft. deep and it was nice to be out there. It has cooled off a bit today with a chance of rain tonight and tomorrow but nice again this weekend. Fishing is pretty good for open water fish if you know where they are. Bink knows. I wish the size was bigger. Crappie are the best followed by bass for brush fish. I am not catching many pounding the bank. The water is still brown to the bridges and is not clearing very quickly but just stained a little green south of that. I am fishing the Robinson Point and Float Creek area on points and banks with access to deep water. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and are open all year. Your first boat stall is free. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 559.45 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running and two spillway gates open 1-ft. Keep it going boys. I went fishing with Bink's Guide Service today and we really caught a lot of open water fish. He knows where they are. We fished neck and neck most of the day but he pulled away at the last minute. He caught 26 and I caught 24. We released all of them on site. We are trying to get the sizes of the temperate bass back up where they were a few years ago. People need to quit killing all of these small stripers and hybrids no matter what the regulations are. A 7-10 lb. striper is not big and pictures of dock floors full of dead ones are not impressive. It was a beautiful January day on Norfork Lake with highs near 60 and sunny with light wind. Wish you were here. It looks to be a good year for fishing. What a fun day. Look for fish in the 40-50 ft. range no matter the depth of water. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 559.95 and has dropped over an inch in the last 24-hours despite us getting about 1-inch of rain the last two days. The new news is that they are running both generators continuously and have supplemented the discharge by opening two spillway gates one foot. This is a step in the right direction. Just do not quit at 553.75 but take it down to below 550 and we will be fine. The increased discharge is not allowing the lake to clear much but the brown water on the main lake has settled a bit but the creeks are stained. The water coming down from Missouri from the river and Bennetts is brown but everything is ok by the time you get to the bridges. The float creek area is an excellent place to start and the main lake points south of there. It was cool when I went out yesterday but the wind had completely died down. I spooned brush for bass and crappie but had limited success. I caught a few but no picture fish. The surface temperature is still about 48 and the lake in general is in good condition. The moon is getting smaller and on cloudy days when it gets dark it gets dark. And when the sun goes down it gets cold. Dress accordingly. We are busy making improvements here at Blackburns and getting the rental boats ready for spring. You will like what you see when you get here. Call to get the cabin and boat of your choice reserved.  We are open all year. We need to keep our high quality employees and do not lay them off. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 560.19 and has dropped 2+ inches in the last 24-hours with heavy generation. They are also running other lakes hard and suplementing with spillway gates. Hold and hope and let out water not going through the generators and wasting it is the plan. Not much of a plan. Why do they not just draw down the lakes after harvest and get revenue with the water? Nothing is hurt by keeping the level of the White River at Newport at 21-feet and lowering the lake levels to have a surge for the spring rains. It worked before. The whole water management plan needs to be reviewed and be revised for the 21st. century. The old one does not work so fix it. The rain is not the problem. The plan is. It was cool with light wind when I went out yesterday and the surface temperature was 48.5 with partly cloudy skies. The creeks are clearing faster than the main lake in this area which is still brown to just short of the 101 bridge. I know where some open water fish are but decided to try and fish the brown water for bass and crappie. It did not work out very well. I tried both the spoon and slip float and minnow over some good brush with little success. I wanted to give it a good try before quitting. Today I will move just a little downstream and work main lake point brush in the clear water. We will see. I would not advise taking a long trip here just to fish at this time. It should get better soon. It always does and there are a lot of fish in this Lake. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 560.39 and has actually dropped a very little with pretty heavy generation. The surface temperature has dropped below 50 and is now in the high 40's with the cooler weather. It is to be slow warming up but should get back into the 50's by late this weekend or early next week. The creeks are clearing after the runoff from the rain but the main lake is still brown down to just before the 101 bridge. The open water fish that I am finding are not in the creeks but on the main lake flats in 60-80 feet of water. Some are in the creeks but that is determined by the prevailing winds as it always is. Many schools of shad are not holding any fish. Crappie and bass fishing has slowed a bit but some are still biting on brush.One thing about open water fishing now is that the fish and the bait are not moving very much and you can stay on them. It is much easier than when they are roaming which can be very difficult to do so. Use a 1/2 ounce spoon and work from the bottom up the water column until you find the level in which they are feeding. If they are not look for some more and move back there later. I wish it was warmer but as long as the wind is not blowing it is not bad. I am still somewhat surprised that fish are biting in the brown water but they are. All of the water south of 101 is pretty clear and a good color for fishing.  Blackburns is open all year.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike with some good ones caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday. They were not released. They had quite a few eggs in them for January. Image title

The lake level is 560.40 and has risen over 3-inches in the last 24-hours. The brown water seems to have stopped before the 101 bridge and is pretty clear south of that. The creeks are settling out nicely but it will take a bit on the main lake north. The brush pile fishing has slowed but the open water fishing has improved but you have to know where to go. It takes more looking than fishing to find feeding fish. They are feeding best at 50-feet no matter how deep the water is. 60-80 feet is best on main lake flats. All kinds of fish are on shad in open water but it is hard to get them to bite. Just keep finding fish and move and then come back to check them.  They are not moving very far.  Some nice crappie are still being caught but not as many as before. This always happens this time of year.  The surface temperature is still just below or right at 50. We put in a couple of nice trees in yesterday in back of the other too deep ones and moved the dock again. It is to be cool for the next couple of days and then get back up to 50 later next week. You cannot walk on our water or drill holes in it. Just dress warm and you will be fine. Better than staying on the sofa.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some good ones. He is fishing in Float Creek with a whacky worm. Image title

The lake level is 559.91 and is still rising after the rain a week ago with very little generation. It came up about 2-inches in the last 24-hours. The one big change that I saw when i went out yesterday was somewhat of a surprise. A wide band of brown water has made it down from the border and is in the main lake channel. It has made it to the bridges and is heading south. Hopefully it will settle out over time. It took it a long time because of the small amount of generation and little current. I have been here 25-years and do not remember seeing the water level approaching 560 in the middle of January. They have had ample time to drop it. If we get a big rain and the level rises five feet and the level is at 548 it becomes 553 which is perfect.  If they keep it at 553.75 which is power pool and this happens it approaches 559 which is one big rain away from trouble.  Someone with a brain needs to reassess the rules about lake management. What they are doing does not work. Everything needs to evolve. We got our brush permits Tuesday and are busy putting in trees for fish cover for Blackburns Resort customers.  We already had some good ones but have added to them and a few new ones. They are holding fish already. Bass, crappie, and bluegill are the best bite now but more schools of white bass are showing up.  They are small but I am glad to see them. Spoons are the best lure for me but jigs are working for crappie too.  I am fishing the lightly stained water but fish are biting in the brown water too. The creeks are clearing from the runoff last week. What you have is creeks clearing but still light brown, main lake channel brown from Missouri to the bridges moving south with areas of clear water outside the channel and in the big creeks and clear water south of the bridges on the main lake. The 6-feet total rise has made the brush piles deeper so i am putting in some to be at 25-feet at this level. It is hard to tell what level to put them. I try for them to be at 25-ft. at 552 which is ideal. People are catching good fish everyday.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

All fish caught on the White 1/2 ounce Bink's Spoon. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 559.73 and has risen 4-inches in the last 24-hours with little generation. They cannot manage it correctly in the winter let alone summer. They need to be replaced. This 12-feet rule at Newport needs to be reviewed and the level should be changed to 21-feet after harvest down stream and kept there until the lakes are well below power pool by April 1st before the spring rains. News alert: Hold and hope does not work. The brown water from the heavy runoff is clearing and the fish are biting again back in the creeks. The lake is clearer the farther down stream you go but that is not necessarily good for fishing. The surface temperature was 50+ when I went out yesterday morning with Bink. We waited until the fog had cleared and went for open water fish. We found many of them in 60-80 ft. of water near the bottom but fishing was slow. He did catch a crappie at 80-feet on the bottom and that was the first time either one of us had done that. We fished a couple of brush piles with little success and then went back where the open water fish were found earlier. We found large schools in 70-80 feet of water and they were scattered from from 30-feet to the bottom. The deep ones would not bite again but we started working our spoons up and down in the water column and started catching fish at 50-ft. It seems they moved from the bottom to 50-ft. to feed and the ones on the bottom would not bite. Once we found that out we caught a lot of fish.I switched from a 3/8 ounce spoon to a 1/2 ounce and that helped too. It was warm out with light wind and a perfect day for fishing.  Especially for the middle of january. I do not fish open water much but this was fun. We caught stripers, hybrids and white bass. The fish were not as large a we wanted but were glad to find schools of white bass which have been elusive since spring. Bink knows how to find open water fish and how to catch them. We caught and released dozens and kept just a few for his friend. I prefer walleye, crappie, kentucky bass and flathead catfish but this was a very fun day. My turn to take him brush pile fishing next. People fishing out of the resort are catching some nice ones every day.  Cold weather is on the way but we are more than 1/2 way through January and we have lots of nice days in February. I will be out there and give you a report. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 558.71 and has risen 7-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with little generation and has risen 5-feet in the last 5-days. The creeks are brown from the heavy runoff most of the way out to the main lake. The main lake is stained a little green but still in good shape. I have had recent changes of thought about brown water.  I used to say fish past the brown water where it turns more clear. Now I have been seeing fish on brush in the brown water and catching them. I still prefer stained light green water though but you cannot argue with results. The surface water temperature is still 49 degrees and they are starting to generate a little but not much. They could be letting some water out to chase the slug that is going through the Gauge at Newport now and better do so. There is a good chance of rain this weekend. Bink found a bunch of White Bass a couple of days ago and I was glad.  They have been scarce since last spring. Crappie, bass and bluegill are still the best bite and spoons are the best bait. It is to warm up to near 70 again later this week. It does not matter much to me as I have an electric coat, gloves and socks and love to fish. We have not had any winter here yet and the iris and daffodils are up and the Bradford Pears have buds. I hope this works out. Good fishing for the next several days.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 555.33 and has risen 2-feet in the last 24-hours with no generation since last early evening. We did receive a total of almost 4-inches here at Blackburns for the last few days. We were able to get in a full day of fishing Friday with very cloudy skies and very light rain. The water surface temperature was just above 50 and the creeks had stained up again. I spooned brush near my dock for about an hour and caught a couple of bass and then moved to a north facing bank out of the wind with brush and found some feeding crappie and caught seven before dark. One was very large. It started to rain about 7:Pm here and thundered heavily most of the night. The creeks run very heavily and are still running. The lake will continue to rise quickly with no generation. They always quit when the rain starts. The cold front is here now and will not do the fishing any good but it is to warm back into the high 50's and 60's early next week. We will seee what happens. I am fishing brush in the 22-30 ft. range but that might change with the lake rise. It is at an excellent level for fishing now. You have to be out there almost everyday do keep on top of the conditions. I will let you know.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Released under the Dock.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 553.63 and they are holding it up with very little generation. They have dropped the White river to 13-feet to protect crops down river. (must be winter wheat)  It should be 21-feet and all lakes should be dropping this time of year. Hold and hope is the motto and bad management is the game. We are to get some pretty good rain the next couple of days and we are getting dry. The full moon and high pressure has slowed fishing a bit but some nice fish are being caught but not as many. I have to fish two or three brushpiles to find feeding fish. Use the 1/2 ounce spoon for the larger bass and the 3/8 or 1/4 for the crappie and smaller bass. The crappie are shallower and the bass are near the bottom. Both are hitting on the drop. Look for brush in the 25-30 ft. range. Until you get used to wheather your spoon is touching brush or a fish is biting do not set your hook or you will snag your lure. If you do snag, get directly over the spoon with your trolling motor and release your line on your baitcaster or open the bail on your spinning reel and use your thumb as drag and try to get your spoon to get some movement up and down and then keep raising it up and down without pulling the hook into the wood. Most of the time you will get it out unless you hook someone else's heavy broken line. Do not let your lure and line drag behind you when spooning or you will lose your lure for sure. Keep it straight up and down. Also watch for a difference in your line movement or resistance when snapping your line up and down to make sure your spoon is not hooked on itself.  You are wasting your time if it is. If you work on this you will catch fish. It was a beautiful day yesterday with mild temperatures in the 60's with medium winds from the south so it was easy to find a brushpile out of it facing north. I fished two good ones and only caught one crappie and then found one with active fish and caught several small bass and the a couple of good ones and more crappie. It was very nice to be out. The surface water temperature was 51 and the lake is clearing a bit and is perfect for fishing. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. Bass, crappie and bluegill are the best bite with a few walleye thrown in but not very many big ones. I caught one of the largest warmouth of my career yesterday. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 553.66 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday with very little generation. They always quit generating when rain is in the forecast so they can maximize the effects of the rain to keep the level up as high as possible. We are to get quite a bit of rain Thursday night through Saturday. They have had all fall and winter to drop the lake but show no signs of doing so. Bad management. I wish they held an elective office and had accountability. I went fishing with Bink again yesterday and we had a great time. The weather was perfect with highs near 60 and light winds. The surface temperature was just above 50 and the lake is clearing and you could see your lure down about 4-5 feet.  We went to Big Creek and fished brush piles with good success. We caught largemouth, kentucky, crappie, bluegill and Warmouth all on his spoons. The grubs did not work well.  The big bass were caught on the larger 1/2 ounce spoon and the crappie were caught on the 1/4 and 3/8 ounce ones. I was using a white with black back and he was using white with red throat. We were fishing Game and Fish brush piles and they were good ones. We caught big bass but most of them were throw backs. About a 3-1 ratio. We caught seven keeper fish and about 20-smaller ones. The larger fish came out of the deeper brush from 30-35 feet and almost all were caught on the drop. We saw one other boat. My turn to take him next time. I learn everytime I fish with him. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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My grandson Ryan with a big one. Image title

The lake level is 553.70 and has dropped less than an inch in the last 24-hours with just a bit of generation. The creeks cleared up quite a bit yesterday and have more visibility than the main lake but that can change quickly.  The surface temperature is hanging in there at about 50. The lake is in excellent condition but needs to drop about 5-6 feet going into the spring and they are not showing any inclination to do so. I guess it will take a drought. The weather has been really nice with highs in the 50's and sunshine. Fishing has slowed compared to the end of last year but we are still catching fish. Bass, crappie, bluegill and walleye are the best bite now but most of the walleye are throw backs. It takes a good one to be 18-inches but I like the rule. Not many big ones get released. Striper fishing is slow and the ones being caught are small. This happens every year at this time. I wish they would drop the limit on stripers and Hybrids to two. The schools of shad I am seeing have few fish on them and all the fish that I am catching are on brush. Do not forget to get your brush permits at the Corps office at 9:AM on the 14th. We want the spawn to have as much cover as possible this spring. The Game and Fish biologists have certainly done their share in helping the habitat and I hope they continue to do so. One day the spoon is the best lure and the grub the next. I cannot tell which one until I try. A few fish are on the bank but not many. I am getting my largest bass in 30-ft. of water. Do not forget to get your deposits in by January 15th to insure you get the cabin and boat of your choice. We do not want you disappointed.  It looks to be a good year and we have made a lot of improvements for you. Come on down and check us out.  You will not be disappointed and the price is right. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 553.64 and stable with just a little generation. We need to be at 548 by March 1st to have enough reserve capacity for the spring rains like they used to do before the mismanagement began. The surface temperature was back up to just above 50 when I went out yesterday. The water was still stained and I could see my lure down about three feet. It is clear next to the bank though.  I waited for the wind to go down before I left last evening and it did so about 4:pm. No sense charging out there in a hurricane unless you are fishing the bank. I found a school of fish just outside a brush pile and got excited. I caught a couple but they were just White Bass so I moved. No picture fish there. The wind was swirling a bit but only about 10-mph, so I went to a north facing bank with some nice brush. I do not spoon much in the wind because it drags your lure and gets hung up too much. If you do, go against the wind with your trolling motor and try to keep your lure straight up and down.  Switched to a grub and casted it over the brush and let it sink. Caught a nice walleye and four crappie (two were very big) and a nice bass and came in at dark. The days are getting longer now and I like that. The moon is getting bigger and that is not helping things. Overall fishing was not as good as everyday for the last couple of weeks before but still ok. Several of us have been out everyday and nobody did great yesterday but all caught some fish. Better than staying on the sofa. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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Big bass caught on the Bink's Spoon yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 553.68 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running about 1/2 the time. They are holding the White River at Newport at just over 14 feet for some reason. The surface temperature is 49 degrees and the lake is still stained and you can see your lure down about 3 feet. It is a good color for fishing and the lake in general is in excellent condition. I caught bass, crappie and bluegill when I went out last evening. I was using both the Bink spoon and a slip float and minnow over brush in 25-feet of water. It tried to sprinkle a little but it was warm and good to be out. It is cloudy again today and I will head out this afternoon. I am seeing more large schools of shad than before and that is good but few of them have fish on them. There were several boats fishing around my dock with birds all around but they did not know I had just fed the fish with floating fish food. The same thing happened under the bridge when I was feeding the ducks that fly in by the boat wanting food. The Corps of Engineers are issuing brush permits for Norfork lake at 9:AM at their office on January 14. First come first serve. This is a good way to help the fish habitat. With the effort of the biologists from Game and Fish and private fishermen putting in brush it will definitely make the fishing better. Blackburns has been putting in brush since 1995 and have some good ones. We want our customers and friends to catch fish and it works. Fishing is pretty good now with spooning being the best over and right around brush.  Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. Why pay more?  We are open all year. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 553.73 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running a little over 1/2 the time. The White River at Newport is still dropping and is just over 14 feet. The water surface temperature dropped to under 50 degrees for the first time yesterday and is 49+. The main lake continues to be stained as well as the creeks. You can see your lure down about 3-feet. I went out a little later than usual yesterday waiting for the wind to go down. I fished a north facing bank to get out of it and worked a brushpile hard for about an hour using a grub with very limited results. Then I switched to a 1/8th ounce Bink's spoon firetiger in color and started catching fish immediately. Caught 4- crappie and a bass in about 1/2 hour and then it was dark. It is very cloudy with misting rain now and I am heading out. We will see what today brings. The only two other boats i saw out there were staying at Blackburns where people are taking advantage of the low cabin rates and their first boat stall free. Many resorts are closed. The lake is in excellent condition and the winter fishing has been very good. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Look at the size of those crappie. Good going James Soltysiac. Image title

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The lake level is 553.95 and has dropped less than one inch in the lst 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. The White river at Newport is at 14+ feet and they must be protecting the corn and bean crop from flooding before the harvest downstream.   Oh, I forgot that was last fall. It is now January and they only have a couple of months before the spring rains. The lake is in excellent condition now though and the crappie and bass are biting. The surface temperature was 50.5 yesterday evening and the water is still stained. Mike, John, James and myself all caught fish. Some people left but we have more coming in. The fishing slows a bit after the cold fronts move in but get better and better after the high pressure arrives until the next cloudy, low pressure produces the best fishing until it rains you out. The fish care about low pressure, food, oxygen, cover, water temperature and proximity to deep water. Maximize as many of these as you can and you will catch fish. That is why I put Blackburns Brush piles on drop-offs.  After they feed they go to a comfortable place. I do not put brush on places to lure the fish there but put them on places known to hold fish to make it more attractive to them. It works. The fishing right now is a prime example. Spring top water fishing is fun and easy but i really like winter fishing for big fish and low fishing pressure. Bass fishermen beating the bank are not doing that well but the ones spooning deeper brush are doing great. This is a good time of year and you cannot walk on our water or drill holes in it. Many places are closed but Blackburns is open all year. Come on dow. We will not charge you too much. Compare prices. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 553.99 and has dropped over an inch in the last 24-hours with both generators running about 1/2 the time.  The surface water temperature is pretty stable at about 51 degrees and the lake is still stained and you can see your lure down about 3-feet. They have dropped the White River at Newport to below 15-ft. and could be letting out a lot more water and creating a lot more energy rather than holding and hoping and opening up the spillway gates and not getting anything from the release. They exemplify bad management and the rules need to be changed. Nobody gets hurt with Newport levels below 21-feet. The fishing remains good with crappie and bass alternating as the best bite and the level is perfect for blackburns brush piles and they are producing. It has been windy for the last two days and it has dropped a lot today finally. More and more walleye are showing up but most of them are throw backs. We have several people fishing out of Blackburns now and they are all catching fish but mostly bass and crappie with a walleye or two also. White bass are scarce and the ones caught are mostly small. Please get your deposits in by January 15th to hold you reservations for this year and insure you get the cabin and boat of your choice and not lose your seniority. There have been a lot of improvements made this fall and winter and you will like what you see when you get here. Looking forward to seeing familiar faces and new ones too. The lake in general is in excellent condition. May the new year find you and yours healthy and happy. Everything is good here. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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All released under the dock. Image title

The lake level is 554.06 and they have started two generators for the last few hours and the level has actually dropped a little. It is the first time both generators have run for about six months. It was windy yesterday and more windy today. The surface temperature is right at 51 degrees. The wind was coming from the west and was swirling and hard to get out of. The bass fishing slowed a bit but the crappie have picked up. Big ones too. Bass, crappie, blurgill and a few walleye are what is biting best. The trollers are catching a few red meat fish on umbrellas but few are even 10-lbs. They are thinning them out. The lake is stained just right for fishing and is overall in good condition. Some nice fish are being brought in every day. Spooning, slip float with minnows, and grubs are the best bait. Deeper brush in the 30+ feet range is producing good bass and some of the time they are right beside the brush and not right in it. Several are hitting the spoon on the drop near the bottom. We are all fishing within 1/2 mile of Blackburns creek. No need to go further. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and are open all year. Your first boat stall is free.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 554.12 and is rising just a bit with one generator running about 1/2 the time. We did receive about 1-1/2 inches of rain last night but most of it sunk in and the creeks did not run. They are holding the White River at Newport at 16 feet to keep the lakes up as high as they can going into the spring rains. The surface water temperature is between 52 and 53 degrees depending on when you check it. The water is stained and you can see your lure down about 3-feet. Bass fishing is far the best now. They are really biting well now in brush about 25-30 feet of water near the bottom. I am using the 3/8 ounce Bink's spoon, white with a black back and red eye. Everyone here is catching a lot of fish. The new Game and Fish brush piles are really working and attracting many fish. Try them in Float Creek. We have a map of them on our game room wall along with the location of Blackburns piles. This is about as good as it gets and is especially good at this end of the lake. Several fish in the 3-4 lb. range are coming in every day. Walleye are showing up with them but you catch about four before you catch a keeper. A few crappie are with them but not as many as two weeks ago. I did catch some very large ones yesterday though but not as many. The red meat trollers are still hit and miss with mostly miss. They fish for two days and catch nothing and then find a feeding school, catch a bunch and then write a report. I wish they would quit killing all of those small 7-10 pund stripers. Pictures of them filling a dock floor is not impressive. Striper fishing will suffer for it if they do not quit. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

All caught on the Bink's Jigging Spoon.Image titleImage title

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The lake level is not changing very much and the water clarity is not changing very much but the surface temperature has risen to 553. Bink and I went out yesterday morning and headed a little north. We stopped where the phone reception was good and waited for Bob Knight from KTLO 97.9 to call at 8:45 AM as he always does on Thursdays so we could give him the fishing report for Live in the Boat. I committed to catch Bob some crappie so we were under pressure. The pressure lasted for about an hour as we tried using the grub and casting it to the bank with a slow retrieve. That did not work very well so Bink moved us to deeper brush and we switched to the jigging spoon. We immediately started catching fish and they got bigger and bigger. We ended up catching Walleye, Largemouth Bass, Kentucky Bass and Smallmouth Bass and a few crappie and many smaller fish. It was a beautiful day and the wind was light and we were reluctant to come in. It was more like an April day than the end of December. It was a lot of fun. We both commented on how people need to quit killing those small stripers in the 6-10 pound range and the small numbers of White Bass. We took pictures and released all of the fish. When I returned to Blackburns I was met by several fishermen at the resort who also reported good success but caught more crappie then we did but they were fishing Blackburns brush piles. They are at a perfect depth. Bink and I caught very few fish shallower than 30-feet with most caught from 35-40 feet near the bottom. He told me the dissolved oxygen was almost the same from 0-90 feet and there was no reason for the shad  to be at any special depth except for cover. It was agreat day and the trip is on me next time. Come on down and join us. We may get some rain saturday but the warm weather is looking to hold for another week. Blackburns is open all year and have the best prices. I am making my promise good to Bob Knight today with the crappie I caught yesterday evening. Big ones too. Bink knows where the fish are. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught more too. Image title

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The lake level is rising with very little generation and they are lowering the White River at Newport and it is now at 16-ft.+.The lake level is now 553.89 and the surface termperature is 52 degrees and also rising. The water clarity is still the same and you can see your lure down about 3-4 feet depending on the degree of sunshine. I saw two other boats out there yesterday and it was very warm. The fish were biting as soon as I went out about 2:30Pm and continued until 4:pm and then they shut down.  I caught several very large crappie and a couple of keeper bass along with several throw backs. One crappie was giant (over 16 inches) picture to follow. I have now caught 30-crappie over 15-inches this winter.  We have several good fishermen coming in today and we will see what they do. One day the fishing is very good and the next slow but I am seldom shut out. This is my time to catch large fish. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. We are open all year and are here now. I am fishing with Bink's Guide service today and you can hear his radio program on KTLO 97.9 Live in the Boat at 8:45 this morning. It is on every Thursday.  We will see how a professional does it. He is a good fisherman and I like his new Ranger Boat. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 553.82 and rising very slowly with very little generation. They are running one generator a few hours a day to keep up with river inflow and are reluctant to turn over the control to the power company. The White River is just over 16 feet at Newport. They have two months to get the level down to 548 before the spring rains. We will see if they do it or just maintain their policy of keeping the level up in the winter and then hold and hope. The lake is at a very good level now for fishing as is the color.  You can see your lure down about three feet. It is clearer closer to the shore. The fish seem to start biting about 9AM and again about 1-2 PM and then about 4-5 PM with periods of lockjaw in between. There does not seem to be any paticular pattern except there are not a lot of fish on the bank and the shad are roaming on plankton and blowing with the wind.  Bass, crappie and red meat fish are on some shad but you have to find several schools before one is feeding. More fish are on shad in open water than on brush but I am catching some good ones on brush but not high numbers. I caught one short walleye, several short bass, three bass keepers and seven keeper crappie with three of them very large in the over 15 inch range. If you are fishing in the afternoon make sure you are out at sundown until dark or you will be missing out on the best time of day. Especially for larger fish. The 3/8 and 1/2 ounce Bink's jigging spoon, white with black back and red eye are my bait of choice with the blue one next. Bink is using the Arkansas shiner. Otherwise I am throwing a Bobby Garland jig, light blue in color, tipped with a small minnow over brush in 25-ft. of water. Cast past the brush and let sink on it while retrieving slowly. Come on down to Blackburns. The weather is great and we are open all year and will not charge you too much. Your first boat stall is free. The surface temperature was just over 51 yesterday afternoon with the ambient temperature in the 60's. It cools down quickly after sundown. After this high pressure moves through and it gets cloudy will be an excellent time to hit Norfork lake and fish until it rains you out. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some very nice fish caught yesterday on the Bink's Jigging Spoon on Blackburns Brush.Image title

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The lake level is 553.78 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday. They are dropping the level at Newport quickly and it is now just over 17-feet. The new top of the power pool is 553.75 and the Corps resists turning the control to the power company. It used to be 552 but the changes in management rules by implementing minimum flow for the put and take trout in the rivers took away 1.75 feet of flood capacity. So much for the dam just being for flood control. It is all about the money. They are running one generator for a few hours a day and the flood gates are all closed. I have been going out every day in the afternoon and staying out until dark and catching several bass and crappie. The surface temperature was 50.5 and the lake is stained.  You can see your lure down about 3-feet. One day the spoon works the best and the next the slip float and minnow.  The grub and minnow is just fair but seems to catch a few fish every day. Some very large crappie are being brought in and some decent bass. Many small bass are being caught. My biggest bass yesterday was 18-inches and the biggest crappie was 15-inches. About 3/4 of the crappie are 11-inches or more. The striper fishermen are not doing very well but never do this time of year. They get lock jaw and move just off the main channel and will not bite except when a lure or bait is dropped right on their heads and you get a reaction strike.  You can find feeding fish on shad if you really look hard but most of them are bass and small white bass. I have not caught a walleye for a month. I am mostly fishing brush piles in 25-30 feet of water and the crappie are on top of them and the bass are right in them near the bottom. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and keep 7 cabins open all year. The weather looks great for the next week. You get a free boat stall with your cabin here at Blackburna Resort and Boat Rental. Check out our new maps with brush pile locations in the game room. The Bink's 1/2 ounce jigging spoon, white with black back and red eye is working best for me. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bink with some good ones. More too. Image title

The lake level is 553.85 and has dropped a little over an inch in the last 24-hours. There is still no generation but they have 7-gates open 2-feet which is not much. Less than 1/2 a generator. The surface temperature is 51+ depending on whether you are in the creeks or on the main lake.  The creeks both cool and warm quicker. The visibility is pretty good and you can see your lure down about 5-feet. I am fishing for mostly bass and crappie but am catching some very nice bluegill but not a lot of them. I am still spooning, using a slip float and minnow and casting a grub and minnow for everything. It is to be very nice weather for the next week and the lake in general is in excellent condition. Bink is also catching some very nice fish as is Tom Kelly. There are not many boats out there and it is nice being out in the sun. Wish you were here. We have several fishermen coming in the next few days and I will get reports from them. You cannot go out once or twice a week and write an accurate report. Things are changing daily. Come on down.  We are open all year and will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 554.10 and has dropped about 1-inch in the last 24-hours.  They are not letting much out now. The water surface temperature is 52 degrees and is a little off-color but you can see your lure down about 5-feet.  One day it is clear and the next stained.  It varies with the level drop and the degree of sunshine. It was cool and damp when I went out with a mist of rain and light wind. The fog had moved in before I returned. The fish were biting very good and I caught about 20-keeper fish total.  Both bass and crappie. A few of the crappie were very large. Some were caught on a slip float and minnow, some casting the grub and some on the Bink 1/8th ounce spoon. They were about 12-feet down over brush. The bass were deeper, just outside brush in 35-ft. of water.  I caught fish until almost dark and then they quit like turning off a light switch. It was the best they have been for several days. I saw no other boats all the time I was out. I like that.  Peace and quiet. Starting tomorrow the weather is to get better and better until the weekend when the temperature is to get in the high 50's with abundant sunshine. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. There are a lot of fish in Norfork Lake and you cannot walk on our water or drill holes in it. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly caught some good ones yesterday on the spoon in Float Creek. More too.  All fish were released. We like that.Image title

The lake level is 554.68 and they have cut down discharge by about 1/2.  We dropped 4-inches in the last 24-hours. It was 7. They need to keep dropping to about 548 before the spring rains. Fish were biting pretty good yesterday on the spoon and the lake is clearing and is in good condition. Surface temperature is just over 52.  Tom Kelly caught some nice bass yesterday in Float Creek just outside the refurbished Game and fish  brush piles. They put a lot of them in Float Creek. I have maps of them on the gameroom wall as well as Blackburns Brush piles. We have been putting them in for several years in the absence of the old ones being taken care of. The group of Game and fish biologists are working hard to make the lakes better and enhance fishing. It is greatly appreciated. I like their quarterly reports. Catfish have slowed way down with the big moon and lake drop. I am not catching as many bluegill also and they usually like the full moon as do the red meat fish. Some guests have been fishing for stripers hard and are having mixed results. They go out for a couple of days and catch nothing and then finally find a large school of fish over shad feeding and catch a bunch. It is hit and miss. The bass are a little deeper in around 35-40 feet where they were closer to the bank. You have to get down to them and the spoon is the best. Some big crappie are with them. I am fishing brush in 20-25 ft. of water for crappie with fair success. Maybe 2 on each pile. I like to find a good brush pile with fish on it and stay there and wait for them to bite but it is not working now. They bite for about 10-minutes and quit for hours and are roaming. There is a lot of shad now with a mixture of very small ones and some about 2-inches and just a few of the schools are holding fish. If you are fishing for stripers you have to keep looking for feeding schools and not waste your time on the ones that are not even though they have fish on them. There are several striper boats near the bridges but only a few small fish caught. When the water gets colder they always get lock jaw every year.  The boats aways covey up in December for some reason. Find a bird and you find a boat. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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It was cool when I went out there yesterday and I saw no other boats all the time I was out. The surface water temperature was 52.5 and the clarity was not bad. You could see your lure down about 5-feet. They are dropping the lake fast and it has dropped about 7-inches in the last 24-hours and is at 555.08 and has dropped over 5-feet since last month. Despite the full moon and the water dropping fishing was not too bad. I went crappie fishing and caught several. Some were pretty big. I caught some on slip float with minnow and some casting the small grub over brush. Blackburns brush piles are at perfect depths now and are holding fish. I only can catch about 2-fish on each one and then they quit and I move. There was no wind and it was easy to stay right on top of them. There were some fish coming up on shad in about 50-ft. of water and I dropped a spoon on them but they were just small stripers and white bass. They were out in front of the docks off Mallard point.  The seagulls have been back for a while and it makes it easier for red meat fishermen to find fish. If you depent on them you will be out of luck when they migrate in a few weeks. There are lots of shad and not all of the schools are holding fish. Look for dots and slashing lines on your locator and not black blobs. The crappie are over brush about 10-feet down. I am catching a few bass but not a lot.  Most are still in open water on shad. Good weather for the next few days. Come on down. We will not charge you too much for cabins and nothing for your first boat stall. You can have free gas on what you can save by staying here unless you just want to pay too much. Several places are closed.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

These and more caught on the Bink's Spoon. Image title

The lake level is at 555.62 and has dropped about 7-inches in the last 24-hours with 7-gates open two feet and 5-gates open 1-ft. and no generation. They are keeping the White River at Newport at 21-feet and there is no flooding down stream. Amazing. Just goes to show you what can be done even though both generators are down for maintenance. It needs to be at 548 going into the spring rains. This is a good level for fishing and Blackburns brush piles are in play once again. Spooning open water fish is the best now with bass and crappie on brush slowing a bit. Try in front of the houses around Mallard Point or in the creeks if the wind is blowing into them.  Many fish of all speces are on shad. I do not wish to follow them around and am catching some good crappie and bass but not a lot. The fish were biting good yesterday until the wind came up and the cold front moved in and then they quit. It was hard to get out of the wind with it coming from the northwest and swirling. I caught more fish in Blackburns creek on the way in on brush but nothing big. Bink caught some nice crappie with his spoon in the morning. The surface water temperature was 54+ and is still stained with the fast level drawdown.  The lake overall is in excelent condition but the full moon coming and the quick level drop is not doing the fishing any good with the constant cold fronts moving in twice a week, except for red meat fish. Blackburns is open all year and has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals and your first boat stall is free. Come on down we will not charge you too much. To be in the 50's for several days after today. If you want to come fish and the place you usually stay is closed, come on down you will be welcome here. You can launch here, park your trailer here, and have your boat in a free stall in just a few minutes. If you are by yourself no problem. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 559.15 and has dropped 5-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. They have 6-spillway gates open 2-ft. and 6-gates open 1-ft. for a total discharge of 10,200 cfs. Be carefull out there on the river. The surface temperature was just over 54 degrees when I went out yesterday and the lake was stained and you could see your lure down about 4-feet. The wind was light and coming out of the northwest mostly and went down after sunset. The moon was bright and in it's first quarter. Full moon is on the 12th. Water dropping fast and moon growing has slowed the catfishing way down. Crappie, bluegill and bass are the best bite now but some open water fish are being caught on shad about 25-ft. down but most are small. I did not catch any picture fish and nothing was biting very well. I will try again today and let your know.  The weather is good and highs are in the 50's. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and are open all year. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

They just opened all of the spillway gates. Be carefull if you are on the River. Image title

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The lake level is now 560 and has risen 4-inches in the last 24-hours with no generation. They just opened all of the spillway gates.  We will see what happens now.  We received about 3/4 of an inch of rain in the last 24-hours but no severe weather. The fish are biting pretty good. We caught walleye, bass, white bass, stripers, hybrids, crappie and catfish. Some crappie and catfish were very large but most of the others were small. I went fishing with Bink and caught stripers, hybrids, white bass and crappie but no picture fish. We had a good time and marked lots of big schools but they were not biting very well. We were catching big numbers but not big fish. Spoons are the bait of choice but catfish are biting well on jugs baited with shiners with the small moon, rising water and cloudy skies. We will see what happens today. A lot of fun is happening here at Blackburns resort and Boat Rental and we still have the best prices. Come on down and we will not charge you too much and are open all year. Lots of open spaces and close to everything with lots of wildlife. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike caught some in the morning and I caught some in the evening. Image title

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The lake level is 559.28 and is rising about an inch a day with no generation and three spillway gates open one foot which is not balancing out the river inflow. Let some water out boys. What in the world are you thinking? Not much I think. If they cannot manage it in the winter they do not have a chance in the spring. I was hoping the new guy in charge at Little Rock would be better but he is worse. Get the level at Newport to 21-feet and keep it there until we get into the high 540's. The surface temperature was 57+ on the main lake when I went out yesterday afternoon. I had a late start and did not get to fish long until dark. I caught crappie, bass and blurgill onlyand no walleye and was using the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon. Bass fishing seems to have slowed a bit but white bass and hybrids are picking up even though not many are very big. The crappie are on shallower brush if you can find it and the red meat fish are on the flats in front of the houses on Mallard point in about 50-ft. of water. Crappie and bluegill fishing is the best. I am using spoons, grubs and slip floats with minnows. It is to get windy this evening and cool down. I am going fishing now and it is 7:AM. Will let you know. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle with some nice ones this morning.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 559.11 and has risen about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with no generation and three spillway gates open one foot which is equal to less than 1/2 generator. It is sunny and a beautiful day today after a cool and breezy day yesterday. The fish were biting pretty well though. Some of out guests were trolling umbrellas in from of the docks at Mallard point and caught red meat fish of all speces but nothing big. With the late summer fish kills, people learning how to catch them, increased fishing pressure, they are getting smaller and less in numbers. Since stripers and hybrids do not reproduce, either increased stockings or decrease in limits need to be implemented. The fish in general are getting smaller and smaller. Too many small fish are being killed. Pictures of dock floors full of dead small stripers is not impressive. Crappie, catfish and bass fishing is not decreasing though. The shad popularion is good also with many schools of very small ones showing up. All speces of fish are on them. You do not know what you will catch when you spoon them. Reports of some nice walleye are coming in but I have not caught any big ones yet. The brush piles are starting to get too deep again. Surface temperature is still in the high 50's and both the creeks and main lake are clearing nicely again after the 2-inch rain. There are still some good bass shallow near the bank off high banks. The morning bite starts about 8:AM and the evening bite starts about 4:Pm until dark and then abruptly stops. And I mean stops. Some nice fish are being caught every day. It gets better and better after a cold front until the next one comes in. Fish right up until it rains you out. We seem to be in a pattern of raining every week and then clearing with chilly nighs and repeat. It looks like some warm weather for the next several days. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 558.64 and has risen 6-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours after a two inch rain. The creeks run hard from about 4AM to 7AM but have slowed now. Both generators are down for maintenance. They are holding Newport at just over 12 feet and it should be at 21 feet. When I went out yesterday I went to a cove where the wind was blowing into  and spooned both brush piles and open water shad. The brush was in about 25-ft. of water and the shad were in about 50-ft. of water down about 25-ft. I caught white bass, bass and crappie. The Bink's 1/4 ounce spoon was used exclusively. I like to try different places.  Others were fishing the flats in front of the Mallard Point docks in 50-ft. of water and were catching bass and small stripers. The white bass are about 10-11 inches long but I am glad to have them showing up. They are easily caught are fun when nothing else is biting. I always say white bass are for people that can't catch anything else and trout are for prople that can't catch white bass. More big schools of shad are showing up and that is good. The lake was clearing nicely but has stained up again with the rain. The surface temperature is still in the high 50's. Thanksgiving is always a good time for overall fishing.  Come on down. We will not charge you too much. Some places are closed but Blackburns is open all year. Weather looks to warm up next week after this cold front moves through. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Morning catch.Image title

My largest crappie in the evening.Image title

Caught on the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon. Image title

The lake level is still rising with no rain for over a week and no generators running.  They do have three spillway gates open 1-ft. which equals about 1/4 of a generator. They are also holding the White River at Newport at below 12-feet to keep the lakes up as much as possible. It should be at 21-feet.  The level is now 558.07. It is time to impeach the Corps of Engineers for incompetence. It was a good day for fishing yesterday. I only caught bass and crappie but it was all I was fishing for.  I was hoping for a walleye but got none. I used the 1/4 ounce spoon exclusively on brush in 18-25 feet. Four keeper bass and several crappie were caught and released. It was about 60-degrees with light wind and the surface temperature was 58 degrees. The lake is clearing nicely and is very clear near the shore. It is another beautiful day today and it is almost time to go. I did see a few boats. The good striper fishermen are catching fish but others are catching none. It is to remain warm but there are good chances of rain for the next several days. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. 

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Caught yesterday on the Bink's spoon.Image title

The lake level is 558.13 and fairly stable with one generator running part of the time and they are keeping the White River at Newport at below 12 feet like something is going to flood. It has not rained for a week.  I though most of the crops were harvested. They are trying hard to protect Branson and running Table Rock hard.   If they will not drop the lake in the winter to prepare for the spring rains we need to get new managemrnt or a private company to run it and take the politics out of it. The level should be in the 540's by March.  It is all about the money. Hold and hope is not a stragety.  Both the main lake and the creeks are stained and you can only see your lure down 3 or 4 feet except near the bank. It is a good color for fishing. Surface temperature is 57-58 degrees. Fishing overall is fair to good with crappie the best.  Spooning brushpiles is the best way to get them. Bass fishing is not bad with some near the buckbrush in 6-9 feet of water. Some very nice Kentuckies are being caught but most of the bigger largemouth are still on shad suspended in 50-feet of water. Big bluegill are over brush about 10-feet down. Warmouth are right on the bank with some schooled with the crappie on brush.  The walleye that I am catching are all short at about 15-16 inches long. A very few keepers are being caught. Some white bass are finally showing up but most are small. Many fish are schooled and roaming with the shad. I have found no evidencce of a night bite for the stripers.  People that cannot catch stripers are fishing for crappie. Trolling umbrellas for red meat fish is the best now except for the spoon. They need to cut the striper limit to two fish and people need to quit killing small fish in the 5-10 lb. range if we want Norfork to keep being a good striper lake. I caught crappie, warmouth, bass and short walleye yesterday with the largest crappie being a little over 12-inches. It looks to not being cold again for the next week and I like fishing in the Thanksgiving time line. Blackburns is open all year so come on down. We will not charge you too much. You get a free boat stall here.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 556.42 and has risen 1.4 feet in 24-hours.  They quit generating when it rained as they always do to enhance the rise. They were not generating much anyway.  They are generating heavily with spillway gates open to hold the rise down at the chain of lakes. We received about 3-inches of additional rainfall last evening and night and the creeks run hard. They have slowed way down now. The Water temperature was 63 last afternoon when I went out and it was very cloudy but no rain until after dark. The fishing was the same as the day before with bass being the best bite with crappie second. I caught bass, warmouth, small White Bass and crappie.  Some guests caught some small hybrids and White Bass but no stripers.They were using shiners with balloons and planer boards with several lines out and were fishing the flats in front of the houses on Mallard point. I went up to the walleye rearing pond point but saw no signs of any after dark activity. Nothing would touch the stick bait. It started to rain so I came in. It is to be very nice this weekend and then get cold.  We will see what the rain did to the fishing and I will let you know. They need to let some water out but refuse to do so. For the people that wanted summer to end they are getting their wish. They should be very happy Monday. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

All Released.Image title

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The lake level is 555.21 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours.  They are running one generator 1/2 speed part of the time and holding Newport at 11+ feet. We received about 0.8 inches of rain and more is on the way. It is cloudy and in the 50's today after a beautiful day yesterday. I went out at about 3:PM and fished until dark. I caught fish from the time I went out until I came in. Fish were on steep river channel banks with the wind blowing into them on the main lake. Warmouth were right on the bank and the bass were out in front of them in 6-8 feet of water and the crappie were in front of them in 13-feet of water. Some very nice fish were caught and all released. It was very nice to be out in the warm sun with fish biting. Tom Kelly came in with some good bass caught in Float creek and released them under my dock. He keeps his boat in Panther Bay Marina and fishes Float a lot.  It is a good place. He was using a 3-inch plastic worm and a spoon and I was using the grub and minnow. I tried spooning brush in 25-ft. of water but only got small fish and bluegill. The red meat fish I am catching are small and the White Bass that are being caught are quite small and not worthy of a picture. I do not keep them anyway.  The shad that I am seeing are very small.  There was a brown scum on the lake but it went away. I do not know what it was. The lake is not very clear now except for near the shore. Crappie are on shallow brush piles but I can only catch one or two in each place. The very big ones are not biting very well yet. Most are about 11-inches but an occassional monster shows up but he is usually with other big fish and not schooled with his own. Surface temperature was 64 degrees. Come on down to Blackburns where we will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. No duplexes here and all cabins have covered porches. Our 18-stall dock has several different sized stalls to fit different sized boats.  No one size fits all here and the walkways are wide and on both sides of your boat. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught plenty more too. All fish were released. Under the dock. Image title

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The lake level is 555.31 and the surface temperature is 66 degrees. The weather is perfect and the fish are biting on Blackburns brush piles which are at a very good level now. Use spoons, grub and minnow and slip floats with minnows. Crappie, bass and bluegill are biting those and catfish are biting jugs with shiners. Everything is biting the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoons. Mike eakle caught two fish on one jug yesterday. It is to stay in the 60's for a while with chances of rain later this week. Fish until it rains you out. This is a good time of year and the lake is in excellent condition. Blackburns is open all year. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

One big fish. Caught yesterday.Image title

These are showing up in big schools.Image title

The lake level is 555.39 and has risen just a bit with no generation for about 16-hours. They are doing their best to hold the level up. They better drop it all this winter to about 548 and raise the level requirement at Newport to a proper level or there will be a revolt. Enough of this mismanagement. The surface temperature is about 66 degrees and the lake was clearing but the creeks turned stained again yesterday. The main lake is still clear especially near the shore. Bass and bluegill are the best bite now with some crappie and walleye also being caught. Walleye bite is best just after sunset on and around main lake points.  I will go up to the walleye rearing pond and check for stripers this evening. If they are to move in there to feed at night it will be by the 12th of this month on the full moon.  I got it from a reliable source that they caught some white bass but I still have not. i do not fish for them much but catch them anyway. This is good news as I have not seen any all summer diving. They are usually everywhere. We need them when other fish do not bite. For some reason some fish that are usually near the bank or on brush, like bluegill, are showing up in big schools on shad in 50-feet of water. They are big ones too. I do not know where all of them came from. Some schools of shad are very small in size so the smaller Bink's spoons, 1/8th ounce ot 1/4 ounce, are working the best. I am either casting my grub and minnow or dropping the spoon exclusively now. I can carry my tackle box in my shirt pocket. It is sunny and nice so it is time for me to go. Come on down. We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free.  I wish more big stripers were showing up and that people released more of the smaller ones. A 7-9 lb. striper is not a big fish. If they do not quit killing these we will not be known as a trophy striper lake anymore even though the same amount are being stocked. Guides, striper club, other fishermen, are getting better at catching them. This along with the increased fishing pressure is taking a toll on them. 

Norfork Lake fishing, lake conditions and fall foliage report by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 555.75 and has dropped about 1-inch in the last 24-hours. We received about two inches of rain the last three days but the creeks did not run. It is good to have moisture in the ground going into the winter. It has been cloudy, dreary, rainy and cool but is sunny and nice out now. I went fishing and found some very nice bass part way back in the creeks in cuts just outside the buck brush in about 7-8 feet near the bottom. I was using the grub and minnow but those three inch worms with a lead head are working too. I caught some good sized crappie but not many of them. I did see some fish schooled on the main lake in front of Mallard Point by Hensleys on shad in 50-ft. suspended but they were small. I only caught bass, crappie and bluegill  but it was nice to be out. No picture fish. I come in at dark and my photographer quits at 5PM. The main lake seemed more stained with the rain but is in excellent condition for fishing and boating. The surface water temperature was 67 but some of our guests were swimming off our rental pontoon. It is too cool for me and I put my scuba gear away Friday. That is a sad day for me every year as I do not want summer to leave. It is easier to get fish with a pole anyway. We had a big group leave today and another one coming in for Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is always good fishing. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and are open all year. The wind blew a lot of leaves off but there is more color than there was and it is not a total bust like last year. The roadways are not bad but the hillsides are still poor. Not worth driving a long ways to see. 


Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on the Bink's spoon.Image title

The lake level is 557.31 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours. They are doing well holding it up as long as possible in case it rains. It needs to be down about 10-feet by April in preparation for the spring rains.  It is at a good level for fishing and boating now though but it has taken them all summer and fall to get there.  We need a private company to manage the dams and parks and get the govenment out of it. It was a beautiful day yesterday and continues today.  Sunny with highs in the mid 70's. The fall color is changing just a bit every day but not very fast. The hillsides are not changing much just the roadways. Tom Kelly caught some nice bass and a walleye yesterday and we put them in the pond. It is getting stocked up pretty good now and is in excellent condition. Bass fishing is pretty good and he caught them on a jig and pig in float creek. We have some good fishermen in now and several others just left. We will see what happens today. Bink caught some good stripers yesterday on his Arkansas shiner spoon.  Fishing will get better as the full moon wanes for bass and crappie. I will go crappie fishing later today. Our brush piles are now finally coming into play. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. One bedroom cabins are still $59/day and they all are single units with no duplexes and all have covered porches. Trolling motors are also free on fishing pontoon rentals. You have 28-acres to roam and are not huddled up on a hillside with little parking. You will like our big dock with security system with different sized stalls for different sized boats with gutters on the roof and access fingers on both sides of your boat.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 557.26 and is dropping less than 2-inches/day. The surface temperature was about 80 when I went diving yesterday. The visibility was poor after the lake turnover but should clear up a bit soon as it settles out. I saw very little algae bloom this year and did not see the thermocline drop past 27-feet all year. The visibility was pretty good all year but spearfishing was just fair. Crappie were good but walleye and catfish were below fair. I will keep going until the surface temperature drops to below 70. I hate to give up. I am seeing less and less fish everyday but it is probably do to the visibility. I am only seeing bass, crappie, catfish and walleye and most of the walleye are undersized. Fishing should improve as we get into the month and after full moon. We will see if the walleye and striper move to the bank at dark on full moon in Novermber to feed. This is the time for stick baits on the 12th with a big moon. They do not always do this but the best walleye bite will be on the bank just before dark just do not know about the stripers. Try soft plastics too. Thanksgiving is a good time to catch some big fish. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Yesterday's fish of the day.Image title

The lake level is 557.40 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours. The lake is at an excellent level and condition for fishing and boating. The surface temperature was 80-degrees when I went diving yesterday.  The visibility was not very good but there were a lot of fish on brush at 25-32 feet. Mostly bass, walleye and crappie.  I still have not seen a White Bass for months and they are usually a nuisance when diving. I went to 40-ft. deep and found no thermocline.  It looks like the lake has turned and took the visibiliry with it. I still got one nice walleye and a couple of big crappie on main lake points on brush. Several walleye just short are showing up now. There are lots of bass with some big Kentuckies in the three pound range. Spoons, plastic worms and finesse worms are working best. Crappie are biting 1/4 ounce Bink's spoons and minnows on a slip float. The weather has been great and the fishing is getting better every day.  Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. It is to be 80 again tomorrow. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 557.70 and rising just a bit with very little generation. It rained a little over 2-inches in a two day period and the creeks run hard for a while. We were very dry. Everything is very green again and the grass is growing. There is little sign of any fall foliage color. The level of the White River at Newport is 11.2 feet for some stupid reason. Hold and hope is their motto and keeping the level up is their game. At least the level is good for right now for fishing and boating. I went out for a few minutes this morning and caught a few off crappie rock with the grub and minnow. Fishing in the morning and diving in the afternoon. Things are tough.  It was cool and rainy almost all day yesterday but is sunny and beautiful today and for the next several days. Come on down and we will not charge you too much. Your first boat stall is free and we are open all year. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle caught some good ones yesterday and they all went in the pond. Image title

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The lake level is 557.68 and has dropped a little over 1-inch in the last 24-hours with very limited generation. The White River at Newport actually dropped to under 11-feet yesterday. I sure hope they do not hold the level up so high this year and then blame the spring rains. That lame excuse is getting old. The level now is optimal for fishing and boating but is where it should have been in early June not October. Impeach the Corps of Engineers. It was a perfect day yesterday but rained a little last night and is still raining now. We have received a total of about 0.4 inches and it has all sunk in with the ground being so dry.  It is to be beautiful starting tomorrow for several days with highs in the low to mid 70's.  Bass, crappie, walleye and catfish are biting pretty well but not great. Look for brush on main lake points in 20-30 feet of water and use the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon mostly and also a plastic worm. The fall foliage is showing just a litte color but not much. I am still expecting the peak to be the very last of this month. Blackburns is your fall foliage headquarters for Mountain Home, Norfork Lake and the Ozark Mountain region. We have cover for your motorcycle and will help you with scenic routes. Come on Down. We will not charge you too much and are open all year. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

A mixed bag caught yesterday on the 1/4 ounce spoon.Image title

Mike Eakle caught a few over 11-inches .Image title

The lake level is 557.81 and has dropped a little over 1-inch in the last 24-hours and they are holding the White river at 11-ft.  I guess they are worried about a flood. We definitely need someone else to manage the dam. The lake is at a good level for boating and fishing but needs to be a lot lower coming out of the winter. Fishing is getting better and better. I am a walleye, crappie and catfish guy and do not fish for the red meat fish much. Bass fishing is good with several smaller ones being caught but some good ones too. Walleye are scattered and not schooled and bass are schooled. White Bass are gone. Crappie fishing is fair with a lot of smaller ones in the 10-11 inch range being caught off Blackburns Brush piles. A few smaller stripers are showing up.  The surface water temperature is dropping is dropping with the cooler nights and is now in the high 70's and varies with the time of day and amount of sunshine. Most varieties start biting about 8:AM or about one hour after sunrise. Main lake points with brush is a good place to start. Top water fish are mostly small bass. Diving conditions are good around Robinson for walleye.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 558.09 and is dropping less than 2-inches/day. They are holding Newport religiously under 12- feet to control flooding during this drought. The level is perfect now for Norfork and Blackburns where you can drive or walk 1/3 mile to the dock and get on with no steps. We will see if the incompetent lake management keeps lowering the level or hold and hope and allow the level to remain too high all winter.  It rains here in the spring boys. The surface temperature was near 80 when I went diving and I went to near 40-feet deep and found no thermocline. The temperature was nearly the same from 10-feet down to 40-feet. The deepest the thermocline has been is 27-ft. all year and it does not drop as the water cools.  You cannot see the thermocline on your fishfinder. The water is pretty clear and what people think is the thermocline is just where the light stops penetrating. The crappie bite has fallen off quite a bit and they are not as big as they were a week ago. Bass and walleye fishing is the best with crappie third.  You cannot go fishing once a week and write a fishing report. Things are changing rapidly. I am still seeing no White Bass and am starting to believe they are not there. They are the go to fish when people cannot catch anything else and are fun to catch. We need them. We will see if the stripers move to the bank in November for a night bite to feed but I have my doubts about that. It does not happen every year. The walleye bite in the fall does happen though with soft plastics just at sunset until dark. I got some good walleye yesterday and a couple of crappie. Come on down. Blackburns is open all year and has the best prices. I know where the fish are and will help you. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Got a couple of good ones Scuba Diving.Image title

The lake level is 558.23 and continues to drop a little less than 2-inches in a 24 hour period. The conditions were sunny and hot when I went diving yesterday. The surface temperature was in the late 70's and the visibility was pretty good at about 8-9 feet. I went down to 35 feet and found no definite thermocline and only slight temperature variation. The fish that I found were deeper than earlier in the week with many big bass at 20-25 feet  and several good walleye and a few crappie with them. Out on the main lake points where they start to drop off are a good place to start. It is to cool later this week with highs near 70 and lows in the 50's. I will be sorry for summer to be over. The lake in general is in excellent condition for fishing and boating. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mr. and Mrs. Roy Woods from Mississippi show off a variety pack. Image title

The lake level is 558.41 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours. When i went diving yesterday a lot has changed. Many of the bass have left the main lake points.  There were still some out on the points in 16-ft. of water but not nearly as many and not nearly as many big ones. Also a lot of the crappie were gone. I went down over 30-feet and found no thermocline. That does not mean there is not one but it has been in the 26-ft. range all summer. It does not go down as the water cools. I was low on air and did not want to go deeper. I will check it out tomorrow. I did see several walleye at about 20ft. where there were none a few days ago. Tom Kelly did catch some good crappie at about 25-ft. and we put them in the pond. The weather remains warm and the surface temperature is near 80. We received 1.6 inches and 1.2 inches of rain last week and everything is very green.  The lake is in very good condition for boating and fishing. The level is perfect and you can drive to Blackburns dock and step right on. The visibility is just fair for diving and seems to be the same from 5-30-ft.  Come on down to Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental. We will not charge you too much.  $59/day for a one bedroom. Not bad. Blackburns is your fall foliage headquarters for Norfork lake, Mountain Home, Ozark Mountain Region and Northern Arkansas. So far it still looks to peak the very last of This month. Looks to be good this year so far. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 559.10 and is still dropping about 2-inches a day. The surface temperature was 80 degrees when I went diving yesterday and the visibility was pretty good .  It rained 1.6 inches earlier and and it cooled the water. You could really tell the difference when i jumped in. I went to a main lake point and fish were everywhere. Mostly crappie and bass but a few walleye too. A lot of good sized bass and some large crappie but hundreds of smaller ones. They were shallow in 12-18 feet of water and suspended off the bottom. I was only looking for big fish so I let the walleye go but picked up a couple of crappie for supper. Diving conditions were very good for september. The pole fishermen caught some nice bass and crappie also with the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon over 30-ft. brush. I am not seeing any schools of walleye or any white bass.  All of the surfacing fish are bass. They are coming up about 6-PM but most are small. Cast the 1/8th ounce spoon over them.  I did not check for thermocline because I did not need to go that deep. I will next time. It is going to get very warm later on this weekend and will be a good time for a boating trip. Summer is not over and our big pool is open. Blackburns is open all year and will not charge you too much.  We are the fall foliage headquarters for Norfork Lake, Mountain Home area and the Ozark Mountain region. Peak will be about the very end of October. Come on down.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 560.28 and dropping about 2-inches/24 hour period. The weather has cooled a bit and it is now very comfortable but cloudy. It looks like the storm that hit Texas hard will miss us and go to the Kansas City area with quite a bit of rain.  We are very dry here. The boys that went out this morning caught a lot of fish and most of them are on main lake points. If you see fish coming up throw the 1/8th ounce Bink's spoon past them and hop it back. That is about the only thing that they will bite on now. I am still seeing no White bass. Bass and crappie are the best bite now. The lake is in excellent condition for fishing, boating and swimming. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Look at the size of this Norfork Lake crappie caught fishing with Bink's Guide service. Big.Image title

The lake level is 560.93 and is dropping about 2-inches a day with reduced generation. They are doing their best to hold the water up for as long as possible. The surface temperature is still 86 degrees and the creeks are stained a bit but the main lake is clear. The visibility is still good for this time of year. We have a group of divers in and they are doing well with crappie, walleye and catfish. They are good divers and come every year. I got one walleye and four crappie and all of them were on or near brush in 18-25 feet of water. The thermocline is hanging in there at about 26-feet with cold water at 30. I am seeing no fish below 30. A few bass are coming up early but they are small. There are still a lot of good Kentucky Bass inside of main lake points shallow. Fishing is picking up with crappie, bass and catfish being the best. I am using the 1/4 ounce Bink's jigging spoon while pole fishing and a 24-inch spear when diving. They are always eating steel if you can find them. Come on down to Blackburns and we will not charge you too much. It is busy here and if you are staying at a place where you are nearly the only customer you are paying too much. You can get a one bedroom cabin here for $59/day with no charge for your first boat stall and trolling motors on pontoons are free. All cabins have covered porches with no duplexes. Bink's caught some good ones yesterday.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tyler caught and released this one near Cranfield Island. Image title

Tyler Peterson with a good one caught in Blackburns Creek. He is from Kansas.Image title

The lake level is 561.49 and it is dropping about 3-inches a day with one generator running most of the time. The bowl is getting smaller and the level is dropping faster with the same amount of generation. They are doing a good job of keeping the White River at Newport at 12-feet for no reason and holding the lake level up as high as possible for as long as possible. Good job boys. It is an example of why we cannot let the government run anything. The surface temperature is staying in the mid 80's and the lake is fairly clear. Some walleye have moved to the flats near Cranfield Island and catfish are at the mouth of Blackburns Creek. Stripers are dying near the dam and it is just a good time to leave them alone and not cause then anymore stress. Many kentucky bass are on the sides of main lake points in 14-18 feet of water. Crappie are suspended over brush about 15-17 feet down. I am seeing no fish below 30-feet. It is still summer here with ambient temperature hanging in there in the low 90's. Overall fishing is just fair but is getting better.  I will let you know when the lake starts to turn. You have to be under water to know this.  All the rest is just speculation. It will probably be in mid October. Blackburns resort and Boat rental is your fall foliage headquarters for Norfork Lake, Mountain Home, Arkansas, Northern Arkansas and the Ozark Mountain Region. We will help you with suggested routes and have covered storage for your motorcycles. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. Our big pool is open.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 562.32 abd has dropped three inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running most of the time. The surface temperature was 86 degrees when I went diving yesterday morning. what i did see is that the fish are not in any normal summer pattern. I am seeing hundreds of good sized Kentucky bass and a few schools of barely legal crappie with just a few large ones mixed in. That is about it. I see smaller fish shallow in 12-14 feet, larger ones 14-22 feet and not much below that. There is nothing below 30-feet. Crappie are on brush in 30-35 feet of water but suspended above the brush about 15ft. down. There is not much else out there except for a few catfish on jugs baited with perch. I have seen no White Bass for months. There are some fish coming up in the morning but are not White bass. They are all small bass. Bluegill fishing is very good on crickets. Striper fishing near the dam is dead literally.  The lake is in excellent condition and the weather remains hot. I saw three boats out on the lake total and they were all my rentals. It is busy here and we like that. People are taking advantage of our low prices. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 562.59 and is still dropping a little over 2-inches in a 24-hour period. Surface temperature is still about 86 degrees and is perfect for swimming and boating. Ambient temperatures continue to be near 90. We received a pop-up shower yesterday in the afternoon and it rained hard. About 0.6 inches here at the resort. Other places close by got none. Fishing overall is fair with crappie, walleye and catfish being the best.  Dead stripers are showing up down by the dam and I am sorry to see this. It always happens in high water years. It is caused by low oxygen.  There is little or no oxygen below about 30-feet and that is why most fish are at or just above the thermocline which is about 26-feet. Fall is quickly approaching and it looks to be a good year for fall foliage. Blackburns Resort and Boat rental is your fall foliage headquarters. Peak usually occurs the very last of October but we will monitor this for you and post on this blog. It is a good time for fishing too. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. Our big pool is open. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Image titleThe boys had fun jumping and diving off our 30-ft. pontoon with tower. #9Image title

James bornhop with some good ones.Image title

Caught and released.on the Bink's spoon.Image title

The lake level has hit 563 even and is still dropping about 2-1/2 inches in a 24-hour period. The creeks are stained a bit and the main lake is clear. Surface tempersture is 87 degrees and the weather has been hot and is to continue to be so for several days. We have been dry for several days.  The lake is in excellent condition for swimming, boating and fishing. We are still in summertime. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. Blackburns has only two tiers of pricing: Summer and off-season. Others have at least three. We are on off-season before Memorial day and after Labor day. The big pool is open and sparkling. It sure was fun here last week. Full house and lots of good people. We like it here when people have fun and still be respectful of property and others. That is why we have so many repeat customers.  Fishing is pretty good and getting better every day. Still no White Bass. i do not know where they are. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Jeff barber from Pocahontas with a nice flathead. Image title

Luke Bornhop with a nice channel.Image title

The lake level is 563.14 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. The lake is in excellent condition for fishing and boating and the surface temperature is 87 degrees. It is summertime here on Norfork lake. Blackburns was very busy here last week with nearly all the cabins full and several boats rented. People are taking advantage of our low prices on both cabins and boat rentals. Our big pool with slide was very busy. You can get a one bedroom cabin for only $59/day with a free boat stall. People were fishing off the dock, out of bass boats and off fishing pontoons. They were catching bass, crappie and walleye on brush piles, bluegill and catfish off the dock and catfish on trotlines and jugs. Walleye are moving to the flats by the Island. Spoons, brim and crickets are all working well. I put several nice fish in Tom Kelly's trophy pond. Jeff Barber was here from pocahontas, Arkansas and was fishing with a spoon and also live bait with jugs and trotlines. The Bornhop boys had fun and their dad helped with with several big jobs. They brought several friends and it was a pleasure to meet them. Blackburns is the family fun and fishing place and we will not charge you too much. We have many repeat customes and appreciate them. Very much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Mike Eakle caught some good ones this morning.Image title

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The lake level is 563.57 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours. It is a good thing we have been dry. The weather continues to be hot with tomorrow being a little cooler and then hot again Monday. There are a few things changing. First there is a mud line forming at about 20-feet until about 27-feet with poor visibility. The visibility is still good to 20-feet and then again at 30-feet. This always happens but is a little slower this year. The thermocline starts at 25-feet and is cold at 30. Many fish are in the mud line making them difficult to get diving. I have no idea when the lake will turn but am guessing October 15th. This does not kill the fishing but makes it more difficult because the fish have no reason to be in any particulae place except for cover and food. Some times the turn is fast and other times gradual. 1/4 ounce spoons around main lake points touching the bottom in the mud line is the best bait now. Kentucky Bass, crappie and walleye are all there. Blackburns has cabins for $59/day and all have covered porches, no duplexes and your first regular sized boat stall is free as are trolling motors on pontoons. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and the big pool is open. Summer continues.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Got some good ones yesterday in 20-ft. of water. Image title

The lake level is 563.96 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running most of the time. Newport is now at 11+ feet to Hold the lakes at a higher than normal level. The lake is in excellent condition for fishing, diving, boating and swimming with a surface temperature of about 85 degrees. The thermocline is about 27 feet and the visibility there is about 8-feet. Many fish have moved above that though including bass  and crappie. I went diving yesterday and found several large crappie at 20-feet. Diving conditions are very good with no mud line and lots of fish moving in. I still am not seeing any White Bass. People are sure killing a lot of small stripers though out of deep water. I put two channel cats, one flathead and six bluegill in the pond caught off my dock. It is to remain hot here for the next week with highs in the mid 90's. Good time for a summer vacation with little boat traffic. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. Winter prices are here. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

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The lake level is 564.16 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours. I predicted several weeks ago it would be 564 by Labor day. They have done an excellent job of holding the level up all summer and the level of the White River at Newport is holding at just below 12-feet for absolutely no reason. We certainly need someone different  running the dams.  I was hoping the new guy would be better but he is worse. We are crazy if we think the government can run anything. The rules need to be reviewed and changed. There is no danger of a flood anywhere around here and we are very dry. Hold and hope is their motto and protect Branson is their game. There was a news article on TV about how high all of the lakes are in the area except Table Rock which is normal and encouraging people to go there and bragging about their tourism. This is not fair. The swim beaches should be in operation by the end of October. Good timing.  Norfork lake is still in excellent condition despite the higher than normal fall level and fishing is getting better everyday and will continue to do so until turnover in October and then keep getting better. I catch a lot of big fish in November. Most boat launches are about normal with more and more parking everyday. This is my favorite time of year. Come on down we will not charge you too much. Blackburns has cabins for $59/day and fully equipped fiberglass bass boats and fishing pontoons for you to rent at the best prices. It was a great weekend with all of our pontoons rented, a full house and nice quiet respectful  people. We like our many repeat customers and thank them. Blackburns is your family and fishing place and we will not charge you too much.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 564.67 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours. The surface temperature is about 83 degrees and the visibility is good  and you can see about 8-feet off rocky banks. Many Kentucky bass and crappie have moved to the bank at about 20-feet along with a few walleye. This has just happened. If you can find brush at 20-25 feet there will be crappie on them. Several are just on the main lake side  of main lake points with some straight out on the points. I saw very few fish at 30-feet where they were earlier. The thermocline starts at 25-feet and is cold at 30-feet. It was encouraging to see so many good fish. i still am seeing no white bass at all which is very unusual. I wish people would quit killing all of these small stripers and taking pictures of dock floors lined with small dead fish. It is not impressive.  When you fish in deep water and catch fish they all die no matter their size.  The limit needs to be reduced to two fish for stripers and hybrids. They do not dress out very well anyway for meat hunters but are fun to catch. Wait until they are on top or on the bank. This will happen this fall. Blackburns has $59/day cabins starting Tuesday and the fishing is getting better every day. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink's Guide Service. Image title

The lake level is 564.98 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with one generator running part of the time. The Corps of engineers should be proud.  They have successfully held the lake high for the entire summer. The White River at Newport is at 12+ feet and they still will not drop the lake. The surface temperature is in the mid 80's and the lake is in excellent condition for swimming and boating. I went diving yesterday and the visibility was not quite as good as Monday but still ok for spearfishing. I found walleye on main lake steep banks in 25-feet of water near the first ledge and crappie on brush from 25-30 feet. Many bass were a little shallower than that. We have had very nice weather the last few days and it is to be good through the holiday and beyond. After Monday you can get a cabin here at Blackburns for $59/day and the fishing will get better and better for the next several weeks. Bink is catching good fish every day and scuba diving is excellent. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. If you are staying elsewhere and paying too much this weekend stop by here and check us out on your way home. We are proud of this place. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

If there were less of these:Image title

We could catch a lot more of these:Image title

The lake level is 564.84 and is exactly the same as it was 24-hours ago. They have cut way back on generation. I give them too much credit when I said they did not quit generating when it rains earlier. They just waited a day. The lake is clearing after the runoff and the surface temperature is in the mid 80's. Blackburns still have one cabin available for the weekend. 3-day minimum. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 564.86 and has dropped a little less than an inch in the last 24-hours. We received over 2-inches of rain last night and this morning and the creeks run hard. They are slowed way down now. At least they did not quit generating during the rain like they usually do. We are catching a few catfish on our jugs but not very many. There are just too many gar. The weather has cooled and the surface temperature is about 85 degrees. I am not excited about summer ending but I will continue to dive until late October. I like three seasons but not winter. I do catch a lot of fish in the winter though. Remember that Blackburns resort and Boat rental is your fall foliage headquarters for Norfork Lake, Mountain Home and the Ozark Mountain Region. Peak foliage is usually the very last of October but you can get updates on this blog. It is also a peak time for fishing. Bink is on the stripers and walleye with his spoon. Some fish are deep annd some are at or near the thermocline at about 30-feet near the bottom. Bluegill are under docks. I predicted that the lake level would be about 564 by Labor day weekend a month ago and I still hold to that. I wish it would drop more to make my brush piles at the right depth for bass, crappie and walleye fishing but mostly so people could see sand again and leave it alone. I have a big sand pile next to my big pool. Blackburns has one cabin available for next weekend and a pontoon available for rent. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. The grass is growing very fast and everything is very green. The lake is at a perfect temperature for swimming and boating and is in good condition.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 565.17 and continues to drop a little over 2-inches/ 24 hour period with generation a little more time. We received over 1-1/2 inches of heavy rain yesterday afternoon with a lot of lightening.  The creeks did run but not enough to raise the lake level. We were very dry but not now. Everything is very green and the weather has cooled with cloudy skies and chances of rain for the next several days. We seem to get a rain everytime we need one. The lake is in excellent condition for boating and swimming and has dropped 9-feet from it's high and the surface temperature is in the high 80's. Visibility is about 5-6 feet. The fish continue to be in two groups. One deep near the botoom in 60-80 feet of water and others near the thermocline. It is late August and the thermocline should not drop anymore this year unless it gets very hot again. It is about 27-feet and seldom gets below 30-feet unless the surface temperature gets into the 90's which has happened before. The fishing will get better and better after the holiday until sometime in October when the lake turns. The water will then be homogenous with no thermocline with equal temperature and oxygen for several feet and the fish have no reason to be anywhere special except for bait and cover. This is where brush piles really help fishing. The fishing gets good again and continues to get better until about thanksgiving. As winter cools the water in December red meat fish get scarce again and lethargic and hard to get and the lake gets very clear baring any heavy rains. Early to mid October is an excellent time to come fishing as is early to late November. Early October for walleye and November for giant crappie. Bass will be the most consistent bite. If you have a flexible schedule get in touch and I will tell you what is happening now.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with BinkImage title

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The lake level is 565.41 and continues to drop a little over 2-inches/24 hour period with a little more than 1/2 the time generating. The creeks are clearing up a bit and the surface temperature is back to near 90 with the hot weather. There are still a lot of fish at or near the thermocline which is still less than 30-feet. Visibility is still about 5-6 feet. Spoons are working the best now for both the 30-ft. fish and the 60-70 foot fish. Just use a bigger one for the deep fish. Catfish are starting to bite again and bluegill are biting crickets. Bass fishing is slow except for the after dark salt craws. I am seeing a few bass coming up in the evening. I wish people would quit killing all of those deep small stripers in the 8-10 pound range. We will pay for it later. Blackburns still has two openings for the labor day holiday so give us a call before you have to pay too much elsewhere. Our big pool is waiting for you. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught this morning on a Bink's spoon.Image title

The lake level is 566.26 and is dropping at a rate of 2-inches/day with generation about 1/2 the time. The level at Newport has dropped below 12-feet now. This is crazy boys. Let some water out. And some people want the government to run more things. They have done an excellent job of holding it up all summer and are trying to get through until way after Labor Day. They cannot use the excuse that it is flooding elsewhere anymore. Our area is below annual average precipitation.  I had a 90-degree surface water temperature in Blackburns creek an hour ago. It is to remain hot for several more days. The creeks are stained and the main lake is somewhat less stained. A lot of fish are at or just below the thermocline which is 25-27 feet. Some smaller stripers in the 8-10 lb. range are coming in along with some good walleye. Bass fishing is fair and catfishing is less than fair but some are being caught. Bink is catching some good fish on his spoon.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 566.68 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. It has come down over 7-feet from it's high and has taken a long time to do so. You can at least walk or drive the 1/3 mile to the lake with out taking the high road. This is good.  Some crappie have moved in to brush at 20-25 feet but there is not very much of that. Most of my brush still at least 12-feet too deep. I am using the 1/4 ounce Bink's spoon for them. They are not the big ones though. I am concerned about the numbers of white bass. I usually see many of them diving this time of year but have seen none. I do not fish for them but they are a good go to fish when nothing else is biting. Maybe the earlier fish kill was worse than we expected or maybe they are just in another area. People are just not bringing any in. The surface temperature is in the mid 80's and the hot weather continues. The lake is in good condition for boating and swimming and the overall fishing is fair. Water is stained but normal for August. The fishing will get better and better until lake turnover in October and then get better again. Thanksgiving is my favorite time to get bass, crappie, walleye and red meat fish. Catfishing has been slow so far but some are being caught spooning for bass and walleye. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake is dropping again after the rain. The creeks are stained and the walleye are schooling. Caught today on A Bink's spoon near the bottom in 30-ft. of water. 8 caught 5 measured.  Go to www.greatamericanwildlife.com and click on article about fishing near the thermocline. Good information. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 567.87 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. We received heavy rain after midnight and the level has been rising slowly since then. They always quit generating when it rains to maximize the effects.   I received over 2-inches locally and the creeks run hard. They are calmed down now and they are just starting to generate again. At a rate of 2-inches/day drop we should drop about 3-1/2 feet by Labor Day weekend and be at 564 which is still 10-feet above where it should be this time of year but not bad.  They have had ample time to drop the lake but refuse to do so. The overall condition of the lake is good for swimming and boating. Fishing is only fair for bass, stripers, catfish and bluegill. A few scattered schools of crappie are showing up. I am seeing almost no white bass while diving.  I do not know where they have gone but they are not showing up with the deep walleye and stripers. The lake is stained and the visibility is not the best but that is not uncommon for August. It will get better as the water cools but do not look for that to happen anytime soon with very hot weather coming next week. Day use areas for swimming, launching and parking are getting a little bit better but are not good. Most Resorts have full services. If you have a desperate need for sand we have a large pile by our big swimming pool.   When you ask for openings always ask 1: Is this a duplex? 2: Do you have ample parking for my vehicle and boat trailer? 3: Do you have a pool and how big is it? 4: Do you have covered porches? 5: Do you charge for the first boat stall at your dock? 6: Do you have trolling motors on pontoons and are they free? Do you have a dock and how big is it? How far are you from town? This will prevent any big surprises when you arrive. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 568.11 and is dropping about 2-inches a day with generation about 1/2 the time. They are keeping the White River at Newport at 12-feet no matter what. We seem to be in a pattern of hot and sunny weather until the heat of the day and then getting rain. It gets black to the west and hits about 3-PM. The grass is greening up again as we were very dry. We are to get rain for the next few days and then get hot again by next week. The mornings are very pleasant for fishing and boating and again in the late afternoon after the rain when it clears back up. The lake in general is in good condition and is a bit stained with surface temperature in the mid to higher 80's and perfect for swimming. Come on down. We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Jack Bucknell with a nice Norfork Lake walleye.Image title


The lake level is 568.68 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24 hours with generation about 1/2 the time. It is very dry here. The lake is clearing a bit and the surface temperature is about 86 degrees. Walleye, bass, catfish and bluegill are the best bite now. The weather and lake conditions are excellent for swimming and boating. It is very busy here at blackburns and people are having a lot of fun. We like that. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 569.10 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. The White River at Newport is below 12-feet.  Let some water out boys. It is very dry and there is no flooding anywhere near here.  This is crazy. You cannot let the government run anything. The lake in general is in very good condition but is stained a bit but not unusual for this time of year. Fishing has held up pretty well with bass fishermen doing well after dark on saltcraws and stripers and walleye deep on jigging spoons. Bluegill are hitting on crickets. A few crappie are under the dock.   The surface temperature is in the mid 80's.  The weather has been great but dry with highs in the mid 80's. it is to get more normal next week with highs again in the early 90's. The days are shorter so the heat does not last as long. My walnut trees are dropping leaves already.  It is very busy here at Blackburns with people taking advantage of our low cabin rates, low boat rental costs and free boat stall with your cabin. Our big sparkling pool with slide and baby pool has been the center of attraction all summer. We are a bird sanctuary and have lots of wildlife on our 28-acres. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. All cabins are individual with no duplexes and have covered porches. You can get a one bedroom cabin for $75/day. Not bad. The children need one more trip before vacation is over. They will like it here. I do.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on a Bink's jigging spoon. Many shad. Image title

The lake level is 569.81 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are keeping the White River at Newport at 12-feet at all costs. Striper fishing is still pretty good and the fish are very deep. You must just want meat to catch them there now as all of them will die when brought up. Remember the possesstion limit is twice the daily limit. The same goes for the walleye with them. Bass fishing with drop-shotted worms is fair during the early morning as are salt craws after dark. Bluegill under docks and around sunken willows is good on crickets. I am seeing few crappie. The lake needs to drop several feet before my brush piles come into play. The fall fishing for crappie should be very good as few have been caught this year so far. Bait fish are everywhere and the game fish are not having any trouble finding food. I am not having the best of luck now with catfish. You still have time to take the children on a lake vacation and Blackburns resort and Boat rental has the best place with the best price and the biggest pool.  Come on down. We will not charge you too much. Blackburns is the family place. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The Dan Bruce family from Olmsted, Illinois caught some nice fish yesterday. Nice people. Glad to have them. They are welcome here.Image title

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The lake level is 569.97 and is dropping about 2-inchers in a 24-hour period with generation about 1/2 the time and they are religiously sticking to the 12-ft. level at Newport despite the dry weather. Let some water out boys. Holding the area lakes up for so long is really stupid and there is no real reason for it. The lake in general is in very good condition and only the day use areas including beaches and launch parking are affected. There is very limited swimming from the shore but most resorts have full services. You can swim and fish off Blackburs dock or also swim in our big pool with slide of off a rental pontoon.  we have 12 of them and at the best price.  Yes you do have to rent a cabin to rent a boat.  Sorry that is the Corps of Engineers rule not mine. Stupid rule. You can get a boat and cabin here for less than a boat rental at most other places and have access to other resort amenities. Fishing is still pretty good for bass and bluegill and Bink is still on the stripers and walleye. The water surface temperature is about 86 degrees and changes from pretty clear to stained almost daily.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Blackburns is the family fun place. Image title

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The lake level is 570.67 and has dropped about 2-inches in the lst 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are hanging on to that 12-ft. level at Newport like a life raft in a flood. I sure would like to know how that level was determined. There is abosutely no reason for it. The minor flood level is 26 feet. This needs to be reviewed and changed. The weather has been beautiful and is to continue so. This is a perfect time for a vacation for swimming, boating and just relaxing here at Blackburns. The lake is in excellent condition and the price is right. The grass is green, the dock is big, the pool is sparkling and Bink is on the fish. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The Bink's spoon is the best lure for big stripers. I like the 1-ounce many shad now when they are deep. Image title

The lake level is 570.98 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They must be trying to hold the level up until after labor Day. It is very cloudy today and much cooler. The weather is to be near perfect for several days starting tomorrow. We did receive just a very little bit of much needed rain this morning and may get some more. I hope so. This has been the best year for gardens in quite some time. Not too much rain and not too little. Just a little irrigation is needed. The lake has stained some in the last few days and the visibility has gone down as the surface temperature has gone up. It is now near 90. Some days higher and some lower. Spear fishing is still ok but you cannot see very far. I still have large numbers of both threadfin and gizzard shad under my dock and they are really bringing in the fish. I feed them also and they just swarm. Early morning stripers deep on the spoon is the best bite and after dark with salt craws is second and bluegill with crickets is third. We have some good fishermen in now and I will check with them. I need the lake to go down a few feet to have my brush piles come into play for the crappie. Blackburns still have cabins for $75/day so come on down. We will not charge you too much for them or boat rentals. Our big pool is very busy. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink yesterday on the spoon. Image titleImage title

The lake level is 571.12 and has dropped 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with a little more generation. The White River at Newport is at 12-feet + now and they are spreading the discharge out over several lakes. If it stays as dry as it is now maybe it will go down by Labor day. They have done an excellent job of starting at a high level in the spring and holding it up all year. The lake in general is in very good condition for boating, fishing and swimming. The clarity has diminished in the last few days but that always happens with the hot weather. I will go diving later and get a new report. Some fish are schooling early AM but are scattered with the bait fish staying under cover in the buckbrush. As the lake lowers, and the thermocline lowers  they will move out further and stay near it. The red meat fish are deep as usual this time of year and the spooners are getting some good ones but also many small ones in the 7-10 lb. range. They all die when pulled up from deep water so if you do not want to kill them do not fish for them there. Pictures of dock floors full of small dead stripers are not impressive. They are all stocked fish and do not reproduce.  Anybody with a good fish finder can hang 6-8 poles with live bait over the boat and troll long enough through shad and get fish on and then hand the pole to someone else and let them reel it in. That is not sport to me. They do not dress out very well anyway if you are a meat hunter. A lot of fish being cleaned now are full of crawdads so the big fish are going to the bank some time or other to feed. I have a lot of both gizzard and threadfin shad under my dock now which is 30+ feet deep and some large bass are hanging around there. I assume this is happening in other places. Big bluegills are biting well on crickets off docks now. Some over a pound. Now those are good eating. Some walleye are off the bluffs in 24-ft. of water. The bigger ones are lone wolves but smaller ones are schooled and roaming and some are deep with the stripers. Bass fishermen are doing well after dark on saltcraws.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on a Bink's Jigging Spoon yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 570.31 and has remained the same for three days with very little generation. They are doing their best to hold it up for as long as possible. The lake in general is in very good condition, clear and clean and good for boating, swimming, diving and fishing. Day users are inconvenienced by lack of parking at the ramps and no beaches but you can swim in our pool, off the dock or off your rental pontoon. Most resorts have no diminished services but some do not have pools so be sure to ask.  We have had typical mid-July weather and it has been very warm and is to last through this week. It is to drop into the 80's by Monday. The surface temperature is near 90. Scuba divers are getting walleye and crappie and fishermen are getting stripers, hybrids and bass. A few catfish are being caught on limb and trot lines using perch. Bluegill are under docks and by submerged willows. Bink is on the stripers and hybrids. Blackburns still has cabins for $75/day and a free boat stall for your normal sized boat. Trolling motors on pontoons are free and all cabins are individual with no duplexes and have covered porches to get out of the sun and rain. We have plenty of parking for boats and trailers and are not huddled up on a crowded hillside. If you like green grass this is the place. Come on down. Sorry we cannot offer specials now to fill openings because we would have to honor the price to all customers. Only fair. We keep our prices as low as possible all year. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday.Image title

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The lake level is 571.48 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours. We have received about 0.6 inches of rain in the last two days and it is raining very slowly now. The lake is getting more clear and the thermocline is still just past 21-feet and there is no mud line yet. The surface temperature is 89 not the 79 that I made the typo on yesterday. I would like to go diving but it is just too dark out now. It is to get hot on Wednesday and sunny with high pressure moving in after Barry the dud leaves. I do not like wind and we did not get any. Listening to the wind howl when you have a 160-ft. long dock with 20-boats in it is like waiting for your daughter to come home from a date and she is two hours late. Fishing is not the best except for the red meat fish in the early morning. The hybrids are coming up early and you can catch some stripers and walleye deep near the bottom later in 70-80 feet of water near the bottom. The trollers are catching some if they know what they are doing but the jigging spoon is the best lure. The shakey head plastic worm is still good for the bass in the brush on main lake points. Bluegill are biting well on crickets. Crappie fishing is slow except for under lights off docks after dark. Catfishing is picking up a bit but is not good again. Boating conditions are good with almost no debris in the water. Bass fishing after dark on saltcraws is pretty good. Blackburns still has cabins for $75/day and has some openings starting today. It was very busy last week. It is good to have so many repeat customers and we appreciate them.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.79 and has dropped a little less than 2-inches in the last 24-hours. They are in a pattern of running the generators for about 16 hours and shutting them down for about 8. They are dropping all of the lakes now and keeping Newport at 12+ feet. It is a good thing it has been very dry. It is to rain Monday and Tuesday from Barry and we can take some with no problem. We are getting pop up showers most afternoons in the heat of the day keeping most things green. I am watering my garden. I went diving and found not much has changed. The surface temperature was 79 degrees yesterday, the thermocline was just past 20- feet and you could see about 7-8 feet just right for spear fishing. I saw more fish than before including two schools of stripers, several bass, a school of gizzard shad, one walleye and several big bluegill. There were many schools of bait fish mostly bass at the 20-24 ft. depth. There were few boats out there. Most of them were Blackburns rental boats. The lake in general is in good condition for both boating and fishing. The best fishing continues to be early AM at just after 5:30. The big stripers and hybrids are moving deeper and are at about 70-80-feet. Foster caught a big bass, over 5-lbs. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday on a Bink's jigging spoon. Image title

The lake level is 572.13 and has dropped a little over an inch in the last 24-hours. They are generating for about 16-hours and then shutting down for about 8 and keeping the White River at Newport right at 12-feet or a little above. I guess they are wating for the hurricane to move north through Louisiana and spread across Arkansas. Hold and hope is still the policy unless Branson is affected and then it is open the gates. The lake surface temperature is approaching 90-degrees but the thermocline is still near 20-feet and the visibility is still 8-9 feet depending on the level of sunshine and the kind of bank you are fishing. There are a lot of fish on Robinson island but it is about 13-feet under water. The tree that marked the spot has fallen and it is difficult to find without GPS.  I know this lake pretty well but it sure is different when it is so big. Everything looks so different. The lake in general is in good condition for boating and early morning fishing is not bad. Stripers and hybrids are in there normal summer spots and frog pond is a good place to start.  Bass are coming up most mornings near the old shoreline. Everything is typical for mid July except for the water level and it is very slowly dropping despite the dry weather. Come on down and swim off Blackburns dock or in the big pool. We will not charge you too much.  All of our cabins have covered porches, your first normal sized boat stall is free, we do not charge for trolling motors on pontoons and all cabins are individual with no duplexes and we have the largest pool around and a slide and big pavillion. One bedroom cabins are still $75/day. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught on a Bink's Jigging Spoon Yesterday.Image title

The lake level is 572.43 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours. They quit generating last evening and it is still down. The White River at Newport is now 12.5 feet. I guess they are holding the level up so it will still be there for the next holiday and if the tropical depression in the gulf trends north of Louisiana to Arkansas bringing rain they can really get it up there. I have a four month old grand daughter that could manage the lakes better. It is dry here and we could use some rain. I went diving yesterday and the conditions are the same as last week. I did not go last week do to the holiday. Some of the people out there think a dive flag is a target. There have been jet ski operators go directly over me and try to grab the flag as they go by before. It was much better yesterday with low boat traffic. The thermocline is still 20-feet and the visibility is about 10-feet in the sunshine. Just right for spear fishing. I still am having trouble finding very many walleye but the ones that I see are good ones. Going to try a different place today. My brush piles are all too deep and the fish are scattered in the buckbrush with plenty of cover. Stripers, hybrids, bass and bluegill are the best bite now. Get out there early and watch for fish coming up and then find shad and use the jigging spoon for red meat fish and a shakey head worm near the bank for bass. Bluegill are under docks and around flooded willows. Crappie and walleye are scarce except at night under docks with a light. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 572.53 and has dropped 2-inches in the last 24-hours. They stopped generating all night to get Newport down to the stupid 12-ft. level. It is now just over 13-feet. They at least could be at 14-feet but they changed how the 70% full level is measured. You do not expect much. You do not get much. They could do a lot of good if they would just drop it 2 or 3 feet and it would not hurt anything. The creeks are stained a little more than they were and I am not sure if it is due to the increased boat traffic for the extended Holiday or the rise in water temperature. We will have an algae bloom soon.  I will go diving later and get you a full report of the water conditions. Bass, stripers and hybrids continue to be the best bite and the best time is early AM. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Bink caught this one on his spoon yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 572.70 and has dropped over 3-inches in the last 24-hours. The Mississippi is dropping, the Missouri is dropping and the Yakima river in Washington state is dropping. I guess it is ok to drop the huge and mighty Norfork lake now. We must keep the level at Newport at 12-feet but nobody knows why when the minor flood stage there on the White River is 26-feet. Did anyone notice they always stop generating during the trout festival no matter what? We must take care of the put and take trout. The lake traffic continued to be heavy (Norfork standards not Lake of the Ozark standards) until yesterday evening. The ramps were very busy and trailers were parked all the way out to the highway. Day users really wanted to get out there bad. It had to be really good for the Mountain Home economy and local businesses. I know Blackburns has 11 pontoon boats and almost all of them were rented. Having all of the beaches and swim areas under water limits the swimming to mostly off boats and off docks and in resort swimming pools. The lake remains in good condition despite the water level with just a small amount of debris floating. It is going away as the lake drops and is less in the creeks than the main lake. The level is about 1.3 feet lower than it's high of 574. Fishing is pretty good early for top water bass and later near the bank on plastic worms. Red meat fish are in their normal places for the year but not quite as deep.I am still seeing pictures of dock floors full of dead small stripers and the striper fishermen will pay the price for this in the future. It is not impressive to see how many you can kill. All of them coming out of deep water will die. Catch a few, leave a few. The limit needs to be dropped to two. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.01 and has dropped 2-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours. Newport is at 12.5 feet and there is no reason to not generate. It is now down about 1-foot from it's high. We received a little over 1/2 inch of rain yesterday afternoon and it is really keeping everything green. It seems to rain just when we need it. The gardens are doing very well. It is not too wet here. The lake traffic has been heavy for several days now with the 4th coming in the middle of the week and people coming here on both sides of it. It should be back to normal tomorrow afternoon. The fishing continues to be the best in the early morning with a top water bite most days with bass coming up. After that the shakey head plastic worm is still the best bait shallow with the Bink's spoon best in the deep water for red meat fish. I had an 87 degree water temperature in Blackburns creek yesterday. The water has stained a bit with the boat traffic but should clear back up until the algae bloom. There is still some debris floating in the main lake but that should go away as the lake drops.  Norfork is in general in good condition for boating and water sports and the fishing is fair. Some catfish have moved back in the creeks as the gar have left the creeks for the main lake. The Straatmans are catching some good ones on jugs with multiple hooks with live bluegill. This is a good time for a visit to the lake and Blackburns Resort where we will not charge you too much. We have an opening starting tomorrow. Come on down. The big pool with slide is nice.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught this morning.Image title

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The new news is that they started generating Norfork heavily and the lake has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours. The White River at Newport has not only cut the discharge but the gauge level is now 12+ feet and there is no reason for them to not drop the lake. They have done an excellent job holding it up. The bass condinue to bite top water early and Bink is really on the stripers deep with his spoon. People going out with him are catching some good fish everyday. The lake in general is in excellent condition and pretty clear with just a few floating logs. Be very careful and avoid being out there after dark. If you do, go out before dark and retrace your route on the way back. It looks to be a busy holiday so share the limited boat launch parking. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught yesterday fishing with Bink. Big fish.Image titleImage title

The lake level is 574.04 and has dropped 1-inch in the last 24-hours with a little more generation. The White River at Newport is now 13-feet and dropping quickly despite very little discharge. They will reach that magical number of 12-feet barring any big rains and should start dropping Norfork in a couple of days. At least they were able to keep it up high through the 4th. I went diving yesterday and the conditions were pretty good. The surface temperature was 84 degrees and the visibility was about 8-feet with cloudy skies. It would have been better with sunshine. The thermocline is still at 20-feet and has not changed for a couple of weeks. I still am not seeing very many fish but the ones thet I am seeing are good ones. Bink is really catching some good ones deep on his many shad spoon. He took out the Straatman crew and they had a good time and caught a lot of fish. Glad they went. Nice people and they are welcome here. Bink is one good fisherman. There is also a top water bite most days early for bass near the bank. Blackburns still has one cabin open. We fill up and then get a cancellation. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 574.14 and rising very slowly with little generation. Newport is at 13+ feet headed again for 12 with reduced discharge to keep all of the area lakes up there except for Branson and if we can go another extended period with no rain they might let some out. I am irrigating both grass and gerden now. There were quite a few boats out there this weekend and the ramp parking was really jammed up. Please do not pick up a bunch of passenges at the courtesy dock and leave their vehicles at the parking lot. The lake is clean and clear with just a few logs floating. Fishing is pretty good both early morning and evening with occasional top water near the bank and red meat fish deep. Crappie and other pan fish are under and around docks. Water temperature remains near 84.  Blackburns has one cabin available now so if interested call Debbie at 870-492-5115.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 574.10 and rising very slowly with very little generation. They have dropped the White River at Newport to 14+ feet by not generating much and slowing the discharge rate there in an effort to keep everything high except Branson for the holiday. If it does not rain they will be able to reach the mythical 12 ft. level and start letting some water out. I had an 84 degree water temperature yesterday and the lake remains pretty clear for this time of year. Paul Ahrens reports catching some nice bass yesterday right on the bank on top water early. Bass fishing is probably the best right now but Bink is catching stripers and hybrids on his spoon. I am seeing just a few logs floating on the main lake but not very many. I would not advise being out after dark.  The lake in general is in good condition and most resorts have no diminished services except launching but Panther Bay has good launching.  Day use people are finding a shortage of campsites, trailer parking and swimming from the bank.  All beaches are gone but you can stay at a resort with a pool.   The lake was very busy yesterday and boaters are having a good time. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught fishing with Bink this morning.Image title

The lake level is 573.98 and is what it was at it's high a couple of weeks ago. It has risen 2-inches in the last 24-hours. They are generating Norfork very little and are still running Beaver and Table rock hard with spillway gates open and filling Bull Shoals. They have also dropped the White River at Newport to 17+ feet. We had a storm yesterday afternoon but I know of no damage and we received about 0.3 inches of rain. These are typical in late June and early July during the heat of the day. The lake continues to be in good condition with the clarity pretty good and the surface temperature in the early 80's. Bink is on the stripers and hybrids on his spoon and bass fishermen are doing well around main lake points on plastice worms just outside the buckbrush on the drop-offs.  Crappie and bluegill are under docks. Some bass are coming up early. I am just seeing a few keeper walleye and do not know where they are. They must be suspended now where they usually on the bottom. I am just used to fishing brush piles and they are all too deep now. Blackburns still has the best prices on both cabins and boat rentals and your first normal sized boat stall is free, as are trolling motors on pontoons, all cabins have big covered porches with no duplexes and we have the biggest pool around.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.82 and has risen 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with very little generation. Newport is 19+ feet and they are running Beaver lake and Table Rock generators as fast as they can with several spillway gates open filling Bull shoals. It holds a lot of water and it is going to take a long time to drop it. We are to get a whole week of sunny skies starting tomorrow. I went diving yesterday and conditions are pretty good with surface temperatures in the low 80's, visibility from 8-10 feet and the thermocline hanging in there at just over 20-feet. I am still having a hard time finding walleye but the ones I am finding are good ones. Small ones are under docks along with crappie and bluegill. Bluegill are everywhere as are small bass. Many species are still just outside the buckbrush just above the thermocline and can be caught on plastice worms with a very light worm weight hooked Texas rigged and weedless. There is still a top water bite some days for bass and stripers but most of the time they are in 60-ft. of water deep and can be caught on the 1-ounce Bink's many shad jigging spoon. Some schools of small stripers are shallow on shad and other baitfish.  I am seeing no white bass like I usually do. The lake in general is in good condition for boating. Blackburns still has some openings and will not charge you too much. Come on down.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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Caught fishing with Bink's Guide Service on the jigging spoon.Image title

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The lake level is 573.71 and has risen 3-inches in the last 24-hours.  We are just about where we were at the high again. They scrapped the idea of opening the gates on Norfork and started running Table Rock hard again to protect Branson and keep filling Bull Shoals. Newport is now at 17 feet. It does not really matter what the level is at Newport as long as Branson is in danger. Otherwise they go by the rules which need to be changed. I went from Cranfield to Robinson Point yesterday and the lake was in excellent condition with no debris. When I scuba dived the water was clear with the thermocline at about 20 feet and a lot of fish just above that just outside the buckbrush. The surface temperature is in the early 80's.  Blackburns still has some openings and will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some nice ones caught yesterday on a plastic worm.Image title


The lake level is 573.48 and has risen a little less than a foot in the last 24-hours. It is about 1/2 foot lower than it was two weeks ago.  We received about 4.4 inches of rain over the weekend and they quit generating yesterday evening. They always do when it rains to magnify the effects.  Newport is at 14-feet and so much for the opening of the spillway gates. It is a good thing they had been generating Norfork for several days and it had been dry or they would really have been in trouble. We had two blows, one was Friday and the other was early Sunday afternoon. Friday had no rain and the one Sunday had heavy rain and blew over several trees in the area and resulted in a few hours of power outage. It is a good thing Blackburns is on city water so water supply was not interruped. Our guests were just sitting on their covered porches watching it rain or cooking and playing games under the big pavillion until it was over. We were fortunate to receive no damage and it is nice to be located in a protected green valley. I did not go fishing this weekend as the resort was full but we do have openings now.  Come on down. We will not charge you too much. I will go diving today to check things out and let you know. I will not speculate and must see for myself.  It is cloudy now but the sun is supposed to come out. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

This and several more caught fishing with Bink.Image title

The lake level is 572.78 and has dropped 3.3 inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. They are to open spillway gates Monday to quickly drop the lake but have not announced how many. I will let you know. The lake surface temperature is 82 degrees and rising with the warm weather. We got some wind yesterday afternoon from the north and blew pretty hard with no rain. It lasted about 1/2 hours and blew the top off one of my pontoons. You could not see it coming from the sky conditions but there were whitecaps in Blackburns Creek and that is rare. Everything else was fine and the people renting boats were all in and showing a lot of sense. Bink is really on the Stripers and Hybrids but always is this time of year.  He always says the hotter the better. Come on down. Blackburns has some openings starting tomorrow and you can get a one bedroom cabin for $75/day. Why pay more?

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.06 and has dropped 2.8 inches in the last 24-hours with continuous generation. It is down about a foot from it's high.  The surface temperature is about 82-degrees and the thermocline is from 20-22 feet and the water clarity is good on the main lake and fair back in the creeks. You can see about 10-feet on the main lake and 5-feet in the back of creeks. I am just not seeing a lot of big fish but many throw-back bass and 12-15 inch walleye. I just have not found many big ones yet. I thought they may have gone deeper but when I went below 30-feet there was nothing. I will keep trying. When you go up into the buckbrush there are many fish but no big ones except for a very few roaming. There are a few logs floating now but not many.  The water drop is holding many of them on the shore and on shallow points. The lake is in good condition for boating and swimming and only fair for fishing. You have to get out there early and look for top water. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 573.29 and has dropped 3-inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running continuously. They are holding Newport at 12+ feet. I went diving yesterday morning and this is what I found: There were a few logs floating in the lake but not very many. The water was 81+ degrees and had about the same visibility from the surface down to 30-feet with the thermocline at 20-feet. I could see about 10-feet away. It may have been just a little cloudier shallow but the sunshine made up for it. There was no mud line but there will be.  I did not see a lot of fish but the ones I saw were from 15-18 feet just outside the buckbrush. I did not go below 30-feet. Walleye, bass and bluegill were the only kinds I saw. I did get one very nice walleye, about 5-lbs. for Gus for supper but let the rest go on by.  My dock did have a huge school of crappie very shallow along with the bass, bluegill, carp and turtles. It is about 31 feet deep and I have trees hanging off it. One of our guests said there was a good top water bite early for bass. I love diving season but do not see how many I can get just how big. People fishing for stripers in 60-70 feet of water near the bottom should not act surprised when they all die after being caught. If they really care they would not fish for them that deep. The lake in general is in good condition and fishing is fair. Diving conditions are good but I am not seeing a lot of fish. Come on down to Blackburns.  We will not charge you too much and have several boats to rent at the best prices and cabins start at $75/day.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Our 30-ft. pontoon with sun and diving deck for only $195/day plus fuel. Has 115 HP 4-stroke Yamaha. Image title

Caught fishing with Bink this morning on top water. Image title

The lake level is 573.56 and has dropped over two inches in the last 24-hours with both generators running. The level at Newport is 12+ feet and they should be able to keep dropping. This 12 foot rule is really stupid and needs to be changed. It does not allow much to be discharged into the white River. The Norfork River from the dam to the White is only 4-miles and is the same as going directly into the White. They could really do some good if they wanted to. I had an 82-degree water temperature yesterday and the clarity may be going down just a bit. The thermocline is still at 20-feet and that is just below the buckbrush and that is where the fish are. There are some stripers in 60-feet and a top water bite for mostly bass very early. Fishing contiues to be pretty good overall. Blackburns has some openings so come on down. We will not charge you too much. We have 11-pontoons and several bass boats for you to rent and all at the best prices. One bedroom cabins are still $75/day and two, three and four bedrooms priced accordingly. Our pool is big and has a slide and baby pool. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Caught this morning on the Bink's Spoon.Image title

The lake level is 573.79 and has dropped 1-3/4 inches in the last 24-hours with generation for several hours rotating between one and two generators running. They now have reduced the discharge at Newport drastically and the level is now at their stupid goal of 12-feet so there is now no reason for them not to generate. The level should have been at 25-ft. for the last several weeks.  We did get about a quarter of an inch of rain last evening and was just enough to water the grass and garden. We have been very fortunate that the weather has been dry for several days. The lake is pretty clear and in general good condition for fishing, boating and water sports.  Come on down to Blackburns. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.92 and has dropped 0.8 inches in the last 24-hours with several hours of generation. I guess they can generate more now that the White River at Newport is at 13-feet and still dropping with very little discharge.  We are lucky that it has been dry here. I have to irrigate both the grass and the garden.  People talk about all of the rain but we have received about 30-inches so far this year and our average total is 48 with about 1/2 of the year gone. A lot of it came in late winter when they could have generated. They will take Newport down to 12-feet no matter what happens to the area lakes. Who ever made these rules should should have to run for public office and let the sun shine on him and resign. I went diving Saturday and the conditions were good. The visibility was pretty good and I could see about 10-feet in an area where it is not normally that good. It is better other places but you do not want it too clear while spearfishing. It is just about right now. The thermocline is at exactly 20-feet and there are a lot of fish just above that. I only fish for walleye, crappie and catfish but will get a white bass or two when times are tough. I got one walleye and one crappie on my first dive of the season and consider that successful since all one my gear worked and I did not forget anything. The surface temperature is just under 80-degrees and should warm with the weather. It felt good.  It looks to be a good diving season but most brush piles are too deep and you will have to get into the buckbrush. I will check several different places and let you know. If you need a dive boat, Blackburns has 11 pontoons for you to rent and Scuba Doo dive shop is 1/2 mile away. Diving from the shore will be very difficult this year.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 573.94 and has risen 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with about 5-hours of generation. They continue to drop the level on the White River at Newport and reduce the discharge.  It is now at 16+ feet and dropping.  It should be at 25-feet if managed properly. The policy of hold and hope continues with rain scheduled for the next several days. I guess they will hold it until all of the lakes are full except for Branson and then open the gates and flood out everyone below bypassing the generators and wasting millions of dollars. Go figure.  You cannot allow the government to run anything. It is about politics and money. Review the policies and change the rules. They have missed many chances to drop the lakes.  The slow rise in level which began this winter has allowed the lake to remain clear and fishing and boating to be good. The beaches, day use areas, camping and launch parking has been the most affected. Most resorts have not lost services.  Spearfishing season starts tomorrow and I am anxious.  I hopefully have all of my scuba gear ready. It only takes one item to fail to ruin a trip. Remember divers are only allowed 1/2 the daily limit of fish.  Not sure why because it is much more difficult to spearfish than pole fish. Pole fishing is doing pretty well now but catfishing has slowed way down. Flatheads are the last fish to spawn on the lake and now their spawn is over. Bass continue to spawn all summer, especiall Kentucky bass, but the bigger ones have been finished for some time. Fish are scattered all over with all of the cover as are shad. Texas rigged worms with a very light nose weight, hooked weedless, are working pretty well. One person caught several bass on a rattle trap yesterday during the day. Come on down. We will not charge you too much here at Blackburns and you will need the covered porches this next week with some rain most days. I would never stay at a place with no covered porches.  It should not rain you out all day. We still have cabins for $75/day and a free stall for most boats and free trolling motors on pontoons for fishing. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.87 and has risen about an inch in the last 24-hours with just a few hours of generation. They are still lowering the level of the White River at Newport and lowering the amount of discharge also and missing a good chance to drop the area lakes. We were to get rain yesterday and last night but recieved very little. It was spotty and some got about 0.2 inches and others got none. I will have to water the garden today. The grass is green and the flowers are blooming and we are not too wet. it has been abnormally cool for the middle of June and very pleasant. Mickey McGee reports that he had a good top water bite yesterday morning and caught several stripers and bass. We are always happy to see him and his family.  They are the best.The lake is pretty clear from the surface and the surface temperature is about 80 degrees. It is good for boating and water sports as well as fishing. Day use areas are affected and beaches are gone but most resorts have normal activity. Launching is still ok but parking your vehicle and trailer is at a minimum at the launches. Overall fishing is fair and about normal for this time of year. I went from the 101 bridge to Cranfield Island yesterday and saw one floating log and it was not very big. Blackburns has some openings this next week and we will not charge you too much. We are the family place.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.87 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday. They are generating just enough to keep all of the area lakes stable while dropping the level at Newport very quickly and reducing the amount of discharge. The level there is now at 19-feet and it should be at 24 if they were managing things correctly. We have not received any rain for several days but are to get some today and Sunday. Hold and hope and keep everyone one big rain away from problems. At least the levels are high enough where it takes a lot of water to raise the lake very much. The bowl gets wider and bigger and the level increases. The water from the Mississippi and Missouri is coming no matter what they do to the little White River. It is policy to make everyone miserable at the same time except Branson. Bass fishing, walleye, crappie and striper fishing are all fair with some good fish being caught everyday.  Mostly early and late. Stripers have moved deeper as usual for the summer and are in about 60-feet near the bottom. Many being caught are 10-lbs. or smaller and they do not live coming up from that deep.  They may swim away but cannot go down. Venting does not work as others say. Dock floors and big stringers full of dead 10-lb. stripers are not impressive. The surface temperature was just above 80 in Blackburns creek last evening and a little lower than that on the main lake and the water looks clear from the surface. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 573.87 and has risen 2-inches in the last 24-hours with about 5-hours of generation.  Hold and hope boys. You had better let out as much water as you can now while there is no rain for several days. It is not a good plan to hold and then wait for the farmers to plant and the crops come up and then open the gates and flood them out. A little prevention could be implemented and it should start in November right after harvest. Fat chance of that. The catfishermen are still catching some good ones but the gar are slowing down the bite. When they move in the game fish move out. Bass are still in the brush and cover but some are in open water on shad. Crappie and walleye are under docks as are bluegill and are biting early and late. I am now getting ready for the opening of spearfishing season which is Saturday and then I will quit pole fishing for a while. Diving for fish is harder but I like both. I will see where the fish are and report on the water clarity and thermocline on the diving report on this web site. The clarity looks good from the top but that does not mean anything. You have to look. The cool weather has kept the surface temperature below 80 but it is very pleasant and the sunshine is nice.  We have had several days of beautiful weather and have more to come.  Come on down to Blackburns where we still have cabins for $75/day and several boats for you to rent and all at the best prices.  We will not charge you too much. The lake looks good and people are having fun. You can have pizza and sandwiches delivered right to your cabin here at Blackburns and are 2-miles from Dollar General and three miles to Walmart. You cannot beat that.  No sense staying out in the boonies when you can stay in a peaceful 28-acre green valley close to everything with many birds and wildlife. We have plenty of parking for both your trailers and vehicles and are not on a congested cliff.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly caught some good ones. Image title

The lake level is 573.45 and has risen about three inches in the last 24-hours with about 5-hours of generation. It drops a ltlle when they generate and rises when they don't. It is mostly don't. We received locally heavy rain earlier this week with varying amounts. Some got 2-inches and some much more. It did not affect the lake much but the rivers got a quick rise and campers had to be evacuated to higher ground but it is back down now with sunny warm weather for several days before a cold front moves in again later next week. Striper fishermen are carching good fish very early about 25-ft. down and then later at sunrise on top water. Bass are still biting on the normal lake bank on plastic worms and top-water but are scattered. Crappie are in cover and under docks. There is plenty of cover. Catfishing on limb lines has slowed back in the creeks and they are biting better on trot-lines on main lake cuts and just around points. I am using live bluegill. The bass being caught are full of crawdads. I am getting ready for spear fishing now and the season starts next Saturday. This is a good time of year. Blackburns still has cabins for $75/day and has no diminished services. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 572.50 and has risen about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They have lowered Newport to 17+ feet in order to cut back on the flow into the Mississippi river like the White River is going to influence that. They are missing a chance to drop the lake and continue to show incompetence in dam management. Hold and hope and then open the gates and flood downstream is their answer to everything. There is no prevention or looking ahead. It is a typical government run operation and is just reactive. We are to get some rain here for the next couple of days but we are dry and can take some with no problem. Almost all of the weather has gone around us and we have been very fortunate. Blackburns has no dininished services and everything is in good condition and the lake is clear and warm for boating and fishing. Surface temperature is over 80. You can swim off our dock or in our big pool. Come on down. We will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Andrew, Joey, Jessica and Opal Casey are from Harrison, Arkansas.Image title


Tom Kelly caught and released these yesterday.Image title

The Caseys can catch fish.Image title

Nice fish Opal.Image title

The lake level is 572.19 and has risen about 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They are dropping Newport quickly again and holding water and missing out on a good chance to drop the lake. Hold and hope will not work.  The surface temperature is about 80-degrees and the lake is pretty clear especially on the shoreline. The Casey Family caught some very nice bass and crappie this morning as well as Tom Kelly. We received a shower this morning and was just enough to water the garden. It is beautiful out now with a good chance for rain the next two days.  The lake is in excellent condition for fishing and boating and most of the resorts have no diminished services. The campers and day use people are the ones most affected with limited launching, parking, campsites and no beaches. Swimming is good out of a boat or in Blackburns big pool. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much and you can get a one bedroom cabin for &75/day.   

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

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The lake level is 572.14 and has risen a little over 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours. it drops a little when they generate and rising a little when they quit. They do not generate much. We have had beautiful weather but there is a chance of rain tonight and fair chances the rest of the week. We seem to get a rain everytime we need it but still have to irrigate a bit. I fished for a few minutes in blackburns creek after work and caught some pretty good bass. It has been so busy here there has not been too much time for fishing. The gar are moving in the creeks and slowing down the limb line fishing. I will need to move out closer to the mouths of creeks or in main lake cuts with trot lines. Bass are still part way back in creeks in the buckbrush near the old shoreline and I caught several on my grub and minnow. Some were smaller but a few were keepers. I released all of them but put a couple of them in the trophy pond. The lake stained up a little yesterday but it is very clear near the bank and you can see the bottom in about 8-feet and there are fish everywhere. There are many shad fry in the buckbrush holding game fish with some being very small and others about 3-inches long.  Looks to be a good shad population this year even before the next spawn. Blackburns just had a big group leave and have some openings starting today. One bedrooms are still $75/day. If you must pay more give the difference to the disabled Veterans. We will not charge you too much here. Some places charging over $100/day do not even have pools or covered porches.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Do you really want to stay where there is no pool or a small one? our 300 MG of internet can barely keep up with all these phones. Image title

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It is a good thing we have the largest pool in the area and slide. With a group this big we need it. They are sure having fun on such a beautiful day. Life is good here at Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental and we will not charge you too much.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Tom Kelly with some nice ones caught last evening.Image title

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The lake level is 572 and has risen just a little over an inch in 24-hours with a few hours of generation. I had an 80-degree surface water temperature in Blackburns creek today. The water is very clear and good for swimming and boating. I could see down about 8-feet when running my limb lines today. The threadfin shad have spawned and baby shad are everywhere as are bigger ones. They spawn several times a year. Gar are starting to come in at night with the shad and will slow the catfishing and walleye fishing down quickly. When they move in the game fish move out away from them. I could see bass everywhere in and around the buckbrush. Bluegill too. Shakey head worms are working for bass and cartish. Tom Kelly caught some good ones yesterday. I am using bluegill for the limb lines. You have to bait them up near dark and check them early to keep the heron and bass off them.  The weather has been beautiful but a good chance for rain might happen early next week. We are not too wet here and the garden and grass are really growing. People really appreciate the covered porches on the cabins but not as much as they like the price.  Some are actually raising their prices again. Compare before you reserve. We will not charge you too much here at Blackburns.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

Casey Denham with a nice Flathead caught on a limb line last night.Image title

The lake level is 571.82 and has risen 3-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with about 7-hours of generation. We had two weather systems come through and received about 1-inch of rain in this area with the very southern part of the lake getting much more. We had no severe weather here.  It is to be sunny for a few days and then a 20-30 % chance for several days after that. The lake is at a good level for limb lines for catfish and several good ones are being caught. Bass are still biting on the old shoreline on plastic worms and some walleye are with them. Bluegill are under the willow trees on the main lake and some crappie are with them.  Several fish are under docks. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

James Soltysiac with a nice catfish. Image title

The lake level is 571.53 and has risen 1.3 inches in the last 24-hours with little generation. We did get a thundershower early this morning but only about 0.3 inches of rain to settle the dust. No damage around here. We are to get more later today but it is sunny and nice out now. It should clear out early tomorrow and be nice for the weekend. The new news is that they have finally closed the spillway gates on Table Rock and cut way back on generation. This comes after it has dropped to below power pool and is normal. You would think they would increase the discharges at Newport to help make up for it but no.  The level at Newport continues to drop with slower discharge and is now about 17 feet headed for 14. They could be at 25. We have been lucky so far to have avoided any heavy rain. Hold and hope and then open the spillway gates is no plan. The lake in general is in good condition and pretty clear, even in the creeks. The fish continue to be between the old shore line and the bank around the buckbrush and other cover. A few red meat fish have moved to deeper water in the 50-60 ft. range.  Crappie are under docks and around any cover. Bass are everywhere with the shad scattered and in cover. Look around both Robinson and Cranfield Islands for walleye.  Shakey head worms are working well for many fish. Limb lines have slowed a bit but some nice catfish are still being caught. Bluegill are still the best bait.  I tried small green softshell crawdads but cannot keep the bass off them. Come on down to Blackburns.  We will not charge you too much. Others are still raising prices.

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.42 and has risen 1.2 inches in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They have also continued to run Table Rock hard with 5-flood gates open and it is now below June power pool.  This is amazing since all of this water is going into Bull Shoals and it is rising as fast as Table Rock is dropping. Things are getting serious over there. We are to get some rain tomorrow and then get clear again. The weather has been beautiful and I was surprised at the clarity of the lake after getting churned up so much over the holiday. It looks good and I am glad to get things back to normal. We did have a very good group of people in and Blackburns again keeps the title of the family place with the best price.  I am encouraging people to leave the small stripers that are deep alone.  They all die when caught and we are short of big ones. Pictures of dock floors full of dead small stripers are not impressive. We can only have so many meat humters and keep a good fish popularion.  

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.34 and has risen 1.2 inches in 24-hours with very little generation.They are continuing to run Table Rock hard with 5 spillway gates open and it should drop below the top of the power pool today. Norfork is 14.5 feet above power pool and Bull Shoals is 21.22 feet above power pool. Go figure. They are also reducing the level of the White River at Newport and it is below 18 feet and headed for 14-feet while reducing the discharge. It could be at 25-feet with no problem. Let some water out boys.  Do not hold and hope again this year and then open the spillway gates and flood everything downstream. At least generate some power out of it. We are fortunate here that we are dry and the water is not rising much from the normal river inflow.  It would not take much to at least stabilize Norfork at this time. Yesterday was a very busy day for lake boat traffic. Launching and parking was at a premium and day use people really had to want to get out there. There were vehicles and trailers parked miles from the launch areas. The weather was great and overall people had a good time. It will take a while for the lake to clear again as it was stirred up quite a bit.  It is a good thing Blackburns has such a big swimming pool with slide as it was full all weekend. We had a great group of people and most were repeat customers. The fishermen did catch some fish but not a lot. Bass, catfish, crappie, bluegill is the best with a small striper, hybrid bass, white bass and walleye thrown in for good measure. Come on down. we will not charge you too much. Check prices carefully before booking as some are still raising their prices. You can get a one bedroom cabin for $75/day or $425/week here at Blackburns.  Why pay more?

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.22 and has risen 2-inches in the last 24-hours. They continue to drop Table Rock and keep it normal at the expense of everything else. The White River at Newport is now at 18-ft. and dropping quickly and headed for 14-ft. for some reason with less discharge. Bull Shoals continues to rise about 5-inches a day with all of the Table Rock discharge.  Newport could be at 25-ft. easily if they wanted to. It would be if Branson was in danger of flooding. Hold and hope. We have a very good group here at Blackburns this weekend with no drama so far.  We are happy to be called the family place. I had a 80-degree temperature in Blackburns creek yesterday.  The holiday boats have stirred up the water a bit but no too bad. There are just not enough day use facilities available for the campers and other locals and it is keeping the lake boat traffic down a bit. I believe most resorts have no diminished services. We have avoided almost all severe weather so far this year and it is getting a little dry here with the very warm weather. There was a smaller fish kill earlier with most being small red meat fish. I am sure the game and fish will find out what caused it. Catfish are biting on limb lines and jugs and the best bait is bluegills. Bass are biting fair on finesse worms and also live bluegills. Some red meat fish are in open water and roaming just outside cover. Several crappie are under docks and around the buckbrush. Overall fishing is just fair but most people are catching fish. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. Some places are raising rates again later this week so compare prices. 

Norfork Lake fishing and lake conditions by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat rental (click here for comments)

The lake level is 571.06 and has risen 2-inches in the last 24-hours with very little generation. They are still running Table rock as hard as they can with 5-spillway gates open and dropping it and keeping it normal. This is causing Bull shoals to fill quickly. They are also slowing the discharge on the White river at Newport and quickly lowereing the level there. It is now below 19-feet. The ground is not saturated here and I had to water the garden yesterday. Fishing has slowed a bit but some smaller stripers and fair sized hygbrids are being caught with some white bass. Some of these have already moved to deeper water at around 50-feet and can be caught on spoons.   Bass continues to be the best bite now with many fish on the old shoreline behind the buckbrush. Crappie are scattered all over but remain somewhat near their normal brush piles. Bluegill are under docks and near willow trees on the main lake. Catfish have slowed on limb lines and jugs but some are being caught. I am using bluegill on limb lines but will give it a break until Tuesday. I am getting too much help running them now. Blackburns is full now with people taking advantage of the