Steve "Scuba" Street's BLOG

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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.   

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The lake level is 570.31 and has dropped about 2-inches in the last 24-hours with generation about 1/2 the time. They are doing the best to keep the level up despite the dry weather. I was hoping the new management would be better but it is worse. They are holding the White River at Newport to 12+ feet like it was from Mount Sinai. Fortunately as the bowl gets smaller the level drops faster.  The lake is in good condition and the surface temperature is in the high 80's. It is good for both boating and swimming. Fishing is just fair for everything except deep stripers and some deep walleye and shallow bluegill. Bass fishing after dark is fair-good on salt craws.  I only report from north of Cranfield Island to south of Robinson Island but i am seeing almost no debris except for an occassional log. Diving conditions have deteriorated with the visibility but that is normal for july. This is a typical July except for the water level. Come on down.  We will not charge you too much. You can still get a one bedroom cabin for $75/day with two bedroom, three bedroom and four bedroom priced accordingly. Why pay more?The big pool is great and the children love the slide. 

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.