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

The lake level is 552.94 and has risen almost two inches in the last 24-hours with almost no generation. We are approaching 553 and that is not a good level for December. They have over two months to get it down but have a reluctance to do so for some reason. The wind kept coming yesterday until almost 4:30 so I could only go out into Blackburns creek for less than an hour. I again caught a few crappie, bass and bluegill but nothing big. The surface temperature was 55 in the creek and it was stained and you could see your lure down about 4-feet except near the bank which is clearer. Spoons were working better than they had been for a few days and I was using a 1/8th ounce Bink's and dropping it right in the brush. Clip off one barb on the treble hook when you do this and do not ever set the hook or you will lose the lure. I have been getting requests from guests as to the fish stocking for Norfork Lake for 2018 and I received them from Jeremy Risely who is the head biologist from AGFC and I thank him for them. They were as follows: there were 155,000 Striped bass stocked at Calamity, Pigeon, Boggy and Gamaliel, 24,853 Hybrid stripers stocked at Pigeon and Gamaliel. This number is significantly less than requested do to problems at the hatchery. I think we need more hybrids. There were 236,657 walleye stocked in various places with 161,657 coming from the hatchery and 75,000 from the nursery pond. No report on crappie or redear stockings.  It is no secret that I think the lake can stand more stockings with the large number of shad and other bait fish present. If it is a matter of money I bet it would be easy to raise plenty of private funds for that purpose and if the hatchery has problems get them from other states. There were a few zebra mussels found on my boat motors yesterday while doing service. Those were the first I have seen on Norfork. None of my boats have been off Norfork Lake in the 23-years I have been here. I think some lakes are more conducive than others to support them  but do want people to clean their boats and live wells when moving from lake to lake.  No need to let them get started like on other close lakes. All of Blackburns bait is purchased from Nabatak which is licensed to sell live bait in Arkansas and are checked closely. We are fortunate to have them in this area. Blackburns is open all year and has a cabin and boat available for you. If you are in the area for the holidays come on over, visit and see all of the improvements. You will like what you see and like the price better. We will not charge you too much.