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.