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

Dave Titus with some of yesterday's catch. One crappie was very large and he also caught some nice bluegill. Image title

The lake level is 553.06 and has dropped 1/2 inch in the last 24-hours with about 5-hours of running one generator. Since the lake reached the power pool of 553.75 in late September they have dropped the lake about 3/4th of a foot with many chances to drop it much more. If they keep it at this rate we will pay for it in the spring and they will say rain caused the high water. This excuse is not going to fly anymore. We need better management. Maybe the people managing the border can manage the lake. The surface water temperature was 72.5 when I went out yesterday afternoon and it was a little windy but not bad. The condition looks good for the Bass Cat Invitational which starts today and finishes on Sunday. There are 237 boats entered. The Phoenix two weeks ago, the Cystic last week and the Bass Cat today all have had about the same number of boats. It has made for a busy October for Norfork Lake and is a very good time to hold tournaments especially this year when the lake has not started to turn yet and has been at a very stable level. The fishing is  not the best but good fishermen are catching fish but it is not easy. I caught some very nice crappie and a few Kentucky Bass in the 2-1/2 pound range along with several very large bluegill. Just what I was after to take to Tom Kelly's trophy pond. They all swam away quickly. Those Kentucky bass are fat and healthy.  They had eluded me for a week or so but are back. Other people here at Blackburns caught some good ones also but the Bass Catters pre-fishing are pretty much tight lipped. We will see how they do today. The weather looks good for the next couple of days and then a chance of rain on Sunday and Monday with a storm possible. It is to get very windy later and that should make for some better largemouth fishing on the windblown banks. Me, I will be spooning and jig fishing brush as usual attempting to catch bass, crappie, bluegill and an occassional walleye. I release almost all of my fish and do not try and catch huge stringers of fish. Leave some for posterity. The fall foliage is not doing much with the rain and no frost as of yet. The wind this weekend will not help things any but we will see. You will be the first to know. Fishing overall is just fair and could be a challenge for the bass fishermen. I wish them well.