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 555.55 and is exactly what it was at this time yesterday but it took borh generators running continuously and spillway gates open a bit to keep it that way. It would have come up a lot more without that effort. The White River at Newport is 22.57 feet so a lot of water is coming from somewhere. It rained a little last night but not a lot maybe a 1/4 inch total. The people saying they are saving the water for electricity needs for the summer do not know how it works especially when spillway gates are opened bypassing the generators. It would have been better to have generated more in the winter and lowered the lake and used the water for electricity but I am glad they are finally doing it now.  The 14-ft. rule goes into effect on april 15th and the 12-ft. rule on may 8th and generation is very limited at those times. The flow level at Batesville also has limiting effects. The surface water temperature was 56+ degrees yesterday afternoon on the main lake and lower than that in the creeks. The fish looking for the warmest water will not move into the creeks unless it is warmer there and that is why there are still bass and crappie on the main lake brush. Some big male bass have moved in under Blackburns Dock but not on the bank to make nests yet. The main lake was stained an off-color of green with a little mud mixed in with it but a good color for fishing. It was the same color everywhere I went. I could see my lure down about 2-3 feet. I continued to be surprised at how quickly the brown had dropped out of the water. It is not a problem in this area but I did not go past Cranfield Island and did not need to. I am sure it is muddy up north but have not been there. I was just out for a short time and caught my self-imposed limit of five large crappie and a keeper bass and came in to check out a rental boat. One crappie was very large and full of eggs. It is surprising that the big crappie are still on the main lake brush in april but I have seen this before when the crappie spawn was spread out over several weeks with the water level variation and the water slow to warm. The bass will move in to the creeks soon and the male crappie are already there. A few days of high 50 degree water temperature will get them moving. That is why the trollers are catching a few male crappie outside the buckbrush in 12-15 ft. of water dragging a small crankbait. Not much skill to it, the rod holder feels the thump and sets the hook for you but you can arbitrarily cover a lot of water and get some meat. Trolling Alabama and umbrella rigs also work but are expensive snags. Using a good fish finder and dragging several lines with live bait on them through enough schools of shad and you will also catch fish. I do not use any of these techniques but am not trying to see how many fish that I can kill. There are enough people out there doing that and do not need me. I keep no frozen fish inventory. Blackburns still has two cabins open now so come on down and we will not charge you too much and your first boat stall is free. Catch a few, keep a few and release a few.