Norfork Lake Arkansas near Mountain Home in the Ozarks Mountains region Fishing Report and Lake Condition by Scuba Steve from Blackburns Resort and Boat Rental

Nicolas Grunwald with a good one on the dock yesterday. Image title

The lake level is 559.45 and has risen 1-1/2 inches in the last 24-hours with one generator running continuously. It stays almost stable now with the generation but will continue to rise if they quit. The White River at Newport is 24.48 and stable and they are managing it at that level to get rid of water. Minor flood stage at Newport is 26-feet. The surface water temperature is 52 degrees and is struggling to rise. We are to get a frost Monday night. The surface water temperature was 47-degrees on this day last year and the level was 554. The creeks and the main lake shore line have about the same water clarity but there is stained water in the main lake river channel caused from the generation bringing stained water down stream from Missouri from the last rain. It is a kind of greenish brown color. The overall color is just fine for fishing. I am glad I put in some of the brush piles in shallower than normal last year and this year as some of my favorite ones are now too deep. The crappie that I am catching now are in about 20-25 foot of water on brush just around from main lake points or in main lake cuts on windblown banks in the evening just at sunset. The bite is not very fast but they are good sized. Some bass are with them. The small bluegill that must have been from late last summer's spawn because of their size have schooled under Blackburns Dock and have brought predator fish with them including bass and catfish. Bluegill can spawn 4or 5 times a year and start when the water temperature reaches 70-degrees. Norfork has some big bluegill and they are nearly the best, if not the best, eating fish in the lake. You will release those red meat fish, no matter what you have to cut out of them after you have had a couple of nice bluegill fillet sandwiches. Put both fillets with black pepper on two pieces of buttered bread with a slice of onion and give it a try. They do not need anything else. You can substitute a Crappie or Kentucky Bass for nearly the same results. There are now no size limits on Kentucky Bass but Crappie are still 10-inches. Most of Norfork's crappie are well over 10-inches in this area. Small stripers in the 5-7 pound range are on the bank spawning at dark and then move out  from of the spawning beds in 20--25 ft. of water during the day on shad. This is a good time to release them out of the shallow water with no harm but people just keeping killing them. They seem to be the same people over and over and must need meat very bad. It would be nice to let them grow. These fish are put and take and do not reproduce. Soon we will be just a small striper lake like Texoma. We are almost there now. At least they reproduce in the Red River.  I do not want them gone as some people like to fish for them and it takes the pressure off the crappie, walleye, bass and catfish. They should just kill and eat the White Bass. Watch for price increases and when you get one call Debbie at 870-492-5115. There will be none here at Blackburns this year until the seasonal one at Memorial day and then back down after Labor day. We have the best prices and the best place in the Ozarks and will not charge you too much. Your first boat stall is free with your cabin.