Arkansas Fishing Report – September 22, 2011
Sportsman’s White River Resort (870-453-2424) said the water is high and clear with seven units running around the clock. Fishing from a boat is the only option, but the trout are biting well. Large stick baits, white 1/8 to 3/4 –oz. jigs, Rattlin Rogues and Rapalas are all producing some good brown trout. Power Bait and small pink or red worms are working well for rainbows. ½-oz. Rooster Tails and casting spoons are working on both species.
Guide Davy Wotton said fall is on the way and so is the trophy brown trout bite. The White is running a good average of 16,000 cfs. The constant flow keeps the fish settled and in a daily feeding mode. A recent AGFC report indicates low levels of dissolved oxygen close to dam zones, so you may experience a slow bite in those locations. As we see cooler night temperatures, you may find the bite slower early until temperatures rise later in the day. Typically, browns will be aggressive as their territorial spawning instincts kick in. Black-biased streamers or large bugs, such as rubber leg stonefly can work wonders at times. The high water has really helped produce some large rainbows, and there are many in the 2 to 4 pound range in the river.
Jim Brentlinger at Linger’s Guide Service and Fishing Lodge (870-499-5185) said the water color has been great, with no murky water coming from the Buffalo as the river is so low. Rains from this past weekend may change that a little. Fish continue to bite Rapala Floating Minnows very well. Fly-fishermen are scoring with green woolly buggers and large bright streamers on a sinking line. Power Bait is working if you can keep it on the bottom.
Just Fishing Guides said the water levels are: Ponca – 1.44 feet and 4.7 cfs; Pruitt – 3.48 feet and 10 cfs; Tyler Bend – 3.47 feet and 40 cfs; Buffalo Point – 2.32 feet and 86 cfs. The entire river is very low and wading or dragging a canoe is the only way to fish except in the Buffalo Point area and below. Water temperatures are ranging from 64-79 degrees. Smaller fish have been the rule. The river flows are very low and care should be taken to not spook fish. Spin fisherman are doing good bottom bouncing tubes, lizards and brush hogs in watermelon/red and green pumpkinseed. For fly-fishing, try crazy dads, rabbit tail sliders, woolly buggers and Clouser minnows on both floating and sink-tip lines.
Just Fishing Guides said the gauge at Kelly’s Slab is reading 10.48 ft. and 44 cfs. The creek is low for floating but possible. Wade fishing is excellent. Spin fishing with soft plastics and 1/16-oz. jigs will consistently catch good numbers of fish. Topwater lures are working well also and some days will catch just as many as bottom bouncing plastics. Try 4-inch lizards, 3-inch tubes and brush hogs in watermelon, watermelon/red and green pumpkin colors along with Tiny Torpedoes and small buzzbaits for topwater. For fly-fishing use Clousers, zonkers, crazy dads, sculpins, poppers, sliders and hopper patterns.
Bull Shoals Lake
As of Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 658.51 feet MSL (Normal conservation pool – 654 MSL).
Mike Worley’s Guide Service said the water temperature has cooled to the mid-70s and we have received several inches of much needed rain. Launch ramps and marinas are back in operation. Jigging spoons are catching a mixed bag of fish 25 to 50 feet deep. Night crawler rigs fished on bottom bouncers are catching walleyes, bass, bluegills and catfish about 40 feet deep. Bass are also being caught on topwater lures, crankbaits and spinnerbaits in shallow water and jigs on points and drop offs.
Bull Shoals Tailwater
Just Fishing Guides said water releases are continuous at 16,000 cfs. Drift fishing has been very good with sink-tips and medium size streamers with good numbers of rainbows and browns. Hopper patterns are still doing very well, as are nymphs, scuds, sow bugs, caddis and worm patterns. Minnow crankbaits in black/gold and black/blue are working along with brown trout-colored jointed minnows. In-line spinners like Rooster Tails and Mepp’s Aguila are also picking up fish.