Corps lowering Nimrod Lake for improvements
Corps lowering Nimrod Lake for improvements
March 9, 2016

Corps lowering Nimrod Lake for improvements

The Army Corps of Engineers will begin a drawdown of Lake Nimrod March 15, in an effort to improve aquatic vegetation, as well as make repairs to the dam, boat launch ramps and swim beaches. The lake will be held near elevation 343 through May 15, which is two feet below the normal spring conservation elevation of 345. Beginning May 15 the lake will be drawn down another five feet to elevation 337. This will take about 47 days, depending on rainfall. Beginning Oct. 1, the lake will be returned to its winter conservation elevation of 342. During the drawdown, boaters should exercise extreme caution because submerged stumps and shallow areas will be more prominent. All water activities such as skiing, tubing and operating personal watercrafts will be prohibited. A temporary boat access will be constructed at Anderson Branch once the lake elevation reaches 337. 
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(updated 3-9-2016) Bates Field and Stream (501-470-1846) said the water is stained and the water level is fluctuating from the rain and gate releases to prevent flooding. The surface water temperature is 52 degrees. Bream are biting fairly well on worms and crickets fished 2 feet deep about 10 feet away from the shoreline. Crappie are biting well on minnows and jigs fished about 6 feet deep around cypress trees near Green’s Lake, Adam’s Lake and Paradise Landing. Bass are biting well on white spinnerbaits and dark-colored soft-plastic lizards in 2 to 3 feet of water. Catfishing is excellent on yo-yos and limb lines baited with large minnows and goldfish around creek channels.
(updated 3-2-2016) Daniel Zajac at Gold Creek Landing (501-607-0590) said crappie are biting fairly well chartreuse jigs and shiners fished around sunken brush and off docks. Bass are starting to hit shad-colored spinnerbaits fairly well. Bream are fair on redworms. Catfishing is fair. 

(updated 3-2-2016) Lowell Myers of Sore Lip ‘em All Guide Service said we anticipate a change in the current generation pattern and expect to see more favorable water levels this week. Streamers, San Juan worms, micro jigs and sow bugs are working well for fly-fishing. For Trout Magnet fishing, use hot pink, cotton candy and white bodies on gold and chartreuse jig heads. Always check before heading to the Little Red River by calling the Corps of Engineers Little Rock District water data system (501-362-5150) for Greers Ferry Dam water release information or check the Corps of Engineers website ( for real time water release and the Southwest Power Administration ( to see forecasted generation schedule.  
(updated 3-9-2016) Greg Seaton with Little Red Fly Fishing Trips (501-690-9166) said said the river is muddy and if the rain comes as expected, there will be no fishing for at least the rest of this week.  
(updated 3-2-2016) James Dillard at Tailwater Fishing Company (501-207-1770) said fishing has been great. Expect to see low, wadable flows within the week. Hot flies have been pink San Juan worms and prince nymphs. Trout Magnets will work extremely well once the river level drops.

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 457.06 feet msl (normal conservation pool – 462.04 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) Tommy Cauley of Fish Finder Guide Service said the water level has risen 0.21 feet because of the rain already and is 5.15 feet below normal pool. The work on the turbine likely will be delayed again until they are able to get it back down after the rise. The white and hybrid bass fishing has been very good at river mouths and in the rivers themselves on spoons, in-line spinners, swimbaits and grubs. The muddy water will shut that down until it clears. No report on catfish other than this warm rain will get all three species going pretty good. Crappie fishing has been good one day and off the next. The wind has hampered it some. Try jigs and minnows around pole timber in 10 to 18 feet of water. No report on bream, even though some have moved up. Walleye fishing has been tough because getting up the rivers has been difficult. The river fish will finish spawning with this warm rain and head back to the lake. The lake fish will be pulling up, trying to spawn. You should be able to catch some spawning walleye along the banks on minnows until the water reaches 70 degrees and then go to crawlers for the best results. Bass fishing is getting better by the minute as the warm rain will have most of the fish going shallow.
(updated 3-2-2016) Cody Smith at said the Corps of Engineers has sufficiently dropped water levels in order to allow maintenance on the gates. Water levels should stabilize on both the lake and river. Water surface temperatures range from 46 to 52 degrees. Water clarity is moderately stained from two thirds of the way up the main tributaries throughout the main lake. The water clears significantly as you progress up through the feeder arms. Water temperatures are significantly cooler in these areas though, and very little activity has been seen. For now, stick to the dirty water. The bite is much better from the bank out to 25 feet or so in these locations. Look for your most active bite for hybrids to be at 12 to 20 feet deep. Walleye should be upriver in 2 to 10 feet of water. Crappie should be around brush in 8 to 18 feet of water. Bass are anywhere from the bank to 18 feet deep, but should make a push shallow in the coming weeks.

(updated 3-9-2016) Harris Brake Lakeside Resort (501-889-2745) said the water is murky and the surface temperature is slowly rising. Bream are fair. Crappie are biting excellently on minnows fished deep out near the island. Bass are biting well on chartreuse jigs. Catfishing is fair on minnows. The fishing should get really good after the lake settles from the incoming rain.  
(updated 3-2-2016) Whiskers Sporting Goods in Perryville (501-889-2011) said the crappie are biting on minnows and Bobby Garland Baby Itty Bit Swim’Rs in monkey milk, pennyback shad, blue ice shimmer and Cajun cricket in 4 to 10 feet of water. Catfishing is good on worms, shad and minnows. Bass are biting buzzbaits and worms. White bass are biting well on Johnson Silver Minnows and Bobby Garland Itty Bit Swim’Rs. Bream are biting on crickets and worms.  

Overcup Landing had no report.

(updated 2-24-2016) Fosters Four Seasons (501-868-9061) said fishing has been slow on Lake Maumelle lately. The white bass run is still a little ways away, but the water temperature is in the low to mid 50s. A few black bass have been caught as well. Drop by Fosters for a fill up of ethanol-free gas and a hot meal during this cold snap. 
(updated 3-2-2016) Jolly Roger’s Marina said the water level is 0.3 feet above the spillway. The water is 51 degrees at mid-lake and 52 degrees at the west end. Largemouth bass are biting very well on wacky-rigged worms, buzzbaits and jerk baits in 4 to 8 feet of water around the Highway 10 bridge. Spotted bass are biting well on jigs and crankbaits in 10 to 15 feet of water. White bass are wet of the Highway 10 bridge and are biting well on grubs, Rooster Tails and jigs. CC spoons also are working when the whites are schooling. The white bass should be excellent by the weekend with the warm weather. Crappie are biting well. They are suspended about 15 feet deep in 20 to 25 feet of water around the edges of the channel around brush. Minnows and jigs are the best bet. Bream are slow, but a few can be found in 20 to 25 feet of water around brush on crickets and worms. Catfishing is good on stink bait, small bream and chicken livers fished in 15 to 20 feet of water. One catfish last week was weighed in at the marina that hit the 80-pound mark. 
(updated 3-2-2016) Whiskers Sporting Goods (501-889-2011) said crappie are biting on Bobby Garland Baby Shad and Itty Bit Swim’Rs in 4 to 12 feet of water. White bass are biting on Cajun Spins and Silver Minnows.

(updated 3-2-2016) Lisa's Bait Shop in Benton (501-778-6944) said a few bream have been caught on redworms and crickets. Crappie have been hitting no. 6 crappie minnows and Kalin's 2-inch Tennessee shad grubs. Catfish have been fair on bait shrimp, chicken hearts and chicken livers. Bass have been hitting on zing tails.

(updated 3-2-2016) Lisa's Bait Shop in Benton (501-778-6944) said many smallmouth and spotted bass are still being caught on brood minnows and bass minnows. As far as the walleye go, a few are being caught on brooder minnows, but they have really slowed. Some nice crappie have been caught on no. 6 crappie minnows in some of the backwaters of the Saline. Catfish have been slow on night crawlers and chicken livers.

(updated 3-2-2016) Lisa's Bait Shop in Benton (501-778-6944) said a few bream have been caught on crickets fishing deep. In about another month or so the great big red ear will be biting really well. Crappie have been fair on no. 6 crappie minnows . Bass have been hitting Zoom Brush Hogs. Catfish are fair on dough bait and cut shad.

(updated 3-2-2016) Lisa's Bait Shop in Benton (501-778-6944) said crappie slow on no. 6 crappie minnows and blue ice jigs. Bass are fair on bass minnows. Catfish are fair on bait shrimp and goldfish. No report on bream.

(updated 3-9-2016) River Valley Marina (501-517-1250) said the water is clear and 54 degrees. Crappie have been biting well on minnows and jigs fished in 4 to 5 feet of water. Bass have been biting well on spinnerbaits and black soft-plastic lizards fished along drops to the main channel in 5 feet of water. The rain will muddy things up and make it tough fishing for a while, but it should settle out once the rain stops.    

(updated 3-9-2016) The folks at Fish ’N Stuff (501-834-5733) said the water is muddy, and the surface temperature is 58 to 59 degrees. Crappie are fair in shallow backwater areas on minnows and jigs. Bass are fair on square-billed crankbaits and jigs fished around shallow backwater areas. No report on catfish or bream. 
(updated 3-9-2016) McSwain Sports Center (501-945-2471) said the water is at normal level and is murky from the rain. Bream are fair on worms and crickets. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs fished near backwater areas in 2 to 4 feet of water. Bass are fair on soft-plastics fished in 4 to 6 feet of water. Catfishing is good at the discharge from Terry Dam.    

(updated 3-9-2016) McSwain Sports Center (501-945-2471) said the water is murky and at normal level. Bream are fair on worms and crickets in 2 feet of water. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs in 2 to 4 feet of water. Bass are biting well on deep-diving crankbaits bumped along the bottom in 4 to 6 feet of water and on soft-plastic worms at the edge of deeper water. Catfishing is fair. Most fish are beginning to pick up, but the rain may stall things a bit.    

(updated 3-9-2016) Herman’s Landing (870-241-3731) said the water is dingy and high. The surface water temperature is 55 degrees. Bream are slow, but a couple have been caught on worms and crickets. Crappie are biting well on minnows trolled slowly around brush. Bass are fair on spinnerbaits fished near the bank. Catfishing is good on minnows and hot dogs.

North Arkansas

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 658.97 feet msl (normal conservation pool – 659 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) K Dock Marina (417-334-2880) said the water temperature already is pushing 50 degrees and the water condition looks great. Crappie that have been coming in are ready to release their eggs. Now that the lake has stopped dropping a foot per day, the crappie are starting to stage on brush piles in the coves.  Not along the banks yet, but that will change when we get 60 to 65 degree surface temperatures. Bass are getting up toward the banks with the warmer days pushing the surface temperature up every week. The bass really starting to hit a Wiggle Wart and spinner bait last week. Anglers are starting to see large amounts of shad around the dock.  This should be a good time for a jerk bait.  No reports on the white bass or walleye yet.
(updated 2-24-2016) Bull Shoals Boat Dock said surface water temperatures are 46 degrees and the water level is almost back to normal. Warm weather had fish moving out of their winter haunts before the cold snap. Bladed Alabama rigs baited with Keitech 3.8 Fat Swimbaits fishe along secondary points and bluffs in 35 feet of water have been good for bass. Keep the boat in 35 feet of water and look for steep breaks, ledges or channel swings close to the bank halfway back in major creek arms. A few smallmouth have been caught on Megabass jerk baits. And on spoons in 35 to 45 feet of water If the wind is blowing, a Rock Crawler or Wiggle Wart fished on 45-degree banks  has worked. Keep the boat close in 12 feet of water and cast parallel to the bank. Strikes are going to happen when it rolls over the rocks. The most productive areas are transition areas where bluffs meat chunk rock or chunk rock meets clay or gravel. Always keep an eye out for bait on the graph and seagull activity, especially when you get into the creeks. Fishing is only going to get better as temperatures warm. The random walleye bite should also start picking up.

(updated 3-9-2016) Sportsman’s White River Resort (870-453-2424) said the water has a green tint to it and has been back to normal level with three generators going, but that may change with the rain. Trout have been excellent on stick baits, Power Baits, minnows and jigs.  
(updated 3-9-2016) Berry Brothers Guide Service (870-453-2424) said the White has seen heavy generation with no wadable water. The combined outflow and generation equal 27,500 cubic feet per second (cfs) or the equivalent of nine full generators. The hot spot has been the catch-and-release section below Bull Shoals Dam. The hot flies were olive woolly buggers (sizes 8-10), Y2Ks (sizes 12-14), prince nymphs (size 14), zebra midges (black with silver wire and silver bead or red with silver wire and silver bead, sizes 16-18), pheasant tails (size 14), ruby midges (size 18), root beer midges (size 18), pink and cerise San Juan worms (size 10), and sowbugs (size 16). Streamer fishing has heated up with the high water. With the heavy flows, the fish have been pushed to the bank. The best bet for large trout has been to bang the bank with large articulated streamers delivered with heavy, 24- to 30-foot sink tip line. You will need an 8- or 9- weight rod. This is heavy work but the rewards can be great.

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 553.98 feet msl (normal conservation pool: September-April – 553.75 msl, April-September – 556.75 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters said stripers are moving up the creeks because the warm winter weather has produced warmer than normal water temperatures for this time of year. I have registered 52 to 55 degree water the last few days. The shad have migrated all the way up the creeks as well. I have been catching large threadfin shad in 3 feet of water and gizzard shad on the banks. Crappie and white bass are already in the creeks. The white bass are spawning and the crappie are active feeding around brush in very shallow water. Walleye are being caught from Calamity Beach to Udall along with white bass. This March will be awesome fishing both day and night, so get your boat ready and hit the water. There are massive amounts of shad schooling from Fouts Boat Dock to 6B. Find the bait and you will find the stripers. Lots of big fish have been caught the last year. The biggest was a 48 pounder. A lot of 20-pound fish have been caught as well. Shiners are also working. I have switched to no weight and/or split shots with balloons and planner boards.  The spring bites have begun earlier than what you might expect. With the higher lake levels, the water has not cooled to its normal temperature, which means the lake is warming earlier. We should see a good topwater and night bite begin in the first and mid parts of March. 
(updated 3-2-2016) Larry Olson of Hand Cove Resort said the night bite for stripers has been very good. Last night Larry boated 15 fish by 2 a.m., two hybrids and the rest being stripers. All fish were under 15 pounds, but they were aggressive and striking a Smithwick Rogue. All were caught east of the dam in the main Big Creek area. Surface water temperature is in the 50s. Last night was a good night. By 2 AM I boated 15 fish, 2 hybrids and 13 stripers the largest being about 15 pounds. They were all pretty aggressive, all but one took my Rogue in the mouth. All were caught east of the dam in the main Big Creek areas. The water temperature was in the 50s.
(updated 2-17-2016) Guide Steve Olomon had no new report.
(updated 3-9-2016) Berry Brothers Guide Service (870-453-2424) said in an effort to lower the lake levels before the spring rains, the Corps of Engineers has opened flood gates. Releases on the Norfork equal 10,000 cfs, the equivalent of three full generators. The water has been off-colored, but is beginning to improve. The most productive flies have been small midge patterns (sizes 18-22)  like ruby midges, root beer midges, zebra midges (black or red with silver wire and silver bead) and soft hackles (sizes 14-16) like the green butt. Egg patterns have also been productive. Double-fly nymph rigs have been very effective. Try a small bead-headed nymph (zebra midge, copper John or pheasant tail) suspended 18 inches below a brightly colored San Juan worm (hot fluorescent pink or cerise, size 10). There have been reliable hatches of small midges (try a size 24 Adams parachute) and caddis (size 18 elk hair caddis). My favorite combination has been a cerise worm with a Sunday special dropper. 

Northwest Arkansas

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 1,121.08 feet msl (normal conservation pool – 1,120 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) Southtown Sporting Goods (479-443-7148) said the water is stained and in the low 50s. Crappie are biting well on minnows and jigs slow-trolled around channel edges in 4 to 12 feet of water. Spider rigging has been the ticket for finding the color the fish want that day. Bass are biting well on Wiggle Warts and jigs fished around chunk rock in 4 to 12 feet of water. and wherever the channel butts up to the bank. White bass and walleye are moving into the White River and War Eagle arms and preparing for their spawn. 
(updated 3-9-2016) Bailey’s Beaver Lake Guide Service (479-366-8664) said the annual Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs kids fishing event is right around the corner and volunteers with boats are still needed. Volunteers will take kids from the HOFNOD program out to go fishing on March 29. Lunch will be provided. Please call Mike at 479-366-8664 or email him at for more information and to volunteer. Surface water temperature is in the low to mid 40s. Stripers are making their way into backs of coves feeding on bait using warmer water temps, a degree or two is all it takes to concentrate bait and stripers. There has been some nice topwater action in the last week. Some fish are using deep water adjacent to road beds, gravel bars, tree lines and bluffs. Look for water temperatures that are concentrating bait. Stripers in the White River and War Eagle arms are in warmer water pockets, close to the banks and on the bottom along gravel bars. Use these intersections of warm water and structure to your advantage. Try dragging baits close to these areas, including along the bottom on gravel bars. Fishing is good on live shad fished on down lines 20 to 30 feet deep and on small umbrella rigs using white or chartreuse grubs. Trolling no. 14 Husky Jerks or Smithwick Rogues in black/chrome or purple/chrome are working as well. Dead sticking a large soft jerkbait also works. Hot spots for stripers include Indian Creek past the marina near the power lines, Lost Bridge South, Big Clifty, Points 5 and 6, the bluff in front of the marina at Rocky Branch and the smaller islands in front of Larue Cove, Cedar Creek, Ford Creek, Ventris, Shaddox Hollow, Monte-Ne, Hickory Creek and War Eagle and the White River. The runoff is beginning to clear, so try upriver of the mud line. Walleye are moving into the creek and river arms to spawn. Walleye can be found from 5 to 30 feet, deep depending on areas you fish. The best method is three-way rigging Rapalas in natural colors for clear water or chartreuse/orange and clown colors in areas of stained water. Also try slow death rigs and spinner rigs on bottom bouncers in orange/chartreuse.

(updated 3-9-2016) Beaver Dam Store said said the water release on Beaver Tailwaters is finally tapering off.  Minimal generation is occurring today for two hours from 7 until 9 a.m. Watercraft can now launch immediately below the dam at River Access 1, as well as Bertrand and Houseman boat ramp.  Try fishing Power Bait in white, red, chartreuse or pink, tipped with wax worms or night crawlers. Troll downstream from Bertrand Boat Launch with Berkley Flicker shads, no. 4, 5 and 9 Rapalas and Colorado spoons for good numbers of fish. Fly-anglers are doing well on egg patterns, big nymphs, hare’s ear nymphs, midges and pheasant tails. The walleye run is on!  Many anglers are reporting walleye catches. Carl from the Beaver Dam Store recorded a 32-inch walleye weighing 13 to 14 pounds and limiting out. 
(updated 3-9-2016) Austin Kennedy of Busch Mountain Fishing Guide Service (479-640-8733) said fishing has been great. The Corps of Engineers is starting to slow generation, but that is likely to change due to the weather. Walleye are being caught in nice numbers on trolled crankbaits and jigged minnows. Most walleye are being caught between Houseman access and Beaver Town. White bass also are making a move upriver. Trout are being caught on crankbaits, spoons and light terminal tackle with various Power Baits. Water temperature between Houseman and Spider Creek is 48 to 50 degrees. 

(updated 3-9-2016) Lucky Key at Duck Camp Fishing Retreat said Lake Elmdale is at, or just below its normal level. The surface water temperature is 48 degrees, and the visibility is 6 feet. This will all change as the rains continue. The temperature should go up, as the rain will quicken the turnover.  Largemouth bass have been pretty active with several being caught over 4 pounds. The best baits have been a suspending crankbait or jerk bait. Several say the jig and pig approach is better. Fish in water 8 feet or deeper for the best results. Crappie have been biting fairly well,  with small minnows or white jigs fished 8 to 12 feet deep over brush. Rock Island and around the boat ramp have been the best areas. Bluegill are biting redworms around 7 feet deep. No reports on catfish yet, but with the expected rains coming, the best place would be in Keeper Cove near the wash-in creeks. Cut perch, liver or stink bait would work best for the catfish.

(updated 3-9-2016) Lake Fayetteville Boat Dock (479-444-3476) said the water is almost clear and at normal level. Crappie are fair to good on jigs. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and grubs swam across the dock and at the levee. Catfishing is fair. No report on bream.   

(updated 3-2-2016) Lake Sequoyah Boat Dock (479-444-3475) said the water is dingy and at normal level. The surface water temperature is 54 degrees. Bream are biting well on worms. Crappie are biting well on minnows and jigs about 3 feet deep. The crappie are beginning to move closer to the bank. Bass are biting well on spinnerbaits and crankbaits. Catfishing is good on chicken liver and dead shad.  

Northeast Arkansas

(updated 3-9-2016) Lake Poinsett State Park said last week was great as far as minnow sales. People were catching the crappie, and the fish should be on the move to the banks soon for the spawn. The 4th annual crappie and bream fishing tournament is scheduled for April 16 this year. There is a limit of two people to a boat. The entry fee is $25 per boat.  Call Lake Poinsett State Park at 870-578-2064 for more details.

(updated 3-9-2016) Boxhound Marina (870-670-4496) said the water is clear and at normal level. The surface water temperature is 50 to 51 degrees. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs fished around the dock. Crappie anglers have also had success fishing over 20 feet of water with their jigs and minnows suspended at 6 feet deep. Bass are fair, but anglers are being a little quiet with a tournament coming to the lake next week. No report on catfish.   

(updated 3-9-2016) Mark Crawford with Spring River Flies and Guides said water levels are running at 390 cfs at the spring and water clarity has been clear. There is a lot of rain in the forecast. As this report is being written the river is looking good. Flooding is forecast for the next few days. Check Mark’s Blog at for updates as things may change. The last week has been great, with anglers catching trout on guppies, old yellers, and olive woolly buggers. Chartreuse and white Trout Magnets and silver spinners have been working well for spin fishers.

(updated 3-9-2016) Triangle Sports (870-793-7122) said the water is clear and at normal level, but will likely rise with the rain. The surface temperature is about 48 degrees. Fishing is slow for all species. A couple of bass have been caught, but there’s been no real pattern to report.  

Southeast Arkansas

(updated 3-9-2016) The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Bass Team said water temperatures are in the upper 50s in Lake Langhofer and on the main channel of the river. There are some shallow areas already over 60. Expect these temperatures to continue to climb. Visibility on the river is only a few inches with up to a foot of visibility in protected backwaters in Lake Langhofer. Again, with heavy rain predicted, it is likely that everything will be getting muddy soon, so break out the black/blue jigs and bright-colored crankbaits and spinnerbaits because the fish will likely be up as shallow as they can be by next weekend.

(updated 3-2-2016) Cane Creek State Park said crappie are biting very well on shiners, particularly in the bayou by the spillway. Bass are biting well on yellow lizards in the break between shallow and deep. Bream are biting fairly well on worms. Catfish are starting to bite well on live bait in the catfish ponds.

(updated 2-24-2016) Local angler Geoff Wright said catfish are hitting pretty well on Chicot with most anglers using stationary methods. Live bait is crucial during cold weather, although dough bait is worth trying as well. Some folks are catching bream. Seems like they are starting to pick up on crickets, minnows, or other live bait. The real excitement right now is crappie. They are biting on minnows and black jigs. Some anglers have reported catching a limit a day, mostly in coves and other areas off the main body of the lake. Seems like they are biting rather shallow, above the thermocline.

Southwest Arkansas

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 2560.45 feet msl (normal conservation pool – 259.20 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) Mike Siefert at Millwood Lake Guide Service said the water level was 12 inches above conservation pool on Monday and rising. Gate discharge at the dam was 5,989 cfs Monday.  Surface water temperature ranges from 55 to 62 degrees, depending on rain, wind, incoming fresh water, location and time of day. Millwood State Park remains closed for repairs.  The USACE are working to replace numerous river buoys missing along Little River since the 12-15 foot rise a few weeks ago.  Water clarity worsened with the current and is 5 to 8 inches in the main lake. The water clarity in the river is 4 to 6 inches, and in the oxbows it is 10 to 15 inches. Bass continue to get more aggressive with the warmer weather. Several in the 4- to 6-pound range have been caught, and the big, pre-spawn females are on the move. The best activity is during the warmest time of the day under full sun in 3-5 feet of water with good clarity. Chatterbaits continue working in black/blue, Texas craw or avocado colors with large thumping swim bait trailers. Real Deal Custom Tackle jigs in Texas craw, Okeechobee spice, or candy bug colors continue working on sunny flats next to cypress trees and stumps close to creek channel swings. Echo 1.75 Squarebills in chartreuse shiner, gold, or sexy chrome will get a few random bites during the warmer days in flats close to deep creek channel swings as well. Clearer water, again this week, seems to be their preferred hang out, furthest from Little River current.  Blackberry, California 420, and green pumpkin-colored lizards continue working and catching pre-spawn females and roaming males, over the past several weeks near flats in the creek channels on stumps.  Red and orange shad or Toledo gold Rat-L-Traps are working on warm days in creek channels deflecting off stumps and timber and near spawning flats around cypress trees/knees. Bang Fat Jobs are working along old vegetation lines in Houdini and watermelon/green/red glitter colors.  Use a light wire hook as small as you can get away with for best action. Schools of white bass continue biting well between White Cliffs and 71 Bridge at Wilton. Backwater sloughs feeding Little River, just out of the main river current, were holding some good schools of whites over the past several weeks. These bass were hitting Echo 1.75 squarebill crankbaits, Rat-L-Trap Tail Spinners, Little Georges, Little Cleos and medium-running cranks from 4-9 feet depths. Crappie had improved on jigs in 7 to 8 feet of water. Catfish continue biting consistently in Little River on trotlines and yo-yos using cut shad, Catfish Charlie and homemade blood bait, set 9-14 feet deep.

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 544.57 feet msl (Flood pool – 548 msl).
(updated 2-17-2016) Gary Lammers of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had no report. 

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 408.01 feet msl (flood pool – 408 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) John Duncan of Action Fishing Trips has the following reports for DeGray:
Iron Mountain Marina reports the water temperature is 60 degrees to 64 degrees. Crappie are moving to the banks in many areas. Many anglers are using long jig poles to pick up some good ones in shallow water. Many boats are trolling upper areas above Shouse Ford. Fishermen are using deep-diving Shad Raps and Rat-L-Traps. Bass fishing is good in the Brushy Creek area. Finesse worms are still a top favorite. Bass fishing in the upper areas has slowed. The Water is murky and there is a lot of debris. The state park marina said crappie slowed in the mid-lake area. Two of his best-selling jigs are tube jigs in Baby Bass and Monkey Milk. Caddo Valley Bait Shop said crappie minnow sales are up. Bass are still hitting in the Brushy Creek area. Crappie fishing is best in upper river areas. The best selling jigs have been Kalins in Acid Rain and Tennessee Shad.
(updated 3-9-2016) Local angler George Graves d the surface water temperature is in the mid-50s and the lake is clear up to Arlie Moore, lightly stained up to Point 15 and moderately stained between Shouse Ford and Point Cedar. Fishing has been slow to fair. Bass fishing has been only fair with some decent catches reported one day and nothing the next. The best bet is to throw a crankbait across secondary points and keep moving until fish are located. Look for fish in the upper end of the lake between Caddo Drive and Point Cedar. Hybrid fishing is very slow with no schooling activity. Even the white bass have disappeared from Shouse Ford and Point Cedar areas. This is the time the fish should be moving upriver to spawn, but no reports are coming from the upper reaches. A few crappie were reported coming from deep (18 to 25 foot) brush piles. Look for fish around Point 15 and Point Cedar. Drop a 2-inch curly tail grub or tube on a 1/16 ounce jig head to just above the thickest part of the brush.  Tennessee shad and black/chartreuse are good starting colors. No reports on catfish or bream.

South-Central Arkansas

(updated 3-9-2016) Stacey Jackson at White Oak Lake State Park (870-685-2748) said the warmer weather has the fish perking up a little. Bream are biting fairly well on worms and crickets. Catfish are biting well on trotlines baited with live bait or prepared catfish baits. Tightlining catfish baits or worms also is working for catfish. No report on bass or crappie. 

(updated 3-9-2016) Buddy Ham at Sportsman's One Stop in El Dorado (870-863-7248) said bass are biting fairly well on crankbaits and spinnerbaits. Crappie, bream and catfish are all slow. The rain will likely raise the water level dramatically again. 

(updated 3-9-2016) Buddy Ham at Sportsman's One Stop in El Dorado (870-863-7248) said bass are fair. No report on crappie, bream or catfish. 

(updated 3-9-2016) ​Local angler Jaret Rushing had no report.

West-Central Arkansas

Lucky Landing (479-641-7615) had no report.

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 344.78 feet msl (full pool – 342 msl). 
(updated 3-2-2016) Good Ole Boys Trading Post (479-272-4710) said the water is muddy and high. Most anglers are still going to Overcup and Blue Mountain lately. Not many reports have come from Nimrod. 
(updated 2-17-2016) Whiskers Sporting Goods in Perryville (501-889-2011) said crappie are biting on minnows and Bobby Garland Slab Slay’Rs, Baby Shads and 1.25-inch Itty Bit Swim’Rs in pennyback, monkey milk, blue ice shimmer, Cajun cricket and barbecue chicken in 4 to 10 feet of water. Catfishing is good on minnows, worms and shad. Bream are fair on worms.  

(updated 3-9-2016) Charles Morrison at Classic Catch Guide Service (479-774-9117) said surface water temperature is 54 degrees and the water is dirty with some clear creeks. The surface temperature is 65 around the nuclear plant. Largemouth bass have been good on spinnerbaits, chatterbaits and jigs on windy points and windblown banks. Flipping beavers, structure bugs and Bamboozie craws on swivel hooks in stumpy areas has been working very well, as have stick worms fished in the creeks and backwaters. Rat-L-Traps are working well around staging areas. Crappie are hit-or-miss. Some days they are shallow and biting fairly well on black/chartreuse jigs, other days they are deep and biting best on pink and brown. Some days have been minnow-only bites. Creeks have been better than the river for size and numbers of crappie. Striper fishing has still been good on the lower end of the river. Spinner baits, Rat-L-Traps, crankbaits and Alabama rigs have been the best for stripers. The bream have been good on crickets and worms in the smaller creeks around rocks with brush. Catfish have been fair, but with all the rain coming it should  improve dramatically off of river points and the first drop out from the spawning flats. Try cut shad, perch, redworms and nightcrawlers. White bass up in the creeks have been fair on white tandem hair jigs, tailspinners and Rooster Tails.

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 576.98 feet msl (full pool – 578 msl).
(updated 3-9-2016) The Trader Bill's Fishing Report with Tom Duke and Phillip Kastner said the water is on a slow rise, but that may change quickly because all the tributaries are full. One more heavy rainfall and you may see some quick rises in water level. The warm rain and steady temperatures may promote some early bedding from the bass by next weekend. 
(updated 3-2-2016) Todd Gadberry at Mountain Harbor Resort said the surface water temperature is 46 to 50 degrees. The water clarity is 2 to 4 feet of visibility on the west end and 6 to 8 feet of visibility on the east end of the lake. Black bass are biting well on jigs, large lipless crankbaits and jerk baits around main lake points and secondary points. Walleye are fair, and are making their spawning run up the major rivers and creeks. Stripers are good on Alabama rigs and brood minnows. White and yellow bass are excellent right now on small CC spoons and hair jigs. Bream are slow on crickets, maggots and redworms fished 20 to 25 feet deep. Crappie are fair on small spoons, minnows or crappie jigs 20-30 feet deep near brush. Catfish are fair on live bait or cut bait in 20 to 25 feet of water.

(updated 3-9-2016) The Trader Bill's Fishing Report with Tom Duke and Phillip Kastner said as of March 9, the lake level is remaining fairly stable because of the increased releases combating the influx of rain. There is a lot of debris floating on Hamilton right now from the flow. 
(updated 2-17-2016) Darryl Morris at Family Fishing Trips had no new report.

(updated 3-9-2016) Shane Goodner, owner of Catch’em All Guide Service, said possible flood conditions are forecast until Sunday for most of central Arkansas. The National Weather Service has projected from 4 to 7 inches of rain to as high as 9 inches in some areas. Lake Hamilton and Catherine refills have been temporarily suspended until further notice. Entergy and the Corps of Engineers will make lake level adjustments in conjunction with flood gate openings and generation flows to compensate for heavy inflows from rainfall. These changes can occur at any time so the public is advised to remain off the tailrace waters below Carpenter Dam until the storms are over and conditions have returned to normal. High water and fast currents will be the norm until flood waters have safely passed through the dam system.

East Arkansas

(updated 2-17-2016) ​Mississippi River State Park (870-295-4040) had no report. 

(updated 2-17-2016) ​Mississippi River State Park (870-295-4040) had no report.

(updated 3-9-2016) Maddox Bay Landing (870-462-8317) said the water is slightly stained and high. There haven’t been any good reports from anglers at all lately.   

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