HOT SPRINGS ARKANSAS AREA LAKES FISHING REPORTS
From The Arkansas Game & Fish Commision Web Site
Updated June 15, 2016
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As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake's elevation was 576.33 feet msl (full pool - 578.00 msl).
?(updated 6-15-2016) David Draper of the Lake Ouachita Striped Bass Association said water is clear and the white bass are spot-breaking, as are the striper. Surface temperature was 84 degrees and the fish are moving down, but you will see the occasional spot-breaker. He reports he didn't catch anything Saturday, but he saw fish in the areas of Crystal Chute, around points 6, 7, 12, 13 and 28. The thermocline was between 58 and 780 feet, and that's where he saw most of the fish. The lake is getting very busy with boats, so be careful. Check out the link above to the association, which will also take you to the association's Facebook page.
(updated 6-1-2016) Darryl Morris at Family Fishing Trips reported black and white bass are starting to school up. Rooster Tails and silver spoons are landing fish. Crappie on minnows or jigs 8-12 feet deep on brush piles. Since the water temperature is entering the 70s, catfish and bream are starting to spawn.
(updated 6-15-2016) Shane Goodner, owner of Catch'em All Guide Service, reports water temperature below Carpenter Dam is 58 degrees with clear conditions in the tailrace. Catherine is now at normal summertime pool and will remain at this level until late November. Rainbow trout are present in good numbers below the dam and thriving in the nutrient-rich water. The bite has slowed considerably now that a summer pattern has emerged and five-fish limits are considered a good day on the water.
Trout in the 12-16-inch range are present and roaming the shallow waters searching for prey. Bank fishermen are doing well during slack water periods with nightcrawlers and redworms fished just off the bottom with a marshmallow floater. Wax or meal worms are also effective presented in the same manner. Corn closely resembles fish eggs and will draw strikes from hungry rainbows in calm water or current flow. Using live minnows floated under a bobber has accounted for the largest trout this week as these fish tend to feed on larger prey items. Fly fishermen can still access areas that hold schools of trout, but must use extreme caution when the turbines are running. Micro-jigs in white or black casted with a strike indicator is a consistent technique because the tailrace holds thousands of shad that rainbow trout feed on daily. San Juan worms in red or hot pink give an angler a nice change of pace when the bite is slow. Egg patterns in yellow or white are always the bait of choice when conditions are tough and the fish are finicky. Boaters trolling shallow running crankbaits against the current are recording limits of quality catches with most of the action best below the bridge. Anchoring behind rocks and fishing the current breaks with small jigs and jerkbaits have caught trout in the 18-inch class by experienced guides. Overall, trout fishing is excellent and will remain good until the middle of June.
White bass are making a strong spawning run toward the dam from the main body of the
lake. Little fishing pressure due to high water has allowed these fish to gather in big numbers on both sides of the tailrace. Current flow drives white bass to feed heavier than slackwater and trolling crankbaits and casting Alabama rigs over sands bars and rock structure will produce good catches. Jerkbaits in bright yellow have been the ticket in the stained waters of last week, but now a silver-and-black pattern has proved to be more effective of late. Live minnows tightlined over deep water around the dam has targeted bass that moved up earlier in the flood. A few hybrid bass have been caught on the same lures with better numbers migrating in the area in June. Some striper activity has been observed this week but no big fish hooked or caught. Freshwater drum continue to spawn the tailrace with fish over 20 pounds caught and larger fish lost. Nightcrawlers and live shad are the best baits to use to entice these fish, which give fishermen a hard fight test tackle to the limit. Carolina rigs tipped with either bait can draw vicious strikes so rods should never be set aside in a boat or the bank and left unattended.
Never navigate the waters below Carpenter Dam without wearing a life jacket and without a good knowledge of the bottom structure below the dam.