HOT SPRINGS ARKANSAS AREA LAKES FISHING REPORTS
From The Arkansas Game & Fish Commision Web Site
Updated September 14, 2016
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As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation was 573.39 feet msl (full pool – 578.00 msl)
(updated 8-31-2016) Todd Gadberry at Mountain Harbor Resort (870-867-2191) said the water is clearing and surface temperature is ranging 78-84 degrees. Black bass are fair and still being caught with Texas-rigged worms, pig-n-jigs and Pop-R’s. Brush piles on main lake and secondary points are producing the best results for “spots” when fished with live crawfish. Walleye are very good and are being caught jigging CC spoons. Stripers are fair on live bait. The central and east areas of the lake are still the best areas for these fish. Bream are still good. Crickets, maggots and redworms are best fished 20-25 feet deep. Crappie are still fair. Try using minnows or crappie jigs at depths around 25-30 feet deep fished on the bottom near brush. Catfish are fair. Try nightcrawlers, trot line minnows or hot dogs in depths of 15-20 feet. Contact Mountain Harbor’s guides – Mike Wurm (501-622-7717), Chris Darby (870-867-7822) or Jerry Bean (501-282-6104) – for more information.
(updated 8-31-2016) David Draper of the Lake Ouachita Striped Bass Association said the LOSBA can offer information to would-be anglers about striper fishing on the lake. Draper said he has not been out personally of late, but has a couple reports from others. The lake is clear again after the heavy rains but the lake is also up a couple feet. Fishing with live bait is hit and miss. You can be in one boat catching fish and the boat 50 feet away doesn't get a bite. Fish are scattered and moving, they seem to be following the main channel so Draper’s advice is to try numerous areas that you know the main channel flows through. You may catch fish in a spot one day and never see a fish in that same spot the next day. He said he has not received any information about artificial baits but does know fish are between 25-60 feet deep.
(updated 9-14-2016) Shane Goodner, owner of Catch’em All Guide Service, reportsthat water temperature below Carpenter Dam is 64 degrees and rises to 67 degrees below the bridge. Clear conditions exist in the tailrace as the normal summertime pool levels continue until November. Entergy is currently running a 12-hour generation schedule per day due to all the rainfall of the past several weeks. Boaters should navigate the area slowly and always wear a life jacket. Sadly, the rainbow trout season is over until mid-November when the stocking program begins again. The vast majority of trout have either been caught or migrated away from the dam. The few fish that remain are extremely wary and almost impossible to catch. Thousands of threadfin shad have migrated into the tailrace in search of cooler water to spawn. Interestingly enough, few white bass or stripers have moved in to feed on the baitfish. No topwater activity has been observed and few bass caught in the past week. No catfish or drum catches reported. This lack of game fish catches are normal for this time of year below Carpenter Dam. However, with the big numbers of shad in the area – schools of stripers and white bass can migrate into the tailrace at any time. Fisherman have to be patient and watch for schooling activity. The month of October normally brings good numbers of white bass into the area, along with hybrid bass. Until the fall weather pattern sets in, fishing below Carpenter Dam will be very poor.