Table Rock Lake Fishing Report – May 12, 2017. I’ve been catching a lot of fish lately, even in the flooded conditions. Currently the lake is at 929.20 feet and surface temperatures range from the high 60’s to the mid 70’s based on where you are located on the lake. The lake continues to receive a lot of water from Beaver lake and is still seeing the effects of recent flooding near Springfield.
The water in the James River Arm was heavily stained a week ago but it is quickly clearing and the clearer water is a welcome sight. There is a lot of debris coming down the river and boaters should be “on the eye” for underwater obstructions. With the water level high and the bass in the “spawn mode” we should see good survival of the fry as they will have a lot of cover.
Since the flood, there has been limited access to the lake as many of the ramps are underwater and the ramps at the marinas are closed for safety reasons. The Corp of Engineers reports that they will leave levels high as the lake levels of the White River Chain are balanced.
Fishing has remained good in the dam and Indian Point areas of the lake with a lot of fish taken various ways. The Ned Rig has come into play a lot for my customers and they are enjoying great success at catching both smallmouth and spotted bass. On days when there is not much wind, a small (6 inch) trick worm Texas Rigged on a small worm hook and light weight have been very effective, especially if the flooded trees being fished have mulch around them.
When fishing both of these baits, it has been very important to stop the bait and let it sit for a few seconds every few feet on the retrieve. The fish will pick it up when it is sitting still. Shade has been very important, especially when the wind is light. Docks have produced later in the day if there is a lot of sun otherwise the fish have come from the ends of walkways that have been pulled away from the shore by the high water.
Some success has been had by Carolina rigging a ring fry and dragging it through 25 to 30 feet of water. This is very good technique to employ on those days when the wind picks up with the never-ending fronts we have seen.
These techniques are resulting in good quantities of smallmouth and spotted bass. Based on the number of beds being seen currently, this should be the case for at least a couple more weeks. With temperatures rising daily and a new moon coming up, fishing here on Table Rock Lake should be very good!
Please be safe!