TWRA Fishing Reports
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Region 1 Fishing Report - No Report This Week
No report this week.
Fishing Report For June 1 weekend
Old Hickory lake anglers continue to report excellent crappie fishing in 3 to 5 foot of water. The crappie may have spawned out by now, but are still being caught in depths similar to where they have held for several weeks or longer. Small jigs are working best
The bluegill bite is also good, but should get better as the waters continue to warm and we get closer to the middle of the month.
Catfish are hitting some below the dams and on the lakeside, too.
Bass fishing on Old Hickory has been fair.
Percy Priest: Crappie have moved out of spawning areas and can be fround around deeper structure. Some anglers have already began trolling for the, but that fishing should only improve through the summer.
-Bluegill fishing is good. Fish shallow areas, shallow points, or coves with crickets or tiny plastic baits and jigs.
-Hybrids and stripers are being caught extremly early in the a.m. until a tad after sunset, according a few anglers.
-Trout fishing: This will begin to pick up on the Caney Fork and Elk rivers (and other tailraces) as the rains slow down and the waters below the dams become less turbulent. That is happening and look for trout anglers to be doing extremly well starting in June.
-NOTE: The Freedom to Fish Act Should become law by Sunday. If tht happens, access below all Cumberland River Dams will be as it has been historically. Restriction buoys are in place below most Tennessee Cumberland River dams, but those buoys will be removed, according the law written into the Freedom To Fish Act.
State Lake: TWRA lakes are providing excellent bluegill and catfish bites right now. Also, bass fishing has been good some days, fair on others---but overall something is biting on just about every lake. Check out www.tnwildlife.org for more informaotn about TWRA Family Fishing Lakes.
Air temperature this coming weeked--low to mid 80s
Water temps on most lakes--low 70s to mid 70s.
Fishing Report for May 17, 2013
Middle Tennessee reports that crappie are still biting and biting good in Old Hickory Lake. Crappie are 3 to 5 feet deep and still full of eggs. Minnows might be ok, but small plastic grubs on light lead head jigs tossed around structure works well. Many crappie are keepers, many are just short of the 10-inch size limit. That bodes well for next year. Bluegill are also starting to bite and you can also catch bass in shallow water right now. IN fact, don't be surprised if you catch a largemouth while looking for crappie on your light gear.
On Priest, bluegill are biting in large numbers. Go to coves and look for bedding bluegill in water that is 2 to 6 feet deep. You can fish crickets, worms, or small plastic baits. A good method is to fish small plastic grubs below light bobbers on light line and twitch the bobber every few seconds. Wait for the hit.
Water temps on both lakes is a tad under 70 degrees. Probably hitting 70 by the end of the day with air temps. now reaching 80 plus degrees in Middle Tennessee.
Lots of water in the Caney Fork River. It is too dangerous to fish by wading anglers. However, some reports are of stripers being caught a mile plus downriver from the dam.
The Corps of Engineers has placed no restriction buoys around several dams in Middle Tennessee recently, both above and below the dams. However, legislation working its way through the Unites States Congress would require for the Corps to remove those buoys. We will report hear the outcome of that legislation soon.
Region 2 Fishing Report - No Report This Week
No report this week.
JUNE 11, 2013 FISHING REPORTS
COURTESY OF TN WILDLIFE RESOURCES AGENCY
Caney Fork: Fishing is good. Several trout are being caught in period of no flow, while fishing with flies. Some nice browns have been caught near Carthage while using spoons and spinners.
Center Hill: Fishing is good. Water temperature is 81; lake is stable. Several bass are being caught at night on spinnerbaits and jigs while fishing points in 10 feet of water. Walleye fishing is fair, while trolling night crawlers and using crankbaits on flats in 10-to-15 feet of water. Bluegill fishing is good on crickets around bluffs in 15 feet of water
Chickamauga: The lake elevation is at normal summer pool. The water surface temperature is in the mid 70’s. Some bass are being caught while schooling. Several bass are being caught along primary points and humps. Crankbaits, plastic worms, and spinnerbaits are the popular offerings. Stripers are being caught in the tailwaters below Watts Bar Dam. Shad is the best bait choice for stripers. Some anglers use crankbaits, jigs, and spoons for teasers with rewards that are not as great. Bluegill and redear sunfish can still be found in shallow water. Many sunfish are spawning. Catfish drifters are catching greater numbers of fish every day.
Dale Hollow: Fishing is good, water temperature is 79 degrees; lake is stable. Walleye are being caught while trolling crankbaits and nightcrawler rigs in 10-to-15 feet of water, around points and flats. Bass fishing is fair at night with spinnerbaits, jigs and soft-plastics, while fishing points and grass in 10-to-20 feet of water.
Hiwassee River: The water flow is normal. The average temperature of the river is 53 degrees. Many anglers are visiting the area from points afar. Those folks along with the regional and local anglers sometimes create crowded conditions. Local anglers seem to prefer low water conditions. Flies, spinner-type lures, corn and worms are being used more often than other baits. Several anglers are catching up to 50 fish each trip. Waders and bank anglers are catching fish, but the drifters are catching the greater numbers. Rainbow and brown trout are being caught more than other species.
Parksville Lake: The water temperature on 6/09/13 was 74 degrees. The lake elevation on the same day was 823.5 feet. This elevation is nearly 5.5 feet below normal elevation. Spotted bass are being caught by anglers casting 3 inch jerkbaits around points and fishing plastics tight in cover. Largemouth bass are being caught more often on the upper portion of the lake. Plastic worms used around rocky or brushy areas in shallow places is the type of water where most largemouth are being found. Crappie are being caught by those anglers using minnows or jigs around brush and blowdowns on steeper banks. Bluegill and a few redear sunfish can still be located in very shallow areas.
Watts Bar: The lake surface temperature is 74 degrees in most areas. The surface elevation on 6/09/13 was 741.5 feet. This elevation is .5 feet higher than the highest elevation considered normal. Smallmouth bass are being caught in greater numbers than any time in recent history. Primary points are the location most are finding a few smallmouth. Crankbaits, flukes, and spinnerbaits are the lures most are using to catch smallmouth. Largemouth bass are being caught along gradual sloping banks in secondary and primary locations. Several largemouth bass have migrated into the summer areas located along humps and points in the deep primary locations. The tailwaters below Ft. Loudon Dam is being visited by many anglers. Crappie are being caught in the still water on the lock side of the dam. Minnows and jigs are being used for bait by most anglers. The real tailwater story is the stripers. Many stripers of all sizes were being caught this previous week. Some stripers up to 50 pounds were caught. Shad, Redfins and jigs were being used to catch stripers. Catfish drifters were catching several fish while using the normal smorgasbord of baits associated with catfishing.
June 5, 2013 Fishing Reports
JUNE 5, 2013 FISHING REPORTS
COURTESY OF TN WILDLIFE RESOURCES AGENCY
Caney Fork: Some really big rainbow trout have been caught near the dam while fishing spoons during generation. Fly fishing has been good in periods of no flow near Betty’s Island and Happy Hollow.
Center Hill: Fishing is good. Water temperature is 77 degrees; lake is stable. Lots of bass are being caught at night on jigs and soft-plastics in 5-to-10 feet of water. Walleye fishing is fair while trolling nightcrawlers in 15 feet of water on the flat banks. Bluegill fishing is good using crickets on the bluffs in 10 feet of water.
Chickamauga: The surface water temperature on 6/02/13 was 75.6 degrees. The lake elevation on the same day was 682.5 feet. This elevation is considered normal. Grass beds are growing and in some areas the hydrilla is already on the surface of the water. Striped bass and white bass are being caught in the tailwaters below Watts Bar Dam. Crankbaits, jigs and shad are being used to catch these fish. One angler recently caught a few good smallmouth while fishing the river humps and ledges in the tailwaters. Largemouth bass are being caught over grass beds in the large river flat areas. Some schooling bass are being caught along ledges and points. Main lake humps are holding some quality bass. Various lures including swimbaits, plastic worms and crankbaits are being methodically worked along these summer areas. Crappie anglers are fishing areas near deeper water with jigs or minnows to catch crappie. Docks, brush, and blowdowns should be the target areas in the deeper water. Bluegill and shellcracker sunfish can be found in spawning areas, but most have completed their work and are moving into deeper areas. Worms and crickets are used for bait by most folks seeking sunfish. Catfish are being caught by drifters located in the main channel and in the larger creeks. Some catfish are being located along the rocky banks in the main channel. Most baits typically associated with catching catfish are being used.
Dale Hollow: Fishing is fair. Water temperature is 76 degrees. Lake is stable. Bass fishing is fair at night with jigs on points in 10 feet of water. Walleye are being caught while trolling nightcrawlers near weed beds in 15 feet of water. Shellcrackers and bluegill are still being caught while fishing nightcrawlers around the weedbeds in 10 feet of water.
Parksville Lake: The lake elevation on 6/02/13 was 823.6 feet. This elevation is 5.4 feet below normal elevation. The surface water temperature on the same date was 75.4 degrees. Crappie anglers are catching a few crappie while using minnows or jigs for bait. Bluegill are being caught by those anglers targeting pockets along the main lake. A few redear sunfish are being caught while spawning in the upper portion of the reservoir. Worms and crickets are being used for bait. Spotted bass and a few largemouth are being caught by many anglers. Jerkbaits cast along rocky points is a technique that many successful anglers are using. Plastic worms fished tight in cover is the other technique that anglers are using.
Hiwassee River: The water temperature at Patty Bridge on 5/30/13 was 54 degrees. The water surface water temperature at the ramp near the powerhouse was 51.1 degrees. Many anglers are enjoying plentiful numbers of trout being caught while fishing from the bank, wading and drifting. Bait anglers, fly casters, and spin anglers are enjoying catching mostly rainbow and brown trout. Drifters are catching the greater number of fish. Some anglers are on occasion catching trout as large as 19 or 20 inches long.
Watts Bar: The water surface temperature on 6/02/13 was 75.3 degrees. The lake surface elevation was 740.9 feet on the same day. This elevation is considered normal. Bass are being caught while schooling by a few anglers. Points, humps and ledges in areas where the current is present is the type of area where schooling fish are being caught. Plastics rigged various ways, crankbaits, and spoons are being used to catch these fish. Some trick worm and jig fishermen are catching bass around docks located between the deep and shallow areas. Crappie are being caught in deeper brush in the large secondary water locations. Some anglers are pushing jigs or minnows in 20 feet of water or deeper in large secondary water locations to catch suspended post-spawners. Black crappie can be caught around community dock holes if you are lucky enough to have a reservation. These docks need a little depth underneath them or deep water in the immediate area. A break underneath the dock will be a crappie magnet for some docks. Striped bass and white bass are being caught in the upper portion of the Tennessee and Clinch River. Shad, jigs and larger topwater baits are being used to catch striped bass. Jigs, spinner-type lures and minnows are being used to catch white bass. Some drifters are catching catfish in the main lake areas while using live or cut bait.
MAY 21 FISHING REPORTS FOR CANEY FORK, CENTER HILL & DALE HOLLOW
MAY 21 FISHING REPORT
Caney Fork River: Fishing is good. A few trout are being caught on spoons, near the dam during heavy generation.
Center Hill: Fishing is good. Water temperature is 67 degrees; lake is falling. Lots of bass are being caught on topwater baits and soft plastics while fishing shallow cover. Bluegill and shell are being caught on nightcrawlers while fishing 5’ water on gravel banks.
Dale Hollow: Fishing is great. Water temperature is 65 degrees. Lake is fairly stable. Lots of bass are being caught on topwater baits and soft plastics and spinnerbaits while fishing shallow cover around willows. Lots of bluegill and shellcrackers are being caught while fishing nightcrawlers in 5’ of water on gravel banks. Lots of catfish are being caught while trotlining and limblining using shad as bait.
May 20, 2013 Fishing Reports
COURTESY OF TN WILDLIFE RESOURCES AGENCY
May 20, 2013 Fishing Reports
Chickamauga - The water surface temperature is above seventy degrees. The lake has fluctuated and has been muddy in areas due to the consistent rainfall. Lake levels on May nineteen was one-half foot above the highest elevation considered normal and rising. Heavy rain is currently falling. Bass anglers are catching many fish but at lower numbers and weights than those in previous weeks. A walk along the bank on Saturday indicated some of the largest numbers of fish present in shallow areas probably this year. It was a view only challenged by the Chattanooga Aquarium. Massive numbers of sunfish have moved into these shallow areas along with some crappie and one of the largest waves of spawning bass to date. Worms and crickets have been the primary baits used to catch sunfish. Bass anglers have used an arsenal to lure bass. Worms, jigs and spinnerbaits are being used as often as any other baits to catch bass. Post-spawn bass have been targeted as often as the spawners. The target areas include secondary points and slight drops or irregular areas next to the spawning grounds. Some trollers have caught crappie in areas close to the spawning grounds. The popular depth to target these fish is twelve feet deep. Some dock shooters have caught several crappie, but a once common art has become a fad and a reservation time is required at most docks. Catfish have been caught most often in creeks and secondary areas. Muddy moving water in secondary areas create idea conditions for concentrations of catfish. Meaty baits and creations have been used to target catfish. White bass and striped bass have been caught in areas near the tailwaters. Smallmouth bass have been caught close to the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant while using jigs, crankbaits and small worms. A few trophy fish have been caught. A local angler caught a five pound and a six pound smallmouth bass in the area directly below Sequoyah Nuclear Plant.
Hiwassee River - The river has cleared and become stable. Two generators have been running most times at the Apalachia Powerhouse. The water temperature on May nineteen at Patty Bridge was 50 degrees. Areas upriver from Patty Bridge are slightly cooler. Anglers have been catching trout in various locations. Most activity has been above the railroad bridge. Those wading, drifting and bank fishing have experienced positive conditions and success rates while employing different strategies. Drifters have probably caught a few more trout than those wading or fishing from the bank. Waders and drifters primarily use fly rods and dry flies. The other anglers use spinners, corn or worms most often. Many local anglers as well as travelers use the area. This is the place for a slower pace and a magical touch with nature.
Parksville Lake (Ocoee No. 1) - The Lake surface temperature is near seventy degrees. The elevation on May nineteen was over five feet lower than normal. TVA is replacing boards at the dam damaged from recent flooding and debris at the dam. Many fish have been bedding. One shellcracker was recently caught that exceeded two pounds. Several large bluegill are being caught in very shallow areas. One angler recently was using panfish assassins with a number two hook to catch bluegill. This is not the typical bluegill rig. Crappie were being caught in previous days at a rate higher than anytime this year. Fishermen in upper lake sloughs near brushy areas or blowdowns while using minnows or jigs were the anglers catching the greater number of crappie. Largemouth and spotted bass were being caught while using jigs, plastic worms, or crankbaits. Some spawning fishing can be found, but many have moved into secondary locations that include points or blowdowns on sloping banks. The bigger spotted bass have not been as frequently caught as they were in earlier months. Twelve pounds of bass might be enough to win the local tournament.
Watts Bar - The lake elevation on May nineteen was at the normal summer level. The water surface temperature is averaging in the lower seventies. Bass anglers are catching plenty of fish in the spawning areas. A wave of bass have moved into the shallows to spawn but many have completed the task and now have moved into post spawn locations. Plastic worms have been as effective as any lure to catch bass. Some anglers use the same approach as the worm fishermen, but choose jigs over plastic worms. A topwater bite has occurred for many late evening anglers. Crankbaiters catch their share of bass this time of year and they get the reaction bites. At least a couple of bass over seven pounds have reportedly been caught in recent days. Catfish have been caught often by those anglers targeting other species. Most of these catfish have been caught in secondary locations. Striped bass and white bass have been caught in areas in the upper part of the reservoir. Jigs, crankbaits and shad have been used to catch both species. Some anglers have caught walleye while targeting white bass.
MAY 13 FISHING REPORT
COURTESY OF TN WILDLIFE RESOURCES AGENCY
May 13, 2013
Caney Fork: Fishing is slow due to excessive generation.
Center Hill: Fishing is good. Water temperature is 66 degrees; lake is falling. Lots of bass are being caught on topwater baits while fishing shallow cover in the creeks. Bluegill and shellcracker fishing is fair while fishing nightcrawlers in the pockets in 5-to-10 feet of water.
Chickamauga: The lake elevation on 5/12/13 was at the normal summer level. This level was down nearly two few from flooding that occurred earlier in the week. The surface water temperature is averaging around seventy degrees. Bass anglers are catching a lot of fish at various locations. Most of these areas are shallow pockets or points. Bass can be caught in the pre-spawn and post-spawn patterns. Most are being caught in the latter. Secondary points close to shallow water is a target area for many anglers. Spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and plastic worms are being used most often. Crappie are moving into deeper water. Minnows and/or jigs should be used to catch crappie while fishing brush in secondary locations. Twelve feet of water is the starting point for most anglers searching for crappie. Bluegill and shellcrackers are being caught in shallow bays while using worms for bait. Many catfish are being caught shallow by those targeting other species. White bass and striped bass are being caught in the upper reservoir by those anglers using jigs, crankbaits, and shad. Some smallmouth are being caught while using crankbaits and spinnerbaits in the tailwaters.
Dale Hollow: Fishing is fair. Water temperature is 64 degrees; lake is falling. A few bass are being caught on topwater bait and live bait while fishing the willow bushes. Several bluegill and shellcrackers are being caught on nightcrawlers, while fishing in five feet of water around willow bushes.
Hiwassee River: The water level is high and the current is strong due to the spillways open at the Apalachia Dam. The swift conditions have decreased the number of anglers. A few anglers are catching trout while wading or drifting. The eddy areas seem to be the areas where concentrations of fish can be located. Some brown trout were being caught amongst the rainbows. One angler recently commented on the quality of fish being better than in previous years. Several small trout are being caught, but a few nineteen inch fish are being caught. Several type of flies are being used. Spinner-type lures are being used by some anglers. White is a favorite color of many anglers.
Parksville Lake: The lake as of 5/12/13 was halfway between summer and winter level. The river was running with spillways open at both ends. Trash was floating freely and causing boating difficulties at times. After launching at the East Ramp last week and traveling the length of the reservoir and back, trash had filled the cove at the ramp. Water was not visible. Large trees and smaller obstacles were abundant and trash had to be removed before a successful loading of the boat could occur. Anglers on the water in recent days were few. Those that were present were catching spotted bass and largemouth bass while using crankbaits and plastic worms. Quality bass were hard to find for most anglers and the number of fish being caught was not impressive. One angler caught a few bluegill while using flies rigged on a fly rod.
Watts Bar: The lake elevation on 5/12/13 was slightly above the summer elevation. Surface water temperatures are fluctuating due to the fluctuating ambient temperatures. Seventy degrees would be about the average surface water temperature. Crappie season typically peaks just before the Dogwood trees bloom. We are past the peak and crappie are moving into deeper areas. Some reasonable numbers of crappie can be found in brushy secondary locations in depths averaging fourteen feet. Minnows or jigs can be used with equal results. Largemouth bass are being caught in very shallow pockets and areas adjacent to the same. Smallmouth bass are being caught along sloping banks in areas between deep and shallow water. Rocky areas are targeted for smallmouth. Crankbaits and plastic worms are being used by many anglers that target bass. Striped bass and white bass are being caught by those in the upper river while using jigs, crankbaits and shad for bait. Catfish are being caught by upper river anglers using the typical baits associated with catching catfish. Many lower reservoir anglers are catching catfish while targeting bass and crappie.
FISHING REPORTS - MAY 6, 2013
FISHING REPORT - REGION 3 MAY 6, 2013
Chickamauga: The water surface temperature is on average around seventy degrees. The lake level is fluctuating widely due to recent rains and TVA’s flood control program. Bass anglers continue to saturate the lake including locals and those from other areas. Some of these anglers are in search of the large bass that Chickamauga is becoming know for and others are participating in tournaments. Bass can be caught in various stages of the spawn. In recent days the lake fell nearly two feet leaving a few beds dry. May the fifth lake elevation indicated a normal summer pool and rising water from recent rainfall. Plastic worms and jigs are being used as much as any other lures. This past week the success rate of many anglers was not as great as one might expect. A Chevy pro was on the lake at least a couple of days and reportedly was in an area with several big bedding fish and he was unable to catch any of these fish. However in a Saturday tournament held out of Dayton Boat Dock, Chattanooga angler and legend Rogne Brown won a tournament with a kicker fish that weighed nearly eleven pounds. Crappie anglers are catching many crappie in various stages of the spawn. Most crappie appear to be in six to twelve feet of water range and heading into summer locations. Minnows and jigs can be used to catch crappie with equal results. White bass and striped bass are being caught in areas near the dam. Jigs, crankbaits and live bait can be used to catch these fish. Catfish are roaming the creeks and shallow areas. Most catfish being caught are by anglers looking for other species. Bluegill and shellcrackers are taking over the shallows. Many anglers are catching these fish in pockets or isolated areas while using crickets or worms for bait.
Hiwassee River: The river has been visited by many anglers in recent days. Several rainbow and brown trout are being caught by those anglers that use corn, worms, spinner-type lures and flies. Waders, drift boaters and those fishing from the safety of their lawn chair are catching trout. Many limits of trout are being caught by those fishing. Most report that limits are harder to come by than in previous weeks. An occasional smallmouth bass, spotted bass, yellow perch and white bass are being caught. Visitors in recent days were from the local area as well as South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, North Dakota, California, Mississippi, Georgia, and Kentucky.
Parksville Lake: The surface water temperature is around seventy degrees. The surface elevation on May the fourth was in the range considered normal or seasonal. The recent rains are allowing TVA to move water in the river. White bass are being caught in the area of the lake near the East Ramp where the river current flows into the deeper area of the lake. Jigs and crankbaits are being used to catch white bass. Some bluegill and shellcrackers are being caught in the shallow areas by those using worms or crickets for bait. Spotted bass are being caught on topwater lures, crankbaits, and small worms in the area downstream from the East Ramp. Most largemouth bass are being caught upstream from the East Ramp. Plastic worms are being used more often than other lures for largemouth bass. A few crappie are being caught by those using jigs or minnows around brush.
Watts Bar: The lake surface water temperature is near seventy degrees. Crappie are being caught most often near brush in ten or twelve feet of water. Crappie fishing has already peaked. Those crappie being caught are being caught while using minnows and/or jigs. Some concentrations of crappie can be located near secondary points. Electronics can be used to narrow the search. Bass can be caught in all the spawning stages. Worms and jigs are being used most often, but various lures can be used to target these fish. Exploration areas should be spawning areas or locations adjacent to the same. Some heavy bass are being caught. A recent group from Indiana competed in a cabin tournament and a few five pound fish were caught. Some fish larger than this are being caught by some fishermen. An eight pound fish was recently caught in the Kingston area of the lake. Striped bass and white bass are being caught in areas near the dams. Live bait and jigs are being used more than other baits or lures. Some musky are being caught in the area below Melton Hill Dam. Catfish are being caught in shallow pockets and secondary creeks by anglers that are targeting other species. Bluegill and shellcrackers are being caught in isolated shallow pockets while using small jigs, worms, and crickets.