UPDATE 5/19/16 Thursday, May 19, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is at 607.5 and holding fairly steady. The water clarity is definitely stained, but not near chocolate milk.

CRAPPIE: The week started out very slow due to cold, rainy weather but yesterday saw some people out catching limits. I would expect that will only get better as we enjoy more of these nice days. Depending on the area of the lake you will either find post spawn males guarding nests or females on nests, or even females still in deeper water getting ready to come in to spawn. The key will be to try different tactics until you find what happens to be working today, at this hour. Blue seems to be contained in most of the color combos that are working right now.

BASS: Lots of fish near the banks getting ready to spawn. This is the time of year to catch plenty of good bass. Have not heard much on white bass recently but you can bet they will be around submerged islands and not so submerged islands. As usual, use something white or shiny to catch them.

CATFISH: There are plenty of channel cats biting. Minnows, crawlers, or stink bait should entice them. We have not seen much in the way of flat heads or blues this week, but I am sure that is more due to lack of fishermen than lack of fish. Gold fish or perch have been productive recently.

NOTES: Saturday is the adult/youth tournament for the Eastern MO Crappie Club. Call for information if you want to fish it.

Update 5/11/16 Wednesday, May 11, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is 607.7. We received about 1.5″ of rain over the past few days. Water color has darkened up some but no reports yet of really bad color. That should actually help to bring the crappie closer to the bank for spawning. Water temps are still mid 60’s.

CRAPPIE: There are still some nice fish being caught and they are still scattered from tight to the bank to 15-20 FOW. It seems the fish are concentrated in tight little spots that you just have to locate. Once you hit that spot you can put a good catch in the boat. I still here blue/white or blue/silver but also some chartreuse/white as well. Tightlining and slow trolling for the deeper water seems to be working well.

BASS: Lots of reports of good bass coming at the bank. This next couple of weeks should see some very good fishing. I have been hearing of some white bass close to the bank as well.

CATFISH: Lots of channel’s biting with this new water inflow. We have heard of quite a few 20-40# flatheads as well. The blues seem to have quieted down for now. Perch are doing well on the flatheads and crawlers on the channel cats.

Update 5/6/16 Friday, May 06, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is 606.2 and steady. Water temp is around the mid 60’s. Clarity sounds to be mostly pretty good with a few dirty spots, though even those are probably cleared up by now.

CRAPPIE: There are some being caught near the banks and some being caught out in deep water. Think 20 feet. Blue/white seems to be a good color right now. Move around if you are catching small ones or not getting any. There are a lot of very nice fish being caught.

CATFISH: All species seem to be on the move as there are a lot of fish coming in. We had a 62# flathead weighed in this week and last week along with a bunch of others. Live bait seems to be working best right now especially perch.

BASS: No reports this week.

NOTES: We are right on the edge of the spawn going full blast. If we can string together a few days of that steady weather it will be on. Of course, so much depends on nothing strange happening to change the course of that, a cold front, a lot of rain, who knows what else will turn them back again. Don’t forget to stop in for BBQ after a day on the water. We do have pulled pork sandwiches at lunch as well.

UPDATE 4/27/16 Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is at 605.3. It is pretty stained from the rain we have gotten recently especially here on the south-west end. Water temps are about 63.

CRAPPIE: They are working at getting ready for the spawn. Males are starting to show up near the bank with females holding out a bit further. I have heard about 10 FOW for the females. This cool wet weather will hold them off a little longer. I look for them to start hot and heavy at any time now. A couple of days of steady warm weather should do the trick. There are people out doing well even now.

CATFISH: There have been some good flatheads taken over the past couple of weeks but not a lot of them. Even the blues seem to have slowed somewhat. Channel cats should bite good now with the recent influx of water into the lake.

BASS: There are a few whites being caught while crappie fishing. We have not heard much about largemouth yet, but then we seldom do.

NOTES: Seems like there are a lot of turkeys around this spring and we have seen quite a few taken. The weather should be good for another good hatch this spring. Also, we are starting our “Baithouse BBQ” this weekend. We will be serving from 5 till 9 on Friday and Saturday nights. Ribs, chicken, pulled pork, and new this year we will be adding burgers to the menu for those that don’t like smoked food. We can also do pizzas. We have started to carry the TJ’s line from St Louis. You can also get a cold beverage at the “Baithouse Bar”. We look forward to seeing you.

UPDATE 4/19/16 Tuesday, Apr 19, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is 604.7. We got 1/2″ of rain today but I doubt it will do much to the lake level as it was pretty dry around here. Water is stained to MTL clear. Water temp is low 60’s.

CRAPPIE: People are catching fish in shallow water but mostly not on the bank yet. This could change by this weekend with the warm weather we are having. By all reports it is going to be a spring where you will likely have to sort through a lot of smaller fish to keep a limit of 9″ or bigger ones. There are lots of fish in the 4-7″ class.

CATFISH: Quite a few channel cats are starting to show up in shallow water along with the bass and crappie. Also, we are starting to see some flatheads. We saw a 65# monster this weekend. Blues seem to have slowed a bit but they should start again soon. Shad seems to be the best bait right now.

BASS: There are some white bass being caught in shallow water mixed in with the rest of the fish. I am sure if you go up into the creek and river arms you could do well on them. We have not heard anything on black bass yet.

NOTES: This is likely to be one of those rare trifecta weekends where you can hunt turkey in the morning and then spend the rest of the day catching crappie and finding mushrooms. We have heard of some being found last weekend but the rain will really make them pop.
Good luck, have fun, and be safe out there. There are quite a few hunters in the woods. If you are going to walk around the woods looking for mushrooms either wait until after 1:00 pm or wear some orange so you are visible.

UPDATE 4/7/16 Thursday, Apr 07, 2016 by Ron

Lake level is hovering around the 605 mark. Water temp is approximately 50 degrees. I assume pretty stained due to the high winds we have been experiencing the past couple of weeks.

CRAPPIE: People are catching fish but most of them seem to be running on the smaller side at 7-9 inches. I hear pretty scattered reports of where they are catching them. Anywhere from 3 to 20 FOW. Warmer calmer days you should start finding the males starting to move in to shallow water to start building nests in some areas, or feeding up for the spawn in other areas.

CATFISH: Most of the catch seems to be blues right now, though we did get a picture of a 44# flathead caught last weekend. I will get that posted tomorrow. Shad still seems to be the bait that is performing the best.

BASS: We have not heard of any yet, though I have to think there are white bass up in the creeks and rivers. Walleyes too probably.

NOTES: This weekend is youth season for turkey. The store is now open for regular hours. We are open from 7 am till 6 pm all week except Sunday, when we try to close at noon so we can try fishing too. Also, launching fees at the ramps are now $5. A year pass is available at Corp campground gates for $40.