Big Hollow LakeThe water temperature is 83 degrees. Thermocline is bottoming out at 6 feet. Water clarity is 30 inches. Black Crappie – Slow: Crappies remain in 6 feet of water in the flooded timber. Vertical jigging works best. Slip bobber and minnows are also picking up a few fish. Bluegill – Slow: Look for bluegill in 5-6 feet of water. Some of the bigger brush piles at the upper end of the lake are good for that depth. Worm and bobber works best in the dense cover. Channel Catfish – Fair: Look for catfish along the face of the dam and in the old creek channel, especially out from the boat ramp bay where the old bridge was. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Look for bass down at about 6 feet, no deeper. Flip soft plastics and jigs back into the flooded timber at 4-6 feet down to find them.
Lake Belva DeerWater clarity is a couple of feet. Thermocline is at 5 to 7 feet. Water temperature is 83 degrees. Black Crappie – Slow: A few anglers early in the morning are still picking up a few in about 6 to 7 feet along the trees out from the beach. Bluegill – Slow: Try vertically jigging around the trees to a depth of about 6-7 feet. Drift quietly from spot to spot; use a 1/64 oz jig tipped with a waxworm. Try the bays on the south side where there is more shade on the water. Channel Catfish – Fair: Along the face of the dam is always a good place to catch nice catfish. Don’t forget to try the “Old Pond”. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Bass are suspended down about 6-7 feet out in the trees. Try soft plastic or weedless jigs early in the morning.
Lake DarlingWater temperature is 82 degrees. Water clarity is about 20 inches. Water remains a green color. The thermocline bottoms out at 9 feet. Most fish are hanging out at between 6.5 and 7.5 feet to stay cool. Bluegill – Slow: Try slow trolling a small (1/64 oz) jig tipped with a waxworm over tops of the rock piles. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use chicken liver just off where the rip-rap ends underwater. Catfish like to cruise along this edge looking for food. It also keeps them in 6-7 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Water is fairly clear below the phytoplankton layer (about 2.5 feet). Run a shallow diving crankbait (0-4 feet) just below that in the morning or a medium diver (5-9 feet) trolled a little later in the day.
Lake GeodeThe water temperature is 85-86 degrees. Water clarity is down to 24 inches with the phytoplankton. The bottom of the thermocline is holding out at 9 feet. Black Crappie – Slow: Crappies are out in deeper water for the summer. Try slow trolling in 8 to 10 feet of water along the drop-offs. Bluegill – Slow: Work the rock piles and flats in 8-9 feet of water or try slow trolling along the drop-offs with a small jig tipped with a waxworm. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Bass are out at the drop-offs; they have slid down the slope a little to cooler water to avoid the heat. They have decent oxygen at about 8-9 feet of water. Best bite is early or just as the sun goes down.
Lost Grove LakeWater clarity has remained fairly good this summer at 7 1/2 feet. Water temperature is in the low 80s. The thermocline starts at 7 feet and bottoms out at 12 feet. Lost Grove Lake has Eurasian Watermilfoil; be sure to clean all vegetation off your boat and trailer before leaving the boat ramp area. Black Crappie – Slow: Crappies are out along the edge of the flooded timber in 8 to 10 feet of water. Try vertical jigging or slow trolling until you find them. Bluegill – Fair: Try slip bobbers and worms off the jetties in 5-6 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Fair: A few anglers are catching catfish along the face of the dam down along the rocks in about 10 feet of water using cut bait or stink bait. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Try vertically jigging in or along the outer edge of the flooded timber in 10-12 feet of water. Water temperature down there is about 5 to 6 degrees cooler. Weedless rigged soft plastics can help you keep out of the snags.
Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)Water levels continue to drop. The riffle above Brighton is visible above the water. The water temperature was up to 86 at the end of last week. Channel Catfish – Fair: With the drop in water levels, find the deeper water and the fish will be there. Use stink baits and chicken livers.
For more information on the above lakes and rivers call the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319- 694-2430.