Bull Shoals Lake Fishing Report & Fishing News
by Ricky Eastwold and Crew, Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock

- Bull Shoals Lake Fishing Report -  

2009 FISH "CATCHING" picture page  
2010 FISH CATCHING   picture page 2010 Fishing Report
2011 FISH CATCHING   picture page 2011 Fishing Report
2012 FISH CATCHING picture page 2012 Fishing Report
2013 Fish catching picture page  

**** White River Trout Fishing Video   2013- YouTube by Guide Del Colvin ****

****Bull Shoals Lake Bass Fishing video 2013 - YouTube by Guide Del Colvin***

***Bull Shoals White Bass Fishing Video 2013 - YouTube by Guide Del Colvin***

MORE VIDEOS HERE

Ask a Guide a Question? Email ours!
Guide Jackie Due - jdue@microplastics.com
Guide Jimmy McDaniel - guidejimmymcdaniel@gmail.com
Guide Michael Osborn - osbornguides@gmail.com
Guide Del Colvin - bertsbaitandfirearms@yahoo.com

 


NEW APP FOR LAKE LEVELS AND RELEASES

The Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District recently launched a mobile App for marina owners, dock owners, fisherman, navigators, paddlers and park visitors. The App delivers current water conditions for Corps' reservoirs, rivers and streams within the district boundaries

TYPE THIS IN SEARCH APP- USACE LITTLE ROCK

Click here for more info and download instructions.

 


2013 fishing report

March 6th - 2013 

     Hello everybody! Time once again for the fishing report. I have just got back off the midwest sport-boat-travel show run like I usually do in the winter months. 6 cites in 7 weeks. Thanks to all of you that stopped by to chat and say hello!

    Bull Shoals lake is currently around the 650 mark which makes it 5 to 7 feet low depending on who you talk to. The water temperature is in the mid to high 40's depending on where you take it on the lake. The visibility is fair to good. Dot know about the thermocline. I think there is probably one very deep somewhere past the 70-80 foot mark. That is where is usually is this time of year. I haven't had to scuba dive yet so I am not sure.

  Fishing patterns are still in the winter phase and should start to change soon. We haven't had much warm weather yet. It is getting up in the 50's and low 60's during the day but we are still getting those very cold nights. All of the fishing patterns are keyed to water temperature and that is hard to predict just like the weather. What a difference from last year. We were already having 70 degree days and warm nights so the water temperature was zooming last year. We will have to wait and see what happens this year. We haven't had much fishing going on this week due to cold, windy and nasty conditions. One of our guides did have a trip today and caught a keeper walleye and a couple of bass on a stick bait. He said the water temperature is still in the high 40's around the lake where he fished. At least he got some bites!!!  Below are the patterns that either I am told are working or should be working this time of year.

March 14th- Thursday- 2013

  Hello everybody!  Yaaaa ! The fishing and catching has started!. We have had some warmer temps this week and the water temp is in the upper 40' and lower 50's around the lake. We have had some good stringers come in this last couple of days. See picture page.

The white bass have started. I haven't been told of any surfacing yet but the are definitely back in the creeks in the "staging" mode waiting for warmer water to spawn in. They are in 5 to 30 feet of water depending on who you talk too and what part of the lake you are on. I am told they are very shallow above the bridge in the Theodosia area. They seem to be deeper down on this end of the lake.

The bass are biting good on any type of minnow looking baits like rapalas, rebels, rogues, x rap ect. They are also biting the crawfish-bluegill color looking crank baits. I would think the other patterns below will work also.

I haven't seen any walleye yet. Just one here and one there. They should take off at anytime. The water temp is right. We are suppose to get up to 80 degrees so that should bring the water temp up some. Might turn the walleye on tomorrow. We have had reports of the few being caught spewing sperm all over when you get them in the boat. This means they are getting ready to spawn. Should be soon! I will post as soon as they start.

I haven't seen any crappie yet either but they should be starting also. Of course you crappie fisherman dot report or show off you crappie much so I dot know much about the catching of these. I usually can tell by the "crappie tackle" and "crappie minnows" being sold. That hasn't happened yet.

A sad note- One of the best Bull Shoals fisherman I ever knew passed this week. Charlie Garrison. You will be missed. I will miss the night pictures he sent me of all the fish he caught at night. :( :(

Until next time!!

March 21st- Thursday- 2013

  Hello everybody! Not much change this week. We have had cold temperatures so the lake is still 46-49 depending on where you take it. We are actually getting snow right now as I am writing this but it is less then an inch and shouldn't affect the fishing much. Jimmy McDaniel actually guided today for walleye and had one keeper. It was a male in spawn mode. The fish was delivering sperm all over when he was netted. This is good news that the walleye are in spawn mode. When they are done then they like to eat!!! Same fishing and catching going on for White Bass and other bass species this last week. New pictures up here.  I have re-posted the last years fishing reports up top for you fish junkies that want to compare temps and patterns from year to year. I did. :) :) 

  The white river trout fishing is very good as usual. The guides have made a new video here featuring 2013 trout being caught. See it here - White River Trout Fishing Video. They are going to make some for the lake also soon.

Until Next time!!

March 31st- Sunday - 2013

   Hello everybody! I had a couple of guides fishing on their own today. Jackie Due and Del Colvin both said the bite was awesome today. They both caught a couple of dozen bass on a variety of baits. Just about any bait was catching fish today according to Jackie. The lake is becoming extremely clear now with visibility approaching 20 to 25 feet most places. Its that time of year when the water becomes really clear. The surface temperature is rising again with the warmer temperatures and the warm rains we have been having. It is from the lower 50's to mid 50's around the lake. Of course this is what is making the catching of fish better.  I am told by one of the local divers that there is a thermocline at 20 feet and the water gets very cold at this point.

   The white bass are still staging back in the creeks and main lake coves. They are on the surface to 20 feet of water depending the time of day and the temperature.

   Guide Jimmy McDaniel caught the first bunch of walleye last night on jerk baits. The last two hours of sunlight and after dark seem to be the best bite right now. see picture

  Crappie are starting to be caught on the very small jigs and small minnows around the brush piles and timber bluffs.

I have changed some of the patterns below. Until next time!!

April 10th - Wednesday - 2013

  Hello everybody! Fishing is great for all species expect walleye. They are still trying to spawn, You can catch a few here and there but as soon as the spawn is over it should be on. I went last night and we caught 2 keepers and 2 short fish. They were all males and trying to spawn. The water is very clear and the temps are 50 to 54 degrees depending on where you go. All bass species are coming in as well as the crappie and white bass. I have added several pictures on the picture page. We still are having warm temps during the day but cold nights so the water temp is slow in warming up. Not many changes yet. Just lots and lots of fish being caught, mostly bass, crappie and white bass. Till next time.

April 14th - Sunday - 2013

    Hello everybody! Lots of fish are being caught on the lake. The pictures are poring in. Mostly bass, white bass and crappie. We are seeing a few walleye here and there but not in major quantities yet. I think the walleye are still spawning and should turn on at any time. We have had colder then normal water temperatures so the spawn is late for the walleye. You can see on the picture page that lots of the other species are being caught.

   We have the Bassmaster Elite Tournament series this week. Practice starts on Monday April 15th. It should be a great week for them . The water temp is still hanging in the low to mid 50's but we are suppose to have a warm week so the water temperature should increase. The visibility is very clear on the main lake and on this end of the lake. I am told that the Theodosia arm has some color up towards the bridge and there is some color around the lead hill area and up.

  Most of the patterns are still the same. Until the water temp increase or we get some type of major water visibility change due to rain they should be the same for awhile. I will try to keep you posted.

April 22nd - Sunday - 2013

  Hello everybody! Not many changes except the lake has risen up to the 658 level. Thetas 4 feet since last week. The water temperature hasn't changed much. We are still having the zig zag water temperature of being in the lower 50's then zooming up to 60, then back down in the lower 50's. Last year we had warmer then normal temperatures and now we are having colder then normal temperatures. What a difference a year makes.

   The fishing has pretty much stayed the same since the water temperature hasn't changed much. Lots of bass being caught, white bass, some crappie and some walleye. In my opinion, the the walleye are still trying to spawn. They are catching mostly males and when they do they are spraying everywhere when they get in the boat. So, based on this evidence, they are still spawning. Which is later then normal. We are expecting some more cold weather this week.

  The fishing patterns have stayed the same. They will until the water temperature changes. Until next time!!

 

April 28nd - Sunday - 2013

   Hello everybody! We are finally getting some changes. The lake has risen several feet and is up to 659.30 at the time of this writing. We have had several inches of rain over the last week and we wont get any new projections on the lake level until Monday. By the way, you can now download an app to check on all of the lake levels, projections and river flow at 'usace little rock' on the app store for your phone. See above.

   The lake is extremely clear at this end of the lake still. The Theodosia arm is pretty murky in most places from what we are being told. The water is in the upper 50's to low 60's on the very surface but just a few inches under the water it gets cold and drops back down to mid to lower 50's. So, Its not warming up much yet. However, the bluegills and perch moved into the bank in very shallow water. Also, there is reports of spawning beds around the bank. So the water temp is finally getting right for that.

  Fishing hasn't changed much yet. The main thing I am hearing is the baits need to be work very slow most of the time. If you are having trouble catching fish then slow or bait down or actually stop it and let it sit. This doesn't work with every bait the suspending stick baits, the floating plastics and stuff like that you can. Still getting conflicting reports on the walleye. I thing everything else is starting to get into spawn mode. That's it for now. Until next time.

May 8th - Thursday  - 2013

     Hello. What a complete difference in things from 2012. Last year was the year of extremely warm temperatures early in March and through out the Spring. The water temperatures last were were way way ahead of the normal. Fishing was different then normal. This year?  its the exact opposite. We have been having cold front after cold front since February. This has been the coldest spring overall that I can ever remember in the 40 years I have been here. The water temperature is still hovering in the high 50's to low 60's in most places. There is plenty of fish being caught. Mostly bass, white bass, and crappie. The walleye are the only species that has been disappointing so far. There still hasn't been that crazy walleye bite that we usually get in the spring. We had snow in Arkansas last week in the northwest corner. That is the first time snow has been recorded in May. The constant cold fronts have been yo-yoing the fish into the bank, then out, then back, then out. We are finally seeing largemouth bass on the beds around the docks here at the cove. The bluegill are in the banks one day and then gone the next. We are suppose to be getting some warm rain this week so that should hopefully put things back on track.

  The water is extremely clear around the lake. The lake is 8 feet high right now. That has put some brush in the lake on the edges. The water temperatures are in high 50's to lower 60's around the lake.

  The fishing is still great for most species. The patterns below are still working. Top water should be starting soon. Until next time.

May 12th - Sunday  - 2013

   Hello everybody! The bass fishing continues to be great. We are seeing lots of good stringers and fish being brought in. The bass are in spawn mode or post spawn mode mostly. We watched a couple of spotted bass spawn right here next to the ramp to the office yesterday. They went at it for several hours. The water temperature is finally starting to rise around the lake. See this chart - water temperature . As you can see the water temp is up in the mid 60's on the surface. Not much change in the fishing patterns. We still haven't seen a major walleye bite yet. Very disappointing for this year. The ones that are being caught are in 20 to 25 foot of water. We never did have a shallow bite on the stick baits this year. The water temp zig zagging had to affect it.

Not much else to report. Until next time.

May 19th - Sunday  - 2013

   Hello everybody! There are a few changes going on finally. The water temperature is starting to warm up in to the mid to high 60's. The bass fishing is still great with lots of fish and good reports coming in. There are a lot of bass on the beds in this cove around the marina. We have been watching them spawn for the last week. Yes, it is a late spawn this year. One of the latest I have ever seen. It should be a good one too. The lake is 7-8 foot high still which means there is some brush in the lake along the shore line. This will give the small spawn a place to hide and survive. Another reason the spawn should be good is the higher lake level. Most species of fish are going to get to spawn while the water is a little high. There has been a few times in the past that the fish will try to spawn and the lake gets dropped then their beds end up out of the water. This is not going to happen this year. The visibility is still really good and should continue to be for a while until the water temperature gets up there where the algae will start to grow.

   I am finally getting some reports of walleye being caught. The bite has been around an hour either side of dark with the rogue-rebel-xrap stick bait. Also, I have been getting reports of the bottom bouncing with a night crawler during the day in 20 to 25 feet of water which is deeper then normal. They aren't usually that deep until the middle of June. What a strange walleye year. I have a good picture (click) of a walleye stringer caught yesterday with this pattern. I would also think split shoting a night crawler or drop shoting a night crawler might work for walleye. Everything else is pretty much the same. The white bass have slowed down a little and are starting to hit at night under lights. Still getting a few reports on crappie and seeing some catfish coming in jug fishing.

Until next time! 

June 1st - Saturday - 2013

  Hello everybody! I think summer is finally here. The water temperature has zoomed up in the low to mid 70's on the surface. There is a major thermocline forming from the 25 to 35 foot level. You can see a chart (click here). There is almost a 13 degree difference in 10 feet. I must say this is a deep thermocline for this early in the year. It usually isn't this deep until July. What a weird year!  The visibility is starting to turn a little from excellent to very good. The lake actually dropped 2 feet this last week which will make the visibility go down. Dropping the lake always does. We did get a bunch of rain yesterday and it went back up a few inches today. Current level is around the 662 level. Projections show it cresting around the 664.5 level on June 6th. This of course is if there is no more rain.

    The walleye fishing seems to be picking up a lot also according to the pictures I have been getting over the last few days. See the picture page. Most of the walleye are being caught in the 12 to 20 foot range I am told. I would expect the walleye to start moving down into that deeper colder water anytime. But we are seeing a lot more being caught and brought in. The shallow stick bait pattern never did happen this year which was very unusual.

   The bass fishing remains fantastic. One of the best years I have seen in the 41 years I have been here. I have seen years with bigger fish but never seen as many as are being caught. Tons and tons of small fish are being caught. Which is good. That means there will be plenty of bass for the next few years. The same patterns are holding as listed below. 

Not much else to report. Till next time!!

June 11 - Saturday - 2013

  Hello everybody! A few changes are going on. The water is still rising a little bit and is up to 665 -666 level. There is a major thermocline down around the 28 to 32 foot level. This is deeper then normal for this time of year. It is usually around the 12 - 20 foot level by now. Weird year again. The walleye are hanging in this zone. So if you are fishing for them and not catching any then you are probably fishing too shallow. Your bait need to be in that zone. Bass fishing is about the same. Plenty are being caught. It seems they are shallow during the early morning, then move out deeper as the sun comes up, then move back shallower as the sun goes down. Not much change in the patterns as of yet. Top water seems to be working good early, then plastics. The water temp is in the mid to high 70's on the surface then starts to chill a little from there. The graph here shows the latest water temperature. The visibility is still very good. Spearfishing starts this Saturday so it will be interesting to see what comes in and what the divers will report.

Until next time!!

June 21 - Friday- 2013

    Hello everybody! The fishing continues to be great. The only changes are in the water temperature. It is warming up but its that time of year. The fishing patterns are still the same. Spearfishing season opened and its been good. The divers are reporting lots of fish being seen. Most of them are amazed at the amount and size of bass they see. This is all related to the high water of 2010 and 2011. We should have a great spawn again this year with the water levels being 8-10 foot high and stable for the spawn. There has been lots of great walleye stringers being brought in. Mostly on bottom bouncers tipped with night crawlers in 25 -35 feet of water. The bass fishing remains great with the same patterns. The only difference I am told is that they are starting to move deeper. So if you are having trouble catching fish then go deeper. The visibility is great and still around the 20 to 30 foot level. The lake is starting to drop and the water temp is starting to rise so I would expect the visibility to start to diminish.

Until next time!! -- Water temp chart -

July 3rd Wednesday- 2013

  Hello everybody! The summer patterns are starting to emerge. The lake is dropping and the water temperature is going up. new chart here. The only changes are the fish are moving deeper into the cooler water. The largemouth bass are still fairly shallow but the other bass species are deeper. If you are having trouble catching fish then move your bait into deeper water. I would expect the main summer patterns to be here any day. We are not seeing as many fish caught but there aren't as many people fishing for them either. The hotter temperatures seem to put a damper on people wanting to fish. Hope everybody has a great 4th of July. Till next time.

 

July 17th Wednesday- 2013

  Hello everybody! Fishing has went into the summer patterns for sure. The water temperature is in the 80's on the surface. It is still very clear. The thermocline is 25 to 35 feet depending on who you talk to and where u go on the lake. I the fishing has slowed down like it always does in the summer due to the heat and not as many people fishing. Most of the bass are shallow the first hour or two of daylight and the last hour or two of sunlight. If you are fishing from 8 am to 7 pm then you should probably go deeper around the thermocline. There are a lot of bass fisherman going at night. We have two weekly tournaments on Tuesday and Saturday. It has been taking anywhere from 10 to 15 lbs to win either one. See below for fishing patterns. Until next time.

 

August 12th Monday - 2013

  Hello everybody! I just noticed the last date on the fishing report was July 17th. I did update it on the first of August but DIDN'T SAVE IT.  LOL. Note to self - save the report after you type it.

water temp chart-

dissolved oxygen chart -

  The fishing hadn't changed much anyway so you didn't miss much. However, things are changing now. We went 7 weeks without rain in June and most of July. Now it has rained a little or a lot almost every day for the last couple of weeks. The lake is rising and is up to 664 at the time of this writing. It is project to go to 670 -672. This has changed the fishing some. The top water bite is really good around the brush next to the shoreline. The Largemouth bass are hanging shallow around the brush. I have had reports of spotted bass being caught in 50 -60 feet of water on night crawlers and plastics. Spooning in 25 to 35 is also starting to produce some fish. The biggest change is the top water bite. Until next time.

 

Temperature and DO chart as of 8-15-13 -

Monday September 2nd- 2013

  Hello everybody ! Another summer season has gone. It is true, the older you get the faster life goes. Anyway, the lake is starting to drop. The visibility is still very good however but will probably change with the lake dropping. The fishing is still the same and wont change until the water temperature drops. The Largemouth are still fairly shallow most of the time hanging around the brush that are in the lake. The Smallmouth are hanging 18 to 25 on the gravel flats. The Spotted bass are hanging in the cold water from 30 to 60 feet and are schooled up. Top water baits early and late in the day, plastics and jigs in 20 to 35 feet for Smallmouth, and spoons and drop shot for spotted bass in 30 to 60. Haven't seen many walleye caught and usually don't this time of year until later in the fall. However, the divers are seeing them in 30 to 45 feet hanging around the brush. Not much else to report. Until Next time!

Friday September 27th- 2013

   Hello everybody ! The water temperature has started to drop and the people fishing has gone up so there are more fish being caught. The temperature is in the mid 70's on the surface around the lake. The thermocline is still hanging anywhere from the 27 to 35 foot level. The level has dropped down to 559 level. The visibility is better then it normally is this time of year. The spotted bass are hangin in the 30 to 35 foot level with some being down as deep as 45. There have been lots of good stringers being brought in by drop shoting live bait. The Largemouth are still fairly shallow along the steeper banks and above the brush piles. The smallmouth bass have been moving up closer too anywhere from surface to 15 foot of water. See below for patterns. Still havent seen many walleye yet but they should be getting close. I havent had many people fishing for walleye yet. The spearfisherman are doing rather well in the 30 to 35foot range. Not much else for now. Until next time.

Friday October 25th- 2013

  Hello everybody !  The lake is turning over as it usually does this time of year. The water temperature is around 70 degrees on the surface and in the low 60's all the way down to 45-50 feet. The thermocline was around 45 feet and moving down. Not much change in the fishing. Not much to report. Until Next time.

BASS -   updated 09-27-13

- Top water is working most of the time now.  Spooks, flukes and any plastics that will go from the surface to 10 feet seem to be the best.

- Plastics are working in 10 to 15 feet of water in the middle of the day. The mustard colored and watermelon colored tube jig (gitzit) seem to be the best.

  - Spinner baits on cloudy windy banks for Largemouth bass. Mostly natural colors in clear water and bright colors in dingy water.

- split shot or drop shot a night crawler or  in 30 to 40 feet of water.

- Split shot a crawfish in 30 to 45 feet of water

- vertical spooning in 30 to 45 feet of water

WHITE BASS -  updated 09-27-13

   Very few reports of white bass. I would think trolling or spooning should be producing some of these.

Walleye - updated 09-27-13

- Bottom bouncing with night crawlers in 30 to 40 feet is producing some walleye.

- split shoting  or drop shoting night crawlers in 30 to 40 feet is producing  walleye

- flat trolling with deep diving baits, simulate a bluegill or minnow .

- spooning in 30 to 40 feet of water.

Crappie -

- Small minnows around brush piles

- small 1/16 ,1/32, 1/64 oz jigs around the brush piles.

 

White River:

White River Trout Fishing Video 2013- YouTube by Guide Del Colvin

NOTHING EVER CHANGES ON THE RIVER EXCEPT THE WATER LEVEL!!!  THE FISHING IS ALWAYS GREAT!!  This question gets asked a lot. "When is the best time to fish the river? "  The answer is anytime. The water comes out of the bottom of the lake therefore it is always very cold. It doesn't have the temperature cycle of a normal body of water. It doesn't matter if its 100 degrees out or 10 degrees out. The water temperature stays the same within a few degrees, Therefore, the fishing is always the same and always good. Arkansas stocks the White River with rainbow trout year around so the fishing is good year around. The water level doesn't matter either, you just have to change how you fish. If the water is high then you usually drift and float fish, if its low then you anchor and still fish. Naturally, fly fishing is better when the river is low. SO, COME FISHING WHENEVER YOU CAN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The river fishing has been great!! Check out the 2012 picture page for photos of some big ones caught over the last couple of weeks. Nothing new on the patterns. --- Worms, night crawlers, power baits, salmon eggs, Count down Rapalas, spoons, rooster tails, jigs and just about any other type of trout bait or pattern you have heard of.

Come visit our expanded bait and Tackle department and good luck and good fishing to! 

 

FISHING -- INFORMATION -- FISHING

WATER TEMP GRAPH - 04-24-09 
WATER TEMP GRAPH    05-24-09
WATER TEMP COMPARISON  FOR APRIL - 08 TO 09 WATER TEMP
TYSON FOODS EMPLOYEE TOURNAMENT RESULTS - 2009
DAN GALUSHA CRAPPIE ARTICLE ON BULL SHOALS LAKE
WATER TEMP GRAPH - 06-26-09
PREFERRED OXYGEN RANGE FOR FISH
LENGTH TO WEIGHT CONVERSION CHART FOR - WALLEYE - CRAPPIE - LARGEMOUTH BASS
WATER TEMP GRAPH - 07-08-09
WATER TEMP GRAPH - 07-22-09
WATER TEMP GRAPH - 08-16-09
oxygen levels - 09-20-09
WATER TEMP - OXYGEN LEVELS - 04-01-10
WATER TEMP-OXYGEN LEVELS - 04-28-10
WATER TEMP-OXYGEN LEVELS - 05-25-10
WATER TEMP COMPARISON  FOR MAY - 09 TO 10 WATER TEMP

     

JOHN EASTWOLD’S FAVORITE SAYING - FISHING IS ALWAYS GOOD - SOMETIMES CATCHING CAN BE SLOW.  

Home Page - Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock Web site      ___________________________________________________________________

NEW APP FOR LAKE LEVELS AND RELEASES

The Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District recently launched a mobile App for marina owners, dock owners, fisherman, navigators, paddlers and park visitors. The App delivers current water conditions for Corps' reservoirs, rivers and streams within the district boundaries

TYPE THIS IN SEARCH APP- USACE LITTLE ROCK

Click here for more info and download instructions.

 

Bull Shoals Lake Boat Dock
PO Box 748
Bull Shoals, AR 72619

Email: boatdock@bullshoals.net

Phones: 870-445-4424 or 870-445-4166

Fax: 870-445-8354