It was another crazy week of weather on Norfork Lake. We had some warm days, but the wind was from the east for four days, and it blew out all the bait and dirty water from the creeks. So as fishing got better the latter part of the week, catching bait became harder.
The first part of the week, fishing was slow, but by week’s end, the stripers and hybrids were more active. We are still fishing the Big Creek area, but we are now catching stripers on the main lake points later in the morning after the wind picks up. I caught three days of limits for my clients with the biggest striper being 22 pounds, which was released after some nice photos.
We are still using long lines with just a small split shot and planner boards with short leaders. The planner board baits are usually 8-inch to 10-inch gizzard shad kept right at the surface. The more wind you have, the better chance you have of catching a big fish. Each day we have multiple strikes on these baits but few hookups since it takes a lot of time and skill to set the hook and play the fish. The best baits have been 3-inch to 5-inch gizzard shad. We use these baits since they last a long time on the hook and can take repeated hits and still stay alive compared to a threadfin shad that will die on the first hit.
Stripers are also being caught up near Twin Coves and around the Crystal Cove.
The top-water bite has yet to begin, but if the weather continues to keep warming the lake, it will not be long. The night bite should also pick up as the nights are staying warmer, which keeps the water warmer.

Ozark County Times

504 Third Steet
PO Box 188
Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423

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