Beaver Lake: Trolling with crank baits for crappie is starting to kick in.
Jon Conklin, fishing guide, said that bite is starting earlier than usual this spring. Trolling for crappie will only get better as the water temperature eases toward 80 degrees. It’s in the mid to upper 70s now. Crank baits that run 10 to 15 feet deep are good to use. Creek arms are good places to troll.
Walleye can be caught 20 feet deep with crank baits or nightcrawler rigs. Work them along points or gravel flats. Bluegill are spawning and will bite crickets or worms in shallow water. Catfish are biting on all types of catfish bait.
Striped bass are migrating toward the north end of the lake, which is their warm-water lair. Try fishing between the Arkansas 12 bridge and Point 4 with brood minnows or shad.
Southtown Sporting Goods in Fayetteville reports fair fishing for black bass. Success varies from day to day depending on the weather. Try top-water lures early then soft plastic lures later in the day.
Beaver tailwater: Austin Kennedy, fishing guide, said good numbers of rainbow trout are being caught with prepared trout baits such as Berkley Power Bait or Pautzke Fire Bait. Small silver and gold spoons have been good, especially during power generation at Beaver Dam.
A hot section of river has been between Parker Bottoms and Spider Creek. Access by boat is difficult unless the water is high during power generation.
Power generation has been taking place much of the day. Spillway releases may also occur.
Lake Fayetteville: Lake Fayetteville Marina reports bluegill fishing is good with worms or small jigs. Catfish are biting a variety of catfish baits. Black bass can be caught in shallow water from the public fishing dock. Use live worms or plastic worms. Crappie are biting steady on minnows or jigs 10 feet deep. Some big crappie are being caught.
Lake Sequoyah: Angler Mike McBride said black bass fishing is good with a variety of lures, including top-water lures. Catfish are biting well on any kind of liver. Crappie fishing is slow, but a few are being caught using jigs or minnows around stick-ups.
Bella Vista: Chip Wiseman at Hook, Line and Sinker in Bella Vista said bluegill and redear are biting well 10 to 12 feet deep on crickets or worms. Catfish are biting the same baits. Black bass are hitting top-water lures early and plastic worms later in the day. Rainbow trout are biting at Lake Brittany on Power Bait, small spoons or small jigs.
Illinois River: Kenny Stroud in Siloam Springs recommends using tube jigs or grubs to catch black bass when the water is low. Small top-water lures or swim baits may also work.
Swepco Lake: Stroud recommends using soft plastic lures to catch black bass. Try top-water lures early. Go with liver to catch catfish.
Eastern Oklahoma: The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation reports good largemouth bass fishing at Grand Lake and Lake Eucha with crank baits, buzz baits, spinner baits, plastic worms or top-water lures around brush, docks or rock. Crappie are biting well on jigs or minnows around brush.
At Lake Tenkiller, largemouth bass are biting crank baits, plastic worms or spinner baits. Crappie fishing is fair with jigs or minnows around brush.
Table Rock Lake: Focused Fishing Guide Service said black bass are moving from post-spawn to deeper summertime haunts.
Top-water lures are working well early. Jig and pigs, plastic worms or Ned rigs are good to use for deeper fish. The drop-shot bite is starting to kick in. Chatter baits or square-bill crank baits are worth a try in creek arms.
— Compiled by Flip Putthoff