Summer heat appears to be fading, making way for better fishing weather

Summer heat appears to be fading, making way for better fishing weather

Posted: Friday, September 14, 2012 12:01 pm
By: By Brent Callicott

After above normal air temperatures in the summer months are concerned, now much cooler and nicer weather is starting to settle in with fall approaching and spells for some really good fishing.
Water levels continue to be problems in most area ponds, lakes and rivers in these parts, but hasn’t stopped many from getting out and hunting or fishing in these areas.
Reelfoot Lake
Water level has come up from the recent heavy rains over the last 10 days. Reelfoot Lake has been in the 279.90 feet above sea level mark just two weeks ago. Since the rains over the last 10 days, Reelfoot Lake has come up several inches and is now 280.40 feet above sea level, which equals to coming up about 6 to 8 inches, if not an inch or two more. The normal lake level is 282.20 feet above sea level. Most all of this information I gather weekly from the USGS website. This gauge I located on the southern end of Reelfoot. Tons of stumps are showing all over the lake.
Water temps are in the 80-degree range and will come up a degree or two as the daytime air temp wars. These cool night with air temps in the 50s and lower 60s will help keep the water temps from climbing very far up the thermometer.
Water color is not all that bad and the recent rains helped in that as well.
As for the fishing report, the crappie bite is improving daily. My dad, Lanny, and my mother, Patricia, managed to have a pretty good day on Monday, catching several of the very nice grade and all caught using the Strike King Lure Co. Crappie baits which have not been on the market but the last three years or so. More new baits have been put out on the market as well as several new products. You can go to www.strikeking.com and request one of the new catalogs.
Most of the crappie fishing is taking place in the Lower Blue Basin area of the lake. One word of caution: Beware of the Asian carp that are in many parts of the lake. Vibrations from the outboard motors, as well as many other noises that generate a vibration, will send these Asian carp flying out of the water and could either end up hitting you or end up in you boat making a huge mess. Even running slow, the fish will jump out of nowhere.
No other fishing reports to pass along on Reelfoot.
Make sure you also carry a working cell phone or two-way radio with you on the lake. It is also good to travel as two, meaning take two boats in case one gets stuck on a stump or log. Carry a long and strong pushpole also or some type of pull hook.
Kentucky Lake
Water levels in the Paris Landing/Big Sandy Creek area was 356.85 feet above sea level Monday and continues to slowly climb and is expected to be in the 357.15 feet above sea level by weeks end this week.
Water temps start out in the upper 70s but will end up in the lower 80s by the heat of the day.
Water color is good. A lot of the grass that was visible over the last few weeks has either started to die out or the water is covering it even more. Current has been visible most every day also, which is good for all fishing.
Crappie have been kinda slow but are starting to pick up and will do so with the water temps slowly falling over the next several weeks and months.
Bass fishing is decent but depends on who you speak with. Look for baitfish and you should find some fish chasing minnows. This is kinda a cat-and-mouse type game. The bass are staying in the general area but moving around to ambush their prey. There are lots and lots of baitfish all over Kentucky Lake.
Best baits are of a variety. The new Strike King Sexy Dawg, the Strike King KVD 1.5, the Strike King Sexy Frog as well as the Strike King Rage Toads. All of these will land you a few fish. Some are still being caught on ledges and drops with the Strike King 5 & 6 XD Deep Diving Crankbaits.
As the lake continues to drop, please remember to run the buoys. This means staying in the main channel or secondary channels while navigating around the lake.
Deer season
The 2012 Tennessee State Deer Season gets under way very soon, this month as a matter of fact.
West Tennessee counties fall in two different Deer Region Units, A and L. Pay attention.
Obion County, Weakley County, Carroll County, Gibson County and Henry County all fall under the Unit L region as well as a host of many other counties across West and Middle Tennessee.
Crockett County, Dyer County, Lake County, as well as a few other counties fall under the Unit A Deer region from far West Tennessee.
Archery, which includes Crossbows, for both units is Sept. 22-Oct. 26. Then Oct. 29-Nov. 2. Muzzleloader (and archery) season will then run Nov. 3-16. Gun (and muzzleloader and archery) season run Nov. 17 through Jan. 6, 2013.
Depending on the unit you’re hunting and county will depend on the harvest numbers.
The Young Sportsman hunts will take place Oct. 27-28 and then again Jan. 12-13, 2013.  This is for Youths 6 to 16 years of age only.
Each young sportsman must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, 21 years of age or older, who must remain in a position to take immediate control of the hunting device and who must also comply with fluorescent orange regulations, as specified for legal hunters. Multiple youths may be accompanied by a single qualifying adult. Youths 10 years of age or older must meet Hunter Education requirements.
You can visit the TWRA website at www.tnwildlife.org to find out more information. One more thing, please watch your step while out in the woods for snakes. They are heading to hibernation for the winter.
Mark your calendar for the 23rd Annual Reelfoot Lake Waterfowl Festival and Sporting Collectibles Show that will be held in Samburg Oct. 13 -14 from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. each day.
This year’s show will feature many of the nation’s best duck, goose and turkey call makers in addition to a large number of collectors’ exhibits. Also exhibiting will be vendors specializing in hunting clothes and gear, boating and accessories, duck and goose decoys, wildlife prints, wildlife artists and other waterfowl and hunting related vendors. Nationally Sanctioned Duck Calling Competitions as well.
For more information, you can visit their website at www.reelfootwaterfowl.com .
Til next week’s column, thanks again for your support in reading my weekly outdoors column,
Catch ya on the water folks.
                      — Brent

Published in The Messenger 9.14.12

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