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Future bright for fishing, outdoor activities at new Carroll County Lake

Future bright for fishing, outdoor activities at new Carroll County Lake

Posted: Friday, April 26, 2013 12:00 pm
By: By Brent Callicott

This past Saturday, I was able to see the much talked about 1,000 acre Carroll Lake just outside of Huntingdon. They sure have a nice new lake over there. Over 22 miles of shoreline, very deep water and extremely clear water at that. I would say in many places I could see at least 10 feet deep into the water.
Here is a little bit that I learned about the lake while I was there fishing with the Obion County Central High School Bass Anglers.
The lake is full of fish — bass, bluegill, crappie and catfish. The lake is divided into two areas according to permitted recreational activities. The dividing line is the TVA power line crossing the lake. Water sports are limited to the northern two thirds.
The southern third is dedicated to fishing and is a no wake area. Fishing is permitted in the water sports area as well. These areas are shown on maps that are available at the park area.
A Carroll County Watershed Association lake permit is required for recreational use of the lake. Permits can be purchased at the lake headquarters, Huntingdon City Hall and the Carroll County Chamber office. The permits are good for one year from the date of purchase.
Annual permits for Carroll County residents are $25 per year and non-residents are $30 per year.
Daily permits for Carroll County residents are $3 per day and non-residents are $5 per day.
A permit is not a state fishing license. Fishing is controlled by the TWRA. A Tennessee fishing license will be required according to the state fishing regulations. See “Permits & Licenses” for more information.
It is not that hard to catch bass but the majority of them are small. As of now, there has already been a 10 pound, 2 ounce bass caught. I feel the lake is 2 to 3 years away from being a great fishing lake producing good size and numbers combined.
Right now, you can keep two bass per man but have to be a minimum of 18 inches long, that is a nice size bass.
Reelfoot Lake
Water temps are in the upper 60s — close to 70. The lake water is mainly clear lakewide but with 2 good chances of rain this week, that could change water color in some areas. Water levels remain rather high — 283.02 feet above sea level. That puts the lake at about 10 to 12 inches above the normal pool level. Now, depending on how much rain we received on Tuesday night and Wednesday and then again today and tonight, look for Reelfoot lake to climb another few inches if not more.
Bass are good right now with the spawn just starting. Several reports of a 5 bass limit on Reelfoot Lake weighing 20 to 23 pounds. Fish trees, duck blinds and stumps. Also, lots of current in ditches so that is a good place to fish also, especially on windy days. Use Strike King jigs in 3⁄8 ounce and 1⁄2 ounce (1/2 ounce on windier days). Dark colors but if you are in very clear water, then use Green Pumpkin or Watermelon seed. Strike King Spinnerbaits good as well. Then try a variety of Strike King soft plastics.
Reports of a few bluegill being caught by some folks also using wax worms
Crappie remain good. Weather has played a role in what is being caught. Cooldowns and rain storms are making some trips hit or misses. The new line of Strike King Mr. Crappie, Wally Marshall crappie baits are good to use.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency will present a preview and recommendations for the 2013-14 hunting and trapping seasons among the agenda items at the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission’s April meeting.
The meeting was to be held in Paris at the Paris Convention Center.
Forestry and Wildlife Division Chief Daryl Ratajczak was to give the 2013-14 hunting seasons’ introduction. Agency biologists and TWRA law enforcement staff will provide background information and season summaries for all the major game animals in the state.
A report on last summer’s eight week field exercise designed to determine a black bear population on the Cumberland Plateau will be presented. TWRA personnel, in cooperation with other organizations and agencies, conducted the study on an area of approximately 170,000 acres (257 square miles) and included portions of Fentress, Pickett and Scott counties.
The public is invited to attend the committee and formal meetings. The Paris Convention Center is located on 1510 East Wood Street (Highway 79).
Junior Bass Club
Two weeks ago, the Reelfoot Lake Junior Bass Club from Union City fished one of their club tournaments on Garrett Lake between Dresden and Paris. Of the club members who fished, there were 25 bass weighed in and released back into the lake.
First place in the young age group was Stone Hale of Union City. He had a total weight of 3.01 pounds. First place winner in the older age group was Jona Climmets with 10.10 pounds. He also won the overall big bass award with a 6 pound 10 ouncer.
They fished this lake just after a large rain which really didn’t seem to make that much of a difference.
Then, this past weekend, the Obion County High School Bass Anglers was also to have fished Garrett Lake but another 2 plus inches of rain fell which muddied up the lake even more so they shifted to the Carroll County Lake. The weather was great and lots and lots of bass were caught.
Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the Reelfoot Lake Bass Club’s annual Big Bass Event that will be held May 11 on Reelfoot Lake out of the Kirby Pocket State Park area just north of Samburg on Highway 22.
Entry fee is $60 per boat. They will pay back first through third place. Blastoff will be at 6 a.m. with the weigh in at 12 noon both at Kirby Pocket. You can pre-register before May 8th at 5 p.m. to be eligible for a $50 gas card. You must be present to win. After this date, you will need to register the morning of the event starting at 5 a.m.
This is a one fish event and whoever has the largest bass weighed in at the end of the event wins. This is a tournament that anyone can win, anyone.
For more information, you may contact Gordon Fox at 885-5541, Rick Kelly at 885-2029 or Brent Callicott at 446-3678 or email at .
Each week I will be reminding you about the Fourth Annual Wounded Warrior Bass Tournament that will be held at Paris Landing on Kentucky Lake May 18. The format is a three-fish limit with a guaranteed first place prize of $2,000.
Entry fees are $110 per boat and if you register before May 2, you will receive a free T-shirt. Fees after May 1 are $120 per boat.
The tournament benefits the Wounded Warrior Program and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency serves as one of the sponsors of the event.
To register or for more information, visit the Foundation website at or you can contact Bill Terry at (615) 878 5099 or email him at
Each year, a large group of Warriors from the Fort Campbell Army Base who are mainly in rehab are paired with area guides and professional fishermen from around the Kentucky Lake area to fish for the tournament as well. Last year, just over 40 Warriors/Soldiers fished and this year they are expecting closer to 55 Warrior/Soldiers.
This is a family event for the Warriors, their wives/husbands and kids. Country music stars are planned for the event at some point. Basically 2 days of just pure fun for everyone is planned and it takes lots of volunteers for this event.
This month marks my 4th anniversary for doing the weekly outdoors column in the Messenger. It has been, and will continue to be, a privilege as well my honor to be able to share each week with each of you about the outdoors.
Thanks to everyone who contacts me in various ways and passes compliments, I cherish each of them. Remember, this is for you and anyway we can help promote and get information out about happenings in the outdoors, we will continue to do so.
Til next week’s column,
Catch ya on the water folks.
                  — Brent

Published in The Messenger 4.26.13

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