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story.lead_photo.caption Smallmouth bass fishing is phe- nomenal in the state in spring, summer and fall. The best way to enjoy it is wade shing on an Ozark highland stream. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/ Bryan Hendricks)

Beaver Lake

Striped bass fishing is picking up.

Reese Jones at Hook, Line and Sinker in Rogers said striper fishing is good south of the Arkansas 12 bridge. The best area is between Hickory Creek park and Point 12. Use shad or brood minnows 30 to 50 feet deep.

Finding shad is key. Look for schools of shad with a depth finder or fish where gulls are feeding on shad. Stripers should be nearby.

For black bass, try Alabama rigs, crawdad-colored crank baits, jerk baits or jig and pigs. Crappie are hanging around brush 10 to 20 feet deep on the south half of the lake. Fish with minnows or jigs.

No reports on walleye or catfish. Average surface water temperature is in the mid-40s.

Beaver tailwater

Austin Kennedy, fishing guide, recommends fishing for trout with Pautzke Fire baits. Try for walleye downstream near the town of Beaver with crank baits or jerk baits. Fish around weed lines and drop-offs.

Beaver Dam Store reports trout are biting for fly fishermen using woolly buggers and midges. Small jigs are good to use. Olive combined with black or orange is a good color.

Lakes Fayetteville, Sequoyah

Both lakes are closed. They will reopen on Jan. 15.

Bella Vista

Hook, Line and Sinker in Bella Vista recommends fishing for black bass with jerk baits or Alabama rigs at all Bella Vista lakes. Try for bluegill with worms six to 10 feet deep. Trout at Lake Brittany are biting Power Bait or small spoons.

Swepco Lake

Kenny Stroud in Siloam Springs recommends fishing for black bass at Swepco Lake with plastic worms or swim baits.

Illinois River

Stroud recommends fishing for black bass with small jerk baits, jig and pigs, tube baits or spinner baits. Work any lure slowly.

Eastern Oklahoma

Fish at Lake Eucha for black bass with jerk baits or Alabama rigs, Stroud suggests.

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation reports fair fishing at Lake Tenkiller for largemouth bass with jig and pigs, jerk baits and plastic worms. Fish around docks, points and ledges. Try for crappie with minnows or jigs around brush and docks.

Table Rock Lake

Focused Fishing guide service reports black bass are biting well 25 to 50 feet deep over the tops of trees in the middle of creek arms that have shad. If there are no shad, go to a different creek arm. Work a jigging spoon, swim bait or drop-shot rig over the treetops.

The James River arm is the best area to work a jerk bait or Alabama rig. Fish around timber in water 25 to 30 feet deep.


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