Area lake levels have been fluctuating a lot this past week, as the TVA tries to get the lake levels back to winter pool of 354 ft. As of Monday, lake levels were at 355.15 ft, but the TVA is predicting a ‘roller coaster’ change in water levels. The TVA is predicting a fall to the 354.5 ft mark by Wednesday, but a fast rise upwards to 357 ft by next Sunday. Flow rates have been very strong, with over 120,000 cfs early this week. The TVA will be allowing more water to come into the system than going out by mid week, thus allowing the lake to rise sharply. Water temps have been in the mid 50’s this week, and expect them to continue to rise towards the low 60’s over the next few weeks.
Bass fishing has definitely improved, with many keeper sized fish being taken. Seems like the fish have grown over the winter. Productive patterns seem to be finding rocky points and banks with shad present, fishing jerk baits around the shad schools. Crappie have backed off, with the falling water the fish seem to have moved deeper, choosing to hang out in 12-15 ft of water. Catfishing should begin to pick up, as the water rises later this week, the fish should move into the shallows searching for food.
TWRA reminds all hunters and fishermen to make sure and renew your licenses before hunting or fishing. Turkey season is almost here, with the juvenile hunt weekend set for March 27-28th and the regular season starting on April 3rd.
The USFS Duck River Refuge and Cross Creeks Refuge will be open on Tuesday, allowing fishermen and hunters to access most all of the refuge areas. Fishermen only need appropriate fishing licenses, but hunters must, in addition to state licenses, have a federal hunting permit, (type 064 Tennessee national wildlife hunting permit $15). The permit can be bought anywhere state licenses can be purchased.