Area lake surface temperatures are now in the low 60’s, but with the return of warm weather, I expect the lake to warm back into the mid 60’s this week. Normal surface temperatures for this time of year should be in the upper 60’s. The lake levels are normal for this time of the year, normal levels should be around 354.5ft, and we are just under that here in the New Johnsonville area, with levels being between 354.3ft to 354.5ft. Flow rates remain slight, with an average of 25,000cfs. TVA has been keeping the flow going most of the day, to help supply water to the Mississippi river, which has been experiencing record low water levels.
I haven’t had many fishing reports this past week, possibly due to the cool weather and strong winds keeping fishermen off the water. Water temperatures have been falling and although the lake levels remain stable, we have had a more constant flow, which should help spur on some great fall fishing activity, it just seems the fish haven’t gotten the memo! Fall has traditionally been one of my favorite times of the year to find not only numbers, but good sized fish no matter the species. As the water cools and lake levels stabilize, fish tend to go into ‘feed mode’ and school up and become more predictable. Crappie, for example, will move into the bays and school up instead of scattering, and often a limit of good fish can be found on just a few stops. Crappie fishermen should use their electronics to find concentrations of crappie in depths of 5 to 20ft, often relating to creek channels with cover. Bass should be chasing shad, often being seen pushing the shad to the surface ‘busting the shad schools', often in quite shallow water, where top water baits can produce some decent stringers. Catfish will begin to gather together in the old river channel, making it easier to put some good eating in the boat.
Next Saturday, October 29th will be the Tennessee Mad Catters, Paula Smiths Benefit tournament, 7am to 3pm. The public is invited to come by, raffle tickets will be available at the event for many prizes. Weigh-in will be at 3pm, public is welcome!
In TWRA news, the first segment of the deer archery season will conclude this Friday, Oct 28th. And the weekend will be for the kids Juvenile deer hunt, held Oct 29-30th. Limits are the same as the last few years, with 3 anterless/day, and 1 antlered/day not to exceed 2 antlered for the season. As of last Friday, the Humphreys County archery harvest stands at 124 deer, with 38 being antlered deer. The statewide total stands at 12,354. So far in Humphreys Co. no turkeys have been harvested, the shotgun turkey hunt will end on this Friday, Oct 28th. Limits are 1 bearded turkey/county.
The upcoming juvenile hunt is open to youths 6-16yrs old, and young sportsman must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, 21yrs of age or older, who must remain in a position to take immediate control of the hunting device, who also must comply with the fluorescent orange regulations.
On a side note, I’d like to invite all the public to come out on November 5th and celebrate 150 years of Masonic Fraternity in the same building, originally the Hurricane Meeting House and Church. The George Hillman #431 Masonic lodge, has been meeting for 150 years in the same building. We will be having a Chili/Soup cookoff with other Masonic lodges, the celebration will be held from 11am to 2pm. The public is encouraged to come out and visit the building and see the inside of the historic Meeting House/Church, which is located just past Loretta Lynn’s Mansion/Mill on the left, off Old Hwy 13.