Fishing Report – Jan/Feb: Great Crappie Fishing Now. The recent rains gave this lake a boost, bringing the lake back up a few feet and conditions for that winter Crappie bonanza will be prime!
Crappie – The Crappie fishing is in dynamite mode! Green jigs & minnows tipped with crappie nibbles or minnows are doing the job. This is a single hand pole fishing at it’s best. Fish each stump &, if no bite, move to the next. The Lower Blue Basin is jam-packed with some of the Lake’s biggest crappie & will continue indefinitely until spring. The areas to search are the 10′ – 12′ levels & fish should be about half way down. Days with a slight ripple seem to be the best. Even with the higher water, big crappie limits are frequent!
Bream – Mid April through June is the best.
Bass – Bass fishermen should target leaning logs & duck blinds with big bladed, slow rolled spinner baits & black/blue jig & pig combos. That is if the blinds are not occupied. Since the water levels rise, bass fishing can be red hot on warming trends. Try to get on the lake around 9:00 am & fish slowly as the waters warm. Generally, cloudy days are best here, but not so much in the fall. The mid-day bite in sheltered places such as Burnt Woods, Katie’s gourd & Snaggy Basin has produced some real memories for anglers who timed it right. With cooler water a slower retrieve and longer pauses when jerking will work well.
Catfish – Some Catfish catches were reported prior to the rise. There is an unusual way to catch catfish this month. Try flipping a large minnow to the base of mid-lake cypress trees where turkeys are roosting. Catfish will be laying in wait to consume the droppings of these birds. Sounds crazy but it is true!
Reelfoot Lake is a sportsman’s paradise! Approximately fifty-four species of fish are found in its waters. The primary game fish includes bream, crappie, large-mouth bass, and catfish. Reelfoot Lake has 30 daily creel limit on crappie and no limit on bluegill. Four to seven pound large-mouth bass are fairly common. Fishing varies on a seasonal basis, but generally runs from March through mid-July and again in September and October. These are prime fishing times, but fishing is popular year-round. Reelfoot Lake’s shallow cypress field waters are recognized as one of the world’s greatest natural fish hatcheries. There are numerous free public boat ramps and fishing piers conveniently located around the lake. Fishing guides can be hired to help newcomers learn how to navigate around the lake and learn more about the hot-spots. During peak months it’s not uncommon for fishermen to return with their limit of fish. Reelfoot Lake is a flooded forest – full of submerged cypress stumps. While boating on Reelfoot , expect to hit some of the stumps. You will be okay unless you are running at full throttle. People boat on this lake using 40 horsepower motors and up, but they go slow, no water skiing or jet skiing is done on Reelfoot Lake. Canoes & Kayaks can be used on Reelfoot Lake. Jon boats are used the most.See Fishing Fees & Regulations in Region 1: Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency See Reelfoot Lake Fishing Guides: Fishing Guides
Best fishing seasons on the lake:
November thru April: Crappie April thru October: Bluegill, Bass