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Fishing for stripers has been hit and miss on Norris Lake

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By The Staff

The following is a weekly summary of the fishing conditions on Norris Lake as reported by creel clerks from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

 T h e lake level on March 5 was  1, 0 0 3 . 1   f e e t  and  e x p e c t e d   t o   r e m a i n   s t e a d y  .  S u r f a c e   t e m p e r a t u r e s   a r e  in the mid to upper 40s, depending on time of day and location .   T h e   l o w e r   e n d of the lake   i s   c l e a r , while t h e   C l i n c h River ,   f r o m   P o i n t   2 9   t o   t h e   h e a d w a t e r s,   i s   s t a i n e d .   T h e   s e c t i o n   a b o v e   P o i n t   3 1   h a s   o n l y   a   f o o t   o f   v i s i b i l i t y .

 C o l d   w a t e r  has h i n d e r ed  f i s h ing . However, anglers using s m a l l   l u r e s  and  a   s l o w   r e t r i e v e   a r e   d o i n g   p r e t t y   w e l l , all things considered .   

S mallmouth and spotted bass fishermen u s i n g   f l o a t   a n d   f l y   r i g s  (1/4 oz. or smaller,  s e t   a t   1 0 -1 5   f e e t deep)  are having the best luck .  

  L argemouth bass a r e   s t a r t i n g   t o plastic worms and lizards  i n   t h e   b a c k   o f   c o v e s   o r   c r e e k s   w h e r e   t h e   s u n   h a s   w a r m e d   t h e   w a t e r .

 C rappie a c t i o n   p i c k e d   u p ,   w i t h   a n g l e r s   a b l e   t o   c a t c h slabs holding  t i g h t  to t h e   b r u s h   i n  large creeks w h e r e   t h e   w a t e r   i s   s t a i n e d   a n d   w a r m e r . As usual, the best crappie lures are m e d i u m   t u f f y   m i n n o w s , one- i n c h   t u b e   j i g s  and 1 / 3 2  o r   1 / 6 4   o z.   p o p e y e   f l i e s  .

 S triper fishing has been hit and miss .  A   f e w   f i s h   i n   e x c e s s   o f   3 6   i n c h e s   w e r e   c a u g h t ,   b u t   t h e   m a j o r i t y   f a i l e d   t o   m a k e   t h e   m i n i m u m   3 6 - i n c h   s i z e   l i m i t .  Stripers  a r e  scattered , with t h e   b e s t   l o c a t i o n   f o r   l a r g e   f i s h  being  C o v e   C r e e k   b e t w e e n   P o i n t s   1   a n d   3 .  Most of the stripers that have been caught h i t   s u r f a c e - d r i f t e d   s h a d .  T h e   w a t e r   i s   c l e a r ,   s o   k e e p   t h e   b a i t   s e t   a s   f a r   f r o m   t h e   b o a t   a s   p o s s i b l e .

 B luegill w e r e   s l o w to bite ,   b u t   o n   w a r m e r   d a y s  a   f e w  have been caught in the shallows o n   p o p p i n g   b u g s .   

Not much activity has been reported by walleye and sauger fishermen on the upper sections of both river arms. The water is still too cold for the annual walleye run.