Generation has picked up this week, but with still no predictable pattern. There was not much water over the weekend; then Monday saw generation all day. Tuesday morning and late evening brought generation, but Wednesday we saw no running water until mid afternoon.
The diagram shows Table Rock's levels and the levels below Table Rock Dam as the Corps of U.S. Army Engineers ran water. Just last week, Table Rock's level was around 907 feet, so the lake has come up quite a bit.
Water clarity is very good and the temperature averages about 49 degrees. Our water will continue to drop as spring rolls on, a normal occurance for spring and even summer. It'll also get more and more clear.
If the water is running, drift. Bump something on the bottom or float something under a float. If it's not running hard (one unit or less), tie up along the edge of the lake or anchor in a slow spot. But make sure you're tying to the front/center of your boat and not the side or stern. Be careful and wise -- anchoring or tying up in current can be dangerous. (A few anglers have found out the hard way over the years . . .)
If you're drifting, stay close to the middle of the lake. If you get too close to the side, you'll get snagged on the trees that have fallen in the lake. Live and natural baits include night crawlers, minnows and, of course, Powerbait, should work well.
Something under a float: Berkley's Pink Powerworm still is the hottest thing going. Fish it from four- to eight-feet deep. Find the depth where the trout are holding and stay with that depth. Two-pound line is best but four-pound would work. We finally got an order of weighted floats from Comal Tackle, which Duane has been showcasing on One Cast. We also have the Lews nine-foot rods, perfect for fishing any jig-and-float rig.
Duane caught this brown trout this morning on a sculpin/ginger 1/16th-ounce jig. He's pointing to the clipped adipose fin signifying that this is a triploid brown.
Jigs and flies are also working under a float. If the water isn't running, try a half-micro jig, ginger, black or olive; small marabou jigs in black/yellow, brown/burnt orange or sculpin/orange head. If the water is running, bump up the size to 1/32nd-ounce.
Flies, of course the Zebra Midge is #1 for me. You need to have four styles in a couple of sizes in your box to try until you find what the trout want. They are red, black, P&P and rusty, sizes #16 and #18. (And, yes, there are other colors, but I didn't want to overwhelm you with having to spend so much at the fly shop.) Tippet size: 5x is okay; 6x is better.
If you're throwing a jig straight, with no float, use two-pound line and keep the jig size small. The best jig by far this spring is the 1/16th-ounce sculpin/ginger/brown head jig. If the water is not running, try working it high in the water column first because that's where they've liked it the best. But if that doesn't work, let it sink and work it closer to the bottom. Just like the jig and float, find where they're holding, experiment with different depths, as well as fast/slow retrieves to find the best bite.
If they're running water, again bump up the size from 3/32nd to 1/8th-ounce. I've tried throwing white with very little success, but it's this time of year when the browns key in on white, so I keep trying . . .