Free Fishing for Spring Break 2020

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, in cooperation with Gov. Asa Hutchinson, voted during a specially called meeting today to waive all fishing license and trout permit requirements for residents and nonresidents starting this weekend at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, March 21 through 11:59 p.m Sunday, March 29.

The special waiver is in response to the extended spring break by many schools and voluntary measures suggested by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to practice “social distancing” to slow the spread of the Novel Coronavirus currently affecting the world.

“Anglers have always practiced a type of ‘social distancing’,” said AGFC Director Pat Fitts. “We just call it ‘going fishing.’ Being outdoors in the fresh air is healthy and it’s the perfect remedy for cabin fever and the restlessness that may come from being cooped up at home. I encourage everyone to look at the current situation as a time to reconnect with nature instead of locking themselves inside. Now is a great time to get outside and build some lasting fishing memories.”

Only the license requirement has been waived for all persons, except those whose fishing privileges are currently suspended; all other fishing regulations, such as daily limits and any length restrictions by species, will remain in place during this time.

Andrew Parker, Vice-Chairman of the Commission complimented staff for working so quickly to organize the effort.

“Hopefully, it will provide some relief to the full-blown anxiety that everyone is feeling,” Parker said. “It does heed the call the governor has made to go outside, keep social distance, but go outside and enjoy the outdoors. Fresh air does everybody good.”

The announcement comes just as some of the best fishing of the year is occurring in The Natural State. White bass, walleye and crappie are moving shallow to spawn where they can be targeted by anglers from shore as well as by boat. Largemouth bass also are beginning their annual spawning cycle, which stimulates their feeding and makes them easier to catch. Warmer weather also makes it much more comfortable to enjoy a day spent alone or one-on-one with a family member or friend at the lake or river.

“We’re blessed with fantastic fishing for everyone,” Fitts said. “And fishing can be one of the least expensive ways to enjoy the outdoors. Equipment can be as simple as a hook, line and some worms you dig up from the yard or garden. Cut a piece of cane for a pole or invest in a modest rod and reel to get your lure out a little further, either way, you just might find out that fishing suits you.”

Fitts says fishing also brings the added benefit of being able to harvest some of the best-tasting, healthiest protein available anywhere. With grocery stores running a little lean on some meats, a meal of fresh fish is an excellent way to enjoy the fruits of your day of social distancing.

Greers Ferry Lake Fishing Report – March 18th, 2020

As of Thursday, March 19, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 463.15 feet msl (normal conservation pool: 462.54 feet msl).

(updated 3-18-2020) Tommy Cauley of Fishfinder Guide Service (501-940-1318) said the water level at Greers Ferry Lake is at 463.12 feet msl and falling with generation. It is 1.08 feet above normal pool of 462.04 feet msl. The overall catch rate is getting better every day because more people are just out fishing because the weather is getting better; the catch rate never really went down all winter. Some crappie are still out suspended in deep water, some closer in, some right in front of bushes and some in the bushes and on brushpiles. Try jigs, or minnows, or a combination – or a trolled bait. As for walleye, the river fish are in rivers and creeks, while the lake fish are on flats and steep banks and some under and around docks. Try crawlers, Flukes or minnows. Bream are eating up shallow in warmer water – real shallow – the rest are still out deeper. Try crawlers, beetle spins or small crankbaits. Catfish are eating all over rivers and in the lake. Black bass are scattered from super deep to super shallow; use any technique you usually use to get to them and you should have a blast. They are scattered all in between as well. Hybrid bass and white bass, some are upriver, while some are part of the way up and some are in the lake; use spoons, grubs, swimbaits or topwater baits for your best catches.

Greers Ferry Lake Fishing Report – March 11, 2020

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 463.03 feet msl (normal conservation pool: 462.54 feet msl).

(updated 3-11-2020) Tommy Cauley of Fishfinder Guide Service (501-940-1318) said the water level at Greers Ferry Lake is at 463.12 feet msl and falling with generation. It is 1.08 feet above normal pool of 462.04 feet msl. The overall catch rate is getting better every day because more people are just out fishing because the weather is getting better; the catch rate never really went down all winter. Some crappie are still out suspended in deep water, some closer in, some right in front of bushes and some in the bushes and on brushpiles. Try jigs, or minnows, or a combination – or a trolled bait. As for walleye, the river fish are in rivers and creeks, while the lake fish are on flats and steep banks and some under and around docks. Try crawlers, Flukes or minnows. Bream are eating up shallow in warmer water – real shallow – the rest are still out deeper. Try crawlers, beetle spins or small crankbaits. Catfish are eating all over rivers and in the lake. Black bass are scattered from super deep to super shallow; use any technique you usually use to get to them and you should have a blast. They are scattered all in between as well. Hybrid bass and white bass, some are upriver, while some are part of the way up and some are in the lake; use spoons, grubs, swimbaits or topwater baits for your best catches.

Greers Ferry Lake Fishing Report – December 12, 2018

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 461.97 feet msl (normal conservation pool: 462.04 feet msl Oct. 1-April 30; 463.04 feet msl May 1-June 1; 462.54 feet msl June 1-Sept. 30).

(updated 12-12-2018) Tommy Cauley of Fishfinder Guide Service (501-940-1318) said the water level at Greers Ferry Lake is at 462.01 feet msl. It is 0.03 feet below normal pool of 462.04 feet msl and staying pretty steady at present, but Tommy says he’s sure the expected rain will change that. He says, “We are pretty much in winter pattern. Some fish are still shallow and live that way all year, for the most part just some of the black basses.”

The crappie catching seems to be still good in 15-30 feet of water; use jigs or minnows fished vertical.

No report on catfish.

As for black bass, some are super shallow on out to 60 feet. The loners will eat small crankbaits and spinnerbaits up shallow, or a jig. The deeper fish can be caught on a football head jig, C-rig or jighead worm for the most part, with a hair jig coming into play as well or a wacky rig.

No reports on bream.

As for walleye, the river fish have got spawning on their mind this time of year and begin their travels up lake. Troll big crankbaits for the best bite, or use a minnow on a jighead or spoon fished vertical.

Hybrid and white bass are eating off and on all day in 25-60 feet of water with some topwater action as well. Use spoons, inline spinners or a hair jig with a grub..

Greers Ferry Lake Fishing Report – October 10, 2018

As of Wednesday, the Army Corps of Engineers reports the lake’s elevation at 459.43 feet msl (normal conservation pool: 462.04 feet msl Oct. 1-April 30; 463.04 feet msl May 1-June 1; 462.54 feet msl June 1-Sept. 30).

(updated 10-10-2018) Tommy Cauley of Fishfinder Guide Service (501-940-1318) said the water level at Greers Ferry Lake is at 459.22 feet msl and falling. It is 2.82 feet below normal pool of 462.04 feet msl for this time of year. The Arkansas Team Bass Trail had a great tournament last weekend, as most of the field caught limits of bass both days of the event, and most said they caught fish after fish on both days.

The crappie continue to eat good all day most days, in and around any wood in the lake in 12-30 feet of water; use minnows and jigs.

No report on walleye other than a lot are being caught around all of the other fish schooling.

Bream are eating crickets and crawlers in 6 inches to 15 feet of water.

Catfish are eating all over the lake on a variety of baits, and a variety of depths and techniques.

Black bass are eating just about anything in your tackle box if you put it in front of one, in depths from super shallow out to 60 feet.

Hybrid and white bass are eating spoons, inline spinners, topwater baits and the like all over the lake in 25-60 feet of water, with a lot of fish on the surface in places as well. Just stay around the shad.