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Millwood Lake Sponsored by
Date 22-Feb-18
Water Condition
Water Temperature  


Conditions : Millwood Lake: Mike Siefert at Millwood Lake Guide Service said the lake level Monday was about 8 inches above normal conservation pool and rising at 259.9 feet msl; and there is current of about 2,800 cfs in Little River, according to the Army Corps of Engineers. The tailwater as of Monday is about 230 feet msl. Water temperatures have improved over the past week, ranging 45 degrees early to 55 degrees under full sun, depending on location. Mike said Tuesday that with the incoming thunderstorms and flash flood warnings later this week, be sure and check the most recent lake level on the guide service’s website linked above, or at the Army Corps of Engineers website for updated gate release changes and inflow rates with rising and falling lake levels and conditions. Continue to use caution in navigation on Little River and Millwood, watching for broken or floating timber. Clarity and visibility are mostly stained heavy in places, especially current rolling upriver. The main lake and lower sections of Little River are not quite as stained or muddy as the northern sectors.
Largemouth bass activity continues to be typical late winter patterns. Bass were improved over the past few days with the warmer ambient conditions, and best on sunny and warm days, from 2-3 pounds each, up to 6 pounds. For suspended bass it was best to go with Z-Man Chatterbaits, slow-moving swimbaits or suspending jerkbaits, dead-sticking Trick Worms and Bass Assassin Shads on a light wire hook. Smithwick Rouges, Cordell Redfin and other suspending hard jerkbaits, along with slow-rolling heavy spinnerbaits and Rat-L-Traps in and near creek channels where any remaining vegetation and lily pad stems remained, have been taking a few stragglers. Heavy, large thumping, ½-ounce and up to ¾-ounce Rat-L-Traps in such colors as Natural (brown/orange) Crawfish, Red Chrome, Red Shad, Toledo Gold or Rayburn Red Zombie, and medium-diving Bomber Fat Free Shad crankbaits in Tennessee Shad or Citrus Shad, and slow-rolling heavy ¾-ounce War Eagle spinnerbaits in white/chartreuse or Spot Remover colors, used deep in the creeks, will pick up a few decent bass in the 2-5-pound class. You have to use a really slow roll or stop-and-go type retrieve to entice a bite these past couple of weeks. Big, slow-moving swimbaits with a stop-and-go retrieve are randomly picking up a few nice contenders in the 4-5-pound class in deeper creeks and ditches. Further upriver and into the oxbows away from muddy Little River current, you’ll find a few reactive bass, and the clearer water near standing timber continues to be several degrees cooler than the dirty/stained water sections closer to the river. The back of the oxbows definitely have the best water clarity, yet have the most lethargic bass. Banging Rat-L-Traps and Echo 1.75 crankbaits into the standing timber on points in backs of the oxbows where feeder creeks dump into the oxbows, and deflecting them off stumps from 8-12 feet deep, were taking a few 14-17-inch bass away from the river, where better water clarity was located without current. Also, heavy ¾-ounce War Eagle Spinnerbaits continue working cypress trees 9-12 feet deep. Best colors over the past couple weeks were Spot Remover or white/chartreuse and FireTiger. Go-to colors of crankbaits, like the Echo 1.75 squarebills, in the clear water in back of the oxbows have been Millwood Magic, Ghost Minnow, Pro Blue, or Sexy Chrome. Oversized 3/4-inch tube jigs like Gitzits with internal rattles continue working most anywhere in clear or the heavy stained water areas where stumps, timber and any vegetation remain. Internal glass or brass heavy-knocking rattles are helping the bass locate the lure in the stained water. Black/blue tail, purple smoke/chartreuse tail, black neon or pumpkinseed/chartreuse tail were getting the best reactions over the past 3-4 weeks; the darker colors seem to draw better reactions in the more stained water areas. Real Deal Kustom Tackle jigs with a heavy craw worm trailer are picking up random, solitary bass on cypress trees and knees in 8-11 feet depth. Black/blue/purple, black/red or Texas Craw continue to be the go-to colors, all with a black or green pumpkin craw trailer. Texas rigged Berkley 10-inch Power Worms in black, blue fleck and black grape, slowly crawled by stumps and timber, continue finding a few 15-18-inch bass.

Mike says whites and hybrids have begun their annual spawning runs up Little River. Large schools were connected last week between the entrance to McGuire Lake and Brown's Slough. Another huge school was found between Cemetery Slough and U.S. Highway 71 bridge. These whites reacted well in 6-9-feet to deep-diving Bomber Fat Free Shad crankbaits in white, Citruse and Tennessee Shad colors; Rooster Tails in red/chrome; and Little Georges in white and blue colors. The ¾-ounce Rat-L-Traps in White Glass, Chrome Black Zombie, Gizzard Shad and Millwood Magic (Silverado), fished slow with a stop-and-go retrieve in 9-12 feet of depth, got good reactions from the whites over the past few days in the aforementioned locations, best behind primary points extending into Little River out of direct current flow, where creeks dump into the channel and where eddies are created with a backwash. Crappie improved late last week on jigs and minnows in 12-16 feet depth along standing timber and brush planted in Little River, just out of the current above Horseshoe oxbow. Blue catfish and channel cats improved on trotlines with increased current using punch baits, spoiled chicken livers, or gizzards and hearts, and hot dogs in heavy current along Little River in 12-18 feet of depth.

Reported by: Arkansas F&G


Hatches: Patterns Lures & Spinners

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About: - Millwood Lake is renowned for its fishing, with much of its more than 29,000 acres being flooded timber that provides exceptional cover for its wide variety of fish, including largemouth and spotted bass, crappie, white bass, striped bass, channel and flathead catfish and bluegills. Boat lanes lead the way through the timbered waters, and there are 5,000 acres of open water near the dam. Each year, the lake hosts numerous bass fishing tournaments and fishing derbies held by local and out-of-state organizations.

Located on the lake's southeast shore, Millwood State Park offers a full service marina and boat dock, 117 campsites, and hiking and biking trails. Corps of Engineers' recreational areas on the lake offer 230 campsites, picnic areas, boat launching ramps and group picnic shelters available by reservation.

Location: Millwood Dam is located on the Little River 16 river miles upstream from its confluence with the Red River. It is about seven miles east of Ashdown, Arkansas.
  • Black and White Bass
  • Largemouth and Spotted Bass
  • Blue Catfish
  • Crappie

Misc Info: -




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