Outdoors report: Crappie fishing still going strong on High Rock Lake
Fishermen on High Rock Lake have been bringing in good limits of crappie over the past two weeks. Fish weighing over one pound have been seen regularly, with 10-inch fish common.
Most fishermen are finding concentrated schools suspended off dropoffs ranging from 10-14 feet deep. Structure such as brush piles or rock piles also are producing some good fish.
A variety of jig colors are effective, with pearl, yellow/white and black/green working great. Live bait such as minnows are always a great choice, with six dozen minnows being gobbled up in a very short time.
Night fishing continues to be effective at Bringle Ferry Road bridge near Tamarac Marina, Abbott's Creek bridge at N.C. 8, and scattered structure/brush piles. Minnows usually are the best choice when fishing under lights.
For the boater who likes to slow troll, try points that have well defined dropoffs. A great place to try is close to the mouth of Dutch Second Creek. The last point on the right just before Cow Isle, which has a danger buoy marking its edge and a couple of cyprus trees in the water, is a great place to start.
Crappie are caught regularly on the dropoffs both on the lake side and creek side. On the Davidson County side of the lake, try on the southeast side of the entrance to Skip-jack Harbor or otherwise known as Sailboat Cove. Good numbers and large fish have been caught there.
White perch also known a "Waccamaws" are biting, with fair sized cooler fillers seen regularly. These are commonly caught while trolling for crappie. Often in the morning and evening, schools of these fish can be seen chasing shad on the surface. When this occurs, most any white, silver or pearl colored lure will produce a strike.
Largemouth bass are hitting well in most portions of High Rock Lake. Surface action can be hot early in the morning and in late afternoon as fish ranging from 1 to 3 pounds hit schools of shad. Bass can be caught regularly around the hundreds of piers that surround High Rock Lake. Soft plastic lizards, pig-jigs and small crank baits do well most days. As the lake cools this month, bass fishing success usually increases dramatically until the really cold weather sets in.
Bank fishing sites continue to be productive. The fishing area at the corner of Goodman Lake and Providence Church roads provides easy access to fair fishing. Crappie, bluegill, channel catfish and white perch are commonly caught at this location.
The High Rock dam discharge at Tuckertown Lake, located off Bringle Ferry Road, is a super place to take the family for a fishing and picnic outing. The best fishing occurs when water is being discharged from the power plant. White perch, crappie, stripers, catfish and white bass are commonly caught, with trophy sized stripers weighing more than 20 pounds, are caught from now through the end of October.
Archery hunters took advantage of cool mornings the first week of the season, and successful hunters brought in good numbers of deer across the area.
Hill's Minnow Farm in eastern Rowan County has been a hub of activity as hunters brought in harvested deer, purchased hunting equipment, filled truck beds with bagged corn and checked out the bragging board. More than 14 deer, including several bucks and good sized does, were brought in the first few days of the season, along with reports of the big ones that just weren't close enough.
Archery season remains open until 30 minutes after sunset on Nov. 6 in the central deer season.
Regulations to remember when archery hunting:
- Bow-and-arrow hunting is limited to longbows and recurved bows having a minimum pull of 40 pounds; compound bows with a minimum pull of 35 pounds.
- Only arrows with a fixed minimum broadhead width of 7/8 inch or a mechanically opening broadhead with a minimum width of 7/8 inch in the open position may be used for taking bear, deer, wild boar or wild turkey.
- Blunt-type arrowheads may be used in taking small animals and birds, including, but not limited to, rabbits, squirrels, quail, grouse and pheasants.
- Poisonous, drugged, barbed or explosive arrowheads or may not be used for taking any game.
- It is unlawful to hunt with a crossbow, except for disabled hunters with a crossbow permit.
- Crossbows are legal hunting weapons only for disabled persons with a permit from the Wildlife Resources Commission. Refer to the "Disabled Sportsman" section of the regulation booklet for qualifications and application information. Crossbows used under this permit must have a minimum draw weight of 150 pounds. Bolts must use heads as described for arrows in the preceding section.
Upcoming Season Dates
Bear: Daily limit 1; Season limit 1
Western season: Oct. 12 ñ Nov. 21, Dec. 14 ñ Jan. 1
West of the boundary formed by I-77 from the Virginia state line to I-40 and I-40 west to N.C. 18 south to the South Carolina state line.
Note: Further game land restrictions may apply. See the Game Lands section for specific game land rules.
Eastern season: Nov. 9 ñ Jan. 1
In the following counties: Bladen, Onslow, Carteret Pamlico (use of dogs for hunting Cumberland bear is prohibited), Duplin, Pender, New Hanover, Sampson.
Dec. 7 ñ 26: Brunswick, Columbus
Nov. 9 ñ 14 and Dec. 14 ñ 26: Beaufort, Hyde, Camden, Jones, Chowan, Pasquotank, Craven, Tyrrell, Dare, Washington
Nov. 9 ñ 14 and Dec. 14 ñ 16: Hertford, Halifax, Martin, Northampton
Nov. 7 ñ 14 and Dec. 14 ñ 26: Bertie, Gates, Currituck, Perquimans
Nov. 9 ñ 14: Greene, Pitt, Lenoir
The N.C.Wildlife Resources Commission is collecting information from black bears harvested by hunters, using the upper premolar tooth (located directly behind the upper canine tooth) from a harvested bear to determine the bear's age. This information helps monitor the status of the bear population, which is an important aspect of our bear management program.
If you harvest a bear, contact our wildlife staff in the field so that a tooth and other information may be collected.
If you cannot locate wildlife staff, call the Wildlife Management division at 919-707-0050 so that we may send information to you on how to collect the tooth. If you provide a tooth, we will mail the age of the bear you harvested to you before next hunting season.
Eastern deer season:
Bow and arrow: Sept. 12 to Oct. 9
Muzzleloader: Oct. 10 to Oct. 16
Gun: Oct. 17 to Jan. 1
Central deer season:
Bow and arrow: Sept. 12 to Nov. 6
Muzzleloader: Nov. 7 to Nov. 13
Gun: Nov. 14 to Jan. 1
Northwestern deer season:
Bow and arrow: Sept. 12 to Nov. 13
Muzzleloader: Nov. 14 to Nov. 20
Gun: Nov. 21 to Dec. 19
Western deer season:
Bow and arrow: Sept. 7 to Oct. 3 and Oct. 12 to Nov. 21
Muzzleloader: Oct. 5 to Oct. 10
Gun: Nov. 23 to Dec. 12
Hunters must wear orange. It is unlawful to carry any type of firearm while bow-and-arrow hunting during the bow-and-arrow seasons. Pistols may not be carried while hunting deer during the muzzleloading firearm season.
The placement of commercially available mineral supplements marketed for attracting or feeding deer is allowed except on game lands.
The big game hunting license authorizes the hunter to harvest up to six deer. All six deer can be antlerless for all areas of the state. The season limit for antlered deer in the Eastern Deer Season is four. The season limit for antlered deer in the Central, Northwestern, and Western deer seasons is two.
The daily bag limit is two.
E-mail Sgt. Anthony Sharum of the N.C. Wildlife Resources at email@example.com.