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Outdoors report: Yadkin River fishing best late in evenings or early in the morning

Fishing on the Yadkin River chain lakes continues to draw good crowds and good catches of fish.
On the Yadkin River above the Interstate 85 bridge, flathead catfish weighing more than 30 pounds are being caught weekly. Fishermen are keying in on deep holes, log jams and bends in the river that have rocky bottoms with deep water.
Use live perch, bluegill or shad for the best chance at a trophy fish. Channel catfish are very active throughout the Yadkin drainage. For your best chance, try using cut-bait, chicken livers, stink bait or night crawlers. These fish can be caught both day or night, but are most active in late evening and early morning before it heats up.
Bank fishing areas to consider include York Hill boating and fishing access across the river from the site of the demolished N.C. Finishing Plant near Spencer. Plenty of fishing spots can be found by following the foot path that begins at the access area and winds along the shoreline downstream under and past the railroad and highway bridges. More than two miles of shoreline can be explored and fished from the public gamelands along the river.
High Rock Lake
Largemouth bass continue to hit well on the lake. Try pumpkin-seed colored Carolina rigged lizards, since these always seem to be a hot choice. Crank baits on submerged structure is a favorite for locals who know the best spots. One place to try is the rock pile at the mouth of Dutch Second Creek. When traveling toward the main channel of the lake, look for the two hazard buoys closest to Cow Island in the center of the creek. This has very large boulders that drop off quickly into 25 feet of water. Often in the evenings, top water action can be great in this area.
Try the shallow side of Cow Island between the mainland and the island. Bass, white bass and white perch regularly chase shad onto the shallow flat, which is under 6 feet deep in most places. Rebel Pop-R’s are great lures, as are other small surface lures.
Crappie have been hitting throughout June and into July. Night fishing is producing some nice catches, with limits common most trips. The size of the fish vary, but fish over a pound are not uncommon, although most range from 8-10 inches. Use minnows and lights at night, and jigs in a variety of colors in the day, including pearl, white, black/green and pink/green.
Tuckertown Lake
At the tailrace of High Rock Dam, white perch, crappie and catfish have been hitting great. Fishermen have been carrying coolers full of white perch home after a day on the water. The hottest place to try is from the fishing wall downstream to the big rock on the Davidson County side of the lake. Best fishing occurs when the water is being discharged from the power plant.
Largemouth bass fishing is great in the mornings and evenings, as schools of small shad move onto points in the evening. Bass up to 3 pounds are regularly caught on the surface. By fishing the weed bed edges with soft plastics, fish over 5 pounds have been seen weighed in by local tournament fishermen.
Conditions on Yadkin River area lakes (levels are approximate):
– High Rock, 1.1 foot below full, stained to clear
– Tuckertown, 0.6 foot below full, stained to clear
– Badin, 1.7 foot below full, clear
– Falls, 1.5 foot below full, clear
Wildlife chairman
The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has elected a new chairman and vice chairman and received notices of re-appointment for five commissioners.
Steve Windham, who was reappointed to a four-year term by Gov. Beverly Perdue, was elected chairman by the Commissioners. Charles Bennett, a commissioner at-large, was elected vice-chairman.
Other commissioners receiving notices of reappointment by Perdue were:
– Berkley C. Skinner III, from Rocky Mount, re-appointed to a 4-year term;
– Nathaniel T. Harris Jr., re-appointed to a 6-year term;
– David Hoyle Jr., District 8 Commissioner of Dallas, re-appointed to a 6-year term;
– Joe Barker, District 2 Commissioner of New Bern, re-appointed to a 6-year term.
Windham, who was vice-chairman, replaces Wes Seegars, who had been serving as chairman since June 2006. He is the owner of Windham Distributing in Wilmington.
The 19-member Commission establishes policies and regulations governing hunting, fishing and boating activities in North Carolina. Members serve until reappointed or replaced.
Tom Henson, a retired wildlife biologist with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, has received the Thomas L. Quay Wildlife Diversity Award.
E-mail Sgt. Anthony Sharum of the N.C. Wildlife Resources at huntfishguy66@aol.com.

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