Larry's Fishing Hole

Striper Fishing Norfork Lake

  As you know, we have been traveling to Arkansas fishing for years because of great fishing opportunities. We have heard about the trophy striper fishing on Norfork Lake and always wanted to catch these pole bending hard fighting fish. However, on this huge and deep clear lake we would not know where to start. After some research, talking with those who have and seeing photos of large catches, we contacted Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters for a fall fishing trip.
 STR Outfitters guide year around in boats made for stripers fishing to ensure you have the best opportunity to land that possible trophy and fishes out of Tracy Ferry Marina in Mountain Home, AR an excellent full service marina in a great location. Tom specializes in live bait (shad) for the most and best catches but surprisingly with long 10 foot somewhat light action rods and light line. This made us wonder how we would land a striper that takes line and runs using light tackle but Tom told us Lake Norfork is void of structure since the area was clear cut before impoundment.
 The day we picked was not the best after a cold front and rain but Tom was confident he could get us on some fish as we headed out he gave us some instructions on how we would fish today. He motored around the mouth of a couple large coves marking bait and watching for those large arches before we started. He baited up 4 rods with live shad and lowered to 40 foot as we drifted along in 100 – 120 foot of water. At one time, we had two fish on at once and you could tell when fish were near as the shad would get excited and the rods would twitch but there was no doubt when a striper hit as the rod tip would bend over, hit the water and you set the hook. It was just like Tom told us “once you fight a striper using these long rods you will never want to go back to conventional tackle”.
 Fighting these big fish was awesome on those long, light rods as they took line and then we try to pump them back till they wear down. Tom had lots of patience while giving instructions and helping to see you landed your fish and had a good time.
 Tom fishes year around for stripers, hybrids, and walleye and has been fishing and guiding on Norfork for over 30 years. His striper fishing techniques will vary based on the season, in March stripers begin their spawning run and move into very shallow water. In April and May fish are very aggressive and he fishes baits under balloons, a time to catch bigger fish, which sounds like a fun to us. In summer, stripers will go deeper to points and channels within schools and a good time for numbers and some big fish. Fall is a transition time as stripers scatter as large schools of stripers begin roaming and are feeding heavy for their winter migration when again is a time for that big fish.
 We enjoyed fishing with Tom, learned a lot about striper fishing and he has great knowledge of the lake and the entire area, therefore, we recommend you visit Norfork Lake and let STR Outfitters provide you with professional guide services for fishing and did we mention also a hunting experience of a life time. You can contact Tom by calling (877) 246-4896, or on web at
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