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Fishing & Boating

Alert

Low winter water levels result in limited boat ramp access. Most accessible ramps are near the dam.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District announces the closure of Cole’s Point boat ramp. The area closed Oct. 11, 2021, to accommodate equipment for construction at the Sardis Lake Marina. Fishermen are encouraged to use the Pat’s Bluff boat ramp until the work is completed. See the Vicksburg District website for details.

COE maintenance is ongoing at the Clear Creek Recreation Area boat ramp restrooms.


Fishing Report

Sardis Lake - 11/29/2022 2:05:37 PM
Species Detail
Largemouth Bass Fish main lake points or on the edges of creek and river channels (any cover is a plus) 4 to 8 ft deep with soft plastics, bladed jigs, crankbaits, or spinnerbaits as fish move to the main lake.
Crappie Bruce at Wyatt's Crossing Outdoors 901-870-0298 closed the bait shop for the season November 1. Fish 5 - 10 ft deep in standing timber or other cover (stake beds, brush tops) or trolling or drifting with jigs and/or minnows at the same depths in the main lake. Use bigger baits and/or fish deeper to target larger crappie. Replace treble hooks with single hooks and/or pinch down the barbs to make releasing short fish faster and less damaging; it does no good to release dead fish.
Bream Fish redworms or waxworms 4 - 6 ft under a bobber in any cover.
Catfish Fish various natural baits in the river and creeks if there is any rainfall runoff. Fish will also be on main lake flats near cover.
White Bass Fish off hard clay or sandy points and near the dam with shad-imitating jigs, spoons, or small crankbaits. There are no size or number limits on white bass.

The water level is supposed to fall to winter pool (236 ft) by December 1. This week’s rains may cause enough runoff to slow or reverse the drawdown. Fish will be on the move following deeper water (ditches, creeks, river) as they head to the main lake. Check water level trends; except for catfish, fishing is usually better on a slow fall than a fast rise. Water falling, fish deeper; water rising, fish shallower.

MDWFP electrofishing finished recently. Bass, bream, crappie, and catfish were in shallow (3 - 6 ft) cover. Crappie were also suspended deeper in standing timber or other cover. White bass up to 3 lb were concentrated on the dam and Engineer's Point.

 

Special Fishing Regulations


Species

Species Type Length To Release
Crappie (combined black and white) Minimum Length Limit 12 inches and under

Creel Limits (per person, per day)

Type Amount Additional Information
Crappie (combined black and white) 15 There is a 40 crappie per boat limit for boats with 3 or more anglers.

Anglers may use no more than 4 poles per person and no more than 2 hooks or lures per pole. 


Spillway


The spillway had 2 gates open 6.0 ft each (1490 cfs) Tuesday. Best luck lately has been for catfish; fish natural baits just off the bottom using a slip float. Fish for crappie along the rocks or in eddies with jigs and/or minnows under a bobber. Bass (largemouth or spotted) will hit spinnerbaits or swim baits fished along the riprap. Fallen trees and other cover in the old river channel are also good for bass. Spillway gate openings, flow rates, and spillway water levels can be obtained at (662)563-4531 or check at http://www.mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/bulletin.txt for a table or http://mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/plots/sardplot.png for a graph or http://www.mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/resrep.htm for both (click on 24-hour change for picture explanation of gate flow, spillway flow, etc.). Be sure to check the date on the table; it usually is updated midday.

Fish captured and kept with dip or landing nets, cast nets, boat mounted scoops, wire baskets, minnow seines, and minnow traps in the spillway areas bordered by rip rap must be immediately placed on ice or in a dry container. Game fish caught with these gears must be released. This regulation was enacted to reduce the potential of transferring harmful Asian carps to the reservoir or other waters.

The 12-inch crappie length limit does not apply to the reservoir spillway, but the spillway, including Sardis Lower Lake, has a 15-crappie creel limit.


Water Level


Water level 236.31, falling 0.15 ft/day, 0.3 ft above rule curve Tuesday. Fall drawdown was supposed to start August 1 and is supposed to reach winter pool (236 ft) December 1. Expect rapid water level rises and drawdowns as rain events happen and the Corps tries to achieve and maintain the rule curve. Emergency spillway level is 281.4. For water level information, call (662)563-4531 or check at http://www.mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/bulletin.txt for a table or http://mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/plots/sardplot.png for a graph or http://www.mvk-wc.usace.army.mil/resrep.htm for both (click on 24-hour change for picture explanation of gate flow, spillway flow, etc.). Be sure to check the date on the table; it is usually updated midday.


Additional Information

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Fisheries Biologists use various sampling methods to assess the fish populations in the State’s waters.   Sampling results for selected water bodies are summarized in Reel Facts Sheets.

 

 


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