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Fishing Norfork Lake

AKA: Norfork Reservoir

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By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Norfork Lake, AR

Popular Fish Species Norfork Lake, AR

Norfork Lake Popular Fish - Crappie

Crappie Fishing

Slab anglers enjoy fishing for both black and white crappie in Norfork Lake, with black crappie often out-weighing white crappie. Crappie fishing is on the rise and they can be found in sizeable schools. Crappie generally school by species, but once you locate them around cover, you may catch both species due to the fact they often share the same cover. Crappie always like cover and structure, so locate brush and vegetation. Using a fish finder can help locate schools of crappie, which tend to stack vertically around cover. Live bait and small jigs are the most common method for crappie here. In spring and fall focus on the 8 to 12 foot range. The best time to catch crappie tends to be at dawn and dusk. As the crappie move deep in summer and winter, follow points out deep, as well as find ledges near channels in deeper water.

Norfork Lake Popular Fish - Striped Bass

Striped Bass Fishing

With giant striped bass approaching 50 pounds swimming in the lake, they are a favorite of many locals and fishing guides at Norfork Lake. They are plentiful, run in schools and continue to grow to bragging size. The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has developed an excellent plan for managing this fishery. In Spring and Fall work the upper end of the lake where water is flowing into the lake. Look for deeper water in the river channel, as a holding place for stripers. In Summer and Winter, stripers hang out in deeper water during the day Morning often draws the stripers to much shallower water, look for them from the surface down to around the 20-foot range as they feed on shallow-running schools of bait. The lake is filled with plenty of baitfish and sunfish to to keep the fishery thriving. Being successful at fishing for stripers is a matter of locating schools of bait, and the wolf packs of stripers which are likely to be nearby. Fish finders, and forward facing sonar, are a big help in locating these roaming schools. Live bait is very effective here, and stripers can be caught year round.

Norfork Lake Popular Fish - Walleye

Walleye Fishing

Thanks to good fisheries management by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, a healthy population of quality walleye are thriving in the waters of Norfork Lake this year. Fall through early Spring tend to be the best time to catch these tasty fish. During this time they tend to move shallower and closer to shore. Other times of the year they are more likely to roam around in deeper water. As always, stay around schools of baitfish. They are eager to feed throughout the lake, but tend to concentrate around structure on points, flats and ledges off the river channels. A proven method for catching walleye here is trolling with spinners tipped with live bait, or trolling with long-billed, deep diving crankbaits. However casting live bait, jigs, worms and spoons also works well at times.

Fish species to fish for...

Guide to fishing for largemouth bass, spotted bass, channel catfish, blue catfish, flathead catfish, black crappie, white crappie, walleye, bluegill, redear sunfish, white bass, striped bass and hybrid striped bass at Norfork Lake in Arkansas.

Norfork Lake Fishing Video

Heavy forest and cliff rock walls surround Norfork Lake, a 22,000-acre lake located in the extreme north part of the state, just east of Mountain Home. With an abundance of coves, points and fingers, this lake has over 500 miles of shoreline, giving a wide variety of fish species a great residence.

Norfork Lake, located in north-central Arkansas, is a renowned fishing destination known for its crystal-clear waters and abundant fish populations. This 22,000-acre reservoir offers anglers a diverse range of fish species and a tranquil setting for fishing enthusiasts.

One of the most popular fish species in Norfork Lake is striped bass. The lake is well-known for its exceptional striped bass fishery, with the potential to catch trophy-sized fish. Anglers can target striped bass using a variety of techniques, including trolling with large diving plugs, live bait fishing, or casting topwater lures. Spring and fall are prime seasons for striped bass fishing, as the fish are more active and tend to congregate near points, creek channels, and main lake structures.

Norfork Lake is also home to a thriving population of largemouth bass. Anglers can enjoy excellent bass fishing opportunities, particularly around submerged structure, weed beds, and points. Spring and early summer are popular seasons for bass fishing, as the fish move closer to the shorelines to spawn. Anglers can use techniques such as flipping jigs, casting soft plastics, or working topwater lures to entice these powerful gamefish.

Crappie fishing is another popular pursuit in Norfork Lake. The lake is home to black crappie and white crappie, providing anglers with ample opportunities to catch these delicious panfish. Spring and fall are productive seasons for crappie fishing, as the fish move into shallower areas to spawn or feed. Anglers can target crappie around submerged timber, brush piles, and bridge pilings using jigs, minnows, or small crankbaits.

Norfork Lake in Arkansas offers exceptional fishing experiences, with its diverse fish populations, quality striped bass and bass fisheries, and opportunities for crappie angling. Combined with its boating amenities and camping facilities, Norfork Lake provides anglers and outdoor enthusiasts with a memorable fishing retreat in the heart of north-central Arkansas.

Bass, crappie, walleye, bream and catfish draw a lot of attention from local anglers. Big striped bass also swim in these waters, along with hybrid wipers and sunfish. Cranfield Recreation Area has a handicapped-accessible fishing pier. Marinas, rental boats, restaurants, convenience stores, bait, campgrounds, RV hookups and boat launch ramps are all conveniently located around the lake. Due to the excellent bass fishing, numerous fishing tournaments are held here throughout the year.

Fishing Boats For Rent In Arkansas

Primary fish species residing in Norfork Lake

Click images for fishing tips and details about each species.

Largemouth bass Spotted bass Channel catfish Flathead catfish Blue catfish Black crappie White Crappie Walleye Bluegill Redear Sunfish White Bass Striped bass Hybrid Stripers

Norfork Lake Amenities

Marina: YES
Boat Rental: YES
Boat Launch Ramp: YES
Campgrounds: YES
RV Hookups: YES
Lodging: YES
Convenience Store: YES
Bait & Tackle: YES
Restaurant: YES

Today's Weather & Forecast

Boating is a popular activity on Norfork Lake, with several boat ramps and marinas available for easy access to the water. Anglers can explore the lake's scenic shoreline, navigate its coves, and find their favorite fishing spots.

Fishing Boat Rentals

Buzzard Roost Boat Dock
Rentals: Pontoon boats

Fout Boat Dock
Rentals: Kayaks and pontoon boats
870 467-5341

Hand Cove Resort
Rentals: Fishing boats and pontoons
870 488-5367

Jordan Marina
Rentals: Fishing boats and pontoon boats
870 499-7348

Panther Bay Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats
870 492-5151

Teal Point Resort
Rentals: Bass boats, jon boats and pontoon boats
870 492-5145

Tracy Ferry Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats
870 491-5335

Public Boat Launch Ramps & Landings

Buzzard Roost Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, west side, off Buzzard Roost Road, this is a three-lane, concrete ramp with paved parking.

Cranfield Campground Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, west side, off Cranfield Road, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with paved parking.

Gamaliel Landing Park Boat Ramp
Located in the northeast section of the lake, west side, off Fout Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Henderson Park Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, east side, off US Highway 62, this is a four-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Panther Bay Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, west side, off Panther Bay Loop, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Red Bank Boat Ramp
Located in the northern end of the lake, east side, off Red Bank Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Woods Point Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the southeast section of the lake, north side, off County Road 156, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with paved parking.


101 Marina
565 Howard Cove Rd.
Gamaliel, AR 72537
870 467-5252

Buzzard Roost Boat Dock
4769 Buzzard Roost Road
Mountain Home, AR 72653
870 492-5346

Cranfield Marina
2028 Cranfield Road
Mountain Home, AR 72653
870 425-3625

Fout Boat Dock
2932 Fout Road
Gamaliel,AR 72537
870 467-5341

Jordan Marina
3291 Jordan Landing Rd
Calico Rock, AR 72519
870 499-7348

Lake Norfork Marina
19 County Road 825,
Henderson, AR 72544
870 488-5229

Panther Bay Marina
151 Panther Bay Loop
Mountain Home, AR 72573
870 492-5151

Quarry Marina
209 Quarry Park Point
Mountain Home, AR 72654
870 499-5388

Tracy Ferry Marina
3438 Tracy Ferry Rd
Mountain Home, AR 72653
870 491-5335

Fishing Guides On Norfork Lake

STR Outfitters - stripers, crappie, walleye

If you offer fishing guide services on this lake, please contact us for a free listing, to be posted here.

Fishing License

Click here for a Arkansas Fishing License.

Camping facilities are also available near Norfork Lake, allowing anglers to extend their fishing trips and fully immerse themselves in the outdoor experience. Campgrounds with amenities such as RV hookups, tent sites, picnic areas, and restroom facilities can be found in the vicinity, providing a perfect setting for anglers to relax and enjoy the beauty of the lake and its surroundings.

Campgrounds & RV Parks Nearby

Jordan Recreation Area Campground - 870 499-7223

Dam-Quarry Campground - 870 499-7216

Point of View RV Park - 512 814-9411

Robinson Point Campground - 870 492-6853

Hideaway RV Park - 870 421-5553

Gamaliel Campground - 870 467-5860

Cranfield Campground - 870 492-4191

Norfork Lake AR Map - Fishing & Camping Areas

Contact Information

Norfork Lake
Panther Bay Marina
151 Panther Bay Loop Mountain Home, AR 72653
870 492-5151


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