Lake Fork

Because Life is Better at the Lake

The Lake Fork Community is Lucky

by
Lake Fork Anglers
Charter member of the Lake Fork Sportsman's Association and founder of the Lake Fork Anglers Bass Fishing club. Lives on the shores of Lake Fork in the Hideaway subdivision in Garrett Creek. Has also lived in Quitman and Yantis before moving to Emory. Lives with wife Cheryl, former pro bass fishing lady and fire fighter.




The Lake Fork Community is Lucky
By Bruce Allen

Just about 20 years ago in 1999 a new organization was formed to protect our lake and the surrounding environs. Born out of controversy. Once that whole episode was over, they needed new purposes.
Made up mostly of lake guides, home owners and a few business owners the membership decided to do whatever they could to promote the lake and the area to improve access for more customers to come to the lake and to protect the fishery. In particular the slot.
Some began to build a live release boat (LRB) that would benefit the fishery for years by returning those fish caught in tournaments to live and be caught on another day.
At the same time planning was begun to bring outside sports writers to the lake for a week of fishing in order to generate positive public relations in magazine, newspapers and TV. And in addition to the sports writer’s employees of Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD) were also invited to participate.
So, how it all worked was all of theses folks were invited to come to the lake for about four days. Members of the Lake Fork Sportsman’s Association (LFSA) fronted the motels, restaurants, guides and activities for the whole deal.
Each boat had a guide, a sports writer and a TPWD biologist. There was a contest of sort and when it first started, they were held in February. Well, as you all know sometimes in February the weather around here is pretty decent. And the fishing is generally pretty good. However, the first year that I remember which I believe was 2002 it was not nice nor anywhere near warm. And a lot of the time those guys didn’t get to fish.
The highlight for those of us not fishing was getting to follow the guides around doing camera boat duties. That was darn neat and educational.
At the end of each week there was a special meeting where the only ones invited were those attending the event. At that time the TPWD would do a whole big seminar known as the “State of the Lake”. They would go into the results since the fish kill in 1999. How may Florida strain largemouth bass fry had been stocked, water quality and control of vegetation. Everyone present could ask questions.
This program went on for about 7 years even moving it into May to get some better weather when as TV became more prevalent and fewer and fewer sports writers would come it was eventually ended. In the meantime, the LRB crew was saving thousands of bass each year.
By that time the LFSA was getting into more environmental projects, Christmas sharing, road cleanup, bridge signs, Eagle count, Eagle Fest, Kidfish, Bass Fest, Informational booths, high school fishing teams free tackle program, and many more projects.
Around 2013 they entered into an agreement with TPWD and the Yantis High School AG class to have them grow button bushes to plant in the lake. The LFSA bought the bushes from TPWD and assisted the kids in growing them from sticks and 6’ tall plants and then eventually planting them in the lake. The first couple of years we learned a lot about where and how to plant. And also, about the feral pigs that eat them. Not to mention a whole patch of them that were uprooted and thrown in the water.
A couple of years ago we built them a second greenhouse where they are now growing grasses as suggested by TPWD. The high water in the lake has prevented us from actually planting anything on the banks.
And, for the last 6 years we have been building structures. First, we built giant plastic boxes made of 3” plastic pipe into 6’ long by 3’ by 3’ boxes with flexible piping wrapped throughout. Then we made smaller boxes. The last project this year the class at Yantis HS built 156 30-gallon plastic drums with 3” holes drilled into them smaller tubes. Some went in on their sides and other went in double high with floatation stuff pumped into the top drum which then floated above the bottom one. Anyone can go to the TPWD website to get the Gps locations for all of them.
And all this time we are still doing around 40 days a year at tournaments with the LRB.
Last year because of the LFSA efforts and projects we were inducted into the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Hall of Fame.
So far this year we have done the LRB, inserted the 156 drums in about six different locations around the lake. We also purchased a 28’ tritoon with a 40 HP motor and donated it to TPWD Tyler for a project boat that will make it a lot easier doing lake projects not only at Lake Fork but all-over east Texas.
We are also participating with TPWD in growing hydrilla in controlled fenced areas. The big problem with getting it to start growing is that turtles love to eat juvenile hydrilla buds.
Next February (2020) we are enthused about helping to sponsor “The Bass Fishing University” that will be filming here for about a week.
Our association has deep roots at Lake Fork. Our members/volunteers work hard to fund these projects and then make them work. For info on joining call Carolyn West at -903-473-3718.




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Lake Fork Weather Forecast

Friday

Chance Rain Showers

Hi: 85

Friday Night

Mostly Cloudy

Lo: 72

Saturday

Mostly Cloudy

Hi: 89

Saturday Night

Partly Cloudy

Lo: 72

Sunday

Slight Chance Thunderstorms

Hi: 90

Sunday Night

Partly Cloudy

Lo: 72

Monday

Chance Thunderstorms

Hi: 91

Monday Night

Mostly Cloudy

Lo: 72


Lake Fork Water Level (last 30 days)


Water Level on 9/21: 401.73 (-1.27)



Lake Fork Fishing Report from TPWD (Sep. 20)

FAIR. Water stained; 82–86 degrees; 1.19’ low. Largemouth bass are slow on deep diving crankbaits, bumping artificial worms, and spinners. While slow some large 8–10 lb fish have still been caught the past week. White and yellow bass are good on Alabama Rigs. Crappie are fair on jigs and minnows. Catfish are good on prepared bait.