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North Carolina Sportsman

Mountain Island more than just a bass lake

Paul Rose
August 13, 2010 at 10:56 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

McDowell Creek and Duck Cove on Mountain Island Lake hold fantastic populations of bluegill.
McDowell Creek and Duck Cove on Mountain Island Lake hold fantastic populations of bluegill.
Mountain Island offers a lot of fishing for anglers who arenít planning to target largemouth or spotted bass.

Guide Chris Nichols is quick to mention the great fishing for big blue catfish. He likes to anchor up on summer nights on main-lake points, fan-casting cut baits around his boat into various water depths.

Also, McDowell Creek has a ďfantastic spawning bluegill populations in the warmer months,Ē according to guide Shane Lehew. The big bream bite is a great opportunity for fly-fishermen to cast small poppers and buggers at panfish.

Duck Cove is a large, expansive flat midway between Cowanís Ford Dam and the huge sandbar that divides the upper and lower sections of the lake. It has a narrow entrance and is very popular for canoeing and kayaking. It leads to a massive flat teaming with carp, bluegills, small catfish and gar, all offering sight-fishing targets. Fishermen carrying spinning rods can cast small skimmer or marabou jigs.

Carp can also be targeted with fly-fishing gear around the big sandbar at first light, before boat traffic picks up and grills arrive and are fired up.

The upper portion of the lake also has excellent crappie water. Try small jigs or flies, letting them fall slowly into tangled branches of laydowns along the main channel.

Editorís Note: This story appears as part of a feature in North Carolina Sportsmanís August issue now on newsstands. To ensure you donít miss any information-packed issues of the magazine, click here to have each issue delivered right to your mail box.

View other articles written Paul Rose