Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Beaver Lake

Beaver Lake, located in Northwest Arkansas, is a popular fishing destination. There are professional bass tournaments held there every year and there is great fishing for a multitude of species including: largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, striped bass, spotted bass, walleye, and crappie to name a few. At 31,700 acres Beaver Lake can seem a little over whelming to fish from a plastic boat. But if you know where to launch it can be a great place to spend a day on the water fishing from your kayak.

Twin Coves access on Beaver Lake

My top five kayak fishing launch points on Beaver Lake:

1. Esculapia Hollow

Esculapia ranks number one on my list due to its ease of access, ample parking, and the variety of cover and structure it offers anglers. The cover includes boat docks, standing timber, laydowns, and some rocky shoreline. Main lake and secondary points, creek channels, bluff walls, and road beds give anglers a wide range of structure to target. One of the most appealing things about this access is the lack of a boat ramp, eliminating the congestion of power boats and trailers fighting for space. The slope of the bank is perfect for unloading and launching kayaks.

2. Van Winkle Hollow

Number two on the list is Van Winkle Hollow. This access point also offers the benefit of no improved boat ramp for power boaters, so kayaks/canoes have free reign here. There are no boat docks in this creek arm but their is plenty of standing timber, rocks, and lay downs for anglers to target. Be mindful if you choose to use this ramp in the summer months, there is a slalom course set up in the middle of the creek that gets use during this time.

3. Natural Walk 

Very close to highway 412, this access point is easy to get to from anywhere in Northwest Arkansas. Natural Walk Rd dead ends at the water, the gradually sloping bank lets anglers back right up to the waters edge to unload their kayak. The water in this area is a little "dirtier" than the lower end of Beaver Lake, enabling anglers to get close to the many lay downs to flip/pitch jigs and soft plastics. Power boats also launch from this ramp, but parking is rarely an issue.

4. Twin Coves

Launching from Twin Coves gets kayak anglers quick access to the main lake. The water here is normally very clear and deep. If you time your trip right you can catch beaver lake striped bass schooling up on main lake points here. There is also an abundance of boat docks and standing timber for anglers to target.

5. Hickory Creek

Just like the Natural Walk access, the road dead ends into Beaver Lake at this launch point. Once again a gradual sloping gravel bank makes unloading and launching kayaks fairly easy. In the warmer months this part of the lake gets a good amount of boat traffic, but there are plenty of coves and shallow water flats anglers can use to stay away from the crowd. When the lake is at normal levels there is a lot of flooded brush and vegetation to fish in this creek arm, along with the typical rock and wood cover Beaver lake offers.

Hopefully this list gives you a good idea of kayak fishing access points on Beaver Lake. There are many more spots to launch, these are just some of my favorites. If you have a favorite launch point that is not included on this list, post it up in the comments. All of us are always looking for new places to fish and/or paddle!

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