Lake Harding has good populations of largemouth and spotted bass, as well as hybrids, crappie, cats and bream.
Bartlett's Ferry has many boat docks and piers that provide good structure to attract fish. This lake has excellent bass fishing. Largemouth bass have been abundant for several years. On the average about half the largemouths are greater than 12 inches. The largemouth you catch should weigh about 1-12 lbs. Boat docks and fishing piers are favorite spots for bass anglers, but do not overlook rocky points and underwater humps. The peak fishing time for largemouth bass is March through May when water temperatures are in the mid-to-high 60s.
For every 10 largemouth bass there are three or four spotted bass. The average-sized spot will be 10 inches and weigh about : lb. Since there is no minimum size restriction on spots, fish of this size can be legally harvested. Spots tend to bite during the same time as largemouths, but generally they are found on rocky points and in deeper water.
This lake is not known for bream fishing. Most bluegill catches will be 6 inches or less and weigh 2-3 oz. On the other hand, redear sunfish grow larger and give anglers catches better than 3 lb. Both species are caught around docks and piers and most frequently during the summer months.
Fishing for white bass and hybrid bass has been good to outstanding for several years. Hybrids have survived well in the lake and it has been reported that trophy-sized individuals up to 14 lbs have been taken. Hybrids have not been stocked in Bartlett's Ferry since 1995, but are still abundant throughout the reservoir. Most of the hybrids in recent years have likely traveled downstream from West Point Reservoir where they were stocked. Catches will average two to 3 lbs, but larger fish up to 8-10 lbs will be abundant for the avid hybrid angler. White bass should average 1 lb or better.
Crappie enthusiasts are not usually disappointed on Bartlett's Ferry. Generally, about 50% or more of those crappie are 10-15 inches. In most years, the average size will vary from 2 lb. "Slabs" are abundant for the avid crappie angler. The best crappie fishing months are February through April and WRD's six buoyed fish attractors provide good fishing areas.
Typically, fishing for catfish is good to excellent. Channel catfish are the most sought after species, but white catfish are plentiful. Catches of channel catfish up to 8-10 lbs are possible, but individuals averaging 2-3 lbs will be the norm. White catfish should average 1 lb. This lake is a good bet for catfish at anytime of the year.