No lie, Taneycomo is still fishing great. The other day I had a full day trip and my clients had such a good morning they decided to call it a day by 2:30 because they had enough. Sometimes fishing can be just like that. It’s almost like when it’s too good you get bored with it and when it’s too slow you can’t get enough of it. The challenge comes in when they are generating water, but if it is off you can bet the fishing will be HOT! Nothing is the way of browns really being caught this week, but a ton of rainbows are in an active mood. Again, nothing in the way of big fish being caught, but I’m also not fishing up top where they like to hold (rebar hole and the outlets). I have seen a few hanging around in the KOA (Trophy Run) and Rocking Chair, but they are a little spooky because of the minimal current so you have to be on your “A” game. The key to hooking a ton of fish is to keep moving around. The fish are not picky what you have to offer, but it is winter so the key to success is to have plenty of midge patterns in your fly box. I’ve been running most my trips around 9a.m. when the fish get up to actively feed on midge patterns. Once this resides a little bit as the afternoon wears on then I will switch and fish the deeper runs with nymph patterns. Of course some days are better than others, but like I said it has to do with the water generation. We are getting plenty of low water, but it is a hit or miss depending on the day. The crowds are down also so you should be able to fish where you want, you might have to wait it out to get the good spots, but fisherman are moving around so it should be a problem getting your favorite spot. Fishing the Creeks and Rivers in the Winter If you are wondering about the local creeks, the answer is…. NO! There’s no water really to get them to run up into the creeks. They are in the mouths when they generate, but other than that I would fish the main tailwater. White River Another hit or miss depending on the style of fishing you want to do. If you are a big brown trout kind of guy like myself then it can be real tricky on how you want to target these fish as of right now. One thing I will say is the White River is chocked with pods of 20 inch browns everywhere. I think alot of this has to do with the 24 inch brown trout regulations that is been a place now for a few years. These fish are easier to catch, fishing nymphs along the bottom in low water. And that seems to be what is going on for the most part. Taneycomo and the White are doing the same type of generation so it can be very tricky on trying to plan a streamer trip right now. I was there last week doing some homework and they had 1-2 units going and we manage to hook three browns in the 20 inch range, but nothing bigger than that in the way of searching for monster browns. I really think if they keep this up and little to no generation we will have to float it through the night and bank more on night fishing trips. I can also say that I’m not fishing the upper stretches where the browns are spawning right now so who knows what’s going on upstream from Wild Cat Shoals to the State Park area right below the dam. I wish I could be down there more, but with most of my trips being on Taneycomo it keeps me limited to getting down to really fish this river more. Not only that, but it’s still a little early yet and the water hasn’t been right either. We need steady generation to get these browns to hold more along the banks. I have a few tricks up my sleeve on how to target these browns in the lower flows, but I’m keeping that under my hat. That was how we managed to hook what we did when we were down there fishing last week. We need to hope for colder weather for longer periods of time and just maybe we will see heavier generation levels.
Note: If you do want to try to target bigger browns the only stretch that I think will get the job done in lower water levels is fishing down at Roundhouse Shoals. The reason being is the water through there is fast and they have to think quicker. Not only that…there are always monsters holding in this area. I know because I’ve already missed a few fishing 2 unit generation. Norfork This might be where we see every guide in the month of February because this is the only tailwater generating around the clock with consistent days of generation as of right now. The only bad part is this river isn’t built for a bunch of boats. Lower levels and motorized Jon boats can defiantly keep the fish locked up. This river even when they are generating two units they have, the river still remains low compared to Taneycomo and the White when comparing generation levels. So it doesn’t take much to get these trout educated to what you are doing. If everyone is doing the same thing then you won’t see me over there until night time or never. I used to love this fishery, but anymore I find better water other places that I would rather gamble with. With saying that….it still holds some quality trout, but then again, it can be a hit or miss and I find that all the time when fishing over there.
I do have one thing going for me and that is the NFOW. I really have this lower stretch pretty much all to myself and it does store browns that chase streamers so that is always my plan “B” when I do have streamer trips. If you would like to know more about this send me an email and I can explain. Last but not the least, I want to thank everyone for being part of Flys and Guides. Fly Tying Classes and the New Flys and Guides Website A few things first before I get started talking about the fishing. Fly tying classes are in full swing for the winter months. The class we had the last Saturday was a huge turnout with probably 20 people attending. I want to thank everyone for coming. It was good to see some of my regulars, but it always good seeing new faces that are introduced to the sport. The next class will be held on Feb 9th and 23rd from 2-4pm at the MDC hatchery building below the Table Rock Dam. If you would like to attend the class it is free to the public. All you have to do is call the hatchery to reserve your spot. It is recommended that you bring a vise and a few tools and we will provide the rest. If you do not have a vise we have a few lying around, but it is on a first come basis. You can also just be a spectator and watch. Some people do this and bring a paper and pen to take notes. Also, these classes are always recorded and posted on the website within a few days. We will continue to tie articulated streamers because we are gearing up for February month to chase trophy browns on the White River. I only have a few more spots open if you want to get in on this bite so shot me an email email@example.com if you are interested. I hope to see you at class!!
READ THIS IF YOU ARE EAGER TO LEARN MORE ABOUT TROPHY BROWNS FISHING STREAMERS ON THE WHITE RIVER
January and February are the hottest months to target trophy browns on the White River in Arkansas. The spawn is over and these predators are hungry and ready to eat. Streamer fishing on the White River can be exceptionally good this time of year, as these aggressive will chase and hammer big articulated flies with aggression. If you’re looking to hook a brown over 23 inches this is the time of year that offers the best chance to get the job done.
You almost have to be lucky to catch a trophy trout on when fishing nymphs with indicators. It can be done, but there are easier ways to target bigger fish. Streamer fishing is my favorite method of targeting hogs, and the winter months are when we can rely on higher water conditions that make this bite happen. Cold weather is also beneficial because it keeps the fair weather fisherman at home watching television, so there is less pressure on the river. Less pressure equals more opportunities for fish to investigate your offering, especially if the trout haven’t seen a fly for a while.
February is the perfect time to plan your getaway, but the conditions can be tough. The client has to do their part as well. If you are not a decent fly caster, then you need to practice casting streamers before you come. I get a lot of people who say they have casted streamers, but let’s be honest, If you are the guy who has casted a single hook big streamer on a six weight then you, my friend, don’t understand this style of fishing. It’s a different ball game all together. It’s more like saltwater fly fishing than anything else. We’re using big rods with heavy lines that sink. It takes some getting used to, but with practice and instruction you’ll get it. A little mojo doesn’t hurt, either.
I usually like to have two days with the client. The first day is the day you get acclimated to the style of fishing, and find your rhythm. The second day, we hunt. You have a better understanding on what the guide expects you to do, where the fish should by lying and how to position your fly. I’ll find the right water and put you in the right position and make sure we keep you on the drift. Your job is to make the important casts count.Winter fishing is serious business and you need to go into it with that mindset. If you get complaisant you might miss the fish of a lifetime. You can’t blink. You must remain focused…grasshopper. Luck doesn’t factor much, when fishing this way. Success is really up to you. I am serious about helping you land the trophy of your lifetime. Not too many guides will tell you exactly what they expect, but I will because I truly want you to be successful. So we’re not going to pussyfoot around. We are going to work as a team. A lot of people want to do this, but to be honest, not a lot of people have the experience under their belt to be successful at this style of fishing. If you want to learn it and practice before you come (which I would highly recommend you do), go out and buy the set up and cast it as much as you can.
The standard set up I would buy is a 9wt with a Rio Outbound (490 grain) streamer line in a T-14 custom that has a 8-9 ips. I use this set up more than any others I throw. My back up would be a 8wt, but only if the 9wt is wearing you out. Buy a line that is a 350-385 grain. I’m not a big fan of SA lines that are the wet tip express or the streamer express. These lines split from the core and you will find yourself going back to the store replacing it. If you do buy one of these make sure you get the wet tip express and not the streamer express. The running line on the streamer express has way too much memory and will coil in the cold. So when you are trying to shoot line it will get caught up in the guides. This is aggravating and will not allow every cast to count.
I recommend you practice throwing this line where there is water so you can understand how to lift the shooting head out of the water. This is what confuses people the most. There’s a reason every time you make the cast. This cannot be done on the ground or any other way. I hope to come out with a demonstration video that will give you all you need to know, in the near future.
I hope this helps you plan for a memorable trip. Please email me if you have any questions. I’m happy to help anyway I can. Until next time…see you on the water.
On another note, the new website is coming along and should be launching sometime in the next month or so. My goal is to have it done by April 1st so I’m crossing my fingers. All in all I think everyone will be pleased with the way it turned out. The better news is the new website has me pumped and put and new flame in me. I’m sure alot of you were wondering why I haven’t been updating the site on a more regular basis. And the truth is… I'm burnt out on this site and didn’t want to add more content to a site that I am getting rid of. It’s kind of like going backwards. It’s been a process, but this new website is done right, so if you plan on learning a bunch of new stuff related to presentations and fly tying. Those are going to be the two main things I will update all the time for the next few months once the site launches.
Lake Taneycomo & White River Overall Fly Fishing Report December 3 2012
I've been everywhere man, all across this land man
I know this has been a long period of no reporting, but this year has been crazy. I really don't even know where to start, but I'll do my best to give you an overall on fishing the last few months, the brown run this year and how the streamer fishing has been here in the Ozark's.
Overall Report for Taneycomo-
Let's start with the brown run. It was a bust this year and us locals are scrathing our heads wondering did this last years flood finally do the bigger browns in. There is a lot of speculation on what really did happen. Did they die from the water being to hot from continued generation in the summer months? Could it be they got flushed over the spillway in Powersite? Or was it just something that preventing them from coming upstream to spawn this year? My guess would be the warm water over anything else. But then I ask myself, how can big browns get caught all year round in the lower streatch (mainly just up from Lilley's Landing down to Scotty's Trout Dock) and then nothing to speak of during the brown run that typically is always a quarantee in the month of October and early November. Yes, I saw a few, but nothing like we are use to seeing. I saw more bigger rainbows than browns, which there's nothing wrong with that by any means. I really believe Taneycomo is shaping up to be a world class rainbow fishery. If you want browns more consistanly I would gamble with the White River, but we do have our one month out of the year that is hard to be for big trophy browns. I guess the thing we have to do is to see what next year brings, and if it looks like the same results I would say we lost alot of trophy browns that have been in Taneycomo for a long time. If this is the case I would say we are in for a long waiting game to get them that size again.
With saying that, I have seen a bunch of two year old browns below the Table Rock Dam area during the run so that's a good sign that we do have a bunch in the river. It's just going to be awhile before we see these browns get into the 20-23 inch class. I'm sure it's all ppositive signs for what this river can offer years to come. I wish I knew for sure, but only time will tell. I did catch a few over 20 inches during the brown run, but few and far between. It's still a great fishery and has it days when it can offer you some of the best trout fishing we have in the Ozark's for rainbows that's a fact!
How's Taneycomo Fishing Now?
With the lakes still down,we are still plenty of low water throughout the week. The weekends have been more of the steady around the clock generations so planning a trip during the week is more of a quarantee for low water as of lately. Of course this time of year can offer some of the best midge fishing we have in the area, you still have options to throw sculpns, scuds, trout crack, wd40's, soft hackles, swinging crackleback's just to name a few. All I can say is it's all working right now. Just depends on your prefrence on how you want to fish.
The number one way to catch numbers right now is midge patterns. Any zebra midge pattern will work, but make sure you have 16's and 18's in your box. If I'm fishing deeper then three feet I go with a 16. Anything under three feet I throw 18's. The best pattern hands down is the Rusty midge followed up with Physco midge/ P&P. If you're a soft hackle fan, this is the time you want be swinging sof hackles. We are defintely seeing a abundance of midges flying in the air so these insects are hatching by the thousands right now. Just look up in the air if you don't believe me, lol. Another fly working great is John Wilson's pattern called the trout crack. I sell on the site if you don't have any, just shoot me an email and we can get some sent out to you in the mail no problem.
White River -
This is where I've been doing more of my trips as of lately. WIth most being streamer trips, I've been focusing my attention here, but it really has been a hit or miss stripping bigger articulated streamers. The last two mondays we had cloud cover with some light rain and the streamer bite was hot. Since I really only try planning these trips in running water and or on cloudy days it has been difficult to predict a successful streamer trip. I think right now the thing to do is fish cloud cover with some rain showers for better results. We're catching lots of smaller browns, but the bigger ones are staying at rest for the most part why they are doing their "thing". I'm staying more downstream from Wildcat down to Rim Shaols and not really trying to bug the ones up in the State Park and Cane Island right now.
The flows have also been great down here with usually fishing 2-4 units depending on mornings verses afternoons. I like the evening bite as of lately when throwing streamers because we are getting bigger strikes in the "twilight" hour. That and the water levels seem to be a little higher on where I'm trying to gage my floats. If you like indicator fishing the mornings have been better.
On another note, the hopper bite went stong all the way through October and a little in November if the days were bright and a little warmer. One thing I notice was some of these browns looked like snakes, big head little bodies, but you only saw it in the later months. I really didn't see this in August and September, but I'll be honest with you, I wasn't able to spend the time I would have like to because I had 80 percent of my trips at Taneycomo. I guess it's where you write the most is where you get booked the most and a lot of that was the case this year.
Winter streamer fishing is right around the corner - Plan your trip now!!
We all know the White is getting alot of attention in the last few years with everybody gearing up for the big trophy browns that love chasing big streamers in late January and all the way through February. This is when you want to get ready to catch the brown of your life. This is the easiest two months to target these monsters here on the White River with fly rods without working your tail off with a indicator rig hunting all day for one of these browns. This type of fishing can be difficult for beginners, especially if you don't have your cast dialed in, but if you have a somewhat of a accurate cast and can put it where you want it, then you'll find this not be as difficult as it seems. To me it's easier to target these big browns alot easier than nymph fishing. In my opinion, the hardest part about this is being able to cast a 8wt all day and if you try to hard by throwing it and not letting the line do the work I can promise you, you will get sore and probably won't be able to cast this type of set up all day. With a little insrtuction , it can change things pretty quick.
The Creeks -
Our local creeks that we fish in the Winter are dried up and will continue to be unless we get some well needed rain. I don't see that happening in the near future so it looks like this year might not be as good as the last few during the floods. A few will have some hanging around in the mouths of the creeks, but we will have to get colder temps and a little more rainfall in the months to come to draw them in.
The good news is, classes are starting back up!! The first one will be held on December 22nd between 2-4pm. We will be tying streamers for the next couple of months gearing up for the browns during the winter months. Class will be held at the Shepherd of the Hills fish hatchery located on hwy 165 right below Table Rock Dam. I hope to see some new faces along with the regulars. Don't miss out, they are free to the public and all you have to do is email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the hatchery to confirm your spot. It's always a plus to bring a vise and your tools, but I will furnish all the fly tying materials. If you don't have a vise one will be provided and if you are new to tying and want to watch feel free to do that as well. We would love to see you at class so get ready to tie and have some fish stories told doing it!!
December Christmas Promotion-
Well, it's that time of the year and I always do this for my fellow fly fishers who follow the site. I usually do this through a bulk email to my subscribers, but I felt like offering this to anyone who ends up reading this report.
I'm offering my same deal I've done for the last three years;
The rivers you can choose - Lake Taneycomo, White River, Norfork Tailwater & Beaver Tailwater
2 full days of fly fishing any river you want for 500.00
3 full days of fly fishing any river you want for 700.00
This is a perfect way to learn streamer fishing in the months to come for a great price!! This promotion will be good until you redeem it. I'm not going anywhere so use it when you want. I'll be guiding for the rest of my life so that's why I say I will honor it always. The only way to get this deal is you have to purchase it no later than January 3 2013.
I also wanted to mention you can spread your days out. So if you don't want to use all the days at once, you can come back you can use it and fish a totally different river then the one you did before.
I have set up a paypal link for both if you would like to pay through paypal. If you don't have paypal account you can send me an email at email@example.com and we can go from there on how you want to pay. If you would like for me to email you a file to be able to print off this as a christmas gift certificate just let me know. I'll be glad to do it.
This is my way of giving back to everyome who reads my site. Thank you so much.
I wanted to let everyone know that I'm getting closer to launching my new website. It's been a long road and I had to learn a bunch of new stuff to make sure this site was done correctly because this is the last time I'm going to back track. This will be my fourth website in seven years and I think I've got it up to speed with the latest social media side of technology. It's took every free time I've had for the last six months. I'm not trying to make excuses, but I was totally burned out on the old site and didn't have it in me to update it as much as I should've. This new site will be updating on a regular basis and I'm excited about it and I think you will be also.
Fly Tying Orders -
I want to say to all the people who bought flies from me and or referred your friends, I thank you for you business. It is greatly appreciated and keeps me doing what I love, teaching the sport of fly fishing to all levels of the sport.
I also have great news, the new site has a shopping cart so it will be alot more user friendly for you to shop. Stay tuned for that as it will be something I will continue to upload on a regualr basis with many more of my fly patterns. I've kept alot of them under my hat, but I'm going to offer them for sell finally.
So the last thing I want to say....Happy Holidays and I'll see you in 2013!!!
September 4th 2012 - Fly Fishing Report
Fishing is about to get real good in less than a month
I say this because it's about to be BIG brown trout time going all the way into February. This is my favorite time to fish and a lot of it has to do with in search of "the one" on Taneycomo and the White. September is the month when I start watching the migrating trend as these monster browns make their way upstream. I'm actually seeing a few more browns holding up top to. My buddy, Tom Rogers hooked into a decent brown throwing a sculpin about a week ago. That's a good sign for many more good things to come.
How do you plan on targeting these fish for the month of September?
BIG Streamers, along with really focusing my efforts on night trips. This will also help you to stay away from the crowds during the day. I think we are going to roll into the prime months having lots of low water. If we do get high water the run will be shorter than normal because of the raceway that is adjacent to the new hatchery put in place about four years ago. If the corps does generate more than two units, the fish can swim right into the area that starts the process with them (finding) running up the raceway into the holding tanks. In my opinion, it’s got a lot more challenging than it used to be targeting these fish during the day. With all the pressure this river gets it can lock these fish up unless you find areas that are tougher to fish that keeps the beginners relying on current (rebar hole, the two outlets, gauntlet hole and big hole to name just a few). Even at night is crowded so it’s key on where to fish and how to approach every situation. September can be a good month if you can get downstream a bit and fish for them as they are moving upstream and that’s what I plan to do.
Note: If you plan on fishing during the brown run, it's better to have a good cast without spooking these already spooky fish that hold in shallow water. As the month continues I will touch more on this subject and keep you posted on the brown run.
How's the hopper bite on the White?
I've had some trips down there when I think the water has been right to have good hopper fishing. The last report I wrote I explained how if the generation is surging the hopper bite can be tricky on where to go and how to target these browns, and knowing when they are looking up to feed. If you hit the water when it's spiking and collecting stuff by bringing debris down river you can find yourself in a mess of trouble, but if you get in front of it with some kind of generation, creating enough current along the banks you will hook some browns. The best luck I have had is when they are generating around the clock for a few days. Staying in clean water with some current is key for having a successful hopper day. I think we still have another month of hopper fishing so if you want to target this bite make sure you can be readily available on an “on call” basis to be able to hit it right.
Key note; if you wait till the afternoon and fish until dark that is the window for hooking the bigger browns feeding on hoppers. And most of the time the river is all yours. Most guides check out at 4-5 leaving the prime time water for the clients in my boat.
Dry Fly Fishing –
If the water is running where there is enough current along the banks you will do alright. I say alright because unless there is some true hatch like cicadas etc. then Taneycomo trout really never key in a specific insect and go nuts for it. The white river is a little different in that regard because they support better brown trout that love looking up. But small terrestrials work great in low water and I think these types of patterns get overlooked and not fished enough. I’m sure most anglers have these patterns in their fly box but probably never fished them. I know in the past few years I’ve had the opportunity to fish with one of the best dry fly fisherman since I’ve been fly fishing. Tom really knows how to fish ants, beetles, crane flies, dragonflies to name a few in a way I would have never thought to fish these particular patterns. He is all original with his fishing techniques. I’ll let him touch a little on how he fishes his ant pattern. I know this really has been the highlight with most my clients when we have the right conditions for fishing this pattern.
Tom’s Ant- In his own words…
After fly fishing the White River, Norfork, and Taneycomo for over 20 years I have always looked for new patterns for each tailwater.
Two years ago I teamed up with a good friend, Jeremy Hunt. While we were getting the boat ready one day, I noticed large black ants all over the parking lot. As a fly tier like Jeremy, I started working on a pattern for trout. Every time I go to the river I am always looking on the bank, under the tree leave for insects, same as when I’m in the water looking for terrestrials for innovating new patterns. It also helps to know what size or stage the insect is in.
After two years of fishing prototypes I have finally worked out all the “ins and outs”of getting this pattern to work the best. Finding the right water to use this in is shallow water three feet or less. The sun also makes a big difference; they always bite better if it is full sun. Wind makes the bite even better. The best presentation is site fishing for fish moving along the shoreline sipping insects. Rigging the leader is the same as I do for all dry fly fishing. Using a 9’ 4x leader to start, I add 30” of 5x tippet, then add 30” of 6x tippet. Long leaders are the key to keeping the fly line away from the fish.
After the leader is to the desired length I use fly line floatant or “flytop” 3 ft up the fly line and all the way down to my 6x tippet knot. This keeps the fly line and leader all on the surface. I also use “Gink” fly floatant on my ant. By rigging this way it allows me to skate or skitter the fly on the surface leading the fish to think it is going to fly off the water. This results in some very aggressive explosions from the fish. Fishing dry flies has been my favorite way to fish for many years and ants are one of my favorites out of all of them.
When I’m tying any of my dry flies the best hackle for me is Whiting hackle. Black hackles are my favorite color for ants. I like securing the body on the back of the hook first, then when body is secured, Attach the hackle in the gap and make two wraps securing it off by raising the body and tying your hackle down. Trim your hackle off; wrap your thread to about 16th of inch from eye of hook. Secure the body again, leaving enough room for two more wraps of the black hackle attached the same way as the back, then raising the head of the body up and secure your hackle under the front of the body. Trim hackle off again, and then double whip finish right behind the eye of the hook. And this will force the post to stand up.
Finishing tip after the fly is tied. With the eye of the hook pointed towards you trim the hackles flat, just on the bottom side, just even with the point of barb of the hook. This will leave a stubby effect like legs on the bottom side of the fly and it will make it sit up right on top of the water. This also allows it to be skittered on the surface. Jeremy and I, and some close friends have had some of the best top water action you could want.
Important note: If they miss it, and do not feel the hook 90% of the time they will try it again and again.
Tom knows his stuff when it comes to fly fishing and I'm glad he is part of the team. You should see more stuff from Tom in the future.
July 20 2012
Taneycomo & White River Fishing Report –
Fishing is good, life is good, what more can you ask for….
Long overdue report, but it’s finally here. There are a few reasons for this. The first one is I’ve only had a few days off in the last thirty days and the other reason is I’m so busy with this new website that I’m building that time is very minimal. I just don’t want to back track and I’m over this site and in with the new. It still has a while, but the progress is coming along. Because I have to cut and past 380 pages of content from my old site to the new it’s got me a bit swamped, but anyways let’s get to the fishing report.
Taneycomo has been good to us this year and a lot of this has to do with little to no rain. Which we need, but us guides and resort owners are having a great year because of it. You can be guaranteed that if you come to fish Taneycomo you will more than likely have low water in the mornings. It’s been pretty consistent for the last month with maybe a few days of running water around the clock. Last week the Corp was not accurate with the generation schedule, but this week they have been on the money with when it’s scheduled to come on. That in return has made for some good fishing and it’s nothing to catch 30-40 fish in a half day(4 hours) of fishing, but if you’re a good caster probably more than that.
The trend for me and the way I map out the course in the morning really depends on wind (if you haven’t read my article on wind click here to read it, you’ll be glad you did) and when it starts in the morning. For the last month the wind has been here every day give or take a few days, but that has been key for how I fish Taneycomo in the morning. If the wind starts later in the day I move to deep water first thing in the morning. The biggest reason is because you get way more bites verses the shallow water. If the fog is thick the fish feed better deep (I have found that the bigger trout are feeding deep first thing in the morning). Once the fog lifts then the trout will get in the shallow water and start cruising around looking up. I haven’t fished up top that much, so everything I’m writing pertains to Rocking Chair Hole down to Lookout Hole. However I have fished the water between the two outlets having good results. I think this has some of the best current in this upper stretch that holds a lot of fish, and a lot of fish that are on the move because this is the main channel they go upstream in.
What’s been the “hot” fly for Taneycomo?
How about Ant patterns!! Tom Rogers, who has been a guide for over 25 years on the White River, is probably the best dry fly fisherman I have ever met. I’ve known him for 16 years and we have become real close over the last few years fishing a lot together. He has developed a serious ant pattern that is destroying these trout in the afternoon. We are in the middle of writing an article about fishing ant patterns and should have it done in a few days. I really think this hasn’t been a real popular way to fish for trout at Taneycomo and Tom really deserves the credit to figuring out that these trout here at Taneycomo love this pattern and I wouldn’t be surprised if this becomes a staple pattern for Taneycomo, just like Brad Wright’s sculpin or various zebra midge patterns. We have been fishing this pattern for a long time, but kept it a hush- hush, but anymore the locals are starting to figure it out, so we figured we could get a article (the article will be called “bow’s on the flats) together by Tom Rogers and let him tell you all about it. Until then all I can say is you better have some ant patterns if you want a crazy dry fly bite. I know my clients are having a ball with this and if you want to just give us a call, either Tom or I will take you out. If you are heading this way and need some ant patterns and want us to tie you some just send us an email and we will get them in the mail to you.
Patterns to fish?
Taney trout are not that picky right now and most zebra midge patterns are working well along with various cracklebacks, sculpin patterns, scuds, Griffith’s knat, miracle fly, soft hackles, rs2 emergers, loop wing emergers, wd40’s and some articulated streamer patterns if we have the right water.
I’ve also had some night trips and fishing is good only if the water is shutting down earlier in the night ( let’s say around 9-10 and dropping out around 11 am) If water drops out sometime after 1am you can expect the bite to be slower that night. The fish are not picky with fly choice; just keep the profile in a size 6. I’m still researching on fishing high water at night in my drift boat, but still figuring out when these fish get on the banks to hit big streamers. I’ve had some results, but not like the White at Night.
White River –
What’s going on with the Hopper bite?
To be honest I haven’t fished there a lot because we have had lower water levels here at my home waters. I have been down there a few times in the last week to fish the hopper bite, but I’ll be real honest, it really depends on having the right water to allow these fish to be on a consistent routine on targeting hoppers only. I think the yo-yoing the water on the White has been the main reason why this bite hasn’t been stronger. That and I think August is the better month, but because we have had a drought and no rain I can tell this year it’s a little early and hoppers are out in the full swing!! If the generation stays more on a steady flow of water for a longer period of time I would bet this bite would pick up. The up and down affect with the generations is throwing the trout off a little bit which keeps you scratching your head and the same for the trout. It keeps them from really getting into a feeding routine. I’ll keep you posted when I think the bite is more solid and worth taking the jump for a serious hopper bite. You can still catch lots of fish on hoppers, but haven’t seen the results I’m used to seeing just yet. Hiring a guide will help you because they know how to stay ahead or behind the soupy water, which you don’t want to be caught in if you have a drift boat. Overall I would love to be on the White River more because you do catch bigger fish more often than you ever will at Taneycomo, but catching quality rainbows is still better right here on Taneycomo.
June 4th 2012
Taney & White River are both fishing solid with some nice fish being caught.
I got some emails from some of my readers that were a little worried about me. I’m here to say I’m good and fishing a lot, so reports are tough to post right now. I apologize for this, but fishing is what I do and that’s really where my passion lies, pursuing the next excited thing when I’m on the water. I’ll first start by saying it’s been awhile since I’ve fished the White River because Taneycomo is thriving big time. We have tons of low water, so you can be sure if you’re planning on coming down you will have low water. Not only that, but night fishing is always an option for the die hard and let me tell you, we have some big rainbows ready to be caught. I’m seeing lots of rainbows in the 20 inch range and they are becoming plentiful on Taney. Another positive note and it’s got me more excited about fishing my home water a little more often, is we have some browns hanging up top on a regular basis, something I think was declining, but not now. The size isn’t what the White River can offer on any given day, but now we have a shot at variety and not just catching stocker rainbows all day. Of course that will always be the majority on all tailwaters, but being able to give your clients a chance at a brown is something I always try to shoot for. This could be a great year for lots of browns being caught!!
This is a great story, so I thought I would share it with you. I don’t do a lot of the testimonial stuff under my reports with clients saying they had a good time, because I already know they did. But it sure feels good when all the stars line up. And you could truly give that customer the day they thought they would get if they did go fishing with someone they believed in….and could get that trophy fish they so want. Stephen has been following me since day one and knows the ins and outs of my site. It took us awhile to link up due to scheduling conflicts over the years, but we finally made it happen. He brought his Father DM Parker, who was there really for his son, but his son wanted him to share fly fishing with him on this day, so my goal was to get him in the game as well. But really he just wanted to be there and enjoy the day, which he couldn’t have picked a better day to see what was in store for his son. This really was one of those days that will go deep into the memory book I’m sure of that.
We started the day a little late because I couldn’t decide where I wanted to float. We had heavy winds and low water, not a good combination for a drift boat. My plan was to float from Wild Cat to Cotter, but when I went over the 412/62 bridge I could see the chop on the water and was a little worried about floating all the way to Cotter. So I changed my mind and decided to start at Rim Shoals, but once I got down there I could see it was still dropping and the wind was actually going downstream. So that got me thinking that Wild Cat would have the same wind until we turn the corner around Hurst, which is not the greatest water anyways, but the all the water from the boat ramp access till Airport Valley would be prime for big browns. I keep telling people that this is the best stretch of water we have anywhere in the Ozark’s for trophy browns and I’m not lying. If you got to see what I saw this day you wouldn’t want to go fish anywhere else on the White River for the rest of your life. And the fact that this is not a tropy regulated area discusses me to no end. Too many big fish to be hooked and potentially killed from bait. If there’s one other section of this river we should try to get managed the correct way, it’s this one.
So we got a late start because we went ahead and left Rim and went to where I thought would be the best plan for getting some better results. We weren’t disappointed either. Every guides dream was just about to happen. Sometimes it is about making the right call; I call it the “guide call”. The third fish was the one you see in the picture. There’s a channel in the river where all the big fish hide during pressured times and this was the area I wanted to focus on. We had the right wind chop to create fewer glares and that was crucial for getting bigger fish to keep feeding in the middle of the day. I always say, wind is your friend and I wrote an article on the subject. Another big factor that made this happen was we didn’t have a boat in site the first 100 yards from the ramp down. I told Stephen if we have a chance it’s going to be the next hundred yards before we got to the bait boats. That’s what I mean about all the stars have to line up. All I can say is it was Stephen’s day and to be able to spend it with his father is why I’m glad I’m doing this sport for all the right reasons.
We finished the day at Rim catching lot’s of healthy rainbows with a few more browns. I think we ended up hooking seven browns and we lost count on bows. The rainbows are defiantly bigger than Wild Cats, but Rim isn’t storing the browns like Wild Cat. If we continue to have low water on the White we should keep getting these kinds of results.
Jeremy, I had read the week before the trip from the website of another guide that you need a guide that was mobile. That played big in this trip because after Jeremy looked at the water and the wind at where we were initially going to fish he decided to fish another stretch of the river. This proved to be the right decision because about 10-15 minutes into the fishing I hooked and landed my biggest brown to date (25 in.). Jeremy had called it, knowing right where the big browns stay. Jeremy continued to know just where the fish would be, keeping us in fish through out the day.
This was only my father's second fly fishing trip and Jeremy spent a lot of time (with much patience I might add) in instructing him. It was a real joy to fish with Jeremy and I think he enjoied it as much as we did. I was very impressed with Jeremy's miracle fly. I have used many egg patterns tied on jig heads before but none that had the hooking ability or hook strength of this fly. It is definitely one to stay well stocked up on. Tight Lines, Stephen Parker
Taneycomo- the way to fish this river right now
Taney has remained for the last month to fish extremely well. And what I mean by this is the fish are not picky on patterns. This means the D.O. is in very good shape. But there are some patterns that will work better than others depending on the wind vs. dead calm conditions. When there is wind chop you can get away with throwing dries, but if there isn’t wind you better find deep water because that’s where the fish will feed the best. I would say KOA is fishing the best all the way around. And there are a lot of big rainbows holding, but it’s hard to approach this area correctly if you don’t have a boat. In deep water we are sight casting to all the fish from the boat and trying to target the bigger ones holding deep because we can see them. The window is from 9-2 and then the bite slows until the evening. I went up top for the first time in a long time and wasn’t too impressed with how many fish are holding. That’s why I’ll always stay downstream from the boat ramp down. That’s where all the fish are. If you get the chop, up top isn’t that bad, but if it’s dead calm have fun with that. Midge fishing is probably doing the best out of everything we are using for catching lots of fish. Size 16 seems to be the size they want.
There’s also a new fly that I’m seeing a lot of people doing good on and it is called the (Duane Doty originated this pattern) tampon fly. I didn’t name it that, but it works. It’s this over sized chenille in white and they are dragging it on the bottom. I’m sure the trout are mistaking it for either guts or dead trout fry they flush out of the hatchery into the chutes. Maybe even shad, but more importantly they see a lot of white from people throwing it all the time. The key is presentation though; there is some art to how you drag it along the bottom. I’m sure you can find out more about this pattern if you go read posts from Ozarkanglers.com forum. Duane posts a lot there and I’m sure you can read more about this new pattern for Taneycomo.
In Conclusion –
I keep saying I’m going to update patterns, but until my new site gets done I don’t want to go backwards with cutting and pasting. So yes the site is in transition so I’m in a dead spot and have to wait it out. I think everyone is going to like the new layout. Once it gets done I have all kinds of new stuff to share. I’ve been accumulating it for a few years, so a lot of new articles and tips will be posted in the upcoming future. It’s a slow process because I have a lot of content on my old site to get over to the new one and I’ll be ready to GO!! I’m not going anywhere that’s for sure; business is good, so thank you for being a part of Flys and Guides!!
May 3 2012
Fish on every drift in low water; don’t believe me….book a trip!
All I can say is the fish are in a good mood. This type of fishing is rare, but happens when conditions are right. Except for yesterday, the corps has been sticking true to the generation schedule. The water has been off until 3pm most days. I think yesterday’s early generation was due to power demand from the hot temperatures. Right now is one of those times you can do no wrong and it really doesn’t matter what they do with the water. If you like streamer fishing you will like catching big browns in high water. One thing I’m seeing that has been different from the past is I’m seeing a lot more browns up top than normally. And a lot of it has to do with locating them from throwing streamers. I’m starting to find out where these fish are holding and I bet they have always been there. Nobody is throwing these big articulated streamers and I keep saying in my previous reports, why don’t you be the first?
I had a few guys book me for just this type of fishing and a lot of it had to do with all the browns they were seeing me post on Facebook. It really got their attention, because they were always sold on the fact they thought this was a White River thing. Being from Springfield they couldn’t make quick trips down to the White so knowing that Taneycomo supports this style of fishing they have a whole new outlook on this fishery and I do to. I’m sure this will get more and more popular and it won’t be the same once everyone is doing it, but right now it’s basically me and my clients having this type of fishing all to ourselves. Matt and Ed were my first clients to have an opportunity at this, and they weren’t disappointed. The first ten minutes into the trip Matt already hooked into a nice brown. Sometimes it happens that way and other times it could happen ten minutes before the trip is over. The key is to always think the next cast could be the one. So regardless of what the water is doing the bite remains strong for all levels of fly fishing right now.
April 23 2012
FINALLY…..WE HAVE LOW WATER!!
I knew we weren't far off from low water and now that it’s here, this means we will have it until we get another big rain that hits the Ozarks. In order to get big water again we will need a substantial rainfall to get the corps dumping big water fast. I wouldn't be too alarmed if we get little rain showers with little accumulations though. The corps might generate a little throughout the day, but it won't be all day so low water is definitely here to stay. This would be a great time to take advantage of it because once the heat gets here it will be all over for good water.
I was kind of getting used to big water and just started figuring out how to get these big browns to jump streamers. Oh well, there's always next time. Now I'll just have to stick to low water tactics and play the numbers game. The trout are thriving and the bite should be good for midges here on Taneycomo.
This weekend I focused on nothing but streamers with my clients. I was surprised to see some bigger rainbows crashing these streamers also. We had one rainbow in the 21-22 inch range that spit the fly once it got to the surface (have it recorded and the video will come out later) with some of the brightest colors you can see on a rainbow. And a few more we caught looked just the same. It looks like a totally different rainbow than all the stockers you normally catch when fishing with an indicator. Of course you get some with color, but the majority of them are stockers that have little to no color. You can tell what I mean by looking at the pictures, real red stripes going down with a bright gill cheek. The kind of rainbows Taneycomo is known for. This is what separates this tailwaters from all the rest. We do have some of the prettiest rainbows compared to other tailwaters here in the Ozarks.
White River –
Again, I've seen a change in their generation to as of yesterday, only generating one to two units. This makes for some awesome drift boat water. Not only that, but some of the best water for dry flies (the best caddis hatch on the river is from Wildcat to Rim, with just up from cotter being the best). If you are still after browns on streamers you can do that to. I would say from Rim down to buffalo is better water for this type of presentation and a lot of it has to do with having a little deeper runs downstream then the upstream, in this type of generation. Either way this is the type of water you can do just about anything you want with good results in any style of fly fishing you desire. Start planning your trips because the low water has arrived!!
March 20 2012
Streamer fishing continues to be productive on Taneycomo
With all the lakes being under a foot, we are starting to see lower flows on a few tailwaters. Norfork and Beaver tailwaters are shutting down at night and then releasing sometime in the morning. Heavier flows continue on Taneycomo and the White River. So we’re not out of the funk of high water just yet. Let’s just hope we don’t get big rains in the next few weeks and I would be willing to bet we will see low water during the day sometime soon. With Taneycomo having the biggest flows throughout the day it’s convinced me to give streamers a go again. This is something I struggle with here on Taneycomo because of the inconsistency on getting good results. A lot of this has to do with the way this river is mapped out verses the White. There’s not enough good water for one and secondly we just don’t have the abundance of browns either. But after this week I’m starting to reconsider my thoughts on a few things.
Is Taneycomo worthy of streamer fishing -
I would say yes, but it’s never going to be like the White. There are a few reasons for this and I would have to say the two biggest reasons are; we don’t have the same layout with miles of good water and two, there’s not the abundance of browns that chase streamers. Rainbows just are not into big articulated streamers. However we do hook a few from time to time which gives you some action, but it’s all about the brown trout when we’re working this hard. We’ve had fair results, but the one thing different about this time verses the other times I’ve tried to do this at Taneycomo is, we actually hooked a few bigger browns like we do on the White. So it definitely has potential, but it really is too early to say how good this bite will be and how consistent it will be throughout the year. In the past I never had these results. I would put away knowing that I’ll give it another shot when I get the itch. I get tired of nymph fishing all the time staring at an indicator all day. This year (on Taneycomo) it’s going to be more about dry fly fishing and streamer fishing when we have the right water for it. It’s always better to learn different things so you can give the client more variety and more importantly, show him something different that will improve his or her game.
Dry fly fishing is right around the corner –
Since I’ve been fishing the banks mostly I’ve noticed each day I’m out there the fish are getting more active taking stuff off the surface. The other day we gave dries a shot just to see if we could get some trout looking up. We had a few big crashes, but not enough to think this bite was solid. We will be doing this more as the weeks go by and I would say we don’t have that long before these trout are chewing up terrestrials.
In conclusion –
A buddy and I put together this small clip of that brown I caught, so I hope you enjoy the footage. If you like the video, give us a like and we always appreciate the support. If you haven’t liked our Facebook page please give us a shout out and like us on there as well. Hope everyone has a good weekend!!
March 15th 2012
Is low water right around the corner, or is it?
In my opinion, we are not far off if we can keep this rain going around us. And for the most part we’ve been lucky not to have heavy accumulations. With Beaver Lake only having a few more feet to dump into Table Rock, this might be a sign for some low water on a few tailwaters. I would guess to say Norfork and Beaver are probably going to have max generation (both have two generators) around the clock till they draw the lake back down to power pool or maybe even a little lower. Both lakes I mentioned have a little over two feet to go with the White and Taneycomo having less than a foot.
While I’m writing this we have a big storm that has moved into the Ozark’s dumping some heavy rain. So we probably will get a few inches out of this which will then fill up the lakes a few more feet again, but we’ll just have to keep playing it by ear. Hopefully it won’t be too much rain so we get those lower flows which in return make for better fishing. The reason I say this is because there are some serious caddis hatches down on the White right now and with lower flows you can really take full advantage of the dry fly presentation because more fish are looking up ( which if you haven’t seen the caddis “storm” it truly is a sight to see).
The White River is finally seeing lower flows, but there are still some sporadic surges that can get fish off their feeding pattern. So it’s really crucial making the correct decisions when fishing the White River system when you have big water, then small water, then back to big water, all in one day. Of course it fishes well on all levels of generations, but when you’re fishing out of a drift boat it’s important on where to put in and where we take out without getting caught in soupy water. Nobody likes to be caught in the surge, not even the trout. So always keep that in mind when fishing out of a drift boat.
How’s the fishing?
Fishing has been fair, but April is always one of those months you can’t really predict what the water is doing, or the trout. It really boils down to the decision you make on where you think the fish are biting the best. You might have to drive for it, but it’s worth it if you find lower water, because where you find low water, you will find actively feeding fish. I’ve been fishing all tailwaters except for Norfork tailwater and NFOW. So Beaver, White River and Taneycomo is where I’m spending a great deal of my time. I wish I could get down to the White more often, but most my trips trust my judgment so we are staying close to home as of right now. That will change in the weeks to come because the White is back to better flows.
Taneycomo is where I’ve been the most this month and we’ve had some great days and some ok days depending on water generation. It’s kind of a cool float I’m finding out, nymphing in the morning and streamer fishing in the afternoon. Very educational trip if you ask me, you get the best of both worlds, hooking stockers on nymphs and having that chance at a big one on streamers. That’s what happened yesterday with Brody and you couldn’t shake the smile off his face for the rest of the day. The last few days we have managed to hook five browns and the biggest rainbow I’ve had on to date fishing articulated streamers. This female bow can back around to grab this fly, but the angle was wrong so when I went to set the hook it just wasn’t there. One of those stories, the one that got away. Oh well, that’s why they call it fishing which keeps us coming back for more.
Taneycomo’s generation pattern -
Taneycomo is doing about the same, running 50 mega watts (roughly 3,200 cfs which raises the tailwater side about 4-5 feet above power pool) in the morning until sometime around noon then the corps bumps it up to 100 mega watts and that’s big water for Taneycomo. However, I’ve been doing lots of research on it, still trying to dial in this whole streamer bite on Taneycomo since it’s more of a rainbow fishery then a brown trout fishery like the White. But I’m here to say that it’s finally paying off.
I haven’t wrote much about it because it’s not something I can say I have figured out, but finding the correct cfs levels has been more of the chore than anything else. We all know that white streamers on Taneycomo are by far the most productive color for bringing out rainbows, and it does move browns from time to time, but the other ingredient on having a more productive day on Lake Taneycomo is figuring out when these fish get on the banks so you can get that impulse strike. Taneycomo doesn’t have a ton of seams busting off the banks verses the White, and the reason being is the White is longer and turns a lot more, allowing for breaks off the banks creating seams where fish ultimately lie for ambushing pray. I have found this to be key for targeting bigger ones, but you have to make that perfect cast where you think the fish is holding off the seam, throw behind him and the fish never see it. So looking down river and always having planned your next cast is crucial. I always say to my clients who are streamer fishing, it only takes one cast and one fish to change your entire day with a trophy of a lifetime.
I’ll keep you posted more on this, but in the meantime if you think you might be interested in learning streamer fishing on Taneycomo give me a shout. I don’t think there are too many people dialing in big articulated streamers on Lake Taneycomo so why don’t you be the first!!
In conclusion -
If you have noticed in my last reports I’m going more into detail about how all these fisheries work, so everyone gets more of an understanding on where fishing is going to be the best at that given time when you come to vacation. If you know more about how this whole thing works, then you can plan your trips more accordingly for what it is you exactly want to do on your fishing trip.
April 1 2012 Generation continues to run around the clock on most tailwaters
With Table Rock only having a few feet to go I'm sure you're thinking to yourself, low water is right around the corner. Not the case in my opinion. Beaver Lake has seven feet to dump and they are not going dump it until Taney gets back down to power pool which is 915. Right now as I'm writing this the pool level is 916.46. It's taking anywhere between 4-5 days to get rid of a foot, so that gives you an idea on how many more days we have until it's back down to 915. Then we will see Beaver Lake dump six feet into Table Rock Lake. So basically the high water more than likely isn't over just yet. If we do see low water I would say it will be at night, but you never know what the corps are doing with the water. It's really a science or should I say a puzzle trying to figure this whole thing out when it comes to generation. The only thing I can say is...let's hope for no more heavy rains that dump five inches of rain. That surely isn't what we need considering out of the last four years, three of them have been big flooding and keeping everyone fishing high water through the summer.
The good news is Beaver has low water during the day. That's where I've been taking my trips if the guys are up for it and most have. I've only fished Beaver tailwater two other times and that was way before I started guiding. But as of lately I have figured out this fishery is worth fishing. It's really set up differently then any tailwater we have in the Ozark's. In low water, it's not that low throughout the entire 12 mile river. When you get out of a shoal area it becomes deep (anywhere between 4-10 feet deep) and it really is hard to see fish. Alot of this has to do with the conditions right now. In a way, it's like Taney, half of the river is shallow (from dam down to Bartrand with the exception of the water just below where Spider Creek is, then it's deep on the bottom half all the way down till it dumps into Table Rock.
The current plays a huge role on how long you can actually float the river and alot of this has to do with back-up water from Table Rock being above power pool. That's alot of why they are not generating water. Until Table Rock get's the water back down, the current isn't really strong and it's made the tailwater side up two feet then normal power pool. This has made the current way slower which makes for tougher fishing. Not only tougher fishing, but also hard to float the river without having water going upstream the further you go downstream. From the dam down to Parker Flats it pretty good current, but once you get around the bend heading to Bartrands it becomes minimal and if you barely get a upstream wind you can go ahead and get to rowing because you won't move. That's why I say tougher fishing. the bottom line is you'll catch more fish in current verses dead still current, but can be done as well with a little experience. That's what I know as of right now. I'm gonna be spending more time this year learning different fisheries so I can always have tons of options for my customers.
Fly of choice -
The way the water was it was a challange at first, but an hour into the day it was catching the rest of the day. The key to this river is to fish midges deep. Deeper then we as fly fisherman are taught not to do. Over sized bead to get it down was key also. And these fish don't care for small midges in 16-18, they want 12-14 and 14's were out doing any other size we tried. The two staple patterns from what I could tell so far is olive body with a nickel bead and good 'ole stand by Rusty with a black bead, wire matching the tungsten bead on both patterns.
Can you say....BIG water. It's here, but the good news is they can get rid of more water faster cause they have eight generators. It usually takes only a few days to get rid of a foot with running 22,000 - 25,000 cfs, but with Table Rock dumping Beaver's water into Bull Shoals, we have high water here as well. Like I was saying earlier, take total advantage of this type of water when targeting bigger browns throwing streamers. This water is was you want for getting them on the banks versus holding in the middle of the river making it harder to target them. I'll be down there Monday and we will be throwing streamers along with testing some bigger terestrials so I'll keep you posted on this particular bite. I wish I could get down there more when I fish with my buddies, but I'm gonna be doing research this year, so my focus isn't fishing the same water, it's about learning creeks for smallmouth or any other warmwater fish that wants to eat my fly
I was down with a group the other day right before the high water hit. We were fishing 1-2 unit water and the bite was really good. Not only that, but truly is drift boat water all the way down the river (from dam down to shoestring shoals). From there down its pretty murky because of Buffalo dumping into the White from all the rain we just had. The bite has been really good for caddis patterns from Wildcat down to Rim, but Rim is loaded with them and the fish are going nuts right along the banks slurping them in. The caddis will remain hot even in high water along the banks throwing dries because these bugs like hanging out in the trees so the fish will be looking up you can bet that. Being that it's a little early for hoppers on the White, the fish are starting to see them, so make sure you try big foam patterns for that trophy brown you want on a dry fly.
Again, water is high on the lake side, but they are only generating one unit out of the two which makes for good fishing and great drifting water. I haven't spent any time over here in a while, but I'm sure the fishing remains good for dry fly fishing along the banks. Drifting SJW's is always a garruanty so make sure you have some of them in your fly box.
I'm off to fish Taneycomo in this big water so I'll get a report up when I get back.
March 25 2012 General Fishing Report – Rain has made fishing challenging
This is one reason why I like to be the most versatile guide I can be. I think it’s crucial when following the “trend” on where fishing is the best at any given time. Figuring out these tailwaters systems is like figuring out a puzzle for the most part and the key to having good days can change from one river to the next.
As of right now, Beaver and Taney will generate for awhile, especially Taneycomo. Both lakes are up about five feet, give or take, and that will take some time to release into Bull Shoals Lake. Taney has been running 14,000 cfs for a few days and the lake is still rising. That’s a lot of creeks dumping into Table Rock Lake so you can only imagine how important rain is for us guides who like lower water levels. So the important part to learn and know is where is there going to be low water. Usually you can find it, but you have to be willing to drive for it. That’s what I tell my clients. If you’re flexible we will find the fish, trust me.
Just before we got hit with five inches of rain we were fishing good water on all three tailwaters. Norfork and Taneycomo had more low water throughout the day, but the White had good flows that made for catching lots of fish throwing caddis patterns on the bottom and on the top. The hatch seems to be better down from Wildcat, but you can fool fish on the top just about anywhere. There are more flies that will do the trick, but anytime you can fish dries, it can be rewarding for that finicky trout.
I would say out of all tailwaters the White River should remain having good flows until Bull Shoals stores enough water or we have another big rain that will start filling up Bull faster. That’s when we will see big water for the entire summer on all three tailwaters. I wouldn’t let this keep you from fishing here because you can still have good days. The fish are used to it and so are we (guides). The goal for me is to keep the guys fishing with me on good water and that might be in Arkansas until they drain out Table Rock. Let’s just hope for no more rain. The corps did say they have a better plan this year to try to prevent flooding and that is to get rid of it as soon as the lakes fill up. That’s why you see Taney running 14,000 cfs around the clock.
White Bass Fishing-
We’ve been doing a lot of White Bass fishing on Beaver Creek and James River for a few weeks. Again, this was right before the heavy rains so this changed the trend and now they should be on the move up the river. So instead of parking on holes we will now float the river and find them along with other warm water species. The other day we caught everything including a catfish on a clouser minnow. More males are being caught on Beaver and the water is more fly fishing friendly, but James River has big sows and I believe we only had a few males for the entire day. The bite seems to be a little better rolling into the night so be sure to stay a few hours into the night. If you want to do a trip like this just let me know and we can make it happen. It might be a little tricky to locate them, but it will be a mixed bag of fish and being that the creeks just filled up it will make for better smallmouth fishing also.
Fly Tying –
We just finished up with our last class for last year’s fall season and will continue them again in the fall. If we do have one it will be posted so everyone will know. In the meantime I will still upload tying videos along with a few tying tutorials throughout the guiding season, but it’s becoming harder and harder every year to upload more. It’s a time thing, but I will still do my best to provide good content for everyone. Until next time…good fishing and good times…
February 24, 2012
Taney continues to be excellent fishing in low water
I had a trip with two gentlemen from Kansas City. They were fresh out the gate learning this sport, so the plan was to start when the water dropped out. Here lately I’ve been starting my trips at 11am until they decide to turn the water back on. It’s all about how you cater the trip towards the level of the client so he gets introduced to the sport correctly with as little frustration as possible. That’s always been my goal because I don’t want anyone to have a bad trip in my boat, that’s always been my game plan. And today was no different. Because Taney is fishing so good right now with imitating midges, the sky’s the limit on how many fish are catchable. This is good for beginners because not only do they get more hits, they can lose several trout practicing how to play and land the fish. That’s the other half of it, just like tying flies is the other half of the whole sport.
Mike and Brad had such a good time and you could see the camaraderie being friends most of their lives. This is what it’s all about, making lasting memories. The highlight of the day is we keep getting the “hillbilly slam” catching small browns, rainbows and even bluegill. I guess bluegill can live up top in cold water through the winter months (these are holdover fish from last year’s flood). What I like about fishing Taney right now is seeing browns up top. I’ve been fishing Taneycomo going on fifteen years and back in the day I used to catch a lot more browns that would hang up top throughout the year. But that seems to have declined over the last few years from what I could tell, especially in the winter after the brown run. Their small, but they’re browns and really that’s what most flyfishermen want to catch when coming to the Ozark’s.
I have a few days with Larry starting at 10:30am today and we always have a good time together. So I’ll keep you posted with respect to what’s going on. I’ve been updating reports as of lately because my fly tying is starting to slow down and the guiding is picking up. Until next time….
I continue to get calls about how to purchase more than one item at a time. I know this is a bummer and I’m working on getting a shopping cart as we speak. Until that happens, you can either email me the order list or just call me on the phone and let me know what you want. It’s that simple my friends. And I truly want to say I appreciate everyone’s business! Thank you!
February 22nd 2012
White River, Taneycomo & NFOW –North Fork of the White Fishing Report
Fishing continues to be hot all around and with this mild winter it has made fishing very pleasant. I’m sure everyone is out fishing more this winter and why not. I’ll start with Taneycomo.
Taney is still running water every day, but there is a window of low water in the afternoon. It’s usually between 11am thru 5pm or so. On the weekends, on Saturday they are doing it a little different, it’s been off in the morning with heavy generation in the afternoon. Either way, there’s definitely a guarantee for catching lots of fish. And in my opinion you can’t beat the midge bite right now. The trout love cruising the banks of Taneycomo, almost like tailing bonefish looking for food and easy pickens. If you mimic this presentation it’s going to be a stellar day for you. The trout are not that picky either. It’s winter and the bite has turned on in a big way.
I haven’t really fished up top, so most my reports are in relation to Rocking Chair hole and down to Point Lookout. If you plan on fishing deeper runs then go to nymphs etc. I had a gentleman and his wife from Kansas City last Saturday and really…. it was his first time learning fly fishing, from the cast to presentation, and he picked up around thirty fish including one brown and bluegill (what I like to call “the hillbilly slam”) with the rest being rainbows with a few giving him a run for his money. I would say he got in the learning curve today. Way to go Doug! I have a trip today and I’m sure the day will be no different from that day.
White River – Shad kill was some of the best in a long time!
The bad news is….I missed it. It’s kind of hard to be at two places at once, but I wish I was there on that crazy bite. The locals say some of the best they have seen in a long time. Both tailwaters have calmed down in the way of big spurts of them coming out of the dam, but I’m sure the fish are still seeing them and looking for them, so throwing white patterns will remain hot for weeks to come. My focus has been streamers and because I have a drift boat I will not be able to run up to the dam and make several drifts floating shad patterns. However I can throw white streamers and trigger bites downstream. That’s been my thinking and when that doesn’t work, I will go to other colors to blend in with the bottom. With saying that, the streamer bites has also been a hit or miss, depending on what happens the day before with shad coming through. When they get full, they aren’t feeding and couldn’t care less. It’s like us eating and we get so full we don’t even care for the desert. The water levels have been great for having your fly in the strike zone for fish to see it, but timing plays a role also. All the stars have to line up in a way for you to really have a sick streamer day. A lot of guides are doing this now and sharing the water depending on if you hit it first is also crucial. I think the browns are on their way migrating back downstream or where they like to hang so browns are throughout the entire river, but I’m sure more are concentrated up at the dam gorging themselves on shad.
I had a trip there two days ago in the 20-25 mph winds with great water in the 4-5,000 cfs range, but we quickly realized that the bite was off and we were scratching our heads saying what is going on? Just a week ago reports I was seeing was showing some solid results with a few monsters caught. But today it was off and it all had to do with the shad coming through a day ago. Not only that, but the sun was bright, not a cloud in the sky. Just sometimes this bite isn’t a guarantee, so you have to take each day how they come. We didn’t bring any nymph rods to change up, so we stayed on the streamer bite till we got to Hurst and pulled out to try another day. That’s why I tell people to book two days just for this reason. This day was just an off day.
Like I’ve been saying in previous reports, this is more of a guaranteed bite then anywhere right now in my honest opinion. This river will never be what the White River is as far as big monster browns, but for staying busy with hook ups this river will not disappoint you, I promise. Rick and I decided to go there instead of gambling with full and fat trout on the White so we took a chance and I’m glad we did. We floated from Blair down to Dawt Mill and didn’t see another soul. That’s what you get over here in the winter. You and the river, and let me tell you, no pressure equals= tons of bites. Because Rick booked me for my special for two day streamer trips, this was more about the education on learning everything he could about the streamer bite. Today was definitely one of those days where he got lots of practice on how to hook fish, play the fish and really how to set the hook. People who convert over from throwing nymph rigs most of their fly fishing experience have a hard time understanding that this hook set is way different, so you have to go in it knowing you’re not going to land everything. This was a true test for Rick, and I would say that was the biggest learning curve of the day.
I think the difference today on why so many browns were caught was because of the light rain we had the night before we went. It made for better current and the fish knew the river changed as far as “stuff” coming down river. It got these fish on a feeding frenzy and probably does every time it rains a little. This river can’t handle big floods, but a little rain is great for this river I’m finding out. We didn’t hook anything big this day (over 20 inches), but we hooked more today than any other day since I’ve been fishing over here going on my second season. I bet we caught 30 browns today. That’s not a bad day on this river.
If you haven’t fished this river I promise you’ll be glad you did. This is the river I would recommend right now if Taney isn’t going to have low water for most of the day. So if you have a guide trip booked with me, we might consider hitting this river instead. We’ll just have to see which one is fishing the best. I always try to follow the trends and that’s why I always keep my clients on fish! See you on the river!
General Report- 2-16-2012
Here recently I moved at the first of the month. I now live in the neighborhood right behind the two fly shops we have here locally in Branson Missouri. What’s this mean? How about more reports, or should I say “short” reports. My goal is to at least hit the river or creeks for a few hours a day and let you know something about what’s going on with fishing.
The last couple of days we have seen low water at Taneycomo, but for me it’s been all about the creeks right now and I’ll tell you why. This past week I’ve been trying for this one fish that is holding in some shallow water and if you approach it wrong this rainbow will spook and you have to come back. This rainbow isn’t a typical fish. It’s been living in the creek now for some time and he is very aware of his surroundings which makes it tough fishing. The kind of fly fishing I like. I have so much more appreciation for fish that are more challenging because it really is where fly fishing takes you. Trout will always challenge you, but it is all about the level you’re at when it comes to remember all the little things that add up to catch that remarkable trout. At the end of the day it is about stealth and how to approach weary fish. Well, yesterday I finally caught it, but I will wait for the video to come out and will explain it all over narrating. It really was a treat for me and it was just as exciting as catching a huge brown down on the White.
General News -
On another note, be sure to check out the tying page. I just uploaded some really cool videos on a few streamer patterns we’ve been tying at class. They are also uploaded to Facebook and like I said, this is where I will be uploading most my stuff when I don’t have time to update the site. So make sure you like the Flys and Guides page and we appreciate your support. I recently have been pouring my money into the media side of this sport so the two recent fly tying videos are high quality and they will continue to be from this point on.
Tying Class -
The next class will be on the 25th of this month. We will continue classes for the month of March, but after that we will put classes on hold until next fall, unless I can squeak one in from time to time. The month of March we will focus on White Bass patterns because that will be here before we know it.
Flies for Sale –
I’ve been having some issues with how to purchase patterns through PayPal. The way it’s set up through the site I’m using, you have to check out after each individual pattern your buy (you can get qty for each pattern), which makes it a bit frustrating to the customer. I’m in the middle of getting a shopping cart, but in the meantime if you would like to buy some of my patterns you can email (firstname.lastname@example.org) me a list of what you want to buy and then can do a direct payment to me through PayPal or send a check in the mail. Either way we will get these flies out to you.
What’s the next Promotion?
I’m also in the process of putting together a warm water fly kit for those of you who are going to target warm water species, White Bass, Smallmouth, and whatever else you are targeting as far as creeks and lakes for warm water game.
Right now the streamer bite is hot and it amazes me that more people aren’t taking total advantage on hooking one of these monsters. If you have a little experience with casting then this won’t be hard to adjust to, but like I say, you need to book two days because the first day is somewhat of the learning day and the next day it’s game on. But if you pick up on it faster than you will have two days of golden opportunities for hooking these monsters that are on the chase big time. It took them a minute to get acclimated to start hitting after the spawn, but they are big time. Not only that, but the shad are coming through on both tailwaters in Arkansas. So to me, this is why they are in a feeding frenzy right now and who knows how long it will last. I would say at least three more weeks, so if you can plan in that time frame then this special might entice you to give it a go.
I’m offering a special that will run from now until March 15th, two full days of guided fly fishing for two people on the White River for $600. If you are a subscriber then you know it’s a little cheaper. This is a way to get you learning this new technique and you really need two days, because there is more of a guarantee for hooking several bigger ones in the two days. Not only that, but you are going to miss fish if you’re not used to this style of fishing. So I really try to emphasize to go two days because you can justify the discounted rate because there will be some learning involved. Book now for this crazy opportunity for hooking several browns that is sometimes tough to do in other situations. To me, I believe the easiest way to get your trophy verses nymph fishing, which can take a lifetime for hooking that one fish of a lifetime! The only other bite that can offer multiple browns is the hopper bite, which is in the months of September and August, another sick bite that you might want to book a trip for.
Flys and Guides General Fishing Report
February 8 2012
Yes, I’ve been fishing everywhere, but it’s hibernation mode. When I get on the vise it’s all about getting ready for "guide season", and filling orders for a few local shops that rely on me getting their fly bins in good shape as well. With saying that, I have a lot to say, so I hope I can remember it all.
The Creeks – The creeks are in great shape. There’s just enough rain that came through to store some trout in the creeks. I will say there’s been some new added pressure to the creeks with more people finding out about them, so it can be a hit or miss depending on if you got there first or just fished it after someone just hit it. Either way the fish are there! We took a hike to one stretch and this pool had at least forty trout holding with a few pushing 20 inches. It’s not a spot where you could put several anglers, but if one guy spots and the other fishes you can have a hoot on stealth "challanging" fishing.
Out of the four creeks we have I would say two out of the four are worth spending some time learning. Give me a call if you want to learn more about them. They are only good for the next few months, and the next week is really the only guarantee unless we keep getting spurts of rain between now and spring. To me, it’s not worth a full guided rate fee and depending on how fast we fish them will determine if we can make a good day out of it. If not we can venture over to Taney for a few hours.
NFOW- North Fork of the White- Exclusive take out rights as a guide for Dawt Mill
Like I mentioned on the last “live” fishing report, this is where I’ve been spending most my time. At least hitting this river once a week for where I want to spend my time gambling for the perfect streamer water. (Note: that has changed as of recent. Now that the White River is running steadier current flows, the browns are on the prowl and from some reports I’ve seen there have been some big ones landed).
A little cool news to share with you. This year Dawt Mill decided to not let just anyone take out at their ramp unless you are a conoe rental outfitter or staying at Dawt Mill. A lot of this is because of liability reasons. So for some of you who are not familiar with this river, Patrick down to Dawt does not have take outs unless you want to take out at James bridge (about half way inbetween Patrick and Dawt), which does not have a true boat ramp so it might be a little difficult to take out there if you have a drift boat. But from there down is pretty much our water for throwing streamers for browns, so in a way, this section gets little to no pressure now. And to me….this is the best stretch for putting your streamers in front of multiple browns.
This is the best stretch for brown trout in the entire river in my opinion. Since I’ve been fishing this river for the past two years, I have seen more big browns in the general stretch of river verses anywhere else. Also, this water is more fishable throughout then up top which means there’s not a lot of dead time rowing through naked water with no fish. Check out the latest fishing report from Dawt Mill. If you haven’t checked out the facility for a central place for lodging to fish several bodies of water, this is the “headquaters”. I’ve been using Dawt more for lodging so we can fish three different waters all within driving time and still get a whole day of fishing in. Keep in mind, you have to keep the whole day open, but the good news is they have a restraurant (with a world class chef) right there for all your dining afterwards. All in all, GOOD STUFF!!
Off season hours for the Restaurant (open from Wednsday through Sunday)
11am - 7pm Wed & Thursday
11am - 8pm Fri and Sat
11am – 3pm Sunday
Streamer Fishing on the White- Good news!! The streamer bite is on, on the White! I like to call it’ “the bite on the White”. Since my last report the bite was slow. I knew it was picking up, because last week when I had Aaron, we hooked a pretty solid brown and a ton of chasing going on. I’ve been developing some new color scheme patterns to get more browns attention and let me say….they are working like a charm. I have several people on hold just waiting for the phone call so here it is. Get ready and let’s go!! I’ll be down there for most of next week so reports will be coming in more perodically. It’s not that I don’t want to write or keep everyone posted, but it’s all in how I manage my time with all this tying.
Just want to say Thank You!
For all of you who have been buying flies from my site, I just want to say I appreciate your business and will continue to add more patterns when I can. I told all of you I would make a believer out of you with the Miracle fly. I can now say I have sold this fly to every state in America and it works there to. It really is a “go to” fly when searching out big fish on the bottom.
Tying Class - We will have one more month of classes after the month of February and we will continue to work on streamers for this month. Classes are always from 2-4pm on two Saturdays a month. February classes will be on the 11th and 25th. Hope to see you there.
Roaring River- I really didn’t spend a great deal of time fishing Roaring this year during catch-n-release season, but from what I saw and heard, this year was a better year then the past three. From what I remember the fish were down on numbers for brut stockers, but this year they were pentiful. Hope everyone got a chance to hit this at least once.
Final analysis- I think fishing will continue to be hot for streamers on either the White River and NFOW for the next few months. Especially this month. Right now it’s raining and I wish I was fishing on the White, but Taney will have to do the next few days because I have trips with the “gang”. I have four people the next few days so hopefully we will get some wadable water sometime on Taneycomo.
Taneycomo has had some low water, but it’s usually at night or on the weekend (not this weekend that's for sure, to cold). Just remember the creeks are good and that’s where I’ve been spending most my time while fishing in the Branson area. Taneycomo doesn’t excite me right now because it’s just fishing right now. There’s no big thing going on so I’m going to follow the trends on where the best fishing is at that given time, and right now it’s really not Taney. Just fishing heavy rigs drifting on the bottom is the name of the game at the “como” right now.
Facebook – Go check out our page and like us!! This is where I’ve been uploading my photos because it’s so easy to do it from my phone when I’m on the river.
Dave with his first nice brown.
December 8th 2011 First snow and fishing didnít let us down in these conditions at all!!
White River Fishing ďbriefĒ Report
I always wonder why thereís not more people fishing in the winter months. Of course I like it that way, but as far as guiding and putting clients on big fish, this is the time to come for sure. The other day I was helping out on a group trip on the White and the guy I had named Dave wasnít expecting what was about to come and neither was I. I always know that fish bite best in the worst type of conditions and it was true in this case. It was a moment Dave will never forget.
Dave's second nice brown trout!
Since the group was staying at a house at Wildcat and the water wasnít going to get there until a few hours later, I decided to float this stretch and gamble with the surge. Itís not good to ever have this happen to you, but in this case I wanted to play. The browns are on the move and this is one of my favorite stretches on the White. I know it well. I knew we could have a stellar day if we hit this right and thatís what we did. To make a long story short, we hooked some really nice fish in the first hour. (I have a little clip of one of the browns we hooked on my latest video called ďFishing our CreeksĒ.)
The next day I had Terry and Gene who the day before were throwing streamers with another guide on the White. Today they wanted a break so we decided to hit a new river and give them some variety. Usually when you fish streamers on the White you target browns so today it was about the getting that ďgrand slamĒ. I mean thatís always the goal when fishing here. In my opinion, out of all the tailwaters, this one always makes me feel like Iím really fly fishing. The layout is in low water, you can get lost fishing it. The other rivers are big and wide with a lot of frog water (minimal current and flat water) so it makes for less a shoal except for Wildcat. Norfork has tons of shoals and the only frog water on this 4.4 mile stretch is Long Hole and the water in-between the two islands downstream just up from the Handicap access. The rest is going crazy with stuff to do.
And then a rainbow, what???
We decided to float it and Iím glad we did. We had the wind against our backs and it blew us downstream instead of the usual up stream. When the weather calls for winds I never fish low water from a drift boat. It makes for a long day rowing with an upstream wind in your face along with too much rowing and not enough keeping the boat in position for allowing yourself with a good drift. I fish a little different than most people. If you have fished with me out of my drift boat then you know Iím all about staying on the drift for as long as you can without recasting. To me, itís about line control and only casting when you need to do so. I always believe itís too much casting and not enough fishing. I try to instill this in people I fish with so they can approach a river in a stealth mode instead of not having a plan before entering the river. To learn more about this I did a YouTube video and it explains what I mean so make sure if you havenít seen it, you go check that out.
Dave had enough after all this in the very first part of the day. I think we wanted to end this cold day on a good note.
So today was one of those days when I got to really be a teacher and my guys got to learn a lot. After it was all said in done we manage to lose count of how many fish we caught. We brought nine browns to the net, one cuttie, and one brook followed up with plenty of bows in the mix. Other than two other people, we didnít see a soul. Just us and the river. Itís not often you get times like these, but in the winter you can bet more people are watching fishing on tv instead of actually doing it. So if you get anything out of this report, go fishing in the winter. You will be glad you did. We had two great days. If you have been following the reports, we are at least hooking a 20 inch brown every time we go out. Nothing was bigger than 17 inches on the Norfork, but that happens on the river.
Norfork is still going through some changes and Iím surprised Iím not seeing more quality trout this time of year right now, but who knows the real answer why. It could be cloudy conditions and low light made it hard for us to see fish, but these are the conditions trout like. We were all optimistic on who was going to catch the beast. Thereís always next time, right?
Releasing my dad's rainbow.
Insight on Fishing local creeks in Branson, Mo
So here we are. Another winter and another couple of months creek fishing. Who cares what Taney is doing. These creeks will be thriving with trout and only a few people actually fish them. There is a downside to these creeks so donít let anyone tell you different. In order to have a successful day on a guide trip the client needs to have low expectations and understand that you can get bored fishing these creeks in a hurry. Thereís only so much water that stores trout in each creek and wading is the name of the game. You can cover water quick and be done fishing each creek in a few hours if youíre a ďfish and goĒ kind of guy. To have a really good day sometimes timing is everything when fishing these creeks.
If more fish are in the creek, youíll be fishing longer because thereís fish to be caught. Sometimes youíll go and there wonít be as many. It all has to do with the amount of rain or snow melt runoff we get. This is the only way the new trout will be drawn into these creeks and the more rain we get the higher the creeks will be. Thatís the key for more fish and more things to do. Out of all the creeks, I only really fish two of them. The other two in my book arenít worth it and itís too much of a gamble to hit them because they get more local pressure. It only takes a few anglers to choke the fishery out. Iíll fish them sometimes, but why fish them when the other places are supporting bigger trout on a consistent basis. The video we uploaded speaks for itself.
If you would like to know more about these creeks please feel free to email me and we can get you lined up.
Donít forget the next tying class we have will be on the 17th of December. You wouldnít believe what happened on the class we had on the 6th. I didnít want to write about it. I went to class thinking we were going to fool around with the new articulated shanks from Fish Skull. Itís a new product that I just donít agree with. I will touch more on this subject at a later time on the tying news and update page when I write about my classes.
All I can say is we didnít have a class and only tied one fly which was really cool. It was a sculpin pattern using the sculpin helmets that Fish Skull recently came out with. I agree with the skulls and helmets, but the articulated shanks donít make since when it comes to keeping the hook point close where the fish usually attack it, from the head. I rarely get any fish on the back hook so why are they trying to promote fish hitting the fly from the back of the hook shank? You have to work with them to understand, but I can only seeing a fleeing type pattern where the fish do it on the back.
Darrenís been keeping his page updated a little more regularly so make sure you check out his latest report and video fishing the creeks as well.
Flies for Sale
Iím adding some dries to the site today and will continue to work on this page throughout the winter.
I recently got a testimonial from Dave who has been in my tying class for years. He really is a believer on the whole miracle fly subject so I wanted to share his story with my readers. Itís what I keep saying about big fish and what they relate to. Maybe this story will shed some light on what some many people are already discovering: whatís so deadly about this miracle fly pattern!!
Even Crappie like the Miracle fly on the Norkfork. you'll never know what you might catch on this crazy fly!
December 1st 2011
Fishing, Tying and Fishing
Where do I start? Iíll start by saying I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving Day with the most important people in the world, family. Now on to fishing and whatís shaking with Taneycomo Trout. Iíve been able to hit several rivers lately and you still have to follow the trend, which for me right now is finding low water. The water levels for streamer fishing havenít been ideal. We need flows to run steady and need to stay colder for longer periods of time. With saying that, we did manage to hit the NFOW the other day. This is the first time to be back and it all had to do with timingÖ when I want to fish it. I love this river, but I can see a big difference from last year with the number of fish. It wonít keep me from coming back because this river still had a lot to offer us and we will be doing trips over here for the next few months. Now that I help Dawt Mill with guided trips, Iím going to make this a hub for going other places when doing multiple streamer trips or just fishing trips. Be sure to look for the next newsletter promotion. I will be offering awesome winter rates for my subscribers. Itís going to be a great deal for fishing. With chances at bigger fish verses the summers, itís a win win for coming down and hitting several rivers. I should be sending that out in the next day or so.
Beaver tailwater has also been on my mind. Iím hearing stories of bigger browns on the river all the sudden. This tailwater to me has always been a hit or miss for big fish and you also need ideal conditions for throwing big streamers if you are strictly searching for big fish. One unit is what Iím looking for and I should be taking a group over there sometime around the 7th of December. We just need the flows to be right. Iíll check that river out and see whatís cooking.
NFOW browny, great colors and they don't have to be big to get this pretty!
Taneycomo has been generating. Hitting low water levels is going to be a gamble. Not only that, but the schedule generation hasnít been consistent in what they say and do. This is what we deal with as guides, as well as locals, on a daily basis. The other day when I fished Taney before they turned the water on early, my guys were hooking lots of fish on midges. I could tell that the fishing was back in a big way so playing the numbers game should be back. I was also able to hit Roaring River that same day and this year I see a lot bigger rainbows than the two previous years. Much of that had to do with rainfall during the catch-n-release year. If they get the rain earlier then the fish come out earlier. We want the big rains to hit a week before or even the day before. Iíll let you scratch your head on that one, but trust me thatís the key to having bigger fish during artificial season.
Norfork is probably the river that is having the longer periods of low water. The pattern over there has been two hours in the morning and some in the evening so the low water has been during the day. Throwing dries will be hot all winter long if we have low water.
Note: This river changed up top in a big way and I think for the better. After you get past Geneís hole and the rest of the docks, the river used to split and you would go river left if you were heading downstream. It used to be shallow, but it was the only way. That has now been filled in with rocks and AGFG came in there and cleared the whole right side and made a wall along the bank until you get to long hole. You donít even have to get out of your boat anymore in low water. It also has more structure and deeper pools where big fish would hold. When we fished it we caught several fish and saw one big one cruising up and down. He was spooked, but good to see that in this stretch of water now. One stretch if fished right could take you a few hours to fish out. I remember walking through this stretch with only a few holding spots for trout to hold.
GOOD NEWS IN MY BOOK!
Another NFOW brown. This is a trophy for that river.
WHATíS NEW NEWS
If you get a chance, go and pick up the latest issue of Southwest Fly Fishing magazine for the High Water Sculpin in the ďguide flyĒ section. I came up with this pattern for fishing big water on the White River. At the time there were few patterns that imitated a larger sculpin for big big water. Most the flies were single hook in a size 4 or 6. I wanted something in the 1/0 or bigger. Now we have fish skulls and sculpin helmets that really do wonders for baitfish and sculpin patterns.
Also the Flies for Sale page is still being updated and the latest patterns are the Big Streamer section and Night Flies. So far I updated the most common ones I think work the best which are the Peanut Envy and Circus Peanut. Some are a few variations that I came up with so please be sure to check that out when you get a chance. The best way to buy them is to buy more than one as shipping wonít be costly for only one fly. I also added a few combo packs for you have all the colors you need to get the job done. Also, the blog is updated with a little write up on Norfork which we recently fished.
Last but not least, classes are in full swing and the tying news has the latest videos from the two classes we had over the month of November. December will be all about streamers because itís that time!!
Darren also uploaded a video on his page he did on the local creeks we have here in Branson. When Taney is running big water and all you have is waders, thiese are the places to go.
Some kind words that John had to say, and I'm glad I could be a part of it. All for a good cause!
I never got the chance to tell you how I did in the Total Outdoorsman Challenge back in September. I didn't place very well over-all, however, Thanks to you, I did well in the fly-fishing event. I ended up with one of the shittiest beats in Dogwood Creek. There weren't many fish and, because there were two heats, I had to fish behind a guy that went and scared all the fish before me. The day before was Bass fishing and I didn't catch jack. So I went into the fly-fishing with nothing to lose. I remembered everything you taught me, used your "miracle fly", and on my second cast, caught a beautiful 15" trout. After that I caught a 12" and then a 13".
As I found out later, the kid that fished the beat before me spent more time untangling his line from the trees and did not catch one fish!
Anyway, thanks again and I really enjoyed my time out there and appreciate you setting me up for success. Next time, I'll learn my knots better so I don't call you, freaking out, the night before! (Sorry about that by the way)
The Field & Stream Total Outdoorsman Challenge is being shown on the Outdoor Channel this week. The next 2 segments are Friday night at 11:30 and Sat morning at 10:30 (EST).
Michael's very first fish or the day. I knew right then we were in for a good day!
November 9-10, 2011- Arkansas
One of those days, ďyou should have been here yesterdayĒ
So Iíll start this story from the start because itís a good one. A gentleman by the name of Dave booked a trip with me strictly to learn the true art of the ďmiracle flyĒ that is getting much attention. The reason this all came about was he and a buddy were fishing a tailwater in Tennessee called Caney Fork, which I fished several years back. They saw these two guys catching one after another. They were scratching their heads wondering what these two guys were doing. They finally walked up to them and asked one of them what were you using? The guy showed him a egg pattern with a jig on it. So they immediately went home and typed in ďjig head eggsĒ in a Google search engine and stumbled on my site. After doing some researchí they decided to get down here and try it out on some of our brown trout.
Nice cuttie caught drifting through the shoals at Wildcat!
Because they booked two days, we had some options now, and that really makes the difference I think, when hiring a guide. The first day we had low water, so we decided to fish from Wildcat to Cotter. You could see and feel it was one of those days that was going to be stellar. We had cloud cover, low temperatures and wind to create some heavy wind chop. All positive things in my book for hooking up on some serious trout. The first fish of the day was Michael hooking up on a brown and we werenít 20 yards from the ramp we put in at. I turned and looked and Michael and said, ďthis is going to be a good dayĒ. We caught so many fish it was crazy. It was just one of those days you say :you should have been here yesterdayď. I wish we could have days like this all time, but I guess thatís why they call it fishing and not catching. Iím sure thatís why we always look forward to the next time we get on the water. As a guide I live for days when everything lines up for a good day. We caught a lot of fish and it was a mix which made the day one these guys will never forget. Not only did they learn the true ďscienceĒ behind this fly, they got to see what kind of damage this fly can do if you stick with it. With a few minor changes in the way we approach the way we fish, it made all the difference in the world if we caught quantity or quality. And this was exactly what they were after.
It was Dave 50th B-day and this was his surprise> I told you it would happen, hehe!!
After it was all said in done we caught twelve browns, one cutthroat and so many rainbows our heads were spinning. The best part of the trip was it was Daveís birthday! Iím sure we all wish we had more birthdays like this. I was excited for Dave and Iím glad this is what he wanted to do for this special day.
The next day we floated the Norfork with a little disappointment because someone didnít stick to the generation schedule. We floated high water to start the morning, banging streamers trying to move something big with no luck. This river is like that, but Iím willing to take the gamble always because this river can sure have itís moments. Iím sure this time around it had to do with bright and early sunshine and AGFC just got done putting big boulders around Cookís island, (which I think is a good thing). All in all, it was a good day as soon as we started fishing on the bottom.
Dead scud's work like crazy on Norork.
Donít forget the next class will be on November 19th from 2-4pm. The last class we did was tying with foam. I wouldíve like to got more patterns tied, but thereís never enough time so we will continue this one in a later date. If you would like to check out what we tied, I uploaded some videos on the tying page for my fellow fly tiers. And as alwaysÖI hope you get something out of it. This next class will be all about midges and why you should learn as much as you can about fishing these patterns in the winter months.
Just want to sayÖ.thank you for the kind words.
Jeremy Hunt provides a world class guide experience! Being a novice trout angler, I was more interest in learning proper technique than catching fish. In a one-day guided trip I learned the basics of casting, knot tying, lure selection, drift and lure placement. Within fifteen minutes Jeremy had me catching trout and learning more than I ever thought possible. Compared to previous guided trips, this was the best experience I have had. Jeremy knows the areas he guides extremely well, has very high quality equipment and the patience to teach at every skill level. He went the extra distance to lend me a rod so that I could fish a few hours before heading home! If you're looking for a great experience, use Jeremy Hunt, buy some extra hand-tied flies and you will not be disappointed!
Marty Perrea Kansas City, MO
My family and I had such a great time fishing the White River this past Sunday. I don't think that we have ever caught so many fish in one day, let alone browns. Catching three different types of trout within the first hour was an experience unlike any other. It came to the point that every time my line landed on the water I expected to have a strike seconds later. With the miracle fly doing most of the work, it was truly an memorable day being able to enjoy great fishing with my family, while learning more about the sport and listening to your humor. I hope that at some point in the near future we can embark on a night fishing adventure in search for that monster brown. I hope that our fortune and luck followed you down to the North Fork the following day.
Thanks, Jack Faerber
For more videos to watch, check out Darren's page. The first three at the top were also uploaded on November 2nd.