Tuesday, July 19, 2016

July 20, 2016





How’s Fishing?
It’s truly amazing how quickly the Spring can recover from a high water event.  Just last week on July 14th, the water rose to over six and a half feet.  This is two and a half feet over flood level, and within four hours, it was back down to four feet, also back in its banks, and showing signs of clearing.  As I write this report, the water has clear edges, some murk in the center but the Spring is pumping out clean water.  Fishing has been good for most. The fish that are being caught and kept are of a decent size – between one and two pounds.  Lures are tending toward the dark side.  Black marabou or rooster tails.  The exception to this is anything that is salmon or peach, from dough bait to glo-balls.
The Niangua rose more slowly, reached a height of over twelve feet and receded by the end of the next day to four feet.
The best advice that I got from those that were actually catching fish was to fish the edges and the eddies.  Fish the far bank.  As long as you aren’t in the middle, you are going to do well.



Fishing Times
July                 6:30 a.m.  -   8:30 p.m.
August 7:00 a.m.  -   8:00 p.m.
September 7:30 a.m.  -   7:15 p.m.
October         7:30 a.m.  -   6:30 p.m.



Water Conditions
Bennett Spring 7-19-16

Gage house level is 2.38 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 78 in 1934
25th percentile is 112
Median is 191
Mean is 154
75th percentile is 174
current level  is 238
Max was 588 in 1988

Niangua River

Gage House reading (water level) is 3.09 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:

minimum was 10 in 1997
25th percentile is 141
Median is 191
Mean is 230
75th percentile is 283
Max is 931 in 2015
Today's reading is 866



What’s Working
From the fly box
Cracklebacks in dark colors, original
Black zonkers, streamers
Zone 2
Marabou – white & yellow, black & olive, pink & white, red & black, peach, black & yellow with gold head and red thread
Peach fur bug
White grub, white grub with tail
Peach fur bug
Zone 3
Power bait, bubble gum or salmon peach





Lunker Club
7-15-16
Matthew Powell from Bethel, MO, 2-1/2 pounds on a peach fur bug
James Oyler from Lee’s Summit, MO, 2+ catch & release on black & orange marabou in zone 2
Kyle Eggers from Rogers, AR, 2.25 pounds on a black & olive marabou in zone 2
7-16-16
Jeremy Bedell from Kansas City, MO, 2 pounds on a minnow in zone 3
7-18-16
Russ Grobe from Hillsboro , MO, 3 pounds on a ginger in zone 2
Drew Sanders from Glasgow, MO, 2 pounds on a chamois in zone 2
7-19-16
Renae Hampton from Festus, MO, 4-1/4 pounds on a peach marabou in zone 1
Jim Asher from Atchison, KS, 2 pounds on a black & gold marabou in zone 2
Brian Dolan from St. Louis, MO. 2 pounds on a ginger marabou in zone 2



Weather Forecast
Thursday: Sunny and hot, with a high near 95. Southwest wind 7 to 10 mph.
Friday: Sunny and hot, with a high near 95.
Saturday: Sunny and hot, with a high near 95.
Sunday: Mostly sunny and hot, with a high near 93.
Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 90.
Tuesday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 90

Spring Hole during high water


Of Interest
The flood was the most interesting thing that has happened for a while.  I’m just going to let the pictures speak for the event.

zone 1 July 14,2016










Roller Dam, July 14, 2016













Quote of the Week (thanks to the nice ladies in our shop that approved this one!)
Bass fishermen watch Monday night football, drink beer, drive pickup trucks and prefer noisy women with big breasts. Trout fishermen watch MacNeil-Lehrer, drink white wine, drive foreign cars with passenger-side air bags and hardly think about women at all. This last characteristic may have something to do with the fact that trout fishermen spend most of the time immersed up to the thighs in ice-cold water.
Author:  Not Known
Published:  New Yorker Magazine, June 13, 1994

Thanks for reading!  Lucy

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

July 13, 2016

How's Fishing?

Run-off from the last rain that we had continues to cloud the water a little bit.  You can see from the pictures that is it mainly in the center and that the sides are clear.  There are less large fish being caught, but in general the fishing has been very good.  Even the inexperienced anglers seem to be doing ok.  As I walked around the park this morning (Monday) I saw quite a few fish being caught and released. One -obviously experienced - angler reeled in three fish in the five minutes I was watching.
As far as which lures to use, if it's yellow - it's working!  A Yellow & white 80th ounce marabou, bedspread mini jig, or pale yellow chenille mini jig have been leading this group.  A second color choice is white or pink and white in a marabou or mini jig.
Small (16 to 18) Black Caddis or tan caddis are doing well.  Blue wing olive (20's) are another good choice.


Fishing Times
July                    6:30 a.m.         -   8:30 p.m.
August                7:00 a.m.         -   8:00 p.m.
September        7:30 a.m.         -   7:15 p.m.
October                7:30 a.m.       -   6:30 p.m.



Water Conditions

Bennett Spring 7-12-16
Gage house level is 2.07 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 81 in 1934
25th percentile is 118
Median is 143
current level is 153
Mean is 163
75th percentile is 187
Max was 501 in 2015

Niangua River 7-12-16
Gage House reading (water level) is 2.72 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:
minimum was 19 in 2012
25th percentile is 45
Median is 106
Today's reading is 131
Mean is 177
75th percentile is 210
Max is 858 in 2015



What's Working?

From the Fly Box:
Blue wing olive
Black zebra midge
Black  or tan caddis
Renegade

Zone 1 or 2

Rooster tail: bumble bee
Glo ball: yellow & black dot, white, white with red or pink dot
Olive wooly with spinner, brown wooly worm
marabou, black & olive, yellow, yellow & white, pink & white
John deere

Zone 3

White and red trout magnet
salmon peach or yellow power bait.
root beer worm


Lunker Club

7-7-16
Kierra Stringer from Salisbury , MO
3 pounds on a pink & white marabou in zone 2

7-8-16
Ellie Anderson (age 8) from Jefferson City, MO
2-1/4 pounds on brown dough bait in zone 3

Cody Haeker from Savannah, MO
3-3/4 pounds on salmon marabou in zone 1

7-9-16
Jared Lootens from Jeff City, MO
3 pounds on home made dough bait in zone 3

7-10-16
Angie Oyler from Lee's Summit, MO
2-1/8 pounds on a green & white marabou in zone 2

Michael Cameron from Hermann MO
2 pounds on a jimmi hendrix glo ball in zone 2

7-11-16
Don Whitsell from Easton, MO
3-1/4 pounds on a root beer worm in zone 3

Wyatt Pine from Lebanon, MO
2-1/2 pounds on a pink & white marabou in zone 1

Jim Lucas from O'Fallon, MO
6-1/2 pounds on salmon powerbait in zone 3



Of Interest 
Several companies have very good options for cleaning and conditioning your fly line.  The take away  is that you should clean your fly line regularly and that you should use a product that is made to do this, not one for making your car shine, for example.   The following happens to be a conversation with a representative from Scientific Angler, so these are the products he is familiar with.

This article is by Brian Kozminski:
     How often do you clean your line? Be honest. I’m not talking Cash-line register somebody dropped a $5 bill you’re going to give it back to him honest, I’m talking deep down inside honest. Do you clean your line every time you go out or every other time you go out? Or even, ‘gasp‘- once a month?
I have noticed a dramatic increase in casting ability when I clean my line at least every other trip. This totally depends on the type of water I am casting into. Whether it is millpond weed frog scum-slime-slick slow  water or if I’m in a nice clean riffle filled stream, it can make a difference. There are still millions of micro particles that stick to your line every time you go out, and they accumulate. Over time, they will not only deteriorate your casting, but your line as well.

Recently, I had the opportunity to cast and fall in love with the new SharkWave from Scientific Anglers. When I lined up all my rods from a heavy week of casting into hoards of spent mayflies, I was concerned with ‘how’ and ‘how often’ I should be cleaning and conditioning this line that has improved my cast and has assisted other anglers reach that twenty incher they might not otherwise have a chance at. Is there a difference between merely cleaning the line and conditioning it? What about these household remedies I hear other anglers recommend, like Amor-All or Rain-X for their line cleaning? What is the best method for the long life and care of my line? So I sent out a few e-mails and got a rather quick and surprising response from Erick Johnson at Scientific Anglers:

Erick at SA:  The bottom line is we cannot guarantee what is in other dressing or products and how it will react with our lines. A perfect example of this is ArmorAll. For years people said that ArmorAll could be used to clean and condition fly lines. What we know now is that they actually reduce the effective lifespan of the line. This is due to the chemicals in ArmorAll reacting with the plasticizers in our coating and actually drying it out. This can lead to premature cracking and line failure. ~ Erick Johnson at Scientific Anglers

Brian K:  How often should I clean my line?

Erick at SA:  Regarding frequency, it really depends on the water type and the amount of debris/dirt/grime/sludge in that water. The obvious answer is “whenever it needs it” and you notice a significant decrease in performance but that is hard to quantify. A good guidance rule would be every 4-5 outings in cleaner ‘trout’ water and probably every 2-3 outings in dirtier, warmer water. The BEST way to “deep clean’ your line is to put a small amount of hand soap on a wet cloth and run your line through it. Rinse it and wipe it clean in freshwater and it’s good to go once it is dry. This method is a little more time intensive than the bucket method, but it does a much better job.



Bryan :  What about with Textured Line?

Erick:   Great question! The short answer is that we never want to use any line dressing or conditioner on any textured lines, including the SharkWave. By applying a dressing or conditioner it actually clogs the texturing and attracts dirt and grime which actually renders the line less effective.

  A good way to clean any line is by using a small about of HAND soap(not dish detergent) in a bucket of warm water. You can then put the line in the soapy water and agitate it for a few minutes. Rinse your line off with fresh, cool water and set it out in loose coils to air dry. Once your line is dry you have two options depending on whether your line is smooth or textured (such as SharkWave, Mastery Textured or Sharkskin):
For textured lines:
Ensure you line is completely dry. It can then be run through a Fly Line Cleaning Pad . This actually buffs the surface of the line and exposes fresh AST (Advanced Shooting Technology) which is our proprietary additive in the coating itself. The line is good to fish at this point.

For smooth lines:
The process is very similar. Likewise, ensure your line is completely dry and then run it through a Fly Line Cleaning Pad to also buff it and expose fresh AST. At that point the line can be dressed with our conditioner using the foam pad applicator. The line is now ready to fish.

Bryan:   What about these so-called Home remedies? Like AmorAll?

Erick:  I get a lot of questions from users about different techniques and “home remedies” to use on their lines. The bottom line is we cannot guarantee what is in other dressing or products and how it will react with our lines. A perfect example of this is ArmorAll. For years people said that ArmorAll could be used to clean and condition fly lines. What we know now is that they actually reduce the effective lifespan of the line. This is due to the chemicals in ArmorAll reacting with the plasticizers in our coating and actually drying it out. This can lead to premature cracking and line failure. That is why we recommend using our Line Dressing. We can guarantee the contents are safe to use with our lines.



Weather Forecast

Thursday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 90. Southwest wind around 8 mph.

Friday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 84.

Saturday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 84.

Sunday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 88.

Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 91.




Quote of the Week

The curious thing about fishing is you never want to go home. If you catch anything, you can't stop. If you don't catch anything, you hate to leave in case something might bite.

Author:  Gladys Taber - 1941

Thanks for reading.
Lucy

Thursday, July 7, 2016

July 8, 2016



How's Fishing

The rain we have been getting has changed the color of the stream a bit.  As you can see from the pictures, the edges of the stream are still pretty clear, but there is some muckiness in the center.  The fishing has changed up a bit because of this.  While the grasshoppers and terrestrials are still working well, some of the smaller top water flies are not as effective at this time.  The exception to this would be the always excellent lure - the black caddis!  The deeper water seems to be a good place to place a lure and darker colors are the best to use, whatever kind you prefer.



 Fishing Times

July                      6:30 a.m.   -   8:30 p.m.
August              7:00 a.m.   -   8:00 p.m.
September      7:30 a.m.   -   7:15 p.m.
October              7:30 a.m.   -   6:30 p.m.



Water Conditions
A bit murky in the centers from rain run off. Edges are still clear in most areas.
July 7, 2016 for Bennett Spring:

Gage house level is 2.37 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 81 in 1934
25th percentile is 120
Median is 150
Mean is 169
75th percentile is 190
current level is 232
Max was 502 in 2015



July 7, 2016 for Niangua River: Moving well, back down from high levels on the 4th and 5th.  A little above average for discharge and levels.

Gage House reading (water level) is 2.72 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:

minimum was 20 in 2012
25th percentile is 47
Median is 106
Mean is 213
75th percentile is 282
Today's reading is 293
Max is 802 in 2015



What's Working?

From the Fly Box:

Hoppers
Possum hair roach
Copper hot shots, all colors
Black zebra midge
Black caddis
Renegade


Zone 1 or 2
Pink mega worm
Rooster tail: bumble bee, brown glitter, or black glitter with gold spinner
Glo ball: original tri color, dark roe with orange spot
White floss
Possum hair roach
Brown roach
White mega worm
Olive wooly with spinner, brown wooly worm
marabou, black & yellow, fucia and black, black, and black & white
John deere

Zone 3
White trout magnet
Orange glitter or white power bait.
Pink and White Mice Tails
UV Salmon Eggs



Lunker Club

6-30-16
Larry Todd from Raytown, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a pink mega worm in zone 1

Glenn Mazuranic from High Ridge, MO
2+ pound brown trout on a brown wooly in zone 1

7-2-16
Ashley Steinkamp from Hillsboro, MO
2 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 2

7-3-16
Layne Mount from Clinton, MO
3-1/4 pounds on a hand tied jig in zone 1

7-5-16
Kathleen Feldewerth-Tilley from Wildwood, MO
2 pounds, 2 ounces on a black & yellow marabou in zone 1




Of Interest 

This e mail is reprinted from Ben Havens, the hatchery manager.  I would also like to add at this point, that this is the first year in seven that we have had to use a fourth sheet for the Lunker Club.  And it's only July.

From Ben Havens:

Another good month for the hatchery and around the park-

 Tag Sales for June, 2016 total 18,165.  Adults comprised 14,977 and there were 3,188 kids tags sold.  Last year the tags sales totaled 16,221.
For the entire year so far, there have been 66,122 sold compared to last year at this time of 61,151.

Attendance is up 12% over last June. Possibly due to weather, as last June we had several rises and off color water for most of the month.
Tag sales are still up 8% for the year over 2015.

Plenty of much needed rain to help us get through for a while longer-
Spring flow was at 25% level (70 MGD) for most of June, thankfully the rains the last couple weeks have bumped things up considerably! We are currently at 232 million gallons/day.



Weather Forecast
Anyone who has lived in MIssouri for any length of time could have written this forecast.  Hot, muggy and a chance of rain.

Friday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 7am. Partly sunny, with a high near 89. Heat index values as high as 97. West wind 6 to 9 mph.

Saturday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 85. Southeast wind around 6 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon.

Sunday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 86.

Monday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 88.

Tuesday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 89.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 90.



Calendar of Events

July 26th & 27th Moss cutting

August 30th & 31st : Moss Cutting

October 4th & 5th : Moss Cutting

Saturday, October 8, 2016:
Holland Trout Derby, help raise some money for cancer society.
Time: 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM

October 31st: End of Regular Season

November 11, 2016: Start of Catch and Release for 2016 - 2017


Quote of the Week

A trip to the river is a series of actions and choices. Which fly? Where to cast - how best to reach the spot I am aiming for? Some days I don't catch a thing, some days quite a few. Fly fishing takes a mulish patience, a recognition of limits, a willingness to put up with mistakes, take them in, learn from them. On the river the world is neither perfect nor broken, but always fixable, adjustable, always ripe for restoration.

Author: Frank Soos
Published:  Bamboo Fly Rod Suite

Thanks for reading!   Lucy

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

June 30, 2016

How's Fishing?

Fishing continues to be great. It's summertime and everyone at Bennett is cool!  There has been a lot of talk about browns.  They are a favorite fish to catch for most anglers because of their 'spunk'.  I've added an article under the "of interest" heading that an expert angler from Bass Pro wrote.  I found it interesting, you may as well.  The latest lure to use at Bennett to catch a brown is a size 18 Renegade.  Remember to measure your catch, a brown needs to be 15 inches long to put on your stringer.
The Lunker Board at our store is going into the third sheet.  This is the most lunkers we have seen since we came here seven years ago.  2016 is just an amazing year!
If we get the rain that is predicted, the water may be a little murkier than it is now.  If you are a weekend angler, you may be able to get away with a heavier tippet material and darker lures.  Remember that rain in Kansas City or St. Louis does not mean that we are getting rain at Bennett Spring.  Check the weather for Long Lane, MO to get the most accurate current weather for this area.

Fishing Times

June/July            6:30 a.m.  -   8:30 p.m.

August               7:00 a.m.  -   8:00 p.m.

September         7:30 a.m.  -   7:15 p.m.

October              7:30 a.m.  -   6:30 p.m.


Water Conditions - Amazingly clear and slow for this time of year.  Almost record low for the Spring Branch.  The Niangua is running a bit higher than average level.

June 28, 2016 for Bennett Spring:

Gage house level is 1.91 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 78 in 1934
current level is 117
25th percentile is 130
Median is 160
Mean is 189
75th percentile is 210
Max was 653 in 1932

June 28, 2016 for Niangua River: Moving well, above average for discharge and levels.

Gage House reading (water level) is 2.16 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:

minimum was 28 in 2012
25th percentile is 57
Median is 98
Today's reading is 178
Mean is 214
75th percentile is 367
Max is 694 in 2008



What's Working?

From the Fly Box:

hoppers
Possum hair roach
crackleback: bennett blue
copper hot shots, all colors
black zebra midge
white mega worm
black caddis

Zone 1 or 2

rooster tail:  bumble bee, brown glitter, or black glitter with gold spinner
glo ball: original tri color,
White floss
possum hair roach
brown roach
white mega worm
olive wooly with spinner
marabou, black & yellow

Zone 3

white trout magnet
salmon peach or white power bait.



Lunker club

6-25-16
Issac Bohm (age 11) from Huntsville, MO
2-1/4 pounds in zone 1 on a self tie - peach

Ron Tilson from Wichita KS
2-1/4 pounds on yellow plastic worm in zone 3

Gavin Jones (age 9)
From Farmington, MO
2-1/4 pounds on green deer hair jig.

Jessica Parsons from St. James, MO
2-1/2 pounds (brown) on white dough bait in zone 3

6-26-16
Steve Hermach from Ballwin, MO
3 pounds on a white worm in zone 3

Tom Dobson from St. Louis, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 2

6-27-16
Glen Mazuranic from High Ridge MO
2-1/4 pounds on olive wooly with spinner in zone 1

6-28-16
Pam Todd from Lee's Summit, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a black glitter rooster tail in zone 1

Hunter Todd from Centerview, MO
2 pounds on a white mega worm in zone 1

6-29-16

Connor Todd from Blue Springs, MO
2.2 pounds on Apricot glo-ball in zone 1

Lonny Todd from Lee's Summit, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 1

Jan Mitchell from Warrenton, MO
2 fish, 2 pounds plus on a pink plastic 'jig' in zone 3



Of Interest
This article from Bass Pro is a little long, but I found it interesting so I'm sharing with you.

Best Bet for Brown Trout
Posted by  Jason Akl
April 4, 2013

The brown trout (Salmo trutta) is possibly the most popular of all the trout species targeted by fly fishers. Be it their willingness to rise to dead-drifted dry flies or give chase to a swinging streamer; brown trout are fancied the world over. Originally the brown trout was imported from its native waters in Europe and western Asia to lakes and streams in New York and Michigan in 1883.

Brown trout are one of the most widespread species of the trout and salmon family.
Brown trout have thrived in their new home, and have taken up permanent residency in all of our upper Great Lakes waters. Currently, brown trout are one of the most widespread species of the trout and salmon family. The reason for the brown's great success in the U.S. is that this fish can live in higher water temperatures than the other salmon and trout; also it is very adaptable to varying bodies of water.

Although the brown trout is such a plentiful species, do not be fooled into thinking that fishing for these freshwater predators will be easy; browns can be the most finicky eaters of all the different trout species. A good understanding of the fish's behaviors and plenty of time out on your favorite waters will help give you a shot at landing a true lunker of a brown.

Lifecycle
Since brown trout spawn in tributary streams through September and October, they begin to take up residence near stream outlets in spring and early summer. After entering into a particular stream, brown trout spawners actively seek out shallow, gravel or rocky areas where they can commence the spawning process. Female browns create redds in the gravel bottom, where the spawning fish will eventually deposit the eggs and sperm of the new generation. The process is completed when the female covers the bed with gravel.

On average, lake-run adult browns weigh about 8 pounds, although many of the individuals who frequent the river are much larger. Of all the different trout species browns enjoy a rather long life span that can reach upwards of 13 years.

Fishing Techniques
When thinking about successful brown trout fishing techniques, no single technique stands out from the rest. Many different flies can be used to get the fish to bite, but tailoring yourself to the specific seasonal feeding personalities of the browns increase your chances of hooking fish and hooking them consistently.

As with all other trout groups, winter browns are a group less prone to chasing fast moving presentations and flies fished with erratic movements. Cold temperatures produce lackadaisical feeding behavior in fish so getting your fly in the strike zone is a necessity. Nymph fishing is probably the best technique to utilize during the cold winter months seeing as it is a quiet presentation that covers lots of water. Nymphing is excellent for repeatedly placing your fly in the strike zone with minimal effort.

Depending on the body of water, you will be fishing in cold water more often that not, a floating line coupled with long leaders will be most productive. Heavily weighted nymph flies and an indicator system are a necessity to get down deep and attract attention from fish while still allowing the angler to detect light takes. Bead flies are a good idea for these types of fishing conditions because they have a little more weight than standard nymphs plus extra flashing to get those lazy fish feeding.

Summer fishing for browns can be a little more enjoyable for the angler seeing as you will have the opportunity to present the fish with many different floating patterns. If you are fishing a body of water that is unknown to you or it is very early in the morning, searching flies swung close to cover paired with timely strips can produce a voracious bite. If you are looking to catch fish on dries, long casts towards overgrown grassy banks will produce best. Cast upstream and across from your target at a forty-five degree angle and allow the fly to drift drag-free downstream.

If you are fishing terrestrial patterns, then a loud plop on the entry and a few strips during the drift will help to get fish looking at what you are offering. Another good idea for summer fishing is to use a dry and dopper technique for browns. This technique is simply attaching a high floating dry pattern like a deer hair grasshopper to the end of your line and running a second smaller nymph pattern from the hook of the first fly. In this aspect you will be covering a few different zones of the water column and allowing the fish to choose what they prefer best.



The dry fly in this presentation will also act as attractant for the nymph and as a strike indicator. Last but not least is the wet fly approach to brown trout fishing. As terrestrial insects fall to the water surface, most will drown and get pulled below the waters surface, where browns will feed on them relentlessly.

Having a few soft hackle patterns that emulate these drowning critters will again help you to increase your odds in catching browns. The wet fly swing is a relatively easy technique whereby the anglers' casts downstream at a 45-degree angle to their target and lets the fly swing slowly across the current until it reaches a position completely below the angler. Repeated casts down and across will effectively cover lots of water and shows potential fish your fly at many different angles and speeds.

Fly Selection
Brown trout are notorious for eating almost any desirable food item that it can fit into their mouths. Browns regularly consume a wide variety of aquatic insects and invertebrates, as well as tiny fish and crayfish. Along with these aquatic forms of food, browns seem to have a particular taste for land insects like ants, beetles, gnats, caterpillars and inch worms. They are known also to eat frogs and the occasional mouse. With such a diverse diet coupled with longevity and intelligence, you can see how one might find it a little hard to choose the right fly on any given day.

To the delight of most fly fishermen, and sometimes to their frustration, brown trout are also known to be voracious surface feeders that are a delight to catch on a dry fly. Unfortunately for most, browns can be very discriminating between a natural insect and a well-crafted imitation making for some very long, slow days in the river. When trying to decide what fly to use on your next fishing trips keep in mind that similarly with all other types of trout no one fly can guarantee that you will catch fish. A good idea is to try and tailor your flies to the water conditions that you will be fishing and to the time of the year it is. For brown trout this customizing of your fly box can be very crucial to one's success.

In early spring, brown trout will be actively searching out aquatic insect forage. The stream bottom critters this time of the year are very large chucked full of nutrients making them a tantalizing treat for browns. Caddis cases and mayfly nymphs are your best bet to keeping the action steady, with the darker shaded patterns producing best. Most hatching nymphs in spring need to be dark in color so that when they hatch they can draw in as much heat as possible to dry out and start their short life cycle. Mottled dark browns, black, and olive will be what you see most from hatching aquatic insects so having flies with these colors is a good idea.

As you move more towards the long dog days of summer, brown trout will certainly still be feeding on nymph patterns but a shift in their diet will become prominent. Browns are the ultimate opportunistic feeder and what better time of the year to take advantage of this behavior than summer with all the hatching terrestrial insects. If you plan on fishing early morning in midsummer then a good idea is to use a large searching pattern such as a leech or woolly bugger. Browns have a tendency to tuck themselves tight into cover and slowly stripping these patterns in and out of cover will produce tantalizing strikes.

Many different flies can be used to get the fish to bite.
Around noon it is a good idea to switch up from your searching pattern and move to using terrestrial patterns especially if there is a breeze out. Bugs will get swept from the fields and woods into the water and browns will be there waiting to feed. Grasshopper patterns with deer hair that float high in the water column are a good bet to start out with while moth, ants and beetles also produce well. If you are interested in fishing terrestrial patterns but are confused as to what the fish might be feeding on take a few simple minutes to walk through the woods and see what is about. Spotting grasshoppers and moths should be no problem, but it takes a keen eye to watch for ants, caterpillars and beetles.



During fall and early winter the feeding habits if the brown trout seem to digress a little. Yes, you can still catch plenty of trout with nymphs but using minnow imitations and egg patterns seems to produce the biggest fish. As the lake run fish begin to enter the streams in order to spawn their respective diets have been focused mainly on baitfish so using large streamers with lots of flash is a good way of inviting a strike. Once the fish start to make their way to the redds their appetites will slow a bit, but yarn eggs in bright oranges and pinks will catch some good fish. At this time of the year another good approach is to use aggravator flies such as leech or baitfish patterns. Seeing as the fish's appetite has slowed, their strike on the patterns will be simply because of aggression and instinct.

Weather & Sunlight
Heavy rain, as with all other trout species, can be a very important variable in the size and number of fish you catch. As the level of the body of water increases and the clarity decreases due to rain, browns will be drawn out of their tight cover to feed on drowned insects. This pattern of moving out from cover will make it very hard for fly anglers to target fish simply because fish could be feeding anywhere throughout the river. During the spawn, the rising water will allow lake-run fish to travel safely up small creeks and rivers to their upstream spawning grounds.

While rising rivers help bring spawning fish upstream, dropping water levels will hold lake runners in deep holes providing ideal fishing conditions. If you are looking to catch lunker brown trout with any success, you have planned your fishing trips around these rising and falling water conditions in fall. Ideally fishing for browns is best if you can reach the river 1-2 days after a light rain, or 3-4 days after a heavy rain. The water level should be just starting to drop and have a slightly tinted color.

The amount of sunlight on the water is not as important to brown trout fishing as other species of trout. If you present these freshwater predators with the right fly they will take it regardless of the conditions or water levels. With that in mind do not forget that fish are very quick at picking up shadows on the water and spook easily, so when the sun is high be sure to keep out of the rays and be aware of casting your shadow on the water. When fishing remember to always start your day off downstream of where you want to end up and work your way upstream. By fishing upstream you will be approaching the fish from behind and not kicking river bottom sediment into the holes that you want to fish.

This colorful and feisty fish will provide exciting fishing. It can be a strong, ferocious fighter and a challenge to any experienced fly fishing enthusiasts.




Weather Forecast

Thursday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 83. South wind 6 to 9 mph.

Friday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 80. Chance of precipitation is 60%..

Saturday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Cloudy, with a high near 80.

Sunday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 83.

Independence Day: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 85.

Tuesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 89.



Calendar for 2016

June 28th & 29th: Moss Cutting

July 26th & 27th Moss cutting

August 30th & 31st : Moss Cutting

October 4th & 5th : Moss Cutting

Saturday, October 8, 2016:
Holland Trout Derby, help raise some money for cancer society.
Time: 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM

October 31st: End of Regular Season

November 11, 2016: Start of Catch and Release for 2016 - 2017



Quote of the Week

A fisherman is always hopeful -- nearly always more hopeful than he has any right to be.
Author:
Roderick Haig-Brown

Thanks for reading!
Lucy

Thursday, June 23, 2016



How's Fishing

The general trend of this year so far has been a very clear and slow moving Bennett Spring branch and Niangua River.  There was a brief storm this last week that brought water levels closer to the normal range. The water is getting clearer every day, so keep that in mind as you plan your trips.  What has been working this week will change up a bit as the water does.
  Father's Day weekend proved for most anglers to be a great one.  There were stringers of larger fish and quite a few lunkers as well.  The action continues this week, fishing deep (remember trout like colder water) is more productive than top water with one or two exceptions.  Grasshoppers, small and brown, and black caddis are both good choices.



Fishing Times

 June/July        6:30 a.m.                     -   8:30 p.m.
August             7:00 a.m.                   -   8:00 p.m.
September     7:30 a.m.                   -   7:15 p.m.
October           7:30 a.m.                   -   6:30 p.m.



Water Conditions :   The color and clarity are improving daily.
June 21, 2016 for Bennett Spring:

Gage house level is 2.02 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 86 in 1934
current level is 141
25th percentile is 161
Median is 229
Mean is 209
75th percentile is 225
Max was 2020 in 1935

June 21, 2016 for Niangua River: .Moving well, just above average for discharge and levels.

Gage House reading (water level) is 2.22 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:
Today's reading is 189
minimum was 49 in 2012
25th percentile is 88
Median is 175
Mean is 303
75th percentile is 474
Max was 1120 in 2015



What's Working?

From the Fly Box:
hoppers
Possum hair roach
crackleback: bennett blue, original
copper zebra midge
rust  RGN
copper hot shots, all colors
black zebra midge
white mega worm
black caddis

Zone 1 or 2
White mini jig
white floss mini jig
red brassie
John deere mini jig
rooster tail: minnow, gold, bumble bee, brown glitter, or black glitter with gold spinner
glo ball: white, original tri color, jimi hendrix, gater (green with orange spot)
Marabou - black & yellow - first thing in morning, moss & Brown, olive and brown gingersnap, ginger, yellow & brown, shell & brown
green  Wooly bugger, fished deep
silver super duper (zone 2 only)

Zone 3

white trout magnet
salmon peach, green glitter, salmon red - power bait.
orange power bait worm - plastic type



Lunker Club

6-12-16
Jeffrey Finch from Otterville, MO
2-1/2 pounds on white floss in zone 2

6-15-16
Tom Rembe from Seymour, IA
2-1/2 pounds on a blue crackleback in zone 1

6-16-16
Tracy Scherder Woodworth from St. Charles, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a orange power bait worm

Cindy Monnig from Jeff City, MO
2 pounds on a red brassie in zone 2

6-18-16
Eugene Bruggenann from Highland, IL
2-1/2 pounds on fluorescent red power bait

6-20-16
Eric Hendrix from Sullivan, IL
3-1/4 pounds on white fur bug in zone 1

Zoey Todd from Independence, MO-
2.5 pounds on gray & white zonker rabbit in zone 1

Zoey Todd from Independence, MO - second lunker
2.6 pounds on gray & white zonker rabbit in zone 1

6-21-16
Carletta West from Caledonia, MO
2-1/4 pounds on green glitter dough bait in zone 3

6-23-16
Brenda Looper from Buckeye, AZ
2-1/2 pounds on a super duper - silver



Of Interest

One of the biggest sellers at Bennett Spring is the marabou jig.  Most anglers have their favorite way to fish these, but the following may be of interest to those of you who don't or haven't tried them in the past.  This is copied from Missouritrouthunter.com.

Marabou jigs (not Crappie jigs) will flat out catch trout if you know how to fish them. Many fishermen are under the mistaken assumption that marabou jigs imitate minnows, but they actually imitate the swimming action of certain large aquatic insects. by dancing up and down rather than side to side. In fact, a marabou jig is technically a fly and can be used on waters designated as fly-fishing only. Even so, this lure is best fished with a spinning outfit. Trout and salmon appear to be programmed by nature to react to this motion almost without fail, so these lures will work even when the actual insects they imitate are not present. In fact, when marabou first became popular as a fly-tying material, some states actually outlawed its usage in some waters due to the massive success fishermen were having and how it actually depleted some trout and salmon populations.
To achieve the proper effect, cast and allow the jig the sink for a few moments. Then retrieve the jig at a slow rate while simultaneously and rapidly twitching your rod tip up and down. Rapid twitching means RAPID twitching. Your rod hand should bounce down perhaps 4x per second while your retrieve hand is making no more than one revolution per second. Try counting "one-one-thou-sand, two-one-thou-sand..." and so on, while bouncing your rod hand on each syllable. It takes a little practice to get the feel of it. Many trout fishermen are jig fisherman exclusively and can't imagine why anyone would consider fishing any other way. And with the success they enjoy, it's hard to argue with them. Favorite jig colors are white, hot pink, and black & yellow mixed. There are also those that prefer to fish these jigs under a bobber or strike indicator, just giving the lure an occasional twitch. Using this method will work better with a smaller jig -- sometimes called micro jigs -- and fished very close to the bottom. This is basically nymph fishing with a spinning rod. Cast upstream, and allow the lure to drift back toward you, passing the jig by as many fish as possible.



Weather Forecast
Friday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 89. Heat index values as high as 95. South wind 5 to 7 mph.

Saturday: Partly sunny, with a high near 90.

Sunday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny and hot, with a high near 92.

Monday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 90.

Tuesday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 87.

Wednesday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 84.



Calendar of Events

June 28th & 29th: Moss Cutting

July 26th & 27th Moss cutting

August 30th & 31st : Moss Cutting

October 4th & 5th : Moss Cutting

Saturday, October 8, 2016:
Holland Trout Derby, help raise some money for cancer society.
Time: 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM

October 31st: End of Regular Season

November 11, 2016: Start of Catch and Release for 2016 - 2017


Quote of the Day

Perhaps it was only a trick of the water, a trompe l'oeil of the late summer light, or maybe just one of those hallucinatory visions provoked by hours on end of upstream nymphing. You know the feeling: cast, lift, reach, lift, cast again, over and over, always staring, until the world fades away, sun and bird song and roar of water, until all that's left is the endless downstream dance of the strike indicator

Author:  Robert F. Jones

Thanks for reading, Lucy

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

June 6-14-16



How's Fishing?

Fishing at Bennett continues to be a really great experience for this time of year.    The water is low, slow and clear.  So much so that you might think you were fishing the stream in August, except there are more big fish!   We have had as many two pounds or better fish brought up to Weaver's Tackle Store for the Lunker Club this year than we had the entire last year.  A pound and a half to a pound and three quarters are very typical sizes to see on stringers.
There has been periods of top water action for those of you that like that style of fishing.  Renegades, pale evening dun, and black or tan caddis have all been doing well.




Fishing Times
June/July   6:30 a.m.                   -   8:30 p.m.
August        7:00 a.m.                   -   8:00 p.m.
September 7:30 a.m.                   -   7:15 p.m.
October       7:30 a.m.                   -   6:30 p.m.

Water Conditions

June 12, 2016 for Bennett Spring:

Gage house level is 1.88 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 81 in 1977
current level is 105
25th percentile is 129
Median is 190
Mean is 209
75th percentile is 257
Max was 409 in 1995


June 12, 2016 for Niangua River: The river isat 51 cubic feet per second.  This is a record low for this date


Gage House reading (water level) is 1.14 feet
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:
Today's reading is 51
minimum was 61 in 2012
25th percentile is 132
Median is 317
Mean is 609
75th percentile is 865
Max was 2210 in 1993



What's Working?

San Juan worm - red
Possum hair roach
crackleback: bennett blue, holographic green, pearl
copper zebra midge
gray RGN
preggy scud - tan with a hot spot in the center.
black zebra midge
Walt's worm

Zone 1 or 2
John deere mini jig
White floss and white sparkle; pale aqua sparkle grub
rooster tail: minnow, gold, bumble bee, brown glitter, or black glitter with gold spinner
glo ball: original tri color, jimi hendrix, red & yellow
Marabou - black & yellow, moss & Brown, orange & yellow, gingersnap, ginger, yellow & brown, shell & brown, pink & white
Copper Brassie
Black Wooly worm with spinner
black roach
pheasant grub with tail
pink or white mega worm

Zone 3
white trout magnet
salmon peach, yellow, orange, brown, salmon red - power bait.
white trout magnet
white worm - plastic type



Lunker Club
6-7-16
Terry Klamert from Imperial, MO
2 pounds on black rooster tail in zone 1

Linda Calhoun from Lawson, MO
2-1/4 pounds on orange power bait in zone 3

Jerry Lewis from Staunton, IL
4-1/2 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 1

Sharon Owens from Chesterfield, MO
2 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 2

Glenn Slonecker from Fairway, KS
4 pounds on orange powerbait in zone 3

6-9-16
Suzie Rager from Evansville, IN
2 pounds on a black & yellow marabou

Bruce Baird from Mt. Vernon, IL
2 pounds on a pink & white marabou in zone 2

Jeffrie Smith from Columbia, MO
3-1/2 pounds on a white mega worm in zone 2

Ron Heins from Liberty, MO
2 pounds, 2 ounces on a blue crackleback in zone 1


6-10-16
Jeremy Robeen from St. Louis MO
2-1/2 pounds on a plastic white worm in zone 3

Travis Callahan from Steelville, MO
2-1/4  pounds on a ginger  marabou in zone 1

Jim Lucas from O'Fallon, MO
3 pounds, 10 ounces on brown bait in zone 3

Chamberlain Albert (age 7) from Tonganoxie KS
2 pounds on a red salmon egg powerbait in zone 3

Colby Guggey from Kansas City, MO
2.1 pounds on broken Minnow in zone 2

Todd Groshans from Colllinsville, IL
2 pounds on tan powerbait in zone 3

Bruce Baird from Mt. Vernon, IL
2-1/4 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 2

Ken Unmisig from Lebanon, MO
2 1/4 pounds on a red and yellow glo ball in zone 2

6-11-16

Kyn Gordon from Palmyra, MO
2-1/4 pounds on an Easter Egg glo ball in zone 1

Sharon Owens from Chesterfield, MO
2-1/4 pounds on a black & yellow jig in zone 1

Ethan Hampton from Festus, MO
2 pounds on a gingersnap marabou in zone1

Roberta Moore from Jeff City, MO
2-3/4 pounds on brown power bait in zone 3
6-13-16

David Todd from Lee's Summit, MO
2 1/4 pounds on a pink mega worm in zone 1

Pam Todd from Lee's Summit, MO
2 pounds 3 ounces on a black glitter rooster tail in zone 1

6-14-16
Wesley Beason from Topeka, KS
3-1/2 pounds on original trout magnet in zone 3

Matt Hephner from Buckner, MO
2 pounds on a gingersnap in zone 2

Aaron Dixon from Columbia, MO
2.1 pounds on a Hopper in zone 2

Weather Forecast

Thursday: Mostly sunny and hot, with a high near 93.
Friday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 91.
Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 87.
Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 89.
Monday: Sunny, with a high near 89.



Calendar of Events

June 28th & 29th: Moss Cutting
July 26th & 27th Moss cutting
August 30th & 31st : Moss Cutting
October 4th & 5th : Moss Cutting
Saturday, October 8, 2016:  Holland Trout Derby, help raise some money for cancer society.
Time: 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM
October 31st: End of Regular Season
November 11, 2016: Start of Catch and Release for 2016 - 2017



Quote of the Week

It is quite easy to debase the sport, change its values, dilute its ethics and destroy its traditional associations with quietness, relaxation and the opportunity to think. Angling is not a competitive sport. The fisherman'- s only real competition is with his quarry and his only real challenge is the challenge to himself. Nothing can add to this, but the blight of interhuman competition can certainly detract from it.
Author:  Roderick Haig-Brown
Published:  Bright Waters, Bright Fish

Thanks for reading!  Lucy