Tuesday, April 29, 2014

May 1, 2014



How's Fishing?


Fishing continues to be great.  We just haven't had enough rain,
despite the storms passing over,  to make a significant difference in
the Spring's fishability.  As far as what to bring  in your tackle
box, it's the same classics that you love. John deere, cracklebacks,
renegades, black & yellow or gingersnap marabou are all working their
magic.  Small black - ants, caddis and gnats - are also doing very
well right now.  Fish size continues to hold, it's still good.
The main subject for this weekend will be Kid's Fishing Day.  I'm
going to let Mike MItchell, the hatchery manager speak from an e-mail
that he sent out.  One more thing....no snow this year!  It's an
almost perfect weekend forecast.
The following is the email from Mike Mitchell:

Bennett Spring State Park is a popular place to fish, but did you ever
wonder what happens to rainbow trout before they’re released into the
stream? You’re invited to two special events that will provide
behind-the scene looks at the raising of the trout and will also show
trout fishing’s popularity.

At 2 p.m. Friday, May 2 at the Missouri Department of Conservation’s
Bennett Spring Hatchery; you’re invited to take a behind-the-scenes
look at how the hatchery operates.  This will be a great opportunity
to learn how trout are raised, how stocking sites within the park are
chosen, and how hatchery staff raises nearly a half-million trout
annually for Bennett Spring and other sites around the state. This
special event is for media, local businesses and organizations
involved with the park.

As a follow-up, please plan to return the next day – Saturday, May 3 –
to see the fruits of this work at Bennett Spring’s Kids Free Fishing
Day. This annual free event is for children 15 years and younger.
There will be a specially stocked area for children to fish. Lunch
will be provided from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. for children (15 and younger) and
there will also be educational activities from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. At 2 p.m.
that day, Bennett’s Hatchery staff will further explain trout-rearing
procedures at the hatchery. They will discuss the process of how we
select fish for stocking (we don’t just lower a dip net into a pool
and hope for the best!), but feel free to ask questions about any part
of our hatchery operation. We hope these efforts help to inform you of
the procedure Missouri Department of Conservation hatchery staffs
across the state follow to ensure quality fishing for the public.
I appreciate your time and effort in attending this demonstration and
I look forward to seeing you on May 2 & 3, 2014.
Michael J. Mitchell
Bennett Spring Hatchery
phone 417-532-4418
cell 417-718-3000
email: Michael.Mitchell@mdc.mo.gov



Water Conditions:

Bennett Spring
April 28, 2014
minimum was 118 in 1984
Today's output is 158 cubic feet per second
25th percentile is 166
Median is 224
Mean is 253
75th percentile is 284
Max was 919 in 1994
Gage house level is 2.26 feet,up, for the first time in a long time.

Niangua River
April 28, 2014
Gage House reading is 3.18
minimum was 124 in 2012
25th percentile is 244
today's level is 313
Median is 494
Mean is 1190
75th percentile is 2220
Max was 3894 in 1994



Lunker Club

4-26-14
Otto Seebold from Overland Park, KS
3 pounds in zone  2 on a white rooster tail


What's Working

Zone 1 and 2
Marabou: peach or creamsicle
John deere and gray deere, white mini jig with red tail or collar
brown  roach, bedspread
bumblebee grub
brassies : red
Red glo balls
White Rooster Tails are still working well.
From the fly case:
copper hot shots
black caddis
black ants
cracklebacks: holographic red or black
renegade or double trouble

Zone 3
Orange power bait
salmon eggs, red
Pink Worms



Fishing Times

May from   6:30 to 8:15
June/July from   6:30 to 8:30
August from   7:00 to 8:00
September from   7:30 to 7:15
October from   7:30 to 6:30




Weather Forecast  -  a just about perfect weekend!

Thursday  Partly sunny, with a high near 55.
Thursday Night   Mostly cloudy, with a low around 39.
Friday    Partly sunny, with a high near 68
Friday Night    Partly cloudy, with a low around 41.
Saturday      Mostly sunny, with a high near 76
Saturday Night    Partly cloudy, with a low around 47.
Sunday     Mostly sunny, with a high near 75.
Sunday Night      Partly cloudy, with a low around 50.
Monday      Mostly sunny, with a high near 75.



Calendar of Events
May 3 - Kid's Fishing Day
May 20-21, moss cutting
June 7 & 8, Free fishing weekend
June 15 weekend - Hillbilly Days
June 24-25 moss cutting
July 29-30 moss cutting
August 19-20 moss cutting
September 16-17 moss cutting
October 14-15 moss cutting
October 31 - last day of regular trout season
November 14 first day of Catch & Release Season
February 9, 2015 - Catch and Release season ends



Quote of the Week

What are more delightful than one's emotions when approaching a trout
stream for the initial cast?
Author:
T. Nash Buckingham

Thanks for reading,
Lucy

Wednesday, April 23, 2014




April 24, 2014



How's Fishing?

In every crowd, there are a few grumblers.  As annoying as they may be at times, they keep us honest and often push us to be just a little bit better.  My reason for stating this is that we are noticing that even our most favorite 'grumpers' have quit grumping.  The fish are plentiful and decent sized.   Not lunkers, just decent fish from one to one and three quarter pounds and plenty of them.  Credit must be given where credit is due.  The new hatchery and proper management of the fish raising process is finally showing results. 
 
The weather on the weekends has been really nice - this weekend is going to be no exception - and the water is slow, clear, and low.  The color is very faint blue green, almost totally clear.  We will need to get a LOT of rain to make these conditions change appreciably.  The ground is so dry it simply sponges up the water, and although there may be some runoff, it shouldn't drastically affect the stream. We do have a series of storms that are forecast, thankfully.  This area desperately needs the moisture.  However, most rain will occur during the week.  Friday and Saturday for the next couple of weekends looks clear and warm.
 
May 3rd is Kids Fishing Day.  Kids will be allowed to fish for free.  They will also receive a goodie bag and a free lunch.  There will be experienced anglers there to help and also to provide fly tying demonstrations.  This coming weekend, unlike last year, should be great weather as well.  So book your cabin or get the camper ready and tell the kids to turn off the computer or put down the I-pad because you're heading to Bennett for fun.  
Watch for some Department of Conservation programs in the future that focus on the experience of fishing together as a family.  I will mention these in future reports when they become available.



Water Conditions

Bennett Spring
April 23, 2014
minimum was 84 in 1981
Today's output is 103 cubic feet per second - slightly down from last week
25th percentile is 179
Median is 238
Mean is 267
75th percentile is 336
Max was 1200 in 1973p
Gage house level is 1.95 feet, down .03 from last week.


Niangua River
April 23, 2014 
Gage House reading is 1.98
minimum is 87 , previous low was 110 in 1990. Today is again a record low for the Niangua on this date
25th percentile is 216
Median is 599
Mean is 1050
75th percentile is 1130
Max was 5570 in 1996



Lunker Club

4-16
Mike Udall from Buffalo, MO
2-1/2 pounds in zone 2 on a black beaded wooly

4-18
Aaron Spratt from Springfield, MO
2-1/2 pounds in zone 1 on a Pink & white marabou

4-20
Daphne Beebe from Gladstone, MO
2-3/4 pounds in zone 2 on a mulit-color spoon



What's Working?

Marabou: red & white, tequila sunrise or gingersnap
John deere and gray deere, white mini jig
green with orange hackle woolie
brassies : red
Red glo balls
White Rooster Tails are still working well.
From the fly case:
RGN's all colors
zebra midge, red or black
cracklebacks: brown, gold or grey with olive
pale morning dun
renegade or double trouble
white or hot pink scud
Zone 2
Super Duper, trout or gold with red tip
Little Cleo Spoons
Zone 3
Orange, pink, salmon egg, or bubble gum power bait
Power Bait Power Dust



Fishing Times

April from 7:00 to 7:30
May from 6:30 to 8:15
June/July from 6:30 to 8:30
August from 7:00 to 8:00
September from 7:30 to 7:15
October from 7:30 to 6:30 



Weather Forecast

Thursday Showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 7am. High near 68. South wind 10 to 14 mph becoming northwest in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.
Thursday Night Mostly clear, with a low around 48. Northwest wind 5 to 8 mph becoming southwest after midnight.
Friday Sunny, with a high near 76. Southwest wind 7 to 11 mph.
Friday Night Partly cloudy, with a low around 51.
Saturday A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 75.
Saturday Night A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 59.
Sunday A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 73.
Sunday Night Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 56.
Monday A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 69.
Monday Night A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 45.
Tuesday A chance of showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 57.



Calendar of Events

April 22-23, Moss cutting
May 3 - Kid's Fishing Day
May 20-21, moss cutting
June 7 & 8, Free fishing weekend
June 15 weekend - Hillbilly Days
June 24-25 moss cutting
July 29-30 moss cutting
August 19-20 moss cutting
September 16-17 moss cutting
October 14-15 moss cutting
October 31 - last day of regular trout season
November 14 first day of Catch & Release SeasonFebruary 9, 2015 - Catch and Release season ends   

 
                   

Quote of the Week  (this quote is for my own son who is one great Dad, thanks for all you do for my grandchildren, Matt Oberle!)
It is admirable for a man to take his son fishing, but there is a special place in heaven for the father who takes his daughter shopping.
Author:
John Sinor
Thanks for reading,
 Lucy

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

April 17, 2014


How's Fishing?
Despite the rain we have gotten, the water at Bennett continues to be low and slow.  This is great news for those who like to fish where they can see what they're fishing for or for those who like to fish on top water.  The down side of this is that we so desperately need the rain.   If you are planning to have a campfire, please keep it small and make sure that it's cold before you go to sleep.  And if you are planning on burning leaves, please wait a few days.  Although Friday and Saturday will be sunny and warm, there is a forecast for rain on Sunday.  
We have been seeing nice stringers this week.  Very few anglers going home empty handed, and most have plenty for dinner as well as a few to take home.  Experienced catch-and-release fisherman are talking about catching 30 fish before 10 a.m.  The size of the fish seems to be hanging in there in the range of 1-1/4 plus pounds.  
As far as what to fish with, the tiny stuff seems to be working very well right now.  A red or black midge fished two feet under the surface is a good example.  Cracklebacks in holographic red or green are working well.  We have been selling quite a few brassies - copper or red.  If you like zone 3, it seems like the yellow glitter Power Bait or mini Trout  Magnet minis are both working well. 
Just a note - moss cutting will happen next week on Wednesday and Thursday, and  Kids fishing day is May 3rd. 



Water Conditions

For this week:
minimum was 84 in 1981
Today's output is 101 cubic feet per second - slightly down from last week
25th percentile is 144
Median is 237
Mean is 267
75th percentile is 360
Max was 666 in 1941
Gage house level is 1.99 feet

Niangua River
minimum was 133 (1992), today it's 107 - that's right, today is a record low again.
Median is 592
Mean is 849
75th percentile is 1130
Max was 2500  in 2007
The discharge today is 107.  Normal discharge is closer to 600 cfs



What's Working?
Marabou: black & yellow,  white, powder pink, or gingersnap
John deere and gray deere, white mini jig
brown woolie, spinner optional
brassies are the biggest winner: red, copper brown, or candy cane
Brown roach
White Rooster Tail
From the fly case:
zebra midge, red or black
cracklebacks: red or blue holographic
pale morning dun
renegade or double trouble
white or hot pink scud

Zone 3

yellow glitter power bait
Trout Magnet mini's
red or pink plastic worms.



Lunker Club
4-9-14
Bev Phipps from Clinton, MO
2-3/4 pounds in zone 1 on a white Rooster Tail

4-10-14
Rusty Gipson from Chesterfield, MO
2-1/2 pounds on a black & yellow marabou in zone 2

4-13-14
Terry Bush from Camdenton, MO
2 pounds 7 ounces in zone 2 on a black wolf dry fly

Aaron Schaes from O'Fallon, MO
2-3/4 pounds on a white jig in zone 1



Fishing Times
April from 7:00 to 7:30

May from 6:30 to 8:15

June/July from 6:30 to 8:30

August from 7:00 to 8:00

September from 7:30 to 7:15

October from 7:30 to 6:30



Weather Forecast

Thursday A 30 percent chance of showers after 1pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 61. Wind chill values as low as 38 early. South wind 5 to 7 mph becoming light and variable in the afternoon.

  • Friday Partly sunny, with a high near 64.

  • Saturday Mostly sunny, with a high near 70.

  • Sunday A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 68.

  • Monday A chance of rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 67.

  • Tuesday Mostly sunny, with a high near 75



  • Calendar of Events

    April 22-23, Moss cutting
    May 3 - Kid's Fishing Day
    May 20-21, moss cutting
    June 7 & 8, Free fishing weekend
    June 15 weekend - Hillbilly Days
    June 24-25 moss cutting
    July 29-30 moss cutting
    August 19-20 moss cutting
    September 16-17 moss cutting
    October 14-15 moss cutting
    October 31 - last day of regular trout season
    November 14 first day of Catch & Release Season
    February 9, 2015 - Catch and Release season ends



    Quote of the Week
    Don't tell fish stories where the people know you; but particularly, don't tell them where they know the fish.
    Mark Twain

    Thanks for reading, Lucy

    Wednesday, April 9, 2014

    April 11, 2014






    How's Fishing?
       The wind is calm, the temperature is warm (70 degrees as I write this) and it's not raining.  Oh, and the fish are biting!  We are getting reports of catch-and-release anglers pulling in 30 plus fish before 10 a.m.  The most positive thing we have been hearing is that these fish are of an acceptable size.   Anywhere from  one and one quarter to one and three quarters seems to be the typical size.  There are still smaller fish in the stream,  but it has been very encouraging to see the larger fish in the stream and to hear the reports.
        The water is still super clear and very low.  It's been so long since we've had rain in this area that the rain that we do get soaks into the ground as if the ground were a sponge.  The weather forecast for the week calls for rain off and on, but I don't anticipate a significant change in the condition of the stream.    
    The best day of the week will probably be Saturday.  Sunny and warm with little wind.
     
     

    Who's Fishing?

       I enjoy seeing the returning groups and catching up on their lives.
        One of the groups that we see this time of year is Skip Russell's family and friends who come to Bennett every year to celebrate Skip's birthday.  The group has a trophy (as several groups do) that gets passed to the team with the best stringer.  This year they decided, that because there are now so many of them, to limit each stringer to two fish. We have pictures of the event posted on our facebook page - Weavers Tackle Store.   Thanks for helping us to remember the reason we are here!  And special thanks to Chad for getting the whole group to start coming to Bennett.
     
     

     
     

    Water Conditions
    April 9, 2014 for
    Bennett Spring, MO
    Bennett Spring output is 104 cubic feet per second - slightly higher than last week
    For this week:
    minimum was 82 in 1936
    25th percentile is 130
    Median is 197
    Mean is 237
    75th percentile is 308
    Max was 740 in 1929
    Gage house level is 1.99 feet
     
     

    Niangua River
    minimum was 96 in 2007
    25th percentile is 130
    Median is 251
    Mean is 312
    75th percentile is 469
    Max was 789 in 2008
     


    What's Working?
    Marabou:  white, powder pink, or gingersnap
    John deere and gray deere
    glo balls:  tri color #4, pink lady
    brown woolie, spinner optional
    brassies are the biggest winner:  red, copper brown, or candy cane
    From the fly case:
    cracklebacks: red or blue holographic
    pale morning dun
    renegade or double trouble

    Zone 3
    salmon peach power bait
    red or pink plastic worms.


    Fishing Times
    April from 7:00 to 7:30

    May from 6:30 to 8:15

    June/July from 6:30 to 8:30

    August from 7:00 to 8:00

    September from 7:30 to 7:15

    October from 7:30 to 6:30

     
     

    Weather Forecast
    Thursday: Mostly sunny with a high near 76.  South wind 10 to 16 mph, gusty
    Friday:  A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms.  Partly sunny with a high of   71.   East wind 6 to 8 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon.
    Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 75.
    Sunday :   A chance of showers.  Mostly cloudy with a high near 69.
    Monday:  A chance of showers.  Mostly cloudy with a high near 56.

    Calendar of Events
    April 22-23, Moss cutting
    May 3 - Kid's Fishing Day
    May 20-21, moss cutting
    June 7 & 8, Free fishing weekend
    June 15 weekend - Hillbilly Days
    June 24-25 moss cutting
    July 29-30 moss cutting
    August 19-20 moss cutting
    September 16-17 moss cutting
    October 14-15 moss cutting
    October 31 - last day of regular trout season
    November 14 first day of Catch & Release Season
    February 9, 2015 - Catch and Release season ends
     


    Quote of the Week                                                

    Now  I am . . . like anyone with a strong preference for the fly rod, totally indifferent to how large a fish I catch by comparison with other fishermen. So when a fifteen-year-old called Fred, fishing deep in midsummer with a hideous plastic worm, caught a four and a half pounder . . . I naturally felt no resentment beyond wanting to break the kid's thumbs.

    Author:
    Vance Bourjaily 1981
     
     Thanks for reading!

    Wednesday, April 2, 2014

    April 4, 2014



    How's Fishing? 
     As of today, Tuesday, the first of April, the water is still very low and very clear. This may all change before the weekend. The weather forecast calls for strong storms tonight and tomorrow with rain off and on all week long. By Friday the weather should be much improved and it will stay that way through the next week. There is an almost desperate need for rain in this area. Fire danger is high and there have been a number of fires that have gotten out of control.
     The hatchery manager, Mike Mitchell, sent us the tag numbers for March with numbers comparing previous years to this one. This year there were 14,182 tags sold. the number of fish per tag sold for the month was 3.16 per tag. The highest tag sales in the last ten years was 2001 with 23,730 tags compared to the lowest, which was 2013 with 13,604 tags sold. Thanks for sharing that with us, Mike. We still have the occasional angler who is unhappy with the size of the fish he is catching, but, in general, the size of the typical stringer of fish is much improved.

     Last week, our friends, Tim and Janet, were here visiting from Colorado. Tim is an avid fly fisherman and he was totally blown away by Bennett Spring. It reminded me of my first visit to the Spring. I remember thinking "oh, now I get it.' I could see why people, even those that don't fish, keep coming back. Mike Perry, the Assistant Hatchery Manager, was kind enough to stop working in the pools to take us on a tour of the new hatchery. Even though I had been through the new hatchery a couple of times, our friends asked questions that I hadn't thought of (for example - if the fish have to be given antibiotics are they safe to eat? answer: they are isolated in the hatchery pools until the medicine is out of their systems) . They were only able to stay for a day but I feel pretty sure that they will be back, and next time Tim will have a fly rod in his luggage.



     Who's Fishing? 
    The best catch and release story that I've heard happened this week. Mike Richardson was fishing on the top of the dam. He raised his line to be cast at the same moment that a robin flew over his head. The robin flew right into the line and was tangled in it. Mike scrambled in his vest for something to cut the line, but before he could do that the bird landed and somehow worked himself free. In case you were wondering, the lure he was using was a salmon colored marabou I offered to give him a lunker button, but he acknowledged that the bird probably didn't make the two pound requirement. Even so, nice catch-and-release Mike! FYI - to figure out how much a fish weighs that you release, measure the girth and length. Multiply the girth times the girth times the length and divide by 800. That will come very close to the fishes weight in pounds.
     (girth x girth x length over 800. )



     Fishing Times
     April from 7:00 to 7:30
     May from 6:30 to 8:15
     June/July from 6:30 to 8:30
     August from 7:00 to 8:00
     September from 7:30 to 7:15
     October from 7:30 to 6:30




     Water Conditions
    Most Recent Instantaneous Value on March 24, 2014 for Bennett Spring
     Spring output is 103 cubic feet per second - down again from last week
    Minimum for this date was 80 (in 1936)
    25th percentile is 141
    Median is 195, the mean is 271.
    The 75th percentile is 289 and the Max was 1450 in 1983.
    The water level at the Gage House is 1.96 feet. A very typical reading for August

     Most Recent Instantaneous Value on March 24, 2014 for the Niangua River
     Cubic Feet per Second is 113. This is a new record low for this date.
    Minimum was 127 in 1995
    The 25th percentile is 207, the median is 378, and the mean is 431.
    The 75th percentile is 485 and the max was 1120 in 2008,
    Gage house reading is 2.20.



     Lunker Board
     3-28-14 Kirt Lueders from Imperial MO
    2 pounds on a john deere in zone2

     Lance Myers from Lebanon, MO
    4-1/8 pounds on a yellow jig in zone 2

     3-30-14
     Mike Mathis from Moberly, MO
    2 pounds on a rabbit hair in zone 2 

    3-31-14
     Jeffrie Smith from Columbia, MO
    2-1/4 pounds on a white zonker in zone 2



     What's Working?
     Zone 1 or 2 white zonker
    salmon, red & white, white, or creamsicle marabou
    gray scud
    john deere, gray deere
    red holographic or gold crackleback
    snow rooster tail, blue rooster tail
    Black ants
    red brassie
    multi colored or gold tinsel mini jig

     Zone 3
     salmon peach power bait
    gold power bait dust

     Weather Forecast 
    Thu Apr 03 Strong Storms 78°/41° 80 %
     Fri Apr 04 Partly Cloudy 53°/32° 0 %
     Sat Apr 05 Partly Cloudy 62°/40° 0 %
     Sun Apr 06 Mostly Cloudy 61°/40° 10 %
     Mon Apr 07 Mostly Cloudy 60°/37° 20 %
     Tue Apr 08 Few Showers 58°/37° 30 %
     Wed Apr 09 Partly Cloudy 64°/40° 10 %
     Thu Apr 10 Sunny 68°/46° 0 %
     Fri Apr 11 Partly Cloudy 69°/46° 10 %



     Calendar of Events 
    Moss Cutting March 25-26,    
    April 22-23.    
     May 20-21,  
      June 24-25,    
    July 29-30,    
    August 19-20
     Sept. 16-17
     October 14-15
     Kids Fishing Day is on May 3, 2014 
    Free fishing weekend is June 7 & 8, 2014
     Catch and Release Season begins on November 14, 2014
     Catch and Release Season Ends on February 9, 2015

     Quote of the Week
    “Be patient and calm – for no one can catch fish in anger.” – Herbert Hoover Thanks for reading! Lucy