Sunday, August 19, 2018

How's Fishing?

Fishing has been exceptional this week.  The stream is low and clear, even after some much needed rainfall that we thought might stain the water.  The trout remain plentiful as do the fisherman attempting to catch them. 

Of Interest:

Catch and release has been and will continue to be a topic widely discussed through various public and private forums.  There are varying viewpoints on the subject of catch and release.  Many individuals choose to catch and release no matter the season.   A successful catch and release involves doing as little harm to the fish as possible.  The way you handle the fish and its time outside the water are important variables in this process.

 The mucus coating on a trouts skin is a protective covering that keeps them free from disease and gives them less friction in the water, so the less handling the better.  When holding a fish gentle is better and they must be held behind the gill plate to avoid damage to the gills.  Removing a hook is much easier with forceps or just eliminating the barb on your hook.  There are times a hook is swallowed or set deep.  When this occurs it is the best option to cut the line and leave the hook in place.  The fish has a better chance of survival when this is done.  When releasing, moving the fish back and forth in the water promotes oxygen and blood flow to the gills for a positive release outcome.  More information on this process and any information you could potentially need when enjoying the outdoors in Missouri is included in the following link:

Bennett Spring State Park catch and release begins the second Friday in November to the second Monday in February.  The hours for catch and release are 8:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M. Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday inside Bennett Spring State Park.

Water Conditions

Bennett Spring
August 19, 2018
Gage house level is 1.79
Daily Discharge levels:
All discharge numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 74.0 in 1936
25th percentile is 102
Current level is 101
Median is 128
Mean is 138
75th percentile is 157
Max was 378 in 1940

Niangua River
August 19, 2018
Gage House reading (water level) is 0.78 feet.
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:
Minimum was 18.5 2012
25th percentile is 30
Median is 44
Today's reading is 36.1
75th percentile is 95
Mean is 77
record high max was 279 in 2017

What's Working

From the Fly Case

white megaworms
green mini mopflies
white mopflies
 beige mopflies
brown roaches
Bennett Blue cracklebacks
yellow cracklebacks
Copper Johns

Zone 1 or 2

John Deere
Old Gray John Deere
Easter egg glo-ball
marabous-  black and yellow, moss green and white, orange and black, and peach and brown
white thread jigs
peacock jigs
Yellow Coachdog roostertail
Glitter Fire Tiger roostertail
Limit Taker roostertail
Frog Super Duper

Zone 3

orange powerbait
green powerbait
salmon peach glitter powerbait
white powerbait
black and yellow rubber worms
bubblegum mousetails
salmon eggs
Bentley's Secret Bait

Fishing Times


7:00 A.M.
8:00 P.M.


7:30 A.M.
7:15 P.M.


7:30 A.M.
6:30 P.M.

Weather Forecast

Monday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 1pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 81. Southwest wind 8 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.

Tuesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 81. Northwest wind around 10 mph.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 81.

Thursday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 82.

Friday: A chance of showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 85.

Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 89.

Lunker Club


Cooper Schaefer from Jefferson City, MO
2 pounds in zone 2 on a John Deere fly.


Jim Lawing from St. Charles, MO
3 1/2 pounds in zone 1 on a Weaver's gold jig

Ken Elledge from Alton, IL
3 1/4 pounds in zone 2 on a beige megaworm


Jamie Thiemet from St. Louis, MO
2 1/4 pounds in zone 1 on a brown and shell marabou

Jesse Cook from Niangua, MO
2 1/4 pounds in zone 3 on green powerbait

Eugene McDonald from Vandalia, MO
2 pounds in zone 2 on a Super Duper frog

Roger Bunse from Cosby, MO
2 pounds 7 ounces in zone 2 on a white jig


Landon Punnill from Ashland, MO
2 pounds in zone 2 on a shell and brown marabou


Gavric Bowen from Shelbina, MO
2.2 pounds in zone 2 on a peach jig

Justin C. Allen from Rogersville, MO
2 pounds in zone 3 on a black and yellow worm

Calendar Events

Sept 19 & 20 Weed Cutting

September 29 Ladies Fishing Day
Activities from 11AM to 2PM
Fishing and Fly Casting Instruction
Girls Fish Free!

October 6~ 7:00 P.M. - Fly Fishing Film Tour at Hidden Valley Outfitters

October 13 & 14 Holland Derby


THURSDAY – August 23th

2:00 PM – Fossils – Curious about fossils?  Join us at the Nature Center where you’ll see a display of several types of fossils and rocks.  The collection includes “crinoids” our Missouri State Fossil. You will leave with a better understanding of the natural materials that surround us and understand how they can be clues to our past history.

FRIDAY – August 24th

2:00 PM – Geology – Join Dan Silas at the Nature Center to learn about Geology. You will see various rock types that can be found on the Earth and talk about how different rocks are formed.
8:30 PM – Sculpin Hunt - Anyone who has an aquarium knows the importance of a bottom feeder. The sculpin has adaptations for this specific purpose and is vital to our Ozark waterways. These unique fish are active at night, giving us the perfect opportunity to see them at work. Meet at the Nature Center to discuss sculpins and then join us as we walk down to the spring to find some ourselves.

SATURDAY – August 25th

10:00 AM – 2:00 PM – Bat/Caves – Stop by the Nature Center to learn more about bats and caves from 10 AM until 2 PM. Since Missouri is known as the cave state, come learn more about this unique bat habitat. The Missouri Master Naturalist Springfield Plateau Chapter will have a professional presentation at 2 PM about Caves and Bats.

11:00 AM – 1:00PM – Animal Pelt Table – Join Butch Simmons at the park store. There will be a table set up filled with different animal pelts for you to touch and see. Learn about where all the pelts come from and the ways we can use them. 

SUNDAY – August 26th

10:00 AM – 3:00 PM – SUNDAY FUNDAY - Join staff at the Nature Center anytime between 10 AM and 3 PM to participate in a project that is inspired by the nature around us.

Quote of the Week

Sometimes when the water is can almost hear the fish laughing at you



Thanks for Reading,


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