White River Fishing Report 4-20-10

Reports From The Field - Flys

April 20, 2010

Updated Report for 4-20-10

Hot Spring Fishing is in Full Swing in the Ozarks

Spring fishing in the Ozarks

Spring fishing in the Ozarks has been a lot of fun!

First off, I apologize for the lapse in reports, but it has been busy around here, and I have also been helping one of my partners through a rough health period. But things are getting back to normal, and look for plenty of updated reports on the Web site, along with a bunch of new blog posts.

SFishing Bull Shoals Dam

Shad patterns were the ticket at Bull Shoals Dam.

On Monday the 12th, I took Scott Moss out for a day below Bull Shoals Dam. At the time, the Corp was running about four-units worth of water through the sluice gates below the dam and four generators were also running. This created quite a wave of water which made the left side of the river unfishable, and the bite was pretty slow. Shad patterns were the ticket, and these flies are always worth trying when the rivers are running high. The big complaint on the White right now is that the river gets very trashy once you get a few miles down from the dam around Cane Island, so it pays to stay close to the dam. We did manage to catch some decent fish, including the chunk in the picture, and it was pretty cool to fish with the sluice gates open – that is pretty much a once-in-a-lifetime type of deal. The sluice gates have now been closed for a few days, and the White is running at about half power, which makes for great floating. Reports are that fishing has been good, if you can find clear water.

Catching fish at Norfork

This is “Typical Norfork”. Just when you think it’s dead, the fish come back with a fury.

The Norfork is also suffering from trashy water away from the dam, which is somewhat alarming when one thinks about it: where is this junk coming from? Almost everyone is doing well fishing one unit on the ‘fork lately and a lot of nicer fish are coming out of the woodwork. This is “typical Norfork”; as soon as everyone gets convinced that the Norfork is dead, it comes back with fury. Lots of NICE cutthroats are also being caught all of a sudden, and the pictures of these big trout are spectacular.

Time to Chase some White Bass

Chasing some White Bass

Chasing white bass in the tributaries for a change.

Because I had some time away from guiding this week, I spent a bunch of time chasing white bass in the lake tributaries. This year’s run has been one of the best in recent memory, so it’s been hard to stay away. My buddy from Lone Star Restaurant and I limited out in just a few hours one evening, and the action has been non-stop almost every time. As you can see in the pic, every once in a while we will catch a spotted bass, which adds to the fun. Unfortunately, the run is about coming to an end. If anyone is interested in trying this out next year, let me know so that I can keep everyone updated. It’s a ‘hit or miss’ type of deal, but at least there are trout to have fun with if the bass bite is slow.

Taneycomo Lake levels are dropping

Bass fishing on Table Rock. Wading is available now that the lake levels are starting to drop.

Lake levels are starting to drop, and Table Rock is now below power pool; currently, the water has been shut down, so there may be some wading available on Lake Taneycomo very soon. The White and Norfork are running nice, moderate flows, so right now is a beautiful time to take advantage of great water and great weather – and the fishing’s not too bad, either. All the dry fly fishing we’ve talked about in the last few months is still a big time possibility if the lakes get to power pool by early May. It could happen, so it’s worth keeping an eye on.

***A note on the Boise trips. My partner Gabe has been quite ill for several weeks (but improving), so we haven’t been able to get as organized as we hoped. We will be making a few exciting announcements about these trips which will add a level of flexibility, including the use of a historic cabin right below Owyhee Dam. If you are at all interested, please let us know. Our aim is to get six anglers together for five days of guided and unguided fishing with Gabe and I (we WILL NOT be the guides). We are shooting for the first couple of weeks in June. If we cannot get this together in time, there will be another junket in September/October. Please, if you have any questions, suggestions or feedback, let us know.

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