Tuesday, November 19, 2013

November:Catch and release at State Parks

Nov 11 2013 (Monday): I took the opportunity to fish the first weekend of catch and release season at Bennett Springfield State Park. The day was overcast with a light breeze blowing down-stream. There were a number of fishermen with the area above the dam which was accessible. I had this area to myself most of the day, except for the two individuals that walked down stream and walked right into the water I was fishing. My fly was within two feet of them as they passed by. The BWO hatch was few and far with the trout responding slowly to most presentations. I did see a number of black caddis on the aquatic plants; which was early for these insects from my observations. 
I usually see the adult black caddis the first of the year. I managed fourteen trout for the day, which is respectable since there was not a significant hatch for this day.

Nov 18 2013 (Monday): Jenn and I had an opportunity to fish together on this day. It was Ann birthday and one would think I should stay home to be with Ann, but she was worn out from a weekend of surprises. So, it was not a problem to go fishing. The day was sunny with the air temperatures in the mid-fifties. The wind was blowing upstream with enough movement to keep the surface opaque, thus some cover for the trout. Again, the number of BWO mayflies was low throughout the afternoon. But, the trout were more willing to take a fry fly presentation this day. The aquatic plants along the slough with a large number of black caddis from last week must have been frozen out and no longer standing. There were a few open pockets in the slough, but I saw no activity from the trout. Jenn did catching trout with a dry fly with the both of us taking a total of thirty plus trout. Near the end of the day to fish (4 PM), the white midge swarms could be seen the trout going for the midge larvae. There were deer on the opposite bank with several more sightings on the way back to Springfield. Had a chance to see Mike Mitchell, he said things were going well and the eagles have been spending most of their time on the Niangua River. Overall, it was a good day to fish, mild temperature, very few fishermen, trout will to take a fly and fishing with my daughter.

Nov 29, 2013 (Friday): Jenn and I fished the day after Thanksgiving. She was slow to get up and out; we did not leave Springfield until afternoon. She was enjoying family time and a late breakfast with Brent and Desmond. The day was sunny with a clear sky and a very light wind. The park attracted a number of fishermen and we had to find other waters than the area above the dam to fish. We defaulted to the water near the hatchery outlet below the stone bridge. 

Bennett Spring mayfly on my truck

Jenn's reflection with a mayfly
The water was low and clear with a few fish coming to the top. There was a large midge hatch and a few BWO mayflies in the air. The fishing was good but the trout were more difficult to hook with many short takes. It continues to be a joy to see a rising trout to your fly, even when it’s a miss. For the last hour we fished the area above the dam, Jenn had it down with the dry flies taking fish at a short distance. 
Jenn hooking a few trout on a #20 BWO dry fly
Over all, the number of trout was down with a dozen catch between us. The weather could not have been better, it even brought out the fair weather fishermen.