Thursday, October 27, 2016

October: Fall fishing with family

My intention was to fish the Eleven Point River for a few days; I took off a few days a month ago. I even moved the kayak out of storage and gathered camping equipment. I went so far as setting up the tent in the yard and made a grocery list.
Just a little sip of apple cider from Murphy's Orchard

On Saturday before my intended trip, my daughter asked me about the 11 Point trip and she expressed an interest to go fishing. After giving it some thought, decided to fish Monday at Roaring River State Park with Jenn (daughter) and Fiona (granddaughter). We left Springfield 8:30AM with a stop in Marionville for some apple cider at Murphy’s Orchard. The day was sunny, very light wind. We did see an eight point buck just outside of Battlefield, a few turkeys along the way. 

Do you have something more my size?

We started out day of fishing by 10:30 AM in zone 1, near the hatchery. Jenn and I took turns fishing while the other watched Fiona. Fiona enjoyed the rocks and wanted to get in the water, which we were able to keep her dry throughout the day. By noon, we went to zone 2, below the camping area and ate soon lunch. I fished a little and had a difficult time getting the interest of the trout. Some of the fish gave chase with a fast moving soft hackle, but would turn away before taking the fly. We stayed until 2:30 PM and returned to Springfield.
I enjoy the outdoors and scenery
It was good to get out with pleasant weather and a granddaughter (15 Months) getting acquainted with our Missouri State parks. Jenn enjoyed the day by sipping apple cider and spending some moments with a fly rod in hand.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

September: Back to Alaska... Fishing Saltery Lake on Kodiak Island

Friday: We left Springfield at 6 AM and flew to Chicago then on to Anchorage before landing on Kodiak near 5 PM ... It were a good trip; a smooth flight and I recommend Alaska Airline. We had a meal at Henry’s near the harbor and ran into Janelle on our way out.

Saturday: 7 AM Rod and I fished on U-Rascal with Chris (Captain) and Becca first mate. There were three fellows from Az? Three women from China. We caught a limit of rock fish, four small halibut, a dozen King Salmon and a few Pacific Cod. The day started calm with the wind blowing from the north in Ugak bay. We did see a couple whale and puffins. Chris kept fishing until 1830; he gave us a full day on the sea to load up on salt water fish.

Sunday: Dave contacted us and we meet him at the airport. Dave’s newly purchased Cessna has wheels embedded under the pontoons. Alanna and Dick met us at the Hotel. We made it to the lodge by 10:30 AM; in waders and on the water before everyone else arrived and before lunch. The silvers were in the lake, probably older fish and limited numbers. I managed to keep a male and released two other fish. There were a few dolly hooked and a twenty inch jack salmon, all released. The day was dry with a few clouds; it was good to get back to familiar water near Saltery Lake. I saw a mama bear and a pair of cubs on the gravel at the outflow of Lake Creek.

Monday: We started in familiar waters near the lodge. I hooked four silver salmon in the upper hole keeping one. Later, moved back to the lake where there were a few other fellows from the lodge fishing. No one was hooking silvers with a few fish seen breaking water. We hung around until lunch time, stopped at noon for a bite. After lunch, shuttled to the mouth of Rough Creek; Rough Creek now meets Saltery behind the berm, forming a Tidal lake. Most of the silvers were caught in a short time. I walked up stream to look for silvers; I did not find any in the holes or fish moving on the shoals. The day was warm with sunny skies. The forecast for the next few days indicated winds blowing out of the south, then a significant change in the weather; rain and high wind gust on Tuesday.

Tuesday: We woke to rain that lasted throughout the day, into the evening and past midnight. There was an immature eagle hanging around me most of the day while fishing, sitting on a limb nearby or flying overhead. With the storm and predicted high winds, we stayed near the lodge. I had the lake to myself; the others from the lodge fished the upper and lower holes. I managed to turn five salmon in the lake but they did not want to chase a fly. It was near lunch time and the others returned to the lodge. I walked down stream looking for silvers in the holes; there were a few silvers lying river right at the lower hole. Farther downstream in the shallow depths, only to last of spawning sockeye salmon  moving in the shallow shoals; it was too low to hold silvers. After a short wade farther downstream came to bed spring (a popular hole), a narrow, deep run holding twenty plus silvers. I was able to get two fish to shore and hiked back to the lower hole taking the ATV trail. I met Jim at the lower hole at the river's edge and Chris was in the water retrieving a lure for Jim. Chris was kind enough to take the salmon back to the lodge for me, and I was able to fish a bit longer before supper time.

Wednesday: The day was dry with partly cloudy skies; due to the recent rain not sure how the far downstream the group could fish. The lake came up 6-8 inches from yesterday’s rain. We stay near the lodge and I fished the lake until noon; I was able to catch two silvers, keeping one bright fish. I took the fish back to the lodge and had lunch the rest of the group; they had returned much earlier and they were nearly finished with lunch. The plan for the afternoon was to drive to the lower Saltery and Rough Creek. We caravan three vehicles to Rough Creek, there was twice the flow of water with some challenges crossing the creek and setting up to fish. There was no activity, or moving fish… after an hour it was decided to move to the lower Saltery River. I managed to take another silver Coho before the day of fishing came to close. I saw a beaver swimming out in front of me; it was the only time we can in eye contact for the week.

Thursday: We started at the lower Saltery River near the estuary. There were a few city fishermen already fishing and traveling the trails. Rod went below and he said there were no fish seen in the straight away. I fished above the crossing and caught a large dolly and saw one fish hanging under some bush. Matt and Elliot decided to retreat back to the lower and upper holes near the lodge, there were a few silvers caught with short time. I eventually moved to the lake and late afternoon with shadows from the nearby hill covering a small section of water. Finally, I was able to hook a few silvers, using a purple closer brought to hand eleven fish. Rod and I fished until 5 pm before calling it a day. I saw a fox on both sides of the lake; they appeared different with the markings and color. I watched the fox across from me jumping and pouncing several times, probably had a rodent cornered.

Friday: The last day to fish. It was a sunny day the lake level receded a more few inches. I decided to stay with the lake, hoping the rain from two days ago would provide a few fresh fish. I had the other side of the lake to myself with Rod fishing with me in the afternoon. We were able to foul hook a few salmon and release them. We could see the bears near Lake Creek. It was a sunny day with a light south wind. Late in the day with shadows covering the lake, a large group of silver Salmon started to move into the lake. I was able to see my fly in the water and moved it towards individual salmon; they wanted no part of it was would move to the side to avoid the fly. I have been in these situations in past years and would catch many salmon. For some reason, the salmon would not go for it. I managed to get my last salmon of the trip out of the upper hole and called it a day. Everyone else had returned to the lodge.

Saturday: This was our last day in Alaska with the all the guest flying out after breakfast. We left in groups of three. Dick, Rod and I had late flights on of Kodiak and it was decided we would go out last. So, we had time to check out the bears. Lake Creek had flowing water, with enough water for the sockeye salmon to move upstream (see video). The bears were busy running the creek, trapping fish under their paws and grabbing them with their teeth. All the bears including the cubs were working on their skill to catch fish. There were two sets of bears; one mama bear had four one year-old cubs. She had her paws full keeping everyone together, but all the bears were up on the river bank eating a fish. The other set of bears was a mama bear with two-year-old twins, occupied the mouth of Lake Creek most of the day, taking fish when the urge struck and eating throughout the day.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

March: Early Spring, mild weather

Bob tying on a fly
March 3, 2016 Thursday: Bob Randall stopped by my house at 7 AM; from there he drove us to Bennett Spring State Park. It was partly cloudy with the morning temperature in the mid-forties. We saw a few deer in the fields feeding and turkeys strutting in fields before with heads high and feathers out; it must be spring. I bought my 2016 fishing license at the Bennett Spring Park store with advice to purchase on line in the future (See their comments on Facebook). The MDC will be replacing the existing hardware with computers so all licenses will be on line and printed on paper. 

It was after 8 AM; Bob and I started our day below the stone bridge near #4 outlet above the bend. I stayed with the soft hackles and managed to catch a few. My intentions were to catch a limit of trout and give them to Mary Henry for her 95th Birthday. I had four trout in a pack-pack cooler before 11 AM with the largest measuring 15.5 inches. I walked up the Ben Havens office and made final plans for him to visit the MTFA members at the Springfield Nature Center that evening. He planned to discuss the hatchery operation, provided a power point presentation showing flood photos from the event. 

Bob and I managed to catch twenty-seven trout some were released brown trout. I did take Mary trout for her birthday and she was thrilled. I plan to fish next Thursday with my grandson.

March 10, 2016 Thursday: Desmond had the week off from pre-school and I had him on Thursday to fish. It had rain a few days before with 1.5 inches in the rain gauge. The ground was soaking up the rain with little to no run off. The morning before we left was foggy with a light rain. We left for Bennett Spring SP after 11 AM, hoping for dry skies and hungry trout.

A pair of deer crossed the highway in front of us a mile from the park, we stopped and let them pass. It was after noon we ate lunch and decided where to fish. I helped Des into his waders, vest and tied up his boots. We started just above the dam in zone 1 and on the first cast took a small rainbow with a white jig. Des helped to bring it in and almost fell into the water headfirst and managed to get his elbow wet with no water down the waders.

We hiked a short distance downstream below outlet #4 and took a few more trout. Des stayed with me in the water and we finally found a wading stick for him. He was lifting his boots one foot at a time out of water and almost fell in again; I was close enough to grab his sweatshirt to prevent a full submersion. We took a few more trout using soft hackles and jigs. It was almost 2 PM, Des let me know it was time to go, he had to go… actually he told me “Grandpa I need to poop”. So, we retreated back to the car and made our way to a facility for Des to take care of business.

Before we left the park, we had an opportunity to sneak upon a woodchuck that was out in the open looking for something to eat. We managed to scare him and he found his borough, safe from our threat.

It was an enjoyable day, maybe a little short on time spent in the water, but I know don’t push the too hard… find joy in the day and make memories.

The Pot Hole 659.5 ft with Taneycomo 707 ft

March 21, 2016 Monday: Bob Randall and I met in Forsyth a few minutes after noon, it was our intention to find and catch white bass. The previous weekend was cool with several mornings’ temperatures in the upper twenties. The cooler water temperatures usually sent the white bass back to the lake. Bob and I drove to Power Site dam with a 659.5 ft elevation, there was a significant generation coming from Table-Rock dam elevation 707 ft with the Taneycomo water spilling over the top of the dam. The water was clear with a mud edge along the western bank or river left ten feet off shore. 
Shadow Rock Park with low flow from Swan Creek 
From there, we drove to Shadow Rock Park; saw one fellow catching a white bass and before he dispatched it was on the phone calling a buddy. No doubt, that will bring in at least a dozen cars with fishing rods before night falls. We drove upstream on Swan Creek; I showed Bob several access points along the Swan looking for the lake/stream intersection and found in near the old mill foundation.
Swan Creek upstream half mile from Shadow Rock
The day was mild with abundant sunshine and a south/southeast wind blowing 10-15 mpr that seemed to go upstream. The red buds and wild plums were in blossom indicating spring, but I did not hear any croakers at sun set. Our next stop was Beaver Creek looking at the Whistle Bridge below Fisherman’s nose and we saw a few bait fish hitting the surface, from there we drove upstream past fishermen’s nose and looked at the Bluff Hole.  We did not see much surface activity, but the sun was bright on the water. We decided to spend the evening fishing Beaver Creek and started at Kissee Mill access and fished going down stream. The water was clear and I did not see any moving fish in the waters below the bridge. It was almost 4 PM and we decided to enter the water near the whistle bridge with our kayaks and fish upstream.
Beaver Creek near Kissee Mill Access
Near the bluff hole shadows were on the water, and I finally hooked a few blue-gills, some of them eight inches in length. So for the next hour, using a Clouser minnow pattern took a dozen keepers, threw back that many short blue-gills and eight Kentucky largemouth bass. A few more vehicles and fishermen came to fish the shore before dark, but I did not see anyone catching fish. A boat passing near us reported no fish.
Bob looking for another area to fish before night fall

I was after 8 PM, the moon was at 96% with a full moon on the 23rd. The planet Jupiter was in close proximity to the moon. There was plenty of light to see while fishing from the kayak.  Bob and I moved back down stream and finished the night near the whistle Bridge. At the bridge we heard a fellow excited having caught his first walleye. In a short time Bob hooked and landed his first white bass of the season, a 13.5 inch male. We fished until 9 PM before calling it a night, counted fish, loaded the kayak and returned to our homes. 

A dozen bill-gill for an evening effort. With a warming trend for the coming week, my guess the white bass will return to warmer water of Beaver creek/Swan Creek to spawn before Good Friday… mark the calendar.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

February: MO State parks Catch and Release season

Bennett Spring SP below the Suzy Hole in zone 3

February 7, 2016 Sunday: Bill Taylor, Bob Randall and I rode with Rod Pennington from Springfield to Bennett Spring State Park. It has been tradition the past several years to fish on Super Bowl Sunday, hoping the football fans stay home in front of their television set instead of fishing. But on this seasonably warm day, there were many fishermen in the park. Another factor for a larger than normal crowds would be the number of trout one could catch in a day.
Started below the Whistle Bridge and fished zone 3 entire trip; a few trout and very few fishermen
It was a cloudy days to occasional broken clouds allowing the sun to break through. There was a western wind that was not much of a faction in zone 3. Bob started in zone 2, Rod, Bill and I started below the whistle bridge and Bill and I fished from there going down stream for the afternoon. Rod fished above the Suzy hole for several hours before hiking to the bend below the stone bridge. We totaled 100 trout for the day. My numbers were down due to the entire fishing trip in zone 3. There were several areas with fish, with the fishing below the Suzy Hole much slower. I fished soft hackles and adult caddis on the surface. Which is fun watching the trout’s reaction to the skating caddis.

The DNR waiting for an inspector to verify the Whistle bridge to be structurally secure
We fished until the horn sounded at 4 PM and returned to Springfield. We saw a few turkey and numerous deer in the fields along I-44. This will be my last trip to Bennett Spring for the catch and release season, it ends Feb 9, 2016. I will check out Bull Shoals and the streams near Power site dam for walleye. The water continues to be high at 672.7 ft and falling with the top of power pool 659.0 ft. I am not sure what I will find, knowing there is plenty of water.

from left to right: Kim Schultz, Rod Pennington, Dr Bill Taylor and Bob Randall

Overall, it was an outstanding catch and release season with Bennett Spring SP provide exceptional fishing due to the flooding and many thousands of extra trout in the spring creek. I heard there will be a discussion with the hatchery managers as to a plan for the trout before opening day.

Monday, January 4, 2016

January 2016: Missouri State Parks

Roaring River State Park
Recent damage from the flood waters last week
January 3, 2016 Monday: The weekend after New Years, I invited my 5 year old grandson to fish on the following Monday. Des has fished with me before and the weather was unseasonably warm. 

His mother, Jenn over heard the conversation and she wanted to go. So, we tried to figure out what to do for Fiona, Jenn’s second child and my second grandchild. Jenn thought it would be a great idea to take Fiona along; bundle her up and let her experience a day at Roaring River State Park. 

The day was forecast to be cooler than we thought, with the high to be near forty degrees. Jenn and I decided to give it a try and made the decision if it was too cold, we would make a short day of it. 

Desmond fishing the upper section at Roaring River State Park
We arrived before noon and parked near the hatchery. The water was high with some chalkiness to the water clarity. Jenn had Fiona bundled up and place her in a child carrier on the front, so Fiona would not miss anything. Des had his waders on and was busy collecting rocks and getting his boots wet. He did fish with me for a period of time and demonstrated his roll cast. We managed to hook a few and he was more than happy to bring them to shore. 

We took a hike through the hatchery. Fiona had a good time watching the trout with Des throwing fish food to them. The cave was flooded due to recent rains with the walk to the cave under eight inches of water. We released four trout everyone getting into the action. 

We packed to leave at 3 PM, the sun was reaching for the western horizon and it was cooling off. Before we left the park, we drove down to zone three below the camping area. There were a number of down trees and many of them in the camping area. There was a crew on hand with a dump truck starting the cleanup operation. The handicap access ramp was spared but the trees just below were taken out by the last high water. I am sure they will shore up the banks and have the park back in shape in short order.

It was good to get out with Fiona and her first fishing trip. Des had a good time and it was fun watching him explore and develop his skills. Jenn enjoyed the day, just to get out. Fun for all

Roaring River State Park

January 9, 2016 Saturday: Bob Randall, the new MTFA Springfield chapter president; one of his suggestions; to have a monthly outing with members. The first outing was to meet at Roaring River State Park for a day of winter catch and release fishing. The winter had been mild up to this weekend. On this day, the temperatures dropped to freezing, snow fell and I did find ice in my guides at the end of the day.

I met Fred Brown, a new member at 7 AM in the Springfield Nature Center parking lot. Fred drove and we met Bob Randall and John Bush in Monett. Another member, Cody Lowery was to drive from Branson and he was to meet us at the park. For most of the drive to Roaring River, snow fell as we trek along Hwy 60. There was a forecast of snow with some areas getting up to five inches. It was after 8:30 AM, when we arrived. We started near the hatchery fishing near and below the low water bridge. The trout were active with cruising trout near the surface; I tried soft hackle, dry flies and small jig patterns. The fishing was challenging, trying different presentations, dead drift, quick strips. My ability to hook fish came in the afternoon farther down stream from the hatchery with the elk hair caddis taking trout off the surface. There were periods of heavy snowfall, and one must wonder when it’s time to quit for the day. But the snow flurry was brief and I continued down stream. There were several large trout in the waters in zone 2, in the flowing waters from dry Hollow Creek.  This area has changed with more gravel and large stones placed at the in flow to Roaring River. The trout were lined up in the fast moving water. I did not hook up with a large trout, but I am rethinking what would work.

Fred Brown fishing below the bridge at Roaring River State Park
It was after 3 PM, the others had packed it in calling it a day. They were bitten by the cold and had enough. Bob walked over to me, and I reeled in line for the day. We took a few photos and called it a day.

From left to right: Kim Schultz, John Bush, Bob Randall and Fred Brown.
Not pictured Cody Lowery
The snow did not continue with along Hwy 60 with the roads back to Springfield clear and dry. Thanks to Fred for driving and hope we have another opportunity to fish together.

Bennett Spring State Park

Photo by Bob Randall: Bennett Spring State Park
January 15, 2016 Friday: There were rumors, that many of the trout from the Bennett Spring Hatchery washed into the spring creek two weeks ago; as a result of the epic rains (8-10 inches) and flooding that occurred at the state park. There were several MTFA members calling Bob Randall reporting last weekend, fishermen were reporting 100+ trout caught for a day of fishing.

Washed debris below the stone bridge
Bob and I meet at Harry Morgan home at 7 AM and we rode together to Bennett Spring State Park. We started fishing after 8 AM below and near the hatchery outlet in zone 2. We fished below three other fellows standing in the outlet flow. The three of us started catching fish from the moment we put a fly in the water. Harry and Bob started with a jig; I used a #18 brown and black soft hackle. We all caught fishing in rapid succession. I did not bother counting caught trout, too many to bother. After an hour and a half and with the sun on the water, I moved up stream. I put on a caddis dry fly and caught a few more trout. I fished my way up to a couple of anglers near the loop access and took to the path to the hatchery.

Harry Morgan fishing below the outlet water in zone 2 photo by Bob Randall
It was 11 AM, I decided to find and talk with Ben Haven, the new Bennett Spring Hatchery manager. I found Ben in his office, he told me about the flood, the on going clean up operation and the current condition of the trout. Ben is knowable and has agreed to speak with MTFA members at the March meeting. The floodwaters were about two feet below the all time high with a watermark on pavilion B near the roofline. The waters from above the dam and Niangua River filled the spring creek and submerge the hatchery raceways; some of trout were able to escape to the river. Ben said he had a count of the trout before the flood and they are now sorting and recount the number of fish in the hatchery waters. So, he will have an idea to the number of trout in the spring creek.

One of many brown caught photo by Harry Morgan
We talked for forty-five minutes, and I went back to fishing. I crossed the stone bridge and went above the dam into zone 1, to see if any hatches were occurring; I saw nothing and figured with the water 10 feet level reach during the flooding, many of the aquatics insects have been washed out for this year. The water was turbid, a white chalky appearance and it remains a few inches high. I made a quick assessment and decided to go below the dam and fish the opposite bank from the hatchery. There were a few fellows dispersed throughout this stretch of water.
Bob Randall fishing zone 2 below the hatchery outlet
I met up with Bob at the stone bridge and I told him about the conditions above the dam. It was 1 PM, we let Harry know where we would be and walked to the waters below the stone bridge. Bob fished rest of the day near the outlet water near the hatchery. I started there and fished my way down stream, eventually crossing the stream and finding fishing to be outstanding. Fishing on nearly every cast, 30% brown trout and 70% rainbow trout. I did finished the day with dry flies, using caddis and #20 BWO. A bald eagle made a pass overhead at 3 PM. We fished until 4 PM, calling it a day.

We had an excellent day of fishing, hope to see you at Bennett Spring S.P. 
We estimated between the three us, hundreds of trout were caught and released. It was an A+ day of catching, I personally have never seen an entire day of frenzy catching with one after another fish being hooked and released with numbers exceeding a hundred. If you have not been to Bennett Spring State Park lately, you better set a date and get there while the catching will be beyond your wildest imagination.

Bennett Spring State Park

Ice formations along the creek bank at Bennett Spring State Park- Photo by Bob Randall
January 18, 2016 Monday: Bob Randall was driving from Billings and stopped by my house to pick me up at 9 AM.  We were off to Bennett Spring State Park for the day trout fishing. The morning temperature was in the single digits with an 8 degrees reading and a bright blue sky, there was an arctic high over the Ozarks. The drive to Bennett Spring going down I-44 provided many deer sightings with many of them standing and feeding in the middle of the fields; it could be due to the cold weather or a winter storm on the way. We saw deer in the fields on the return trip to Springfield and counted 80+ deer in groups from two to a dozen.

There were a few fishermen fishing this day in Bennett Spring SP, maybe 15-20 anglers in the water. There was a fog over the water swirling by the winds and it persisted most of the day. The wind was light and variable; it was predicted to be out of the north. Bob and I dressed in several layers and speaking for myself; I was comfortable most of the day. I did carry knitted wool fingerless mittens, but only wore them went walking the trails. If my hands got cold while fishing and standing in the water, I’d warm them by dipping them the waters of the spring creek.

Zone 2 
We parked the truck and started fishing in zone 2. Bob fished below the outlet waters and I fished above the outlet. I found the trout to be less active then on Friday, I tried moved from one spot to another and it was 1230 PM and had caught/released twenty trout. I walked to Ben Haven’s office to check with him, but he was scheduled off and not in the office. I crossed the stone bridge and walked up above the dam to look at zone 1. I saw no surface activity and only a few trout in the water.

The dam with the photo taken from the stone bridge
I walked back to zone 2 across from the first hatchery outlet on the opposite bank and fished down stream. I used an adult caddis dry fly and skated it from the bank to deeper water searching for trout. It was a blast watching the trout give chase and some of them took the fly, for the next hour took twenty more trout. It was 2 PM, near a dry creek outlet and I switched to soft hackle wet flies. I took 72 trout the next two hours, with a majority of them being brown trout. I threw the fly down stream and varied the strip or movement of the fly. I finished the day with 112 trout.

Walking back to parked truck near the outlet water on zone 2, spotted an eagle perched in the sycamore tree over the hatchery and was able get a few photos. As we left the park, a pair of eagles sat together on the same branch of the tree. 
I did not get a photo of the pair, this was taken 10 minutes before
We spotted a pair of deer on the top of the hill as we left the park and saw many deer in the fields returning to Springfield. There was ice in my guides the entire day and de-iced the rod by dipping the it in the spring water. Again, an outstanding day to fish, few fishermen in sight, plenty of trout to grab a fly and watching nature up close. It does not get much better than this, winter fishing at its best.
Here is Bob loading up and leaving after a day at Bennett Spring SP

Bennett Spring State Park

January 23, 2016 Saturday: I spoke with Rod about the current fishing conditions at Bennett Spring State Park and he wanted to go. So, we met at his office in Springfield, Saturday morning and computed to the state park. Springfield was under a heavy cloud cover with snow on the ground from the last storm. I was looking forward to fishing with my white coat to blend in with the background, but as we drove out of Springfield the snow disappeared with traces of snow on the ground in wooded area without sun. I left the coat in the car and wore my green hood for outerwear while fishing this day.
Rod getting ready to fish near outlet #4
We drove through the park at 11 AM. There were 20-30 fishermen in the stream. We looked at zone 1 from the dam to the spring. Rod agreed the stream was washed out with no visible weeds on the surface or signs of trout on breaking the surface water. There were half dozen fishermen below the stone bridge and a number of fishermen in and below the outlet waters in zone 2 to the whistle bridge. There were orange cone barriers across the whistle bridge, closing the bridge to vehicular traffic. So we parked near the bridge and started our day below the whistle bridge in zone 3.

We fished zone 3 for 1.5 hours and each released about twenty trout each. I suggested to Rod to finish the day at outlet #4 in zone 2 for the rest of the day. There was no one in the area when we started and became more populated late in the afternoon. Rod fished at the outlet and I ventured farther down stream to fish for the brown trout. I caught trout in rapid succession until the horn blew at 4 PM. Rod and both caught near 100 trout this day, actually my count was 95 with the last thirty minutes taking them with a small clouser pattern with a few fibers left on the hook.

On our trip back to Springfield, we saw 50+ deer feeding in the open fields. I will begin a long stretch at work and it will be at least two weeks to get back to fishing. Remember the last weekend to fish the catch and release season is February 8, 2016.