Most Recent Trip Reports and Pictures
This page was last updated: July 22, 2015
PAST FLYFISHERS AT THE CROSSING
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Even More Trip Reports Below
Lake Taneycomo #2 Four Generators Running - A Bust?? Not Really! (Mar 27-29): We had many FATC headed down to Lake Taneycomo this weekend - around 8 were camping, 3 had a condo for four days and our group of five, made up of Tim Trog, John Walker, Dave Beerbower, Tom Kelly and Kenny Klimes, stayed at Lake Taneycomo. Before the trip started it looked like a bust - heavy rains caused the Corp of Engineers to blast four generators all weekend. Lake Taneycomo was 9 feet above the wading normal and the flow was 10 times as fast as normal. So our five decided it was time to go to plan B. We set out for Branson Friday morning with an intermediate stop at Bennett Spring to fish for three hours. The water was high there also but fishable as everyone in the group caught fish with Tim pulling in around six. On our drive down to Branson we checked every river we crossed - all were high and chocolate brown. We didn't feel good about the trip at this point but lesson number one - never give up on a trip because of what you "think" it will be like!! We arrived in Branson and as we thought Lake Taneycomo was high and fast. We put plan C into effect as we headed to Roaring River State park on Saturday morning. The park water was slightly higher than normal from the rains which was perfect for fly fishing! The fly fishing area was empty with our five and two other fly fishers (two Tenkara ambassadors). We caught lots of fish that day with John Walker getting a big 17-18 inch rainbow (he even picked up a "I released a Lunker" patch). Midges and soft hackles caught the most fish. We fished from around 10 am until 4pm and it was a beautiful day on the water. After fishing we visited the "Big Fish Pond" in the park and got to view some 24 - 26 inch Browns and Rainbows. The drive back to Branson was filled with talk of a great day. During dinner and while watching the NCAA basketball tournament, we discussed our plan for Sunday or Plan D. We noticed that some areas in front of the condo were cleared of brush and we thought maybe, just maybe, we could walk out far enough in the water to fish a seam or two. Success! We fished for several hours in the ice cold waters of LT and a couple of us were very successful using scuds. So our Sunday turned out well fishing LT. OK, it wasn't the perfect trip but Timmy, Davey, Tommy Boy, Johnny, and Kenneth made it a good one with fun times, good food, some great singing and awesome fellowship. Some big fish were caught too. Trips like this produce good friendships and some day maybe even old friends - you know, " Old friends, casting in the park, telling fish stories till it's dark, old friends, old friends" Sorry Roger, I changed the words around a bit (at least he ain't a movie star!).
Two New Members to the FATC (April 10th): Montauk and several FATC members welcomed two new members to our fellowship on Firday. John Chi and Wayne Sebasty became official FATC as Sid Aslin, Dave Beerbower, Matt McClure, Pete Drochelman, and Kenny Klimes took them to Montauk. John Chi already an accomplished fly fisher caught some trout with us and Wayne Sebasty had Sensei Kenny breathing down his neck most of the day to become an official graduate of the FATC fly fishing class. Screams of "mend, mend" and "cast as if there is a wall behind you!" could be heard throughout the park this day. It brought a smile to the others who have been in Wayne's shoes before. But Wayne did an awesome job a caught well above the average amount of trout for the first time on the water. Congratulations Wayne! The gang pretty much fished the fly fishing only area. And yes, it was crowded for a Friday. The water was up slightly from all the rains (about 6 inches and the clarity was just a little cloudy but not bad). Trout were taken all throughout the day on midge larva, pheasant tail flash back nymphs, soft hackles, leeches, and wooly buggers. Fishing was fair to very good depending on who you talked to this day. A small mayfly hatch started in the afternoon but not big enough to get the trout aroused. The guys were so into the day that they fished beyond their scheduled quiting time (finished around 6pm), had a fellowship dinner at Hick's BBQ in Cuba and all got in trouble when they got home around 10:30pm. But it was an awesome day to get into trouble so I don't think any of us minded. Get out there and fish now. The hatches will start soon and don't let the weather dictate when you go - just do it.
Cardiac Hill is Up and Running: Sunday, 12 April 2015 - Meramec River – Cardiac Hill - Successful flies: Beadhead Pheasant Tail Nymph, Black Soft Hackle, rubber leg Stone Fly. Bob Chott and Bruce Sheffield fished the Cardiac Hill area on the Meramec River on Sunday. Beautiful day on the river and the fishing was good. Within 10 minutes Bruce landed a 14” brown trout and 10 minutes later had his 2nd 14” brown both on a black Soft Hackle. Bob had hiked up to the Gar Hole before starting to fish, back down stream, using a combination of a Beadhead Pheasant Tail and black Soft Hackle. Throughout the day Bob landed a number of 16” plus Brown trout. Most taken on the Beadhead Pheasant Tail nymph. All but four of the fish were Brown trout with 3 rainbows and one small mouth bass being caught. The brown trout had right eye and left eye tattoos and pectoral fins clipped for markings. We pretty much had the river to ourselves as we only saw two other fishermen and a guy in his john boat that came by twice. Yes, we survived the long walk back up the hill :-)
All the Best,
Last Minute Change Brings Success! (Apr 17th): Larry Farrar and I (Kenny Klimes) were supposed to take two newcomers out for a fishing trip. The plan was to head to Montauk and get the newbies on to fish. But a last minute change had both new guys cancel out on the trip. So Larry and I discussed other options. Bob Chott gave glowing reports of Cardiac hill just a few days before. I suggested it and Larry said, "I've never been there before" What?? I hadn't been there in years. Well, that settled it, we were off to Cardiac hill. Cardiac hill can be a tough place to fish at times but we figured with two experienced fly fishers we could figure it out. As we approached the river and started to cross, I went down. "I've fallen and can't get up" With help from Larry I made it back to my feet. Hopefully not an omen for the rest of the day!! We walked all the way to the "gar hole" before we started fishing (as recommended by Bob Chott) and fished our way downstream. The water looked awesome and the day was beautiful and we felt good about catching fish, and the fish came. Big browns and chunky rainbows were the prize. As you can see from the pictures we had a great day. Larry caught the big brown for the day, a 17+ inch pig on a peachy worm or a pheasant tail nymph - we weren't sure because he had both flies in his mouth. The best flies were black and white leech patterns, peachy and cerise san juan worms, pheasant tail nymphs, copper johns, and P&P midge. The browns liked the bigger flies while the rainbows took the rest. We fished all the way to Suicide hill area which unlike years past was passable, which allowed us to fish the boulders just beyond. Larry made the quad-fecta, catching a brown, rainbow, sunfish and a giant chub in one day!! Actually Larry was pulling out state record chubs throughout the day - looked like five pounders from where I was standing. Overall this was a very special day - both the fish and weather cooperated. This was the last place that I got to fish with one of my best friends, Ben Hynds, before he died. I felt his presence this day - thanks for the great day, Ben. No, the story doesn't end here. Everyone who has fished Cardiac hill knows that you still have a long walk to the car - we made it, but with covering all that river and the hike up to the car, we are both sore this Saturday morning. But we are smiling!
Meramec River Fishes Well (Apr 21st): Kenny Klimes and Dave Beerbower headed to the Meramec river outside the park on this Tuesday. Fishing was good in the morning as the guys started at the "bend" in the river and worked their way down to the gar hole by 11am. All rainbows except for one very nice 17 inch brown caught by Kenny on a black leech pattern. The guys worked their way back up to the bend after lunch when the fishing just seemed to turn off. Maybe because of the motor boats that blasted through the area. But about an hour later the fish came back when the guys switched to cerise worms fished deep. The best flies of the day were the pheasant tail nymph, copper john, black leech, P&P midge and cerise worm. The guys stopped fishing around 2:30pm when a thunder storm rolled in but they were about done anyway. Overall it was a nice day on the water - a little chilly in the morning but warmed up nice towards the afternoon. The river did rise about a foot and the flow doubled to 800fps since the weekend but it was very fishable. Below are just a couple of the fish caught this day
Montauk is Fishing Well Again ( Apr 22): Gary Elliott, Sid Aslin, Dave Franke, Rich Fleschner, and Jim Franke traveled to Montauk State Park on Wednesday, April 22, to see if any hatches had started. After missing a turn, Gary, AKA I don't need a stinking GPS, and the other four anxious anglers arrived at the Park. Starting at the spring, Gary tried out his new, hand-made bamboo rod. After turning down several generous offers for the rod, he successfully landed four trout in short order. P&P midges, fished deep seemed to be the star of the day. Several other nice rainbows were taken on green and blue cracklebacks, some in the film layer, but most successfully using sinking tip line, quartered down stream on the swing. All in all it was a good day i.e. many good hook-ups and no one fell in or got hurt. Thanks for the report Jim! It sounds like you all learned a lot from the Intermediate/Advanced fly fishing class we had - except how to follow driving directions?
FATC Brothers Make It a Day on The Water: (Apr 24th): The Aslin brothers (Sid & Bob) had a great day at Montauk last Friday. On the way they noticed the cows were spread out in the fields (a good sign). It was a cool cloudy day, but they escaped the rain. Bob did well in the morning and caught them on Cerise worm with a P&P dropper catching trout on both. Sid had a good morning too, as he didn't catch any fish, but didn't fall in. After lunch, Sid caught several on an orange streamer, however things slowed down for Bob, but it was a much better afternoon than being in the office! Thanks for the report and it's nice to see brothers enjoying a day on the water!
New Graduate - Just in Time (Apr 27th): Five FATC guys headed to Montauk this past Monday with one mission in mind, to get Jason Corman graduated before he moved away to Canada. So Jason Corman, Kenny Klimes, Brian Yost, Matt McClure and Steve Kettering drove down to Montauk State park to chase the rainbow. It was a beautiful day and the park was not crowded at all so the guys had a lot of room to fish. Jason on his long quest to graduate before he moved was completed early in the day. He caught his first trout on an orange soft hackle. Jason got the chance to fish all different techniques and I think caught fish with each one. Congratulations Jason!! The rest of the guys did well although they would rate the fishing this day as fair. Everyone put fish into the net. Brian and Matt chased each other down the river most of the day and Steve, Jason and Kenny hung tight throughout the afternoon. Soft hackles, midges, cerise worms did well while some trout were brought to the surface with dry flies. Fishing is picking up so don't miss those hatches!
Did Someone say Bait? (May 1st) : It All Started with the Question “What’s the Definition of a Lunker?” On Friday, May 1, Gary Elliot, Ron Peasley, Sid Aslin, Dave Franke and Jim Franke once again made the trek to Montauk State Park in search of the first hatches of the season. As we returned to the car after buying our daily tags, Gary noted that he nor anyone he had ever fished with had landed a lunker trout, and that he wished just once someone would catch a lunker. Dave asked "what’s the definition of a lunker?" Gary replied a fish over three pounds. Dave vowed to catch only lunkers that day. Fishing was slower than last week, with success on red and P&P midges, cerise worms and black squirrel leaches. Sid caught a nice 16”, 1 3/4 lb. rainbow on his own creation, an orange wolly bugger. But the prize of the day goes to Dave Franke who landed a 24”, 5 lb. 9 oz. rainbow! Dave caught the lunker with an ultralight spinning rod and tan dough bait just below the catch and release area where it enters the “spring branch”. Arriving home that evening I checked Craig’s List as I sometimes do for deals on fly fishing equipment. I saw a post which caught my eye “For Sale - hand made bamboo rod - will trade for ultralight spinning rod or cane pole with bobber”. I hope it wasn't one of our guys that wanted to sell his bamboo rod (Gary?). As the policy of our web site has it, we are not allowed to show any fish that is not taken by fly rod - sorry Dave - but it was BIG!! In fly fishing any trout over 20 inches long is considered a "prize".
Montauk Taking Dry Flies in the Afternoon! (May 7th): Tim Klotz and Sid Aslin drove to Montauk State Park and met up with Bob Aslin and his friend Earl Shuesler (he used to be the Park Superintendent at Montauk in the early 1980's and Bob has been good friends with him since 1976 when he did a college internship with Earl). They had been in the area Turkey hunting (no not in the park!) and fly fishing at Montauk for a few days. They did not get a turkey this year, but have been successful together in the past and both "know their stuff" on how to "sound sexy" for Tom turkey to come over to investigate their calls. Earl had taken one early in the season (yes you are allowed 2). The morning was slow and few fish were taken by any of the 4. Bob and Earl did take a few on P&P and Cerise worms before they left for home about 3PM which was just about time for some big hatches to start and Tim and Sid were ready with some dry flies and caught a few in the area of the "Boulder Hole" and above. Sid had one good run when he caught 10 trout on a Griffith Gnat in about a half hour's time. The hatches stopped so Sid got out his "world famous" large (hook size 10) orange and yellow with flashing Wooly Bugger and caught his largest fish of the day a 16 inch rainbow which had been swimming downstream from the boulder. Unfortunate for the trout the line got up in it's gills area in his net and was injured so it was kept. (Kenny, I promise I will try to be more careful next time!) Tim and Sid caught most of their fish on the Renegade and Griffith Gnat. We had a taste for BBQ so we had dinner on the way home at the BBQ restaurant, Olig's in Licking. I think that the waitress was happy that we chose to set outside to eat on the deck rather than inside since we had been fishing all day! LOL Great report from Sid! Sid and Tim are becoming better fly fishers as they hit the water again and again! Way to go guys!
Fishing the Watauga in North Carolina (May 7th): Here is a report from Dave Beerbower on his trip to the Watauga river. It must be a great vacation so far because he gets to fly fish!! I am in NC at our cabin and had a chance to fish my favorite spot on the Watauga River. I started after lunch and things were a bit slow to start with, but I had some luck with the brook trout taking the P&P midge. A brief shower chased the pretenders from the river and I had the whole place to myself for the rest of the evening. Fish started rising and I switched to dry fly fishing for the rest of the day. A sparkle pupa and a white hackled crackleback had great success. The water was as smooth as glass until the fish exploded on the flies. I caught Rainbows and Brookies, but could not raise any Browns to complete the trifecta. It was a great time in a beautiful spot
Tan Vat & Baptist Camp Produce Trout! (May 18th): Steve Mahan (longtime friend) and Larry Farrar made the trip to Baptist Camp and Tan Vat to see if the MO Conservation had stocked Brown Trout in the stream. We started at Baptist Camp and worked our way down. We predominately caught Rainbow Trout with a few Brown’s mixed in. The best flies were Hare’s Ear and the Soft Hackle flies. We moved to Tan Vat and found fishing taking the same flies as they were down at Baptist Camp. All the Trout taken there were Rainbow’s except for one Brown.
A Visit to Montauk Pays Off (May 19th) Steve Mahan (longtime friend) and Larry Farrar made the trip to Montauk State Park the day after spending it on the river outside the park. Fishing started off relatively slow for the first hour with most fishing being caught on the Hare’s Ear, Soft Hackle and a few on the San Juan Worm. We moved down to the bluff hole and the fishing took a great turn. Most all the fish were taken on the San Juan Worm. The two had several doubles (~dozen times) over a period of about 1 ½ hours. The activity slowed down once we made it to the boulder. We called it a morning, had breakfast and left Montauk to spend some time at Bennett Springs.
Evening of Day 2 of Week Long Trip - Now Bennett (May 19th): Steve Mahan (longtime friend) and Larry Farrar made it to Bennett Springs Tuesday afternoon. The weather was great, the park was packed and to top it off they were cutting the grass in the stream. Fishing was slow up at the spring but the activity improved the further downstream we went. The best flies were the Hare’s Ear and the Gray Scud. Near the end of the day Steve put on a fishing clinic up near the spring. Most fish were taken on the Hare’s Ear.
.Now Bennett (May 20th) :Steve Mahan (longtime friend) and Larry Farrar made it to Bennett Springs Wednesday afternoon. The weather changed from the previous day as the temperature dropped and the rain moved in. The foul weather kept most people off the stream but the fishing was hot once we found the desired pattern. Near the end of the day we had the stream to ourselves and the fish really cooperated with us. The best flies were the Hare’s Ear, San Juan Worm and the White Midge. Tight lines.
.Final Day at Bennett (May 21st): Steve Mahan (longtime friend) and Larry Farrar made it to Bennett Springs Thursday afternoon. The weather was chilly which kept a lot of fishermen off the stream. Fishing was slow until we found the fly the fish wanted and then things really picked up for the both of us. The fly to use Thursday evening was the Pheasant Tail Nymph in size 16 or 18, Natural color. Fish were taken in most of Zone 1 and 2 on the that fly. The fishing was hot and it was a great way to wrap up a trip with a good friend. Tight lines everyone.
Never Been to Cardiac Hill?? (Jun 9th) Kenny Klimes and Dave Beerbower decided to get out and fish. Kenny hadn't fished in a month - ridiculous!! So as they made their last minute plans Dave mentioned that he had never been to Cardiac Hill to fish - ridiculous!! So early Tuesday morning they headed down to Cardiac Hill. The Meramec river near Cardiac Hill is often tough fishing in the summer. With the sun shining bright and no clouds anywhere it looked as though this too would be a tough day of fishing. The trout were down deep and because of the bright sun showed very little movement. It was decided to go deep and gaudy so with plenty of weight and cerise worms tied to the guys tippet they hunted for browns in this area. They started by walking up river to some deep runs and were rewarded. The cerise worm was the best fly of the day when fished in deep runs with plenty of weight. One brown was taken just shy of 16 inches and several fat rainbow from 14 - 15 inches. The guys fished back down to the put in point (Beginner's Riffle) and had lunch. The afternoon they worked down to Suicide hill but the hot sun made the fishing a lot tougher. The day ended around 3pm. Dave enjoyed his his first time at Cardiac but wished he had caught more fish. Cardiac Hill can be tough place when summer approaches - Spring seems to be the best time BUT there are trout there to be caught - check out pictures. (And please don't make fun of Kenny's goofy hat!)
Water High but Montauk Good (June 24th - 25th) Sid Aslin sends us this report from Montauk State park. I had not been on the water for a while so I was itching to fish again so I headed to Montauk Tuesday afternoon to fish. I got a campsite and started fishing about 3 PM. Water is up, but found several trout on Wooly Buggers (mostly olive green) . Did the same on Wednesday! By Thursday I was getting tired of constantly feeling like the water was about to cause me to fall in but I had not. So I fished on the banks and was pleased that some were finally rising and got some on top water! Thursday I ran into Gabby and Bruce Morton on the water who were doing well fishing with leaches under a strike indicator, but also fishing on the bank! Bruce got to initiate his newest home made bamboo fly rod and was pleased with it's performance! I wanted to get a good picture of him with a trout and his new rod, but accidentally dropped my cellphone/camera into the water when I took a tumble . Luckily I was able to use a hand dryer on it from the restroom and get it to work again. I personally am going to wait until the water goes down before I fish down there again, but I would suggest that any of you that are more stable wading in rapid water to head down there while the fishing is great!
Yes, Water is High but Fishing is Good! - Tan Vat (June 27th) John Walker sends us this report after his great day on the water. On Saturday June 27th, I headed down to Montauk for a little therapy, aka fishing. Also, I had just bought a new rod and a new Redington Rise-II Reel from Wooly Bugger and was keen to try it out. Shameless plug, but I really like the reel and with the 20% discount the FATC gets it is quite a good deal. Anyhow, on to the fishing, with all the rain the Current river is was running about twice the normal flow on Saturday (~ 450 cvs) and at about 12-16in above normal height. Much of the smaller particulates had settled back down so the water clarity was ok but there was a lot of bigger debris like grasses, leaves, twigs etc... floating in the river, making it what people in the know call technical fishing. :) That is a little inside joke but It was a little challenging. As for the fishing itself, I started the day at TanVat and with the clarity being what it was I tried nymphing and when I wasn't removing grass from my flies the fishing was pretty good. With all the water pushing and moving through the stream, I would imagine that a lot of bugs were floating in the river right now making the fish happy, happy, happy. I had a lot of success with the P&P but the bigger nymphs were also working pretty well. I caught fish on prince nymphs and the hares ear nymphs as well - size 14. I caught a nice 17-18in Brown on the hares ear. That would have been more exciting except about 30 min earlier a guy approached me from that really deep hole about a mile from the TV parking lot. I got to take pictures of his lunker for him. He caught it on a chartreuse worm. I fished below the cable just outside the park in the afternoon. The water has really changed some of the layout so folks who haven't been down there lately will see some big changes in a couple of the usual holes. The weather was great all day and it was a pretty enjoyable trip.
Father/Son Trip to Montauk (June 29 & 30) Matt McClure sends this report as he enjoys a couple days fly fishing with his son. My son and I set out for Montauk Sunday evening with the new travel trailer. We fished all day Monday and half day Tuesday. Although The campground was full there wasn't a lot of pressure on the river. Lots of families vacationing and enjoying the outdoors but not all fishing. We concentrated our efforts from the spring down to the spillway on both days. The winner for us was a red San juan worm although we did catch a few on primrose and pearl, copper john and blue Crackeback however the San juan worm caught fish consistently all day no matter what part of the river we were fishing. Fishing was very good, Weather was excellent and the best part was we were able to spend some quality father / son time together. On a side note we also spent a couple days at Bennett several weeks ago. Our hot spot was casting upstream through the center arch of the main bridge and stripping black woolybuggers. We both caught at least 30 fish each on the first day working that area. Plan is to return to Montauk in a couple weeks to enjoy more of the great outdoors. Matt
Canada Fly Fishing (July 7th -12th): Just completed our annual Brothers/Sons - Uncles/Nephews trip to Ontario, Canada. Although we do fish with baitcasting and spinning techniques we also find the time to throw a fly or two. Our trip this year was in July, three weeks later than we normally go, and the "catching" happened to be fair this time of year. We caught some Musky, Northern Pike and of course, Smallmouth Bass. I did manage to do some fly fishing and have a few pictures of some of the fish caught on the fly rod. I used my new 10wt fly rod hoping to tag into a "big" pike or musky but didn't get the "big" one this year. Oh well, I guess I'll just have to go back!! I did experience one thing - my ULTIMATE FISHING NIGHTMARE!! It is to have a nice pike or musky on the hook and as I take him off he shakes and gets me hooked with him. Yes, both of us hooked at the same time. As the pike thrashed in the water shaking the lure in his mouth and my hand hooked to the lure - it didn't feel too good - he finally some how shook off the lure and left me still hooked to it. Didn't have to pull the treble hook through my skin - the pike did it for me. My son snipped the hook barb free with our small bolt cutters. The hand is ok but the memory remains. Maybe now the nightmare will go away. If any of you get a chance to fish in Canada don't forget to bring your fly rod. Remember you can catch any fish on a fly rod - any fish!! See you on the water - and tight lines, Kenny Klimes
Water Cloudy and High but Fishing Good - Montauk (July 21st): Kenny Klimes and Jim Anzer found time to go fishing this Tuesday and their travels took them to Montauk. After some severe thunderstorms in the area during the week, the guys weren't sure what the water conditions would look like but they went anyway. They fished Montauk in the morning. The water was high and moving fast but they handled the conditions well and were rewarded with several rainbows. Midges, nymphs, and wooly buggers were used. After lunch the guys headed to Tan Vat since Jim had never fished there before. One guy coming off the water said he caught several nice browns so with the water high and fast we put on the "meat" - wooly buggers and sculpin patterns. No browns but nice rainbows were caught. Cerise worms and again, small midges did best. Jim had the big fish of the day just before quitting time. It was a great trip, not a lot of fish caught but at great time of fellowship. We took our time and relaxed throughout the day - no rushing. With the high water, which will go down and clear soon, the fishing should be awesome so don't miss out on it.