Most Recent Trip Reports and Pictures
This page was last updated: September 29, 2014
PAST FLYFISHERS AT THE CROSSING FLY FISHING TRIPS ARE BELOW!
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Even More Trip Reports Below
Any Fish On The Fly (Canada June 27th - July 3rd) I just returned from a trip to Canada for smallmouth bass, pike and muskie. It was a great trip with brothers, uncles, cousins and nephews. As I have told you in class before, you can catch any fish on the fly. So I added a few pictures of some Pike that I had the opportunity to catch in Ontario, Canada, Get out there and enjoy some fishing with family and friends.
New Graduate and Plenty of Fish at Montauk (July 7th): The FATC has a new graduate from our latest class!! No less than eight showed up to fish this past Monday at Montauk. The forecast called for afternoon storms but they never came giving us a mostly sunny day. Dave Beerbower, Mike Bisaga, Dave Komor, John Walker, Kenny Klimes, Matt McClure and his son Sam and our latest graduate Dave Inman headed to Montauk for what turned out to be a good day of fishing. There was plenty of room on the river to fish as the "crowds" were low. The catching was a little better in the morning than the afternoon but all caught plenty of rainbows. Dave Inman graduated right away and did very well the rest of the day. Our best flies were P&P and red midges, San Juan and Cerise worms, Stimulators, egg pattern, CQ streamer, and soft hackles. The water was very clear and the flow was very slow which made it a little tougher for dead drifting. Most fished in the park above the dam while two decided to give below the dam a try in the afternoon. One lesson learned - set a definite time for lunch before everyone heads out to fish. Or someone may never get to eat lunch??!!! Oh yea, and make sure you know how to get back to the car at the end of the day - Dave Inman almost had to take the course all over again as he got lost on his way back to the cars (or was he Kenny's responsibilty??). A trip to Hicks BBQ ended the day. Congratulations goes out to Dave Inman our latest Flyfisher at The Crossing!!
Another Graduate at Montauk (July 14th) We are in the process of building our FATC Instructor cadre this summer. Dave Beerbower is our first "Instructor" to hit the waters with a newcomer from our Spring fly fishing class. Sounds like they had a great time under tough fishing conditions. Here's Dave's report and congratualtions to Darryl (and Dave!!). Dave Beerbower and Darryl Weinrich headed out to Montauk this past Monday. Darryl was in Kenny’s last class and wanted to graduate. Kenny could not go, so Dave got the pleasure (and pressure) of taking Darryl out to catch some fish. It was a day of firsts! Dave’s first day as a “certified” instructor, Darryl’s first trout ever caught on a fly rod and his first stop at Hick’s barbeque. Darryl took the pressure off of me faster than any graduate I can remember. He had a very nice qualifier in the net within the first 10 minutes on the water. The park was very crowded and the fish were very tentative. It was one of the slowest fishing days I have ever had at Montauk, but that did not stop Darryl from catching 5 nice rainbows. He also had several on the line but they got off before getting to the net. Wolly buggers, soft hackles and cracklebacks fished deep had the best results. All in all a great day, and the Hicks was good as always to finish it off. Kenny’s record of 100% is still safe. Phew!
A Day at Montauk (July 17th) Bruce Sheffield found time to hit the waters returning from a "work" trip. He had a great day and even met another FATC brother on the river! Here's his report: Kenny, I had some personal business to take care of in Iron County on Thursday so I packed my fishing gear so I could head to Montauk after I having taken care of business :-) It was noon before I arrived at Montauk but with the weather so nice it was a great day to spend on the water. My first cast was with a soft hackle and it yielded a strike and I thought this might be a good day but that was the only strike I got on a soft hackle all day. Fishing was slow and that was verified by other fly fishers I spoke with. Every now and then I'd come across someone in the right spot with the right fly and they were catching fish. The water is crystal clear so it is easy to see the trout rejecting the flies. The trout were mostly lookers and not takers. At times a trout would look at a fly two or three times before swimming off. I did catch a few, mostly using an olive mohair leach, but the P&P midge and a brown crackle back tricked a fish or two. There were plenty of folks on the river but they seemed to congregate close to the areas that had parking close to the river access. In between those areas other fishers were sparse. I did run across Sid Aslin as I was walking out. So we talked and fished together for about an hour and I almost doubled my catch rate for the day while fishing with Sid. So I've decided Sid is a good guy to have around when I'm fishing:-) The picture is one of the rainbows I caught while fishing with Sid. All the Best, Bruce Sheffield Yes, I have been out lately too and the super clear water creates a challenge - a good challenge. With slower moving, clear water this summer concentrate on using smaller diameter tippet (6X, maybe even 7X) for your dead drifting flies or think about adding movement to those flies as they drift. Stripping flies may also help provoke an attack.
Montauk Proves Challenging (July 30th): A bunch of flyfishers headed to Montauk this past Wednesday and here is a report from Dave Beerbower. A rather large group of fly fishers decided to give it a go this past Wednesday. Dave Beerbower, Jim Franke, his brother Dave, Gary Elliot, his neighbor Ron, Sid Aslin, and Tim Fleisher met up with Bruce Morton and his pal Mike. We were joined by several hundred other fishermen at Montauk on a day when the fish were amazed at how many feet were hitting the water all around them. As a result, the fishing was fairly difficult. Bruce and Dave had brought their recently finished bamboo rods to christen them, and found success early in the day. Both liked how the rods performed and were happy to finally get them out on the water. Gary and Jim had good success around the boulder with soft hackles and dry flies. Dave Franke and Tim headed to the spinning rod area and caught some nice fish with trout worms. Sid planted himself in the catch and release area, but later felt guilty for catching too many fish so he retreated to the river. Late in the day, the trout started to hit Griffiths gnats on the surface, and this salvaged some of the fishermen’s egos (mine included). All had a good time and we finished it off with Hick's BBQ. It would be a good idea to stay away from the state parks until the kids are back in school!
Roaring River (July 28th) : Jerry Lybarger got to the far west end of the state and fished the Roaring River. The FATC hasn't fished there in a long time. Here's his report. Had a chance to fish Roaring River with my wonderful mate who feels her skills are unworthy for the trout streams. Started late morning about 1/2 way up from the famed DryFly/Mike Meadows memorial bridge and fished to bridge in the catch and release. Knowing the Roaring River clientele, not expect many in that area. Tried the MDC recommended lures and fly shop recommended ants w/ light indicators, which I thought good as my pool at home has had a lot of ants in the filters. As some would say - the fishing was very technical. Very low clear water with little flow w/ fidgety fish in the shadows. Fish would suck in and spit out a fly without even moving my wife's indictor or before I could yell for her to raise. I obviously am not as good a teacher as our master. Did poorly on recommended stuff so went to my schooling from our master teacher. Used a barely visible orange dotted yellowstone beetle as indicator with 7X soft hackle dropper. Landed at least 12 in the next two hours (mostly the soft hackle) loosing almost as many. Fish under bridge in the DryFly/Meadows hole were stacked. Caught first three casts. While calling for wife, two bozos seeing my catch (no one else was catching) raced to the other side of my hole. Wife said she did not want to fish by them with her skills. I pointed out that the two red necks only came over because they saw me catch and the way they were fishing, would be gone shortly. All materialized and now my wife thinks I know what I am doing.
Bennett Crowded but Fishable! (July 31st and Aug 1st): Here is a trip report from Tom Kelly who had a chance to fish with his brother and pass some of his knowledge to a young fly fisher. Wanted to give you a fishing report from last week. Sorry, no photos. My brother John & I hit Bennett Springs on Thursday 7/31 & Friday, 8/1. The water was at normal levels, normal flow & very clear. We had beautiful sunny weather both days with highs in the upper 70's to low 80's. Park was pretty crowded both days from morning whistle to evening whistle. Many stretches had fishermen lined maybe 30 feet apart for much of the day. Busy but still very fishable & enjoyable. We had a wonderful time, pulling in a total of 85 rainbows between the two of us over the two day period. The P&P was the go to fly accounting for
probably 60% of all fish taken. Also took a few on the Renegade Dry, Big Ugly, Copper Head Midge & one of John's creations called the Ruby Glitz (red midge w/ green wire wrap). Most fish were around 12" with a couple in the 14" range. Not real big but good fighters. While fishing I met a young man who had just graduated from high school. We were fishing next to one another for a while. His uncle had recently given him a fly rod and he was whipping it back & forth using a big dry fly with no luck. I had caught a few fish while next to him so he was asking me a couple of questions. I shared with him some of the education that you had imparted on me about where fish mostly feed. I also hooked him up with a strike indicator & a couple of P&P's and gave him a 30 second lesson on dead drifting & mending. Checked back with him a little while later and he had caught his first trout on his fly rod. Thanks to you Kenny for all that you have taught me. Felt good to spread a little FATC love.
That's the report. Hope all is well. Thanks Kenny!
Deep Summer - Terrestrials are HOT (Aug 13th): Here is a report from Dave Beerbower! He says the catching is picking up - better get out there! Dave Beerbower, Sid Aslin and Tim Klotz headed down to Montauk to see if the crowds had receded since many schools are now back in session. Though there were plenty of fly fishers, it was much better than a few weeks ago. The fishing has been tough for several weeks, but that changed on this day. We started out near the boulder and caught fish right away on soft hackles and dry flies. There was a terrific mayfly hatch going on as we hit the river and it lasted for over an hour. Fish were rising all over the place and we hit them hard. Later in the morning, I decided to try a hopper pattern, casting against the far bank. Wow! They started hitting it almost as soon as it hit the water. It was great fun to see them attack the hopper with such gusto. After lunch, we went further upstream and continued to do well with hoppers, ants and soft hackles. Wooly buggers and cracklebacks also did well, especially in olive and black. On this day, the fish were hitting anything on the swing and long, slow strips seemed to work best. Tim had plenty of fish to take home to his son, who loves to eat fresh trout even though he is a vegan. Sid decided to stop fishing the catch and release area and spent the whole day on the river with great results. In fact, he caught the largest fish of the day with a very nice 16 incher. It was so much fun that I had to call us off the water at 5:30. It got to be too late for Hicks BBQ, so we stopped in Rolla at the Panera for a quick bite before heading home. Terrestrial season is now officially on. Get out there and be prepared for some great fishing.
More Head To Current River Outside the Park - Fishing is Good (Aug): Jim Minor sends us this report from Montauk. Just wanted to let you know that I met up with Steve McDaniel last week and went down to the current river at Montauk. The fishing overall was really good and I broke in my new rod/reel. We fished outside the park and there were a lot of fish but most did not even look at my flies. But I did catch about double my limit which is good for me. I used a fly to simulate the mayfly early in the day and did quite well. Later I used the P&P and had some success and ended with catching a nice trout on an Elk hair Caddis I tied. It was a very ugly tie job (my first) but it did land a nice size trout.
Steve was a blessing to me and he helped me out quite a bit plus he can tie a very good fly. Anyway sorry for not emailing you sooner...just wanted you to know we had gone out and had a really good day of fishing.
Need More Rain - But Another is Added to the Fellowship (Aug 18th): Four of us headed out to fish the Current river this past Monday. With some of the rain that we had we thought that finally the river levels would have risen and the clarity less clear but not true. Kenny Klimes, Dave Inman, Jim Franke and newcomer Dennis Puryear fished both Tan Vat and below the cable (Montauk). The water is still crystal clear and the levels are still low. The morning fishing at Tan Vat went well with cloudy skies and cool temperatures but after lunch the sun and the heat came out and the fish honkered down low below the cable. The best flies were the midges (P&P, Red and black zebra midges), mohair leech, soft hackles, copper johns, and renegades. Yes, we need rain to fill the rivers - it will come. As always a lot of techniques were learned to catch the tough fish. Big fish of the day was a 16 inch Brown caught on a "dead drifted" mohair leech by Jim Franke. We want to welcome our newcomer Dennis Puryear. Dennis is an experienced fly fisher who lives in the House Springs area and comes to us with many years of fly fishing experience. Dennis found The Crossing because of the FATC ministry - thats cool. After a great day of fishing and fellowship we all headed home to find a new place to have fellowship dinner. Well, because of Jim Franke's suggestion, we found a new awesome place to chow down. El Nopal (see I got the name right, Jim) which is a mexican restaurant in Sullivan.
Two "new" guys (and Matt) - Rock the 'tauk (Sept 7th) Two New Guys? Well, Mike and James complete a first. Congrats to Mike on his first student (successful) and James on his graduation from FATC. Here is their report. Three fly fishers headed down to Montauk on Sept 7th. Mike Bisaga (one of the new FATC Instructors), Matt McClure and James Edwards (the now, newest FATC Class Graduate). The weatherman called for "perfect" (if you were not fishing) clear blue sky conditions. Being a Sunday, some of us were a little worried about the crowds. As we pulled into the park, we noticed a fair number of people and cars.(uh oh). We continued on, got dressed and headed for the water above the dam. There was a large group of people in the "lake" area above the dam, so we walked on past to get up stream of them. Mike and James set up camp just above the crowd and reviewed some of the stuff Kenny had taught in the class and went through some casting. Matt headed up stream to try his luck up there. It turns out, the majority of the morning crowd, were all located just above the dam. Once above the initial slow stretch of water, it was very peaceful and only a few other anglers up through Walter's Stretch. Although Matt did find a "friend" in his travels that proceeded to talk his ear off and tell him everything there was to know about fly fishing, and Montauk. He even offered his guide services. He was a real find.
Mike and James got off to a bit of a slow start, but James was into his first couple fish before lunch. Now that the pressure was off, Mike could relax a little and enjoy the rest of the day. After a quick lunch with the group (yes, Dave, I said lunch WITH the group), we hiked up to the spring. Well look at that, we found the crowds. Fishing the rest of the day was little "cozy", although, I guess it could have been worse. Despite the crowds, fishing was pretty good. Lots of action on P&P, Red Midge, San Juan, CQ Streamer and even a few fish on an Adams Dry. Now, I probably shouldn't do this, but we are all friends here. Just don't tell anyone else. According to Matt's new "friend", there is only 1 fly you should ever throw at 4pm. Nothing else. If you throw this specific fly at 4, you will have more fish than you know what to do with. What was it...Griffiths Gnat (or something like it, according to him). But "you need to cast to 11 o'clock, let it drift and then strip it back on the swing". Well, just for kicks, we went ahead and tried this super secret suggestion at 4, just in case he actually knew what he was talking about.. Did it work? Well, I guess, but no better than throwing a soft hackle (or similar) which is what I switched to about 4:15. I'm pretty sure anything stripped just under the surface may produce the same results. But it is our secret, so don't tell.
After a long day on the water, we were hungry, and had The Hick in our sights...We get to The Hick, and everything is dark. Huh, wonder if they are closed on Sunday night. Nope, turns out, someone had hit the power pole across the street, just minutes before we got there. Darn...Closest carnivorous substitute we could find was the Lions Choice in Sullivan.
Anyway, it was a great day for all of us, James Edwards is now officially a graduated FATC member, and Matt has the name and number of a Montauk guide if anyone is interested.
An Evening on the Meramec (Sept 8th) Did you ever just want to get on the river and fish until dusk? Did you ever want to see those aquatic insects hatch as the sun set? Well, I did. So on Monday I called the only guy I could think of that wasn't doing anything in his life (just kidding) - Dave Beerbower! We headed to the Meramec river, outside the park to find the browns that were so numerous this spring. Well the water was very low, clear and the fish were down low. They didn't seem to care that we were there. Only a few fish were caught - 3 total in the net. Just one of those days or should I say evenings. But the quiet and stillness were awesome as we were the only ones on the river. The winter catch and release season is coming soon. Be ready it's the best time to fish in Missouri.
Montauk Fishing Well in Fast Waters (Sept 14th); Larry Farrar and Joe Walker fished a half day at Montauk on Sunday and report that the fishing is good in the fast moving water. Here is their report. Kenny: Joe and I had really good success on light colored midges (P&P, white, light olive), light colored San Juan worms, and light olive and light green soft hackles. Our best luck was in faster moving water, up near the top of the stream, just above the bluff, and down at the boulder. We used 6x tippet all day with light indicators (small foam and the New Zealand).
Looks Like Montauk is Back on Track ( (Sept 18th) Here is a report from Dave Beerbower with a congrats to Jeff Layton who completed his graduation into the FATC> Seven flyfishers headed down to Montauk this past Thursday to see if the trout were biting. Dave Beerbower was taking Jeff Layton down for his graduation experience and they were joined by Bruce Morton, Gary Elliot, Jim Franke, Sid Aslin and Tim Klotz. The weather seemed perfect with cool temps and an overcast sky. The cows were spaced apart and feeding, so we were looking for a good day, and we found it. There were several hatches going off all day and the fish were active. Jeff is an experienced fly fisher, so he caught his graduation fish early, and it was a dandy. Fish were surfacing all day and soft hackles and dry flies caught most of the fish on this day. You had to put some motion into the flies to get the fish interested, but when they were hooked, they fought like crazy. It is exciting to skitter a dry fly across the surface and see it disappear in a mighty swirl and splash! Everyone caught lots of fish and we finished the day off at El Nopal in Sullivan.
Montauk - Beautiful Day, Water - Clear and Low, Crowded?, New Graduate! (Sept 22nd): Six Fly Fishers took advantage of a beautiful fall day with blue skies and cool temperatures - Jim Franke, Dave Inman, Craig Dull, Steve McDaniel, Kenny Klimes, and soon to be new graduate Rory Pottgen. Montauk waters are slow, low and clear making fishing a challenge. The best place for "catching" is any where the water is moving fast. Fishing in the slow water is difficult. The river was more crowded than usual so the guys broke up into two groups for the day of fishing. Rory was there to graduate so he and Kenny stuck close together for the day. After some casting practice Rory was on fish before noon and seemed to enjoy the day with about 8 fish in the net and many lost. Everyone caught fish this day with an eclectic group of flies used. Elk Caddis, midges, San Juan worms, cracklebacks, and soft hackles caught the majority of the trout. Everyone had a fun day and we even had some deer give us a show as they crossed the river no more than 30 feet away as we fished (see pictures below). A fellowship dinner was had at Hicks BBQ and new friends were made. Winter season is fast approaching. It is the best time of fly fishing in Missouri so be ready with the proper gear. Congratulations to Rory Pottgen!
Stream Team Event Takes Us to Bonhomme Creek (Sept 27th): Our FATC Stream team met this past Saturday to not only monitor and clean up the waters of Bonhomme Creek but also to learn some valuable tools to help us become better fly fishers. It was a beautiful Saturday morning with blues skies and cool temperatures. Stream Team Lead Mike Bisaga took six other FATC members to Bonhomme Creek just outside of Babler park. John Walker (also trained in Stream Team procedures), John Bloss, Matt McClure, Bob Aslin, Mike Chambers and I (Kenny Klimes) were about to embark on a fantastic morning of learning the ways of the streams. First, I have to say if you have not had the chance yet to participate in one of our Stream Team events please make it your business to do so. It was an awesome learning experience about our streams, their aquatic life and some interesting fly fishing knowledge. The team took water and aquatic life samples from three different locations on the stream. The stream was very low but the team was able to find three locations with riffles that held vast numbers of aquatic life. We found over 10 different species of stream life to include mayfly nymphs, caddis larva, aquatic worms, leeches, scuds, minnows, sculpins, damselfly nymphs and more. After filling out monitoring and insect info for the MDC the guys did a little cleanup and headed for a cookout at my house to discuss the days events and of course, fly fishing. Check out the pictures below of this awesome day!