Most Recent Trip Reports and Pictures
This page was last updated: August 19, 2016
PAST FLYFISHERS AT THE CROSSING
FLY FISHING TRIPS ARE BELOW!
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Even More Trip Reports Below
Two More Added To FATC (Apr 8th): Two more fly fishers were added to the FATC this past Friday; Steve Clark, who finished his graduation from our most recent class, and Brian Smith, already a fly fisher who wanted to be part of our fellowship. It was a chilly, windy day for April but blue skies for most of the trip. Kenny Klimes took Steve for his graduation trip and was joined by Brian Smith and Matt McClure. Brian is a prior fly fisher who fished a lot in Colorado. He has lived in St Louis for some time now but is recently retired and wants to fish more here in Missouri. Brian welcome to the FATC!! Steve was ready for his graduation trip and did very well. We practiced some techniques before lunch and Steve missed a few early. One really nice rainbow jumped, spit the hook out as to say welcome to fly fishing Steve! After lunch we started out at the top of the spring and worked our way down stream. Steve got the hang of the dead drift, mending and high sticking and caught his first rainbow on a fly rod. Then he caught another and another. Steve netted about six for the day which is above average for a first timer. Montauk is still tougher than normal and it may take sometime to figure out what the trout are looking for. We ran into many fly fishers that weren't catching any - we did well. Best flies were the san juan worm (pink or red), P&P midge and rubber legged stonefly. I know I've said this many times but the floods in January have changed many of the rivers here. I think for the worse. Too much sand was dumped into holes and runs that I think may have killed many of the aquatic insects on the bottom. I'll write to the MDC to see what they think. If you are interested in a trip please let us know when you can go fishing and we will hook you up. Weekdays are still "calm" in the parks but weekends will start to become impossible soon. Tight Lines!!
FATC Invade Montauk (April 13th): The FATC left St. Louis in full force invading Montauk with 11 fly fishers on this Wednesday. The good thing was we owned the river this day. Montauk was virtually empty and as the day wore on the FATC were the only fly fishers on the river. Some were camping, others drove up at different times but the greetings on the river were loud and clear. Let's see if I can get all of the names - Bruce Morton, Gabby Heath, Gary Elliott, Dave Beerbower, Jim Franke, Sid Aslin, Tim Klotz, Kenny Klimes, Bill Byington, Matt McClure and Connor Peters. I think the best part of the day (besides the fishing) was lunch time as we all joined together to break bread - so to speak. We spread out on the river and most started up at the top of the spring to work down stream for the day. Everyone seemed to be doing well with midges and Cerise worms as the top morning flies. Dave Beerbower also christened his new bamboo rod that he made. Lesson learned this morning - make sure you are deep when dead drifting your fly. It was nice to see FATC everywhere you looked this morning. After a cool morning of fishing the layers came off and the gang decided to really spread out during the afternoon. Four headed down to the portion of river by the campgrounds and found it empty. This group fished all the way outside the park to the 90 degree bend. The flies of the afternoon seemed to be pheasant tail nymphs, midges, rubber legged stonefly, san juan worm and even elk-hair caddis when a small caddis hatch started. The fishing was very good this day - many thought it was one of the best days of the year. With the weather warming up the hatches were more prevalent and we are hoping soon will bring some awesome dry fly fishing. As you know the parks WILL be crowded when the summer starts so get out now if you can... Tight lines....
A Day of Learning at Montauk (Apr 18th): Jason Corman flew in from Toronto, Canada to fish with us. Yes, he did! Jason graduated last year and then had to quickly head to Canada because of a job transfer. He came home to visit some friends and decided to thrown in a fishing day with the FATC. So Kenny Klimes, Miles Meyer and Bill Byington joined him at Montauk. A partly cloudy day greeted the guys as they fished from the top of the river down to Walter's stretch. Miles, Jason and Bill, being relatively new, got extra instruction from Kenny and put it to good use. Fish were caught on midges, cerise worms, "Gabby's Golden Wooly", and a few other various flies. The river wasn't too crowded for a Monday and we usually had any spot, especially in the afternoon. No hatches or rises to speak of but the fishing was good. The guys got to work on their dead drifting techniques and truly improved a lot. A greaat day on the water was followed by mexican food and awesome fellowship as always.
I Owed Him This One! (Apr 26th): Last week Tim McCoy asked to be reminded of the trip that we were taking to Montauk. I (Kenny) forgot :( and he had to read about the trip on the web site. So I owed him a trip - just the two of us. Tim had never been to Cardiac Hill so that was the plan until the weather changed our plans. With severe thunderstorms predicted for the early afternoon we decided to cancel that and go check out the Meramec river instead - good choice. Tim and I fished outside the park on the Meramec river - at the bend. Overall the fishing, I mean catching, was good. The trout were feeding on top in the scum/film layer caused by the cold water rushing out of the park meeting the cool water of the meramec river. The seam formed by the confluence of the two flows trapped midges by the hundreds. Oh yea, forgot to say there were so many midges hatching that at one point it got annoying as they flew in our faces all morning. No browns were caught, all rainbows but fiesty ones. The three biggest fish were above 15+ inches. As we saw the trout feeding in the film layer the soft hackles came out and the catching began. Many very subtle hits as we would swing the flies through the seam. We also tried P&P midges, rubber legged stoneflies, wooly buggers, cerise worms to pick up any fish near the bottom but the majority of trout taken were the ones feeding on top. It was a blast! We fished until 1 pm and then decided to have lunch since the skies were getting darker. Right as we finished our meal the BIG storm hit and fishing ended early for the day. Lessons learned: if you plan on going to a location that will take you far from your car (i.e. Cardiac hill) check the water levels and weather before you go AND never go alone! If we had gone to Cardiac hill we would have been right in the middle of the storm. Not fun and dangerous. If you want on a trip that is announced via email, please respond to the email. If you hear thunder while on the water, that means lightning too. Get off the water and don't be waving your graphite rods in the air - don't want to be a lightning rod. Be safe out there!!
Lake Taneycomo Finally Turning Water Off ( Apr 30th and May 1st): Bob Aslin joined 7 other friends for a Boy Scout Dad’s weekend at Lake Taneycomo. Six of the eight fished from boats and used spinning rod & reels, however Bob and his friend Tom Love took the opportunity to wade and fly fish since they were only running water (two generators) for a couple of hours each afternoon. The water was a little murky with sediment and moss floating by and the fishing was decent all but Saturday morning. The fly of choice was an olive green wooly bugger (#14), however at times they would only take a soft hackle (red or orange) and Tom caught a couple on an olive crackleback. They fished upstream from the Point Royal Condos area and just below the dam one afternoon just after they stopped running water through the turbines. All the fish were released to fight another day.
A Day of Catch and Keep at Montauk (May 13th): Steve Clark, Connor Peters & Matt McClure headed down to Montauk for a day of fellowship and of course fishing. With the recent rains we weren't sure what the river was going to be like. Water was up a little bit but it did not hinder wading into any areas. The water was stained so we started out with color. The San Juan worm once again did well. I started with a dropper pheasant tail along with primrose & pearl midge and did well with most taking the midge and a couple taking the pheasant tail. This was a keeper day. Steve has a buddy who likes to grill whole trout so at the end of the day we gutted our limit of 12 fish to take home. All in all fishing was consistent throughout the day. Steve continues to hone his skills and is definitely starting to get the hang of it and caught several fish. On another note I've heard rave reviews about the homemade pies at Happy Pappy's (top of the hill on corner before entering the park). We called ahead and ordered 2 banana cream pies and cherry pie to pick up on the way home. Absolutely phenomenal! If anyone is interested in doing this in the future call a few days ahead of your trip and place your order. Bill & Glenna Ard are the Owners. Glenna will make any flavor pie you want. Happy Pappy's - 573-548-7777. Matt, thanks for that report and the tip about the pies!!!
The Boys and Their Toys - Secret Location (May 21st): Matt McClure & Connor Peters headed down to Arthur’s Creek, private land owned by one of Connor’s Dad Friend for a day of fellowship, fishing and guns. Let me tell you this property was a playground for the outdoors men. Matt and I both decided if we owned property like this we’d be fired from our employment. Since neither Matt nor I had ever been here, we didn’t know what to expect. All we knew was the creek had been stocked with 1,000 rainbow trout at the beginning of March. This was a perfect opportunity for Matt to test out his new Redington Hydrogen 3 weight rod. Due to the cloudy water we began using the pink worm. It continues to work well when water is murky and stained. As we worked our way upstream into some shallower water, Matt tied on a soft tackle and caught a trout. Matt was killing it today. We fished for another two hours in the morning and then broke for lunch and guns. My dad brought a 50-Cal sniper rifle. I had shot this rifle two summers ago; however, Matt had never shot one. We both took our turn shooting and decided to head back to the water for some much needed fishing. Once again Matt continued to slay the fish. All together fishing was pretty consistent throughout the day. It was nice to get away from the crowded parks being able to space out and not having to worry about someone walking within 5 feet of you. Again, as usual, Matt and I had an awesome day of fellowship!
-Connor & Matt
New Graduate Enjoys His Day (May 25th): Kenny Klimes took Sid Aslin and new graduate, Jon O'Connor, to Montauk on this Wednesday. It was a good day to fish as Montauk wasn't very crowded and the boys had lots of room to learn the many techniques of fly fishing. Jon came ready to graduate as he prepared himself well before getting on the water. Jon was eager to learn as much as possible and it showed as he had a fine day of "catching". But late in the day he made the mistake of saying he'd like to go for the new graduate record of 19 rainbows first time out. So after about six or so trout Kenny left him on his own (but watched him closely). Jon learned quickly, as we all do, he has a lot to learn. Sid did well too as he followed us for the rest of the day. Best flies seemed to be the midges, copper johns, and the cerise worms. Just have to say Jon did an awesome job and welcome to the FATC!! The water was still high and cloudy from our rains of two weeks ago. Always check the water levels and speeds before you go to any location to fish. We tasted BBQ on the way home. Jon is number four to graduate of the 18 in the last class. Let's get out there guys!!
We're Movie Stars! Tan Vat/Baptist/Cable (June 2, 2016): It was an interesting trip on Thursday, June 2nd as we fished the Current river. First, we decided to fish Cardiac hill but the water was too high, fast and muddy from all the rains. So we decided to fish the Current river. It too was higher than normal and slightly faster than normal and slightly cloudier than normal. So we made our decision on the word "slightly". As you can see from our "group" photo Matt McClure and I fished together but after we took the photo we noticed this figure in the background. Could it be the great sensei of all fly fishers?? We never got to see his face but he agreed to fish with us in silence. So we hit Tan Vat in the morning. The fishing was good until around 10:30 when we pulled up our gear and headed to Baptist camp. The best morning flies with the fast and cloudy water were the cerise worm, pheasant tail nymph, elk hair caddis, soft hackles, and rubber legged stonefly. We heard rumors that Mark Van Patton (of MDC fame) was fishing at Baptist and making a movie!! Of course, we wanted to be movie stars so we headed that way. Ate lunch at Baptist then looked for Mark fishing for the cameras. We were "invited" into the filming and of course, the great sensei of all fly fishers stole the show by catching a trout on cue for the camera. We aren't sure it will be a full feature film or one of those shorts. We bid Mark farewell and continued downstream of Baptist to catch a few more rainbows. After Baptist we spent the last two hours of our trip checking out below the cable. Flies used there were soft hackles, cerise worms, Caddis dry flies and the Chernobyl ant. It was prefect conditions on this day - no rain, cloudy, and decent temps - but the mosquitos got us throughout the day. Fishing has been tough for some but not the FATC guys because they were taught well. Get out there and enjoy your summer fishing season.
No One Goes There Anymore, It's Too Crowded (June 10th): You probably heard many of the Yogi Berra-isms. One is "No one goes there anymore, it's too crowded." As we planned our trip to Montauk I was thinking just that. As summer gets in full swing it seems Montauk gets more crowded. So what do we do? We plan a trip with 12 fly fishers - yes, you heard right - TWELVE fly fishers. So who is crowding the rivers now ;) Dave Komor, Tim Klotz, Sid Aslin, Bill Byington, Mike Bisaga, Jim Anzer, Connor Peters, mystery fly fisher, Steve Clark, new guys Bennett Sieczkowski and Al Angiocchi, and me (Kenny) headed to Montauk to not only graduate a new guy but to just enjoy the day on the river. As we showed up on the river others were asking themselves why is it so crowded on a Friday - it was us! Congratulations to Bennett who graduated early in the day and also to Al who joined us. Bennett caught trout early and learned several techniques of fly fishing throughout the day. Even though we spread out on the river we ran into each other throughout the day. That was fun to talk and catch up on each others lives. We all broke bread together at lunch time - all twelve of us...... twelve of us breaking bread together - what does that remind me of ???? The best flies of the day were the P&P midge, elk hair caddis, cerise worm, crackleback, cream midge larva, and a few others thrown in there. It was a hot day but most stayed protected with hats, buffs and sun screen. Check out the pictures below for a photo story of the day. Afterwards I got out voted and we decided to eat at the Hicks BBQ in Cuba BUT not before we headed to Happy Pappys to pick up a couple of pies!! Awesome pies!! And to prove it Connor ate a half of Cherry pie, yes, a FULL half of cherry pie before he got to HICKS BBQ!!! Oh to be young again!! The fishing is still good but the days are getting hotter. Why not refresh in a cool river with a trout on the end of your line!
Bamboo Rod Day or "You know, the short, fat, bald guy!" (Jun 17th) - This was a special day trip for five FATC who, under the tutelage of the bamboo rod Sensei Bruce Morton, had the opportunity to test their newly made bamboo rods on the water - catching fish. The weather was predicted to be hot but the cool waters of the Current river seemed to keep everything at a very nice temperature. After suiting up and before heading to the water the gang of five took their pictures with their rods - still pristine and all in one piece. The bamboo rod gang fished in Montauk park and got on to fish right away. Some used regular flies (Cerise worms or worm nymphs??) and others stuck with the dry flies and tiny flies made for the delicate flex of a bamboo rod. It was a fun day as "fish on" rang down the river. Surprisingly the river was not too crowded on this summer Friday. The guys fished the entire fly fishing only area and caught fish throughout the day. The best flies were the cerise worm, the WWF worm, the nymph worm?? - oh, come on guys you're killing me. Other flies used (and caught fish) were the elk hair caddis, renegade, soft hackles of various colors, P&P midge, pheasant tail nymph and copper john. The guys hung up the rods by 4pm and celebrated with Mexican food and Margaritas! It was an awesome day of friendship as the guys finally got to fish with the rods they spent months on building. Oh yeah, the short, fat, bald guy that I'm sure you are wondering about. Well, you will just have to ask one of the bamboo guys about that - Bruce Morton, Gary Elliott, Kenny Klimes, Jim Franke, and Dave Beerbower. Just be careful on who you talk to on the river and yes, rumors do fly fast!?!?
It looks like Brian and Dave hit the jackpot on this trip to Bennett Spring park (rumor has it that they have a lot of fish there right now!): Brian Yost and Dave Beerbower decided to hit Bennett Springs during the week and picked the best day of the week temperature wise. But the fishing was on Fiya! We started slowly as we tried nymphing deep for our prey. No luck. We decided to try dry flies and terrestrials, and the fun began. Grasshoppers with a twitch, caddis flies, ants and Wulffs brought the fish up. We both had a great day with upwards of 30 fish each and they were good size too. We ran into fellow FATC members Matt McClure, his son Jack and Connor Peters. It was hard to leave, but we headed for home after 5pm. Ate at Bandanas in Lebanon to finish a perfect day on the water.
Tim Klotz sent us this report from their trip to Montauk: Sid and I went to Montauk today. The place was empty and fishing was pretty good. Olive wooly bugger and pink mega worms I'm the morning. In the afternoon, Sid caught a few on stonefly. I had luck with a P&P dropper from an elk caddis. Caught fish on both the nymph and caddis.
Met and fished with Brice Morton and Karen while we were there
Many Trips Happening this Summer - Here are a few Trip Reports for the week of June 20th - 24th
Our Brothers in Virginia (Jonathon Pierce and his son Tyler) send us this report from Virginia waters: We have had heavy rains for the past few weeks but Tyler is indefatigable. Here are a couple of nice Browns caught in unstocked waters during high-water conditions.
Our Bamboo Rod Makers Head to Colorado for Reunion and Fishing ( July 15-17): Bruce Morton and I had the opportunity to fly fish on some private water on the Frying Pan River in Colorado above the Ruedi Reservoir. The drive along the river and reservoir is absolutely breathtaking due to the sheer red rock cliffs that line the canyon. The wading was very tough and my wading staff came in very handy. Once I got stationed in the river, the fishing was great. I was swinging soft hackles through the current and also fished dry green drakes and caddis flies. Bruce had his dog Ellie and she got to run free in the fields next to the river. The river is narrow and tree lined, so roll casting was the rule of the day. We both had a memorable afternoon on this beautiful piece of water and caught several wild fish in the 10”-14” range.
The primary reason we were in Colorado was to attend the Colorado Rodmakers Reunion near Marble, CO. There were about 75 people in attendance and we learned some new bamboo rod making techniques and got to cast some amazing rods made by other makers. The location was at the base of Chair Mountain at about 9000’ elevation where we needed a jacket in the mornings and evenings. The fellowship was special and I met some new friends in the rodmaking community. What a great trip!
New Graduate and Only 15% Chance of Rain (July 20th): A future graduate, Ron Berger, was ready to get his "diploma" so a trip was scheduled on a Wednesday. We were a little worried about two things as we planned this trip; Montauk being crowded and a super hot day with only a 15% chance of rain in the forecast. But that has never stopped us before so seven of our FATC decided to hit the road and give it a go. Pete Drochelman, Sid Aslin, Jim Franke, Connor Peters, Tim Trog, Kenny Klimes and newbie, Ron Berger, headed to Montauk to take their chances. When we arrived we were shocked to see the park empty - yes, empty! That made us smile and Kenny happy. There was a little cloud cover which held the morning heat down to a nice 83 degrees. The morning fishing went well for everyone as Ron Berger graduated before lunch, which took the pressure off of him (what pressure???). The group fished the entire fly fishing only area. At lunch reports of catching, no crowds and nice temperatures filled the discussion at the lunch table. As the guys headed back out for the afternoon things would be different. Ron caught a few more trout as we worked our way down from the top of the spring. Everyone was on to fish and the fly selection was all over the charts; cerise worms, red copper johns, P&P midges, Woolybuggers, Soft Hackles, Pheasant tail nymphs and more.... And THEN IT HAPPENED!! That 15% chance of rain went out the window (of course because of that we didn't bring our rain gear with us to the river). It rained, and rained, and rained - harder, and harder and harder. You might as well shot us with a garden hose in the face for 45 minutes straight. The cool rain and the heat created a fog over the river where you couldn't see your buddy from 30 feet away. I think in all my time fishing I've only been in rain like that about four times. We were SOAKED - but continued to fish right through it - I'm so proud of you guys :) At the end of the day we had our fellowship dinner at Hicks BBQ as usual and talked of the trip and family. Congratulations to Ron Berger our newest graduate!!
Tan Vat and 'Tauk still Fair to Good (July 25th): A little "extra" instruction was requested so it's hard to give it unless you are on the water. Four FATC made the trip to the Current river; Craig Dull, Jon O'Connor, Bill Byington and Kenny Klimes. They first hit Montauk's fly fishing only area and again, for a summer weekday, the park was empty. Fishing was fair with midges and copper john's the best in the park. After lunch the guys decided to "test" their skills and fish Tan Vat. Tan Vat was relatively ours for the afternoon. As always you have to "up your game" to fish and be successful at Tan Vat. Rainbows and browns were caught but most important the guys refined their techniques to catch them. The summer months have been hot but on the river it's been relatively nice. The water now is super clear which makes the fish a little wary and good technique and stealth are the order of the day. It was a good day of fishing and a better one of fellowship. Some Mexican food on the way home completed the trip.
Virginia Fishing and Fellowship ( Aug 8th): Here is a report from Dave Beerbower on his trip with the Virginia fellowship! Dave Beerbower had the opportunity to meet Tyler Pierce of the Virginia contingent of FATC for some wild trout fishing in the VA highlands. Tyler has spent a lot of time on these small streams and helped me learn the important aspects of this style of fishing. We used dry flies all day in riffles and small pools with good success. There were lots of hits and several brought to hand. This area is so beautiful, but the colors of the fish we caught took your breath away. It is tough casting to wary fish, but great fun. The fish are generally in the 6-8” range, but every once in a while you get a nice surprise. (See Tyler’s Brown in the pictures). All in all a great day with a fine young man in God’s creation. I could tell you the streams where we fished, but I would have to kill you, though we did hit the South Branch of the Holston among others. I will definitely do this again, but I may try it with my Tenkara rod. BTW, between the two of us, we accomplished the Appalachian Slam. A wild brown, rainbow and brookie in the same day.
A Successful Canadian Trip (Aug 7 - 14) Here is a trip report from Matt McClure who took his yearly family trip to Canada. Our own Connor Peters and his Dad joined Matt's family on this trip. Hi Kenny, I wanted to share some of the success we had on our annual Canada fishing trip. As you are aware this was the first time I took along a fly rod. Well, it was a success. It took a while getting used to casting an eight weight rod & reel with a large Pike fly but I was eventually able to get used to it. Here's a few photos of several Pike caught on fly rod. The first was a 38 incher weighing in around 16lbs. and a 33 incher. Thank you again for loaning me a 8wt. rod and reel and for helping me tie up Pike flies. The 38 incher was caught on one that you tied and the 33 incher was caught on one that I tied. I have included some additional photos of the trip. Thanks again for helping me to prepare. Matt McClure Matt, you are welcome. And I hope others going on fishing trips (other than trout) will bring their fly rods and give it a shot! It's a blast!!