FISHING REPORT – WINTER
The cold weather left us a week or two ago, and we’ve been basking in warm temps (45-60 degrees). Unfortunately, we’ve received little snow as of late. Our best snowfall usually occurs from Feb. 15th – May 15th, so lets cross our fingers and maybe mother nature will turn that jet stream. The warm weather has brought a few fisherman out, and reports have been good.
I’ve included a few photos of the river at the Mountain Palace boat ramp about ten days ago. The ice has broken up since, but I thought some of you would like to see how cold it got. We saw the river freeze up unusally hard, and further upstream than usual.
When things heat up, look for midges, both surface and subsurface to be the most productive. Water temperatures are very cold, so expect the fish to be pretty lethargic until we get a good Chinook in here to warm things up a couple of degrees.
Many of the smaller tributaries and some sections of the larger rivers are closed now, so make sure and check the regualations before heading out. The Missouri from Holter Dam downstream is open, and you’ll have the place to yourself this time of year. Keep an eye on the weather, especially of you plan on floating.
Winter fishing on the Missouri can be hit and miss, and largely depends on the weather. For those who haven’t been in this area during the dead of winter, we can get some very cold temperatures. These cold fronts, however, are often interupted by “Chinook” winds that can cause the temperature to rise into the 50’s or 60’s in a matter of hours. Hitting these warm fronts is key to having an enjoyable winter day on the ‘Mo.
Winter fishing usually involves nymph fishing with an indicator. On certain days midges may hatch in enough numbers to get the fish going on top, but not with the consistancy found on other rivers in the region. Stick with nymphing or slow stripping buggers for the most consistent action.
Flies for winter fishing on the Missouri should include:
-San Juan Worm in Red, Fl. Red, and Fl. Pink
-Pink, Gray or Tan Scuds
-Wooley Buggers in Olive, Brown, Black
-Bunny Leeches in Olive, Brown, Gray