Joe Ready from OKC with a great‘bow off Norfork _ Nathanael Ferguson pic
I MIGHT have mentioned something about high flows and quality fish last week. Well they turned up this week.
Joe Ready turned up a great rainbow on Norfork and we heard some reports of solid fish on hoppers.
And then you might have seen a couple of the fish my wife has been pulling on streamers this week. Put the 2 best fish _ a 24 and a 26.5” head to tail and they are almost as tall as she is. Just add one of the 2 20” fish and it’s way over.
Now we aren’t talking huge numbers of trophy fish but there are some great fish being caught right now.
The lakes are starting to tick their way down, with around 75 to 80 capacity out of Bull Shoals power station being utilised around the clock and 75% of Norfork in the afternoon, so mornings are offering some wadeable flows.
WHITE RIVER: THE WHITE has been running 5-plus units the past few days, around 15,000 cfs in the morning and bumping up to 20,000 in the heat of the afternoons. The river turns into an interstate at these levels, big flat and fast.
Certainly you have to be aware of your surroundings, there is way less stuff to hit but the speed means you have to make decisions earlier. Spotting an abandoned inflatable kayak buried in a strainer last night brought it back home last night. I find the White very comfortable at this level but you can’t afford to lose concentration.
These sort of flows have inundated a lot of riverfront that hasn’t seen water since 2011. The grassbeds are filled with worms, grubs and other insects which were caught by the rising water. We are on the way to seeing some seriously good worm fishing. You can run an attractor egg ahead of your San Juan, Prism Worm or the wire bodied Get Down Worm. Or use a bright worm pattern as an attractor ahead of Davy Wotton White Tails, Sowbugs or Pheasant Tails.
If you want to toss hoppers try black patterns like Fat Alberts, Juicy Bugs or the Roach, or pink Fat Alberts and Western Ladies.
On the streamer front fish some stuff with weight, Dungeons, Circus Peanuts or Boogieman flies.
NORFORK: Norfork has been offering the only serious wading currently, during the morning hours. Keep an eye on the water flows day to day our app (see links below) to look at when the water is expected to turn on on any given day and then when it actually does.
.On low flows there has been plenty of action on Ruby Midges and Rootbeer Midges, run behind Sunday Specials or Hunchback Scuds. Sowbugs have pulled some fish. We have also heard of hoppers puling some fish on low or light flows.
On the heavier water run eggs and worms, copper johns and pheasant tails