Happy Thanksgiving Y’all! Turkey day is happening today at mom’s house (cheaper airline tickets if you fly tomorrow on Thanksgiving), and I somehow ended up in charge of the turkey, which is starting to crisp nicely in the oven and smell of herbs and lemon, so I will keep this brief.
Those plotting to fish the White River this coming weekend will likely encounter cloudy skies and a cold wet drizzle, which can turn down the level of enjoyment of being outside, but which also creates favorable conditions for a brown trout bite. This fall has already seen some amazing brown trout days and many of them were under dark dreary skies, so this weekend holds great potential for those getting out there.
Flows are a bit unpredictable right now – not necessarily matching up with projections, but fishing remains productive regardless. Bull Shoals Lake is storing a heck of a lot of water, at almost 12 feet into flood pool and rising, which bodes well for winter streamer fishermen hoping for high water conditions.
Read on for current fly selections.
Regardless of flow, which is all over the place, a two fly nymph rig employing a brightly colored attractor and a midge or mayfly trailer. The list of effective attractors is topped by old reliables like egg patterns and San Juan worms, but is well complemented by local favorites like the AR Beadhead shad pattern or the Rubberlegs mega nymph. Effective midges include Rubies, Rednecks, DW Whitetails in silver/black, red/white, pearl. Blue winged olives have been spotted emerging especially on cloudy days and can be matched well enough with Iron Lotus, Hare’s Ear nymph, and various small gray to olive colored soft hackles.
Norfork turbines are shut down but spillway release is the equivalent of a partial unit. Shad patterns are a good bet anytime spillways are open, so try Wiggle Minnows, white Wooly Buggers, AR Beadheads, Puff Daddies, and Sparkle Minnows. If white isn’t producing, try worm and egg patterns, orange or pink Hunchback Scuds, or small black Wooly Buggers.