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Fly Fishing Guides and Info
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SEASONS ON THE WHITE AND NORFORK
Fall is all about spawning browns. We do not target spawning fish but are fishing for them as they make their spawning runs upstream. Larger flies and streamers are the ticket to success. With eggs in the water, egg patterns are very effective for all species. Y2ks in yellow and orange and egg patterns in peach can yield good results. This is also our prettiest time of the year with vibrant fall color.
Winter is the big surprise, with the possibility of a shad kill on the lakes. Cold weather and heavy generation are the key factors to look for. When the shad die due to the low water temperatures, they are forced through the generators resulting in a feeding frenzy below the dams. In addition the major brown spawning site below Bull Shoals dam is closed to accommodate the spawn from November 1 until January 31. Opening day is February 1 and these big trout have not been fished for over three months. As they make their way back down stream this is an excellent time to go after the big browns with big streamers.
Throughout the year, there are midge hatches that can happen any day. Small parachute Adams can be very effective. No matter what time of the year you choose, something is always happening.
BLUE RIBBON GUIDES
A frequently asked question is when is the best time to fish the White and Norfork Rivers? The truth is that every season has an allure to it. The best season for one angler may be different than what is best for another. Spring is best known for its abundant hatches and the quality of its dry fly action. The most important of these is the Rhyancophylia Caddis. It is a green caddis and is best imitated with a size fourteen elk hair caddis. Emerging insects are often targeted early on in the hatch. When this occurs a green butt or partridge and orange soft hackle are your best bets. This hatch occurs in March and April. Our best Mayfly hatch is our sulphurs, in May and June. The hot fly for this hatch is a sulphur parachute in size fourteen. Here again, there is also a lot of action on emerging insects with the partridge and orange being your best bet.
Summer is hopper time, although they can be found until late in the fall. These tempting morsels can pull some big trout off the bank. The most effective flies are large foam hoppers in tan or green with a quick sight on the back. Improve their effectiveness with a small nymph dropper. Bead head partridge tails and copper johns both in size sixteen are excellent choices. Crane flies are abundant and are best imitated with a size fourteen light Cahill.