Fishing Report by Lilley's Landing.
This has been one of those weeks when anyone can honestly say that it would be easy to be a successful fishing guide… almost everyone is catching trout right now. Water flows have been angler-friendly too, running minimal water most of the day and night with increases some afternoons of up to 2 units. Most of the time they’re running only 35-45 megawatts or a half unit, 2,500 – 4,000 cubic feet per second. Water temperature is holding at 48 degrees.
Steve Dickey, one of our guides said “it’s crazy easy right now… and they’re good size rainbows too.” The Missouri Department of Conservation has been stocking larger rainbows this week it seems, anticipating a busy Memorial Weekend. We’ve had spotty rain showers but nothing to effect water clarity or flows.
The best, again, at catching rainbows and lots of them is the Berkley Pink Worm under a float. I’ve been putting this in my fishing reports for a couple of years now but I really can’t help it – this pink worm works. Our guides fish it 80% of the time. Why? Because it’s easy and it works. And no, I’m not a part owner in Berkley! They’re fishing it anywhere from 4 to 6 feet deep, 2-4 pound line and a small, 1/100th ounce jig head. If you’re by the resort and have questions, please stop and we’ll show you how to use it.
Anglers are catching trout on other Powerbaits too – white paste actually caught some nice browns this weekend from Cooper to Monkey Island, drifting on the bottom. Also minnows and night crawlers did well, catching bigger fish on average than Powerbait. But with this low flow, you need to drop to just a split shot, just enough to get your bait to the bottom.
Spoons are still catching good fish early and late in the day. Gold and red seem to be the best colors. Also throwing or trolling Flickershad, Shad Raps or Fingerling Fat Free Shad Bombers — they’ve been picking up nice browns and rainbows on these baits.
Our browns have been doing something a little strange, at least in our memory and experience… they’re been feeding on small threadfin shad in the surface early and late in the day. But it’s not a “busting the surface” like bass do. It’s more like a big gentle swirl and slurp… hardly any sound to it. See one and throw a white jig or small spoon or crank bait.
In the trophy area, it’s been pretty good! White jigs close to the dam has been best but white jigs all through the area is very good. Not as many bass, crappie and walleye as a couple of weeks ago but very good size rainbows in the 15 to 19 inch range, and beefy! Duane was drifting a shad fly in the Narrows late last week and caught some trout that were regurgitating fresh shad so they are still seeing threadfins in that area at least.
So white jigs, shad flies, white wooly buggers imitating shad is number one but throwing darker jigs is good too. One angler told me he couldn’t get bit on white the other day so he switched to peach and started catching. Crazy! Spoons will work too as well as small crank baits. Fly fishing has been good using scuds, egg flies and shad flies under an indicator. Have not heard of any dry fly action yet — it’s still a little early.