Gazette Article - How To Properly Handle Trout!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Arkansas Tailwater Fishing Report July 1st 2012

The Arkansas river below Pueblo Reservoir is fishing insanely good right now!  This is a real blessing considering many of you Springs residents are chomping at the bit to get back on the South Platte but can't yet because of road closers.  The last week I have seen Caddis, Baetis, Midges, and big fish eating them.  Good patterns to carry are: Beadhead Hare's Ears size 16-20, Beadhead Pheasant Tails size 16-20, Olive Sparkle Pupa size 16-18, Mercury RS-2's size 18-22, and Barr's Emergers size 18-22.  All these fished under an indicator with a good amount of weight above your flies.

Caddis have been coming off around 10, and the Baetis around 12:30.  Two days ago we had a little rain and cloud cover in the afternoon, and the Baetis hatch exploded off the water.  The fish couldn't resist a size 22 RS-2!  Bring your 4x and 5x tippet because these big trout aren't leader shy and they pull hard.   

Flows of been pretty consistently around 250 cubic feet per second, and this stretch of river fishes fantastic anywhere between 200-500 c.f.s.  This morning when I checked the flows were at 383.  They are still doing work on the dam which means it could be a steady 250 c.f.s. in the morning, and then without warning it could jump up to 400 c.f.s. or more in a matter of seconds in the afternoon. 

Trust me you don't want to be caught out in the middle of the river standing on those slick rocks when that happens.  I recently had to carry one of my clients across with her husband when they bumped the flows on us.  She literally couldn't get her feet down to wade because the current was so strong. Find a spot that you know is holding fish where you can also watch for rising water along the bank.  

Also I've had a few people shake their had at me when I tell them where I have been guiding and fishing since highway 24 closed.  Yes it is extremely hot in Pueblo...  If you put on your wet wading shoes and shorts, put on sunscreen, and wear light and protective clothing it is actually very comfortable!  The water coming out of pueblo dam is coming from the bottom of the reservoir so it's nice and cold and feels great to wade in.  Leave the waders at home, and prepare for the heat just like you would prepare for the cold only in reverse.  I promise you won't regret it if you take a trip down south.  The bugs are hatching and the fish are big!

Tight Lines! 

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