The MO continues to fish extremely well this Spring. The last couple weeks have seen pretty steady flows in the mid 6000s the cfs and our water temp is slowly climbing, but the stairs are pretty steep right now. Floating the river is the most ideal way to fish the MO right now, but wade fishing is still possible, it’s just a little bit sporty depending on where you are walking. With good midge hatches, nymphing and dry fly fishing is happening, although the best dry fly action is in the evening just as the sun is setting. Streamer fishing remains steady as well, however if you can get out in the island areas and swing the streamer, you’ll increase your results over just trying to bust the banks out of a boat.
My leader/tippet length the last couple days have been right around seven feet to the first fly, then 12″-16″ to the second fly. All the flies you would think should be working this time of year, are working! Lead flies will include the Tungsten Firebead Sowbug in the 14 to 16 range, Caviar Scud in 14 or 16, Amex in 14 or 16, Tungsten Beaded Cotton Candy in 14 or 16 are all good. Trail smaller flies in the 16-18 range behind one of these; Amex, the Tailwater Sow, unweighted Cotton Candy, Pink Lightning Bugs and ‘RED’ Zebra Midges are all good choices. Just a hint, the Red Zebra Midge was on absolute fire this week, so don’t overlook that in a size 18.
It’s been a bit windy lately, so we haven’t seen a lot of noses, but right at the end of the day we have been seeing quite a few. Cluster Midges, Buzzballs, Griffith’s Gnats, Midge Clusters, and the Comparabuzz are all good choices. Trail a small Sprout Midge or Zebra Midge off the back of the main dry fly and you’ll have a pretty outstanding combination.
Like I said earlier, swinging patterns either from the boat in appropriate locations or wade fishing around our many islands has produced a lot more fish than trying to just bust the banks all day long from a boat. Steady producers for us have again been the Doc’s Articulator, the Mini Dungeon, Urchin Buggers, Kreelex Minnows and the Bow River Bugger. Light colors and dark colors have both been producing, so pick whatever poison you prefer and have some fun!