February 18 fishing report

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by Bill Babler ~ Got out on the upper lake at 0900 yesterday morning and boated to the dam.  Air temps at 26 water was 44.9  I boated up from Branson and did not see a single boat all the way to the cable.  Wanted to just use a fly rod and drifted from the cable to clay banks 2  times.   Started using a white/grey jig under a float about 12' and nothing the first 2 drifts.  Switched to a size 8 weighted shad fly and stripped and drifted it on a straight line again 2 times from the cable to clay banks and had zero.  Gave up the long stick for a drift and jerked a 110 plus one in french pearl thru the same water.  Again nothing to report.  That was 5 drifts on White and not even a bite. 

 I was not fishing a jig like the boys in the video.  I saw no shad and the fish I caught were spitting either grey or copper scuds.  Seems to be a right place right time deal.Had noticed quite a bit of midging below the Brown Trout raceway so I tied a big dry  on with a size 18 black midge about 2 ft. under it.  Made 2 passes over that flat and caught one 12" brown on the dry.  I had just about had a dose at this point, so I dragged out the spinning rod and bottom bounded a egg and scud from the cable to the conservation ramp.twice.  Caught 4 really nice bow's on the size 14 copper/orange scud and lost one that was big, wide and silver.  Fish jumped right at the boat and put a nice show on.

Moved out of the restricted zone and caught about 1/2 dozen on a pink power worm from Fall Creek thru Trout Hollow on the flat side.  Lots and lots of midging going on between the docks on the slacker water.

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Visited with Phil a bit and did whine some as I really expected the upper end to be a bit better.

Moved down town and the fish really bit on just about anything you wanted to throw, from the power worm to a midge to a spoon to a small crank bait.  Caught about 30 in a couple of hours.  Funnest deal was stripping a size 10 wooley below the walk out just above the fish house.  You would get a bite on just about every throw.  Best bite was at the end of the drift after the swing, just holding it in the current.  They would just thump it.  I missed more than I caught.

On a side note, folks fishing the docks below Scotty's were catching really nice fish on Power Bait.  Looked to me to be very nice fresh Big stockers.

Here is a bit of a pictorial of the copper/orange scud that I have had really good success with the past week.

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Good Luck out there.

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