Those water temps are falling fast. It is time to look towards winter water.
We’ll be talking about this winter type water all swing season long. And for you nymphers in the audience you too will be getting away from that faster bankside water and moving across the river into the slow moving pond-like water.
With water temps falling, look toward winter water.
The water temps have fallen into the 45F and will continue to drop as we near December. The low point for the Missouri River water temp is about 33F. Some winters we do not get to that low mark. Some winters we hover in the 36F range. The fish like that better. Humans like that better as well.
But we still have some time above the 40F mark. How long? Maye a couple weeks, but if that damn winter cold front rolls in this holiday week ahead of us we may see that 40F mark fall sooner than we would like.
We are getting into the winter pace here in Craig. Late morning or afternoon starts with wade fishing the primary game in town. You could get in the boat but many of us locally would rather wade than play the drift boat game. Just way easier.
The flows are holding at the 3.3K level making wade fishing a dream. You can really wade into a toni of runs. Cruise around on the frontage road and approach your favorite run on foot.
I was out swinging a streamer yesterday afternoon and noticed a real change in the location of trout. No longer were they hanging in the faster water. Not many in the medium pace either. But a few. Most were shaded toward the softer side.
Last week while nymphing from the boat the fish were starting to frequent the slower water. Not all the time. But you could feel the shift about to happen. The nymph fish were still int he medium speed center river runs. But not for much longer. We will be navigating the boat on the soft, inside, boring water for the next 4 months.
The flies will change too. More on that topic later.
So as you wander the river in the next week or two, think about looking toward winter type water. The time is near. Until then fish the medium speed medium depth stuff.
Also still good swinging and stripping and nymphing pretty much everywhere fishing the Missouri River. Some fishing soft hackles, some fishing short leash nymphs, some a bit deeper, some hunting heads, some chucking and ducking, and some have gone to the 2 handed Trout Spey Rod exclusively for the Missouri River Swing Season.
What are you gonna do this weekend? I’d be looking for a touch of fall water before it disappears.
And if you have looked into the weather future you will get yourself out of the house this weekend. It may get a touch western this holiday week.