Copyright 2017 James Marsh
Fly Fishing On The Little Red River In
The Little Red River is known for its fine brown trout
fishing but it is also stocked with brook, cutthroat and
rainbow trout. This river has some huge brown trout in
its gin clear water. It's cold, water comes from the
Greer's Ferry Dam at a temperature of about
forty-seven degrees year-round. The river is located in
Central Arkansas, not far from the more famous White
River tailwater. Fly fishing the Little Red River can be as
just as productive as fishing any tailwater in the nation.
Anglers can crowd the many shoals in the river during
the spring and early summer but the best fishing is
actually in the fall when the brown trout start migrating
upstream to spawn. The spawn starts about the middle
of October and is over around the first of December.
Trout can be caught from the Little Red River as far as
thirty miles below the Greer's Ferry Dam. It's Collins
Creek Tributary also has a good population of trout. The
dam is controlled by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The river has a very good food supply for the trout
including scuds, sowbugs, freshwater shrimp, leeches
Fly fishing the Little Red River depends greatly on the
discharges from the two turbines at the Greer's Ferry
Dam. The water can be low or very high and dangerous
and change from one to the other in a very short time.
The Little Red River can usually be fished from a drift
boat year-round. Keep in mind the river's flows are
regulated by the powerhouse at the dam and it can
become very swift and dangerous in certain areas when
a lot of water is being released. Normally, the Little Red
flows through long pools of water with many shoals. We
recommend floating the highest discharges only with
experienced guides or anglers.
The first few miles below the dam has plenty of boulders.
It can make it tough to float for small vessels such as
canoes and pontoon type boats. There are some large,
long pools downstream of the boulder filled section but
below that, you will find other obstructions in the form of
islands. Further downstream, there's a series of shoals
that can hinder larger boats, especially during low flows.
Below the shoals, the river can be fished from a canoe.
There are many shallow areas to deal with on low flows.
Below the shallow areas you will find a long pool
extending for about three miles. Downstream of the big
pool, the river narrows down with long runs that flow into
another section of shoals. Below that, there's more deep
pools that flows into a series of rapids. This area is just
above the low water dam above Pangburn. The river
again slows down and flows through another series of
|Type of Stream
Brown Trout (wild)
Rainbow Trout (stocked with
Brook Trout (stocked and wild)
(Stocked with holdovers)
Medium width but 29 miles of trout
John F. Kennedy Park has a ¾-mile,
area (artificial flies and lures only,
with single, barbless hooks only).
Call 501 362 5150
State of Arkansas
National Weather Service Link
Fly Fishing Gear, Tackle, and
Little Red River
Free Shipping Continental U. S.
100% Satisfaction Guaranteed
Photo Courtesy of David Knapp Photography
Recommended Tackle & Gear
4, 5 or 6 weight
Dry fly: 9 &12 ft., 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 71/2
ft., 3 or 4X, Streamers 0-2X
Dry fly: 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 3 or 4X,
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly Supreme Four, Superb Five or
For 4/5/6 fly line
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
Floatants, KISS Strike Indicators
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
Little Red River Fly Fishing Guide:
The easiest access to the uppermost section
is from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
public ramp next to the Federal Fish Hatchery.
Access Points. There are several other
access points in the middle to lower section of
the Little Red River.
The state maintains the Barnett access at
Winkley Bridge, Lobo Landing, Dripping
Springs and Ramsay access. In addition, there
are four other privately owned access points
or launch ramps.
There's little access from the banks of the
river in the middle and lower sections. Most of
the property is privately owned and posted.
The best way to fish these sections is from a
The water of the Little Red is very clear.
Large, wise, old brown trout are nocturnal
feeders and are not so easy to catch during
the day. If you attempt to fish the river at night,
the fog caused by the cold water will be a
huge problem. It just isn't safe to fish the river
from a boat at night.
Don't get so excited about catching the big
browns that you forget about the rainbows.
More rainbows are caught than brown trout.
Many of the browns that are caught are
caught using conventional tackle.
The combined stocking of both federal and
the state of Arkansas amounts to 150,000 to
200,000 fish per year. They are stocked in
over forty-five miles of water. In other words,
there is no shortage of rainbows in the Little
Most of the trout in the Little Red feed below
the surface. Trout do feed on the surface at
times, but it usually takes a large aquatic
insect hatch for them to do so. Unless you see
trout taking insects from the surface, we
suggest fishing a nymph or streamer.
You can catch trout any day of the year
Due to the constant temperature of the
tailwater, the fish can be caught on the
coldest days anglers will give it a try.
Fly fishing the Little Red River during the
Spring is usually the best time for rainbow
Fly Fishing Guide, continued:
Most of the river bottom is sand or gravel,
with heavy moss in the deep areas. The
heavy moss gives anglers problems.
From the dam to Ramsey Access you will
find plenty of public access where you can
wade the Little Red. When wading, you
should always be aware of rising water. The
water can fluctuate as much as several feet
in less than a few hours. You should pick
out a landmark along the bank and keep
track of the water level. If you see that it is
rising, you should make certain you can
easily get out of the water.
The Greers Ferry Dam has two generators,
and the flow rates range from 20 to 7500
cfs. When only one generator is operating,
the flow ranges between 2,500 and 4,000
cfs. Generally, the best time to wade the
stream is on the weekends. They normally
generate less power than they do during
the week. That's also the time the river
sees the most anglers.
During the Spring, the flows are usually
high. This is more to do with lake level
control than electricity. In other words, the
odds of being able to wade the river during
the Spring months is low. When fishing from
a boat during high flows, about the only
option is fishing the banks using streamers.
The brown trout reproduce naturally in the
river. The original stocking of brown trout
was done by individual anglers in the
1970's. Descendants of those bucket
stocked brown trout are what made the
Brook trout also spawn successfully, mostly
in the Collins Creek area. The cutthroat
trout are not plentiful. They mostly exist
downstream of Winkley Shoals.
Midges hatch during the entire year but
become more plentiful and available for the
trout to eat during the winter months.
January and February are the top two
months for midge hatches. Most of them are
blood midges, or red midges. There are also
plenty of cream and during the Spring, Light
Although more important during the Winter,
midges are still the most plentiful source of
food day in and day out. You should always
have imitations of the larvae, pupae and
adults. Most of the time, a double rig with a
pupa imitation on the top and a larva imitation
on the bottom works best.
There is also a huge population of both
scuds and sowbugs. Imitations of these
crustaceans work year round. Most of the
fully grown scuds are a hook size 14 and
most sowbugs a 16.
Leeches are also very plentiful in the Little
Red River. Sculpins are very plentiful and a
favorite food of both the rainbows and brown
trout. There are plenty of minnows, mostly
dace as well as thread-fin shad. The large
brown trout will also feed on smaller size
crayfish. Streamers that imitate the above
items are excellent flies to use. Low light
conditions are best for streamer fishing. High
water conditions can also be good for
streamer fishing. At times of high water, it
may be the only option.
The cool water discharges from deep
Greer's Ferry Lake provide excellent
fishing even on the hottest days of summer.
Autumn is the best time to fish for large
Little Red River Hatches and Trout
Other than midges, the Little Red River
doesn't have a huge number of hatches that
occur but those it does have are very
important. Blue-winged Olives are
bi-brooded, and hatch in March and April
and again in August, September and
The best of these two BWO periods of
hatches takes place in the Fall. Both times
can be good but the low water levels of Fall
offers the best dry fly fishing opportunities.
BWOs hatch best in the afternoon, on calm,
overcast, rainy, or even snowy days.
Hatches during bright sunlight conditions are
usually very sparse.
We have caught a few trout sight fishing
during low water levels during the Fall
months when these small mayflies were
hatching. That is one of the few times dry fly
fishing can be excellent on the Little Red.
You can also sight cast to fish using nymphs.
This is often far more successful than using
a dry fly. A BWO nymph imitations, hook size
18, is an excellent choice for this. Sow bugs
and scud imitations also work well sight
fishing for trout on the shoals.
The most common and plentiful hatches that
occur are the caddisflies. The hatches start
in March and last through June. These
consist mostly of net-spinning caddis called
Cinnamon Caddis ranging in a hook size
from 18 to 16. There are also some Green
Sedges, hook size 16 and plenty of Little
Sister Caddis. They are a hook size 18.
|Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (email@example.com)
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.
2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.
3. Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.
All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $50 are shipped via
|More Arkansas Trout Streams
We have Perfect Fly website pages on
each of these other fine trout streams.
Click the links for fly fishing information
including descriptions of the streams,
access, location, species of fish, a fly
fishing guide, a fly fishing report, hatches
and recommended trout flies, fly fishing
gear and equipment, USGS stream data,
local weather and much, much more
Headlines: The river is in good
shape with clearer water and more
insects hatching. The Sulphur hatch
is one of the best ones the river has
to offer. We received a good report
from the past week. By the way, we
were asked twice this past week
about the barbless hooks. Yes, you
can simply mash the barbs down on
regular hooks and be legal. You do
not have to have special hooks.
This coming week should be a good
one. Keep a close check on our
weekly updated Little Red River
fishing report linked above.
Map of Little Red River
Fishing Report Headline Archive:
Click Here For the Current Little Red River Fishing Report
10/13/15 Brown trout have begin to spawn and some are on the redds. We don't recommend
fishing for them at this time but it isn't against the regulations. Midges, scuds, sowbugs and
small BWO nymphs are almost aways important insects to imitate, but the brown trout will
remain in their hiding places less than they have been and be out on the move.
10/20/15 Brown trout are in the love mode and aggressively taking streamers like our Brown
and White Belly sculpin. Blue-winged olives are about the only thing hatching but they are
thick on cloudy days. There have been a few trout caught on the surface this past week.
Stream levels and flows are very low right now, but that's sure to change. There is more rain
in the forecast.
10/27/15 It is turning a little cooler this coming week and there is a good bit of rain in the
forecast. The brown trout are in the pre-spawn stage and aggressive and territorial.
Streamers like our Brown sculpin fly will fool them. Stream levels are high right now because
they are running water through the dam but should subside later today.
11/03/15 Conditions are as good as they have been in a long time on the Little Red. You may
have some good opportunities to wade and fish this coming week. Brown trout are spawning
and some big ones are being caught. The only thing hatching is very small non-baetis blue-
winged Olives and Midges. Midges will become more and more important this month.
11/10/15 This tailwater is rather different from many. Sometimes the water is high and rolling
and still clear as a bell. That's due to the clear lake water from the Greer's Ferry Dam. It will
vary depending on what the power company need are. Hatches will be mostly limited to small
BWOs and midges for the next few weeks. Be sure to check with the power company for the
discharge schedule. 501-362-5150.
11/17/15 The stream levels and discharges are fine right now. I wouldn't count on the staying
that way long. It is raining hard right now and you will need to get the release schedule.
Otherwise, conditions are very good for this time of the year. Blue-winged olives and midges
are the only thing hatching and they will be sparse. The small BWO nymphs and midge larva
and pupa imitations will work.
11/24/15 The river is flowing very high and fast right now and from the looks of the forecast
for the next week, more rain is headed into the headwaters and the odds are good high
discharge rates will continue. You will need to keep a close check on the schedule. Other than
high water, conditions are good. Blue-winged Olive and midges will continue to be the only
12/01/15 The stream is flowing high and fast due to heavy discharges. There has been a lot
of rain in the Little Red River headwaters lately and it is going to take a few days to get things
back to normal. Hopefully, this weekend, things will be fine and you can try ot hook one of the
big brown trout on the fly. It will be turning a little colder and midges will be the most important
insect to imitate. The Brown sculpin streamer should continue to work good.
12/08/15 The weather is going to be nice and very warm this coming week. The stream is
likely to be high and fast but maybe there will be some fly fishing opportunities. Stream levels
are currently very high. Check the discharge schedule before you plan a trip. I'm sure most all
of you know that but we run into many that don't. We added Winter stoneflies because they
will begin to hatch sometimes this month. Midges are still king.
12/15/15 The stream levels continue to be high and the water flowing fast. Be sure you check
the discharge schedule before fishing. You can do that by calling 501-362-5150. The
weather remains good for the next week with no chance of rain. We have had enough of that
for a while. Midges should continue to be the most important insect you need to imitate. The
Brown Sculpin has been the big trout fly of choice the last month.
12/22/15 Every time they get the Greer's Ferry lake levels down to winter flood storage levels,
there's more heavy rain. They think the high discharges should end by the end of the month.
They have operated a flood gate at times due to one turbine being worked on. There is more
rain in the forecast and unseasonably warm weather for the coming week.
12/29/15 The discharges will be very high for the next few days to get the lake back to winter
storage level. There has been flooding in the watershed and most of the state of Arkansas.
You will just have to keep checking the levels to know when you can fish again but it will be at
least a few days.
01/05/16 The stream levels and rate of flow are down to normal levels for this time of the
season. We still recommend getting the release schedule form the power company before
traveling very far to tish. There is more rain in the forecast for later this week. Scuds, midges
and little BWO nymphs are key foods to be imitating at this time.
01/12/16 The discharges are remaining high, too high to wade and will probably be that way
most of the coming week. Thee is a little more rain in the forecast. Winter stoneflies and
midges will catch trout fished on an indicator from the banks in a few places. Keep them on
the slow side of the current seams. The White Belly sculpin streamer is a good fly to use at
01/19/16 The river is running very high right now and most likely will stay high for the next two
or three days. The only way to know is to get the release schedule from the power company.
There is more rain coming through this Thursday. Midges and little Winter stoneflies will be
the insects you need to imitate when the flows subside.
01/26/16 The good news is the weather is going to be nice and warm with no chance of rain
or snow for the coming week. The bad news is the power company is discharging a large
about of water and the stream is very high. You will just have to keep a check on the levels
and power company discharge schedule.
02/02/16 The discharges and stream levels are far too high to be fishing the Little Red River,
with or without a so called fishing guide. Don't waste your money. Watch the schedule and
levels. It shouldn't be long before they subside. There is much less rain in the forecast.
02/09/16 The discharges from the dam continue to be very high and the levels high and fast.
The lake should be getting back down to normal winter levels and the discharges subsiding.
There is no rain or snow in the forecast for the next week. Fishing will be good as soon as the
levels come down.
02/16/16 The discharges continue to be very high and little to no opportunity to fish with any
decent chance of success. You will just have to keep checking with the discharge schedule
and stream levels. The weather is getting much warmer and conditions will be great just as
soon as they cease the heavy discharges.
02/23/16 The discharges have finally subsided at least for a while and the stream level back
to normal. It is raining but that should end tomorrow. Midges are hatching, both reds and
creams. Winter stoneflies should still be hatching and as always, scuds and sowbugs will
03/01/16 So far, conditions remain very good. The weather is much warmer. There is some
rain in the forecast, but so far the discharges and stream levels are staying down and allowing
anglers a good opportunity to fish. A local customers reported catching some nice trout this
past week on little BWO nymphs and scuds.
03/07/16 Right now, the power company is "pulsing" the discharges, or running a lot of water,
then shutting it down and back and forth. This will likely stop soon due to the amount of rain in
the forecast. There are flash floods for three days the week. I just don't see much opportunity
for fly fishing this coming week, but I hope I'm wrong.
03/14/16 The discharges and stream levels are very high, making it a bad idea to try to do
any fly fishing. The good news is, the weather forecast for the coming week has only a slight
chance of rain on two of the next seven days. Hopefully, this will give them time to get the lake
level down low enough to stop the heavy discharges.
03/22/16 The river is down from its extremely high levels and hopefully, will drop down much
lower soon. It is possible to fish it now from a boat but we don't recommend it. We don't have a
brick and mortar store on the bank of the river and any need to stretch the truth. Conditions
are not that good right now and we don't recommend you make a trip just yet.
03/29/16 The discharges are down and hopefully, will remain down. Most of the time they will
be running water will be in the mornings. The lake level is down where it should be but there is
more rain coming for a couple of days, and I'm sure they will keep it down, so check them.
Midges, scuds, sowbugs, little BWOs and soon, Black Caddis will be the foods you should
04/05/16 The little Red has produced a few times for our customers during the past few days.
Discharges and stream levels have been better, but still too high for safe wading most of the
time. Drift boats have been able to fish at times recently. Midges and little BWO nymphs,
scuds and sculpin streamers have produced for our customers at times, but it is all to do with
04/12/16 The Little Red is in great shape, with good stream levels and very low discharges.
You always have to check them, but there is little rain in the forecast for the next ten days, so
we think they will remain in good shape. Midges, little Blue-winged olives and little Black
Caddis are hatching. Scuds and sculpin streamers will always work.
04/19/16 The discharges and stream level is low, well below normal. It is raining as I write this
and will continue through Thursday and most likely, the will discharge some water in the near
future. Midges and Blue-winged olives are hatching good. Little Black Caddis are hatching in
the middle and lower sections of the river. It is going to be nice and warm this coming week.
05/03/16 The river is in the best shape it has been in a while, and anglers including some of
our customers, are catching trout. The Brown sculpin caught a 20 broon trout this past week.
That isn't unusually large for the Red but a good one. There are plenty of Blue-winged olives
hatching and Cinnamon Caddis have just started. Look for Sulphurs to begin hatching very
soon, if not already.
05/10/16 The Little Red is flowing high with some strong discharges right now. There is some
more rain on the way, but hopefully, the amounts won't be very much. You will just have to
keep checking the discharge schedule. Our customers were catching som very good size and
numbers of trout wading the low water. As of now, drift boats and fishing from the bank is the
05/17/16 Discharges are currently low and the stream level down. You can wade for a
change. The water is very clear and a lot of insects are hatching. The Sulphurs are getting off
to a slow start but should pick up soon. Lots of caddis are on the water. I recommend sculpin
streamers early and late in the day.
05/24/16 The discharges are very high right now. You must call the power company to get the
schedule to know when you may have some good fly fishing opportunity. There is rain in the
forecast every day for the next week, but some days the chances are low, so that doesn't
necessarily mean much. The weather is getting much warmer.
05/31/16 The discharges and resulting stream levels continue to be high. There has been a
lot of rain in the watershed and there is another week ahead with a change of rain every day.
It will settle down soon, but for now all you can do is watch the release schedule and levels.
When the flows do subside, you will be fishing prime time with lots of hatches and some great
action if you use the right strategies.
06/14/16 We somehow missed getting our report from last week posted. It was written but not
properly formated. The Little Red is in very good shape and our customers are reporting that
they are catching some good numbers and sizes of trout. The discharges are down and
should remain down for the coming week. There are Sulphur hatching and some trout are
being taken on the surface.
06/20/16 Discharges are on and off and the water up and down and you must get the release
schedule to know when you can wade or not. This is just a basic requirement at this time of
the year. There is no rain in the forecast for the next week but they do generate for electricity.
Anglers have been sending us some good reports and others not so good but it is all to do
with the levels of the water and their experience. You should be catching trout.
06/28/16 The Little Red is in very good shape with lots of hatching insects. The discharges
are low and wading is possible at the time this report is being written. There is rain in the
forecast from Wednesday on through July 4th and that may change the low discharge
situation. You will just have to watch the levels and get the discharge schedule. Sulphurs are
hatching as well as two species of caddisflies.
07/05/16 The river is in good shape with lower discharges and resulting stream levels.
Anglers have been able to wade safely at times. Our customers are reporting some good
numbers of fish caught lately. The conditions should remain good for the coming week. Lots
of insects are hatching and the late afternoon caddis egg laying activity is bringing a lot of
trout to the net.
07/12/16 Two more good reports from customers fishing the Little Red this past weekend
came in. They were able to wade and caught several trout and some on the surface. The
discharges are currently low and stream levels fine for wading some of the river safely. There
are some insects hatching but seem to be slowing down some. It won't be long before
terrestrials come into the picture.
07/19/16 There are heat warning for the next few days, but fortunately, this will affect the trout
very little, if any. The upper sections of the tailwater will still be the same temperature as it
normally is. If the discharges and stream levels permit fishing from a drift boat or wading, you
should still be able to catch trout. That is the big advantage of tailwaters like the Little Red.
Sulphurs are still hatching and two species of caddisflies as well.
07/26/16 The Little Red is in great shape at this time. The discharges and stream levels are
low providing easy wading. This will most likely change and the big key to fishing the stream is
to get the schedule of releases from the power company. There is rain in the forecast every
day this coming week. The weather will still be hot, but not quite as hot as last week.
08/02/16 Discharges and stream levels have been down the past two days and likely will
continue that way for a while. The weather is going to be back extremely hot this coming week.
The can raise the water temperature in the lower part of the tailwater. Stay cool and fish early
mornings and very late. The last two hours of daylight with egg laying caddis gives you a good
shot at catching a lot of trout in a short time.
08/09/16 Discharges have been low. This has given wading anglers some very good
opportunities. There is rain in the forecast everyday and the discharge amounts are likely to
chance, so as always, make sure you check the schedule with the power company. Scuds and
sowbugs have been working good. Sculpin streamers have been working good in the
08/17/16 Discharges and the the stream levels are very high right now. They are discharging
a lot of water and you won't be able to fish until this ceases. The weather is going to be much
cooler but with that, comes more rain There is a chance everyday. There are still plenty of
cinnamon caddis hatching every afternoon. They likely will continue, even in the high water.
Scuds and sowbugs are also working. Our Sculpin streamers should work good in the higher
08/23/16 They have been running water starting about the middle of the afternoon until late in
the day. Of course, that can always change. The mornings have provided the best
opportunity for any wading. Drift boats can fish all day and do well. Our customers are
catching some nice browns on the Matuka sculpin patterns, both olive and black, in the early
mornings. Tricos are hatching and there are plenty of Cinnamon Caddisflies hatching.
08/30/16 Cinnamon caddisflies and Tricos continue to be the main insects hatching on the
Little Red, other than midges. Cream and Red (blood) midge imitations with the larva and
pupa fished in tandem will result in one having plenty trout reach the net. Early morning
streamer fishing using our Matuka streamer fly patterns, Black or Olive will get some of the
larger size brown trout. Late afternoons, imitated the egg laying Cinnamon caddisflies.
09/06/16 We received a couple of good reports from customers fishing over the holiday
weekend. The were catching some nice browns on Sculpin streamers in the early morning.
They also did well on the mid afternoon caddisfly hatches, using the pupa as well as near
dark on the adult imitations when the females deposit their eggs. Tricos are still hatching but
some call them the White Wing curses. They are not easy to imitate correctly.
09/13/16 High discharges and stream levels have made it tough to fish recently. There is rain
in the forecast everyday for this coming week and this pattern is likely to continue. Make sure
you check before making a long trip. Streamer fishing has been good thanks mainly to the
cloud cover. That should continue. Wading is out with the high flows and drift boats are
having it tough at times as well.
09/20/16 The weather continues to be hot but has little effect on the water temperature of the
tailwater. The discharges and stream levels have been lower the past few days giving anglers
some good wading opportunities. Catches have been fairly consistent lately but most all
subsurface. There are still a few caddisflies hatching but other than that, it is mostly midges,
both creams and blood or red midges.
09/27/16 Good stream levels from low discharges has made it easy to wade most of the Little
Red. One angler did well yesterday sight casting to trout. There are some hatches taking
place, mostly cinnamon and little Sister caddis but there are some Blue-winged olives. Scuds
and aquatic worms are working and as almost always, midges will produce trout. Reds, or
blood midges, and creams are working good now.
10/03/16 The discharges and resulting stream level is high right now but falling. There is little
rain in the forecast for the coming week, so we don't expect the high water levels to last long.
There are little BWOs and Mahogany duns hatching. Scuds have been working as well and of
course, midges will always catch trout on the Little Red.
10/10/16 The river has been off a little the past month but mostly due to discharges. They will
probably continue to run two generators in the afternoons making it tough to fish and wading
impossible in the afternoons. Mornings should give you some good opportunity. The brown
trout are in the pre-spawn stage and taking streamers like our Brown Sculpin.
10/17/16 The levels have been up and down and strong and light on the discharges,
something not uncommon at all. There are plenty of opportunities to wade and fish from boats
during the day but not all day wading wise. You can always cast from the bank when you can't
wade and on the Little Red, you can actually catch a few trout in places doing just that. You
have to get the fly down through current in the holes with little current and that isn't exactly
10/25/16 The river is in good shape for wading anglers. The discharges and stream levels are
very low for a change. There is little rain in the forecast and they are likely to continue to be
low. Brown trout are near the spawning stage and aggressively taking streamers like our
Brown and White Belly sculpin. Scuds and BWO nymphs are also working good. Midge larva
and pupa will always catch some trout.
11/01/16 The Little Red River has been in very good shape most of the time. Anglers have
been able to wade and at time, it has been low enough that it was easy to spook trout,
according to one customer. Some very big brown trout have been caught. Two of them came
on our Brown Sculpin. Blue-winged olives are hatching good. Scuds and sowbugs also work
but the most consistent producer is midge larvae and pupae.
11/08/16 The discharge and stream levels are running high again. There is rain forecast for
today, but clear the rest of the week. We don't think the high level discharges will continue
very long. You will have to keep a check on them. You can fish from a drift boat at this time,
but wading would be unsafe anywhere. Blue-winged olives and midges are hatching very
11/15/16 The discharges and levels are back up but we don't think they will stay high. There
is a chance of rain on Friday and that's it for the coming week. The levels have been down
and wading anglers have done well along with the drift boat guys. BWO nymphs, size 18,
fished under a strike indicator works good. Scuds worked good for one of our customers this
11/22/16 The discharges are taking place mostly at night and in the mornings, but of course,
that is always subject to change. There are still catching some large trout on the Brown and
White Belly sculpin streamers. Cream and Red Midges are hatching good. Fish the larva
imitation and the pupa imitation in tandem for the best results. Scuds will also catch trout.
12/06/16 The river is still in good shape but they are running water heavy at times, but mostly
in the evenings. You should make sure you check the schedule and levels. There is little rain
forecast this coming week. We did get two good reports from the past week. Midges,
especially the creams and reds or blood midges, are hatching good. Fish the larva and pupa
in tandem. The Brown sculpin streamer is working good for the larger trout.
12/13/16 The are running a lot of water. Both turbines are going strong and have been for the
past few days. You will just have to watch the levels. Call (417) 336-5083 or (501) 362-5150
to get the discharge schedule. The Black Matuka sculpin is a good fly choice with the higher
levels. Midges, Creams and Reds, or blood midges, are the best choice when the water is at a
12/20/16 The discharges and resulting stream levels are down. They have been very high.
We didn't receive any reports from anyone fishing this past week, most likely due to that. The
levels should stay in good shape most of the time. Remember, wading is not safe most of the
time. Most of the fishing is done from boats and the river is in good shape for that. Midges,
reds or blood midges, and Creams are the most important insects hatching.
12/27/16 The stream levels are high at this time but we think the discharges will let up soon.
The lake is near the right level. We didn't receive any reports from any one other than a local
customer who reported catching several on our Perfect Fly sow bug imitation. We still
recommend midges, reds and creams fished with the larva and pupa imitations in tandem over
01/03/17 I keep getting ask about Black flies. Yes, they hatch off and on. Right now, probably
off due to the warm weather. They have larva, pupa and adult stages similar to caddisflies but
unlike caddis, they can bite you. Midges are the main insects you should be imitating now,
and most of them are Cream midges. There are some reds, or blood midges hatching where
there is some soft soil or sand on the bottom between shoals.
01/10/17 The discharges and stream levels have been high until yesterday, but in good
shape as of now. There is rain in the forecast everyday for the coming week, so it is anyone's
guess as to how long they will remain in normal shape. There are lots of midges hatching, but
I would want to have some streamers on hand for higher water levels. Fish the midges in
tandem, with the pupa the top fly and the larva the bottom fly.
01/17/17 The discharges and stream levels are down low and you can even wade some
sections. The water is warmer downstream than it is near the dam, or right the opposite of
what is normal thanks to the very warm weather. It will continue through this coming week.
Blue-winged olives and midges are hatching very good. There is rain forecast everyday this
coming week, so the levels may come back up. You can fish this under an indicator.
01/24/17 The discharges are low and stream levels low enough to wade in some places. This
of course, is likely to change. There is no rain or snow in the forecast for the coming week. It
is going to be cooler, but still relatively warm. Midges, Reds or blood midges and Cream
midges are hatching good. There are some little Blue-winged olives hatching and a few Winter
stoneflies. Scuds and sowbugs should also work.
01/31/17 The discharges and stream levels have been varying greatly, so make certain you
call and get the release schedule before traveling very far to fish. Midges, Reds, Creams and
Light Greens are hatching good. Fish the larva and pupa in tandem with the larva the bottom
fly and the pupa about 16 inches above it. The Black Matuka sculpin streamer has been
working good when it has been cloudy.
02/07/17 You can almost wear a bathing suit to fish in. It is very warm with thunderstorms
taking place at the present time. Streamers like the Perfect Fly Matuka sculpin, Olive and
black and the Brown sculpin have been catching some trout for one customer. They work best
under low light conditions. Midges remain the main food to imitate. Reds, creams and light
greens are hatching. Fish the larva and pupa in tandem for the best results.
02/14/17 It has been a warm, good week for fly fishing the Little Red. The discharges and
stream levels have been low much of the time and anglers have been able to wade. It is
running to high for that at this time, but there is no rain in the forecast beyond today and
hopefully, they will be down soon. Midges, little Black Caddis and little Blue-winged olives (non-
baetis) species are hatching.
02/21/17 We have received some good reports the last week and some, not so good, all
depending on the time and waer levels, and of course, the skills of those fishing. The weather
will be clear with no rain for the next week. The stream levels are a little high right now but
should come back down to where wading is possible soon. Midges, little Blue-winged olives
and Little Black caddis are the main insects to imitate.
02/28/17 The discharges and stream levels are low at this time. Anglers are able to wade
much of the river. Hopefully, the discharges will stay down low for a while. It is raining as I am
writing this but it should end today and clear up for the next five days. It will remain relatively
warm but this will have little effect on the water temperature. It is average about 49 degrees.
Midges are still the most important insects to imitate.
03/07/17 Conditions have been good recently. The discharges and stream levels have given
anglers plenty of wading opportunity. Both bank and boat anglers have been catching trout.
More caddisflies are beginning to show up but we still think midges are the most important
insects to imitate. When it is cloudy and overcast, try the Black or Olive Matuka sculpin
streamers. Our customers have been catching some of their best trout on these streamer.
03/14/17 Sculpin streamers are going to rank high this coming week. The water levels will
come back down, but all you can do is Keep a close check on them. The Black Matukda, Olive
Matuda, Brown sculpin and White belly sculpin should work in the higher flows. Midges are still
important food even though a lot of caddiflies are beginning to show up.
03/21/17 The discharges and stream levels are fine at this time but headed up. There is rain
forecast everyday but one this coming week and the higher than normal discharges may
continue but you never know for sure. Caddisflies or three different species are hatching
good right now. Sculpin streamers should work especially good with all the cloud cover
03/28/17 The discharges and stream levels are fine for wading and boats. Our customers
caught some nice trout yesterday using the Black and Olive Matuka sculpin steamers. Midges,
Creams and Reds, continue to work. There are three different species of caddisflies hatching.
Little black caddis, Cinnamon caddis and some Spotted sedges. Conditions are good right
04/04/17 The discharges and stream levels are high at this time. They have to get the lake
back down to the right levels. The rain ends tomorrow and then five days of clear weather.
There are logs of caddisflies hatching along with some little Blue-winged olives. Sculphin
streamers like the Black or Olive Matuka sculpin should do good when the levels get lower but
still hight. Check back with us to see when the discharges settle back down.
04/11/17 The weather is going to be much warmer this coming with. There is a change of rain
for most days, but low odds on most days. The lake level is getting down to where it should be
and hopefully, there will be lower discharges soon. There are lot of caddisflies hatching along
with midges. Most of the midges are light green. Sculpin streamers work good where there is a
little color to the water and under low light conditions.
04/18/17 The conditions have been excellent the past few days. Anglers have been able to
wade and we have received some very good reports. Hopefully, the low discharges and
stream levels will continue to exist much of the time this coming week. There is some rain in
the forecast. Midges continue to work good but the main thing going is the caddisfly hatches.
There are three different species hatching right now.
04/25/17 The discharges and stream levels are down low, allowing anglers wading opportunity
about anywhere they wish to fish. Our customers have been catching good numbers of trout
the past few days. There are lots of caddisflies hatching along with some light green and
Cream midges. Sculpin streamers have worked good early and late in the day.
05/09/17 The discharges and stream levels have been very high but are currently back down
not too far above normal. It is too high to wade safely but can be fished from a boat. The river
is likely to be up high again. There is two more days of rain in the forecast and the lake is still
a little high. Make sure you check the stream levels prior to traveling very far to fish. Midges,
light greens and creams, and two species of caddisflies are hatching..
05/16/17 The discharges and stream levels are down now, permitting wading most of the time.
Check the discharge schedule. They may run it part of the day. There are lots of caddisflies
hatching. We didn't receive any reports from anyone fishing this past week. There has been
so much rain, we guess anglers didn't think it would be in good shape, but it is right now.
05/23/17 The little Red isn't so little at this time. It is high and stained, too high too wade and
too high to fish from a drift boat in our opinion. Anglers have been catching good numbers of
trout the few time the stream levels have been decent. This high water conditions is likely to
continue for a few more days, but be sure and check back with us. We will keep you informed.
06/05/17 The discharges vary greatly with the pulses but the levels are very high most of the
time. There has been a lot of rain in the Little Red River watershed laely, but the forecast is
showing no chance of rain for the next week. The levels should drop back down much lower
very soon. You can check them by clicking the link below.
06/13/17 The discharges and stream levels have been much better after all the rain recently.
The lake level is in better shape and that's good because there is rain in the forecast
everyday for this coming week. The chances are low sometimes and hopefully, it will be just
the right amount to keep the stream levels at a normal level. There are lots of insects
hatching including Sulphurs.