Wednesday, November 22, 2017

2017 Iowa Fly Fishing Summary

After keeping electronic Fishing Logs for 10 consecutive years, 2017 was the 2nd consecutive year of not keeping one.  I had planned to do one, but then fell behind early in the season on logging results from outings and had to give it up.  

So...there are many 2017 metrics that I don't have solid numbers for....such as total fish caught, how many days fished, how many of each species, etc.

But there are some metrics I do have a fairly good handle on.

I caught 20 species of fish this year, 19 of which were caught on flies. (I had at least 2 fair-hooked Grass Carp on, but did not manage to land any of them).

I caught 2 species I had not caught on flies before...a Black Bullhead and a Hornyhead Chub.

I caught new or tied flyrod personal bests for 4 species.

I caught at least 10 fish of 5 different species that qualified for an Iowa Master Angler Award.

Some notable fly-rod-caught fish from the year:
-21.25" Largemouth Bass
-15" Black Bullhead
-8.25" Rock Bass
-28" Bigmouth Buffalo
-28" Channel Catfish
-28" Common Carp

I caught 14 Largemouth Bass between 18" and 21.25".

I caught at least 25 Channel Catfish on flies this year.
I caught at least 20 Common Carp on flies this year.

Overall, it seemed like a pretty good year.  I don't have the hard numbers to back it up, but I feel like I caught a LOT of Largemouth Bass on flies this year, compared to previous years....and the numbers of 15"-18" fish was excellent!  Hopefully that translates into a lot more 18"+ bass in the next several years.

I didn't feel like I caught as many bluegills and crappies as in past years.  I fished for them less, but even when I targeted them, I didn't catch as many.  Maybe the booming bass populations have something to do with that?
15" Black Bullhead
16" Smallmouth Bass

13" Crappie
28" Bigmouth Buffalo
8.25" Rock Bass

Pumpkinseed Sunfish
Pumpkinseed Sunfish

Common Carp

21.25" Largemouth Bass caught on November 15
28" Channel Catfish

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Hornyhead Chub
20" Largemouth Bass caught on February 28

Technically the fishing season...and even the OPEN WATER fishing season isn't over.  Thanksgiving is tomorrow.  I drove by a pond on the way to work this morning that was 100% ice-covered.  We are supposed to have a bit of a warm-up, so I expect the ice will melt off, and isn't likely to start forming again until @ December 5th.  We shall see if  I'm able to squeeze in some more flyfishing this year.

If not....its been a VERY good year, and I really enjoyed the fishing!  Hope you did as well.
20.5" Largemouth Bass caught on December 1!


  1. Dave
    You are truly blessed!!!! Thanks for sharing

    1. Thanks Bill! I had a fairly strong finish to the year.