Sunday, December 18, 2022

2022 Flyfishing Summary

 I feel 2022's fly fishing was pretty decent.  The big rivers (Mississippi and Missouri) and tributaries were for the most part really low for the Summer and Fall.  That was a big change from the really high water levels in some of the southern Missouri and northern Arkansas streams we wanted to fish in the Spring, but were unable to due to flooding.

I fished central Iowa ponds and NE Iowa streams with my buddy, Jay.

I fished southern MO, northern/central AR, and the St. Louis area with my buddy, Hamilton.

I fished a couple places with my brother, Steve, in the Spring as well!

I ended up catching 46 Species while flyfishing this year.

Of those, 5 were species I'd never caught before.  They were:

-Ozark Sculpin

-Chain Pickerel

-Knobfin Sculpin

-Largescale Stoneroller


Hamilton had big hand in helping me get pretty much all of those.  Thanks HB!

I'm pretty excited about the Bowfin.  They've been on my bucket list for a long time, wasn't sure I'd ever get one.  Then finally got information on a couple places not too terribly far away where there are bowfin!

My first trip to one of those places did not yield any bowfin, but I saw plenty of them gulping air on the surface.  They were there! The next 8 trips yielded 45 bowfin landed on flies!  Along with my first one from Arkansas earlier in the year, that gave me 46 Bowfin in 2022.  Such a cool fish...really fun to catch!

I've now caught 83 species on flies.

I only kept track of numbers-caught of a few species.  I caught:

-40 Grass Carp (last year was 167)

-46 Bowfin

-207 Koi (last year was 100) (updated)

-133 Goldfish (last year was 87) (updated)

...and I believe I caught 12 Common Carp on flies this year.

Another highlight was fishing the Dally's Ozark Odyssey multi-species 2-day tournament. Two-person teams, and my partner was Hamilton.  After the first day, we were in 1st place!  We ended tied for 2nd place, but dropped to 3rd place based on the tiebreaker points.  Very fun event.  Hamilton had the strategy planned out very well!  We each won a new Nautilus fly reel!  And the swag bag was worth the price of the entry fee! 😍

Let's see....oh, I caught my Personal Best Shortnose Gar (26.5"), a new PB Longnose Gar (30.5"),  a new PB Redspotted Sunfish (6" or 6.5"?), and my biggest Bowfin so far is 24.5".

Below I'll add some of my favorite fish I caught in 2022.








Mirror Koi

Leather Koi


Mirror Koi

Leather Koi



Rainbow Trout



33" Grass Carp

26.5" Shortnose Gar

24" Bowfin

Grass Carp


26" Shortnose Gar

Redear Sunfish

BIG Goldfish

Longnose Gar (possible hybrid)

Rock Bass

Brown Trout

Smallmouth Bass

Pumpkinseed Sunfish

Longear Sunfish

Redspotted Sunfish

Redspotted Sunfish


Grass Carp

Grass Pickerel

Knobfin Sculpin


Golden Shiners

Largescale Stoneroller

Ozark Sculpin

December 17-18, 2022

 Sitting at 186 flyrod-caught Koi on the year, I figured I may as well go for 200.  Spoiler Alert: I didn't make it.

I flyfished 12/17, and it was cold.  It supposedly reached 32 degrees, but the line guides on my fly rod were icing closed all afternoon.  Water clarity was decent, fish were moving around feeding.  Still, it was hard..lots of visible refusals of fish coming to the fly and then moving away quickly.  Can't blame them. 😉

I managed 7 Koi and 3 Goldfish.  That put me at 193 Koi for the year.

I went again on 12/18.  Still similarly cold...but the ponds had partially iced over overnight, and the water had turned muddy.  The only pod of larger Koi I found were sitting still on the bottom.  They only moved to get away from my fly. 😕

I managed just 2 Koi and 3 Goldfish.  That puts me at 195 Koi for the year.  I'm pretty sure I'm done trying for them, since the extended forecast is calling for colder weather, which I'm sure will finish icing-over the ponds.

So, I didn't reach 200 for the year, but I did catch 195, which is 95 more than last year.  And I really wasn't going for 200 until really late in the year when it seemed a reachable goal.  I didn't fish there near as much as I could have, but I didn't want to burn the spot out. 

Plenty of really beautiful Koi and Goldfish were caught this year!

Here's most of the ones from these two days:

The Koi:

The Goldfish:

Monday, December 12, 2022

December 11, 2022

 Visited a new-to-me body of water in northern Missouri, for a brief morning flyfishing outing.  32 degrees F.  Caught 4 Rainbow Trout and a nice Bluegill.

First trout caught just did the (unexciting) "thrashing back and forth" type of fight.  The next one was the complete took off on a blistering run, jumped, then tail danced across the surface.