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Smallmouth Fishing Report 8.18.17

Smallmouth Fishing Report

TGIF my friends. The weekend finally give us a fighting chance to fish the rivers without flooding. I think through the entire month of July, the weekend water was difficult to fish from the Thur/Friday rains.

Finally….The water is in perfect condition, the Great Miami is on fire and fishing very well in the early morning and later evening. This also includes the Stillwater, Mad River, and some stretches of the Little Miami. Vegetation and structure (boulders/ledges) is the name of game. Find it and work the fly all around it. The mornings have been great to fish up until 9 or so along the banks. The smallies are congregating in the shallows and banks during this time frame to feed up before the bright sun gets over head. Smallies are crushing both crayfish and baitfish patterns. I would have some poppers both hard and deer hair, some waking flies, or some crayfish patterns during this time. Black, white, and olive are all producing. Zoo cougars, Whitlock Crawfish, Schultz’z Craw, Meat Whistle, and sneaky petes are all great in the morning.

Once the sun gets overhead, make sure to get the fly deeper in the river’s channel or runs. Larger fish may be on the pool edges, but most of the larger fish have been taken on clousers, meat whistles, and other fast sinking flies. I really don’t think the pools fish very well as the more oxygen water is in the middle channels and off the edges of the pools.  A sink tip works perfectly during mid-day bites. Again white, black, and chartreuse have been the best colors. My best fly lately during the 10-4 range is a white/chartreuse clouser size 2.

As the sun starts to get blocked from the canopy, the surface action turns on. Around 6:30/7 in most areas. Poppers and again flies that make a wake are the best of the best. I love deer hair flies like the zoo cougar and I would encourage a mouse or two for waking flies. Many other anglers have been using fruit cocktails and other larger deer hair patterns. This is absolutely my favorite time to fish all year long, just watching smallies busting water.

Good luck this weekend, make sure to get your sunglasses for the eclipse!!



Ohio Smallmouth Fishing Report 6.16.17

Smallmouth Fishing Report for June 16, 2017.

The earlier rains of the week have swollen many of our smallmouth rivers. However, the good news is that a couple rivers and creeks are falling in shape north of Dayton. The Stillwater, Little Miami, and Mad River should be in a halfway decent shape by late Saturday afternoon. For the southern anglers, the waters may be a bit too high and may need to drive more north. This may be a great weekend to explore main tributaries off these major rivers and fish around the mouths!

Lately the bite has been really good in the morning/early afternoon, and especially well at dusk. My team and I are mostly fishing crawfish, leeches, or anything with weight along the bottom in the morning/afternoon. The evening time has been excellent for surface/subsurface flies.

  • Crawfish Patterns: Meat Whistle, Bunny Busters, Whitlock craw, Schultzy Craw, or anything with rabbit hare and lead/ tungsten head
  • Top water: Zoo cougars, deer hair poppers, gurglers, and other frog patterns.

Structure is always the key and I would devote more time around vegetation in the evening time as the baitfish find cover. The bass will hold extremely tight to the bank with the correct amount of depth (3-4ft) and cover. We have also been fairly consistent along seams of riffles for smaller bass.

The upcoming week looks great. As the air/water temp increases, the bass bite will only continue to get better!

Good Luck this weekend!



Mad River Fishing Report 6.16.17

Mad River Fishing Report 6.16.17

Swollen by the rains, Dayton is under siege!!! But the weather missed the trout section. The flows received a small bump this week and should set the weekend for some great fishing.

  • Note: You can always look at the water flows in the top right hand corner of the website. It will show you flows for all our rivers that I and the team fish.

As with the beginning of the hot weather, the canoe livery’s are in full force. I would let this not frustrate you, go above the put in or go below the take out. This usually means the middle section between Lippincott and 36/55 can be very busy after 10:00 am.

Terrestrials are just starting, but if you are looking for some mid-day dry fly action, throw on a Caddis. X-caddis, goddard, or a Elk Caddis will do perfect. Keep it riding high and make sure hit underneath lower hanging limbs and branches. I also love to throw a small sz16 Black Beetle!!

Anglers are still having success later in the evening with some Cahill and sporadic Sulphurs still coming up. I would note to be in position around 6 or 7 and the hatch should pick up. I would have a couple different patters. A couple cripple, comparaduns, and some parachutes. 16 and 18 should work fine.

We have these patterns in the fly shop. We are open 12-5 on Saturday or M-F 9-6. As always, thanks for the local support. www.reelflyrod.com

However, I think the best tactic for all day fishing is going to be the wet-fly swing. If you are not familiar how to rig wet fly rigs, download or by the Wet-Flies: Tying and Fishing Soft-Hackles by Dave Hughes. A great read and really details how to make this technique the best in the ol’ tool box!

Enjoy the Father’s Day weekend. Good luck



Mad River Fly Fishing Report 6.9.17

Mad River Fly Fishing Report 6.9.17

As noted in our smallmouth report, the fish are biting and the rivers are in great shape. The Mad River however has been such a gem to fish lately. The bug activity this time of year is awesome. Good hatches both in the morning, afternoon, and evening really gets the fish motivated to eat.

All techniques are good strategies to land a few fish. Small streamer fishing and nymphing in the early morning, switching to soft hackles and then the evening dry fly hatch. Personally, the evening dry fly hatch is what makes me love the late May, early June time frame.

The morning time will have a rise of BWO and midges. I love to throw a size 20 BWO dun with a copper brassie dropper. Sometimes you can get a nicer fish on this setup. Once the sun goes overhead, the caddis flies come out and the infamous soft hackle swing is stellar. I love a green body with a partridge collar. I will have tandem rigs and swing the fly in riffles, tailouts, and longer runs. Don’t forget that grasshoppers and my favorite, beetles, are exclusive patterns during the afternoon especially on windy days.

Then if you are on the water all day, the evening hatch begins around the 7 time frame. From Sulphurs and Cahills to the sporadic drake hatch in the very late evening, near dark. I would make sure to have size 16 in the sulphur and cahill dries, which include parachutes, comparaduns, spinners, and cripples. As for the drakes, we have been throwing some very large flies right at dark, landing some very nice fish! Some flies haven’t even been drake patterns!

We have all the flies in shop that you will need to get your Mad River fix. Enjoy the weekend. Good Luck,


Ohio Smallmouth Fishing Report 6.9.17

The Early June Smallmouth Fishing Report

The summer is here. The longer days of June are catalyst of awesome bass fishing on our local rivers; The Stillwater, Great Miami, Little Miami, Twin Creek, and Lower Mad River. Water levels are holding steady with slight drops in CFS with clarity increasing each day.

For several weeks, the staff of the fly shop and I have been guiding a ton in the morning and fishing in the later evening. From bottom bouncing crawfish to stripping surface flies, I could consistently say that the smallmouth bite is good all day long. The technique used and the depth of the fly is of crucial importance and key to success.

The early mornings are the time to fish crawfish patterns. Patterns must have rabbit! Black, Brown, Orange, and White are producing nice fish with black and orange being the best colors. We are fishing the structure and vegetation lines very heavily as the bass are waiting for an ambush baitfish along the edge.

As the sun rises overhead, the fish have been moving to the deeper slots, edges, and holes. However, the smallmouth metabolism is increasing due to the raise in water temps as the sun heats the water. We have been switching to clousers and other baitfish imitations with weight to keep the fly in the first half of the water column.

As the sun begins to lower, this has been the best bite. Large surface flies that move water and create water disruption have been terrorizing smallies. Edges, vegetation lines, rocks, and logs are all producing. Find the structure, find the fish.

We have plenty of flies for each of these times. Stop by the fly shop or give us a shout. I hope you have a great weekend. Good Luck.



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