Cold Day Fishing – Beaver Tailwaters Nov 14

With snow in the forecast and the temperature starting at a frigid 27 degrees, that was still not going to stop me from getting a little fly fishing in this Saturday morning.  I thought about fishing many times throughout the work week and on my way from work Wednesday evening I had even convinced myself that is was Thursday and that I had just one more long day at work until I could fish.  That was a shocker when my family reminded me it was only Wednesday and I had TWO more days of work until Saturday.

I bundled up from head to toe to battle the cold and the fish.  I wore a long sleeve moisture wicking shirt as a base, then layered on a Rocky mock neck thermal(Walmart), then layered on a Magellan 1/4 zip thermal(Academy Sports), and finally a Patagonia Down Sweater(puffy jacket) for my torso.  On my legs I wore Rocky thermals, Magellan fishing pants and then Russell sweat pants(Walmart) to finish out the layer.  On my feet I wore wool blend socks(Walmart) with Patagonia neoprene socks(Cabelas) over that.  On my head I wore a full head cover with a baseball cap and then a Carhartt beanie over that.  On my hands I wore Cabelas neoprene pop top gloves.  These are by far the best gloves I’ve found for fishing these conditions.  They kept my hands so much warmer than any other glove combination I’ve tried, and the pop top allows you to quickly make your fingers accessible to tie those tiny flies without exposing your entire hand.


I started the day at the Bertrand Access and was going to fish the Spider Creek Hole.  I haven’t fished this area much, but word of someone catching over 50 fish in 4 hours a few weeks prior got my attention.  I thought maybe I don’t give this spot enough credit. I tied on a size 16 Black Zebra Midge and waded in to do battle.  I ultimately wanted to fish at the bottom of the hole, but depth of the water and the ability to easily walk along the near side kept me at the top side, up from the boat ramp.  The temperature also kept my expedition spirit and intentions in check, being lazy.  I moved up to exposed timber and went to work.  After a few quick casts I hooked my first fish of the morning and it was a Brown Trout!  It was only 13 inches, but it’s always rewarding to catch a Brown, and especially when it’s your first of the day in a spot you’re exploring.  After a few more casts I hooked a sunken piece of timber and broke the fly off.  I tied on the Olive Green Midge with red thorax and caught two more trout. I really didn’t like the water and grew restless with the new area, so I decided to head back to the truck and go to one of my usual spots after an hour.

I went to the walk-in access at the bottom of the Beaver Riverside campgrounds.  I fished and worked my down to my secret rock and caught several fish.  I caught a couple on my Ruby Midge(pic below), but had by far the best luck on the simple Black Zebra Midge.  I barely cracked the double digit mark in the next couple hours before my hands were finally too cold to fish.  The rest of my body was fine, but I always fight with my hands getting cold.  Just minutes into my journey home, it began to rain and when I got to Rogers, it was starting to sleet.  The sides of my truck were all iced over when I pulled into garage.  Glad I got off the water before the precipitation started.

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Here’s my Black Zebra Midge posing for a pic:

fishing nov15 037-001fishing nov15 024-001

Sorry, my hands were just not up to taking many pictures today.

Happy Fishing and stay Trout Tough!



Published by nwatrout

Fly Fishing Guide on the White River below Beaver Lake Dam, also known as Beaver Tailwaters. Located 10 miles west of Eureka Springs, AR or 30 miles east of Rogers, AR and Bentonville, AR off Hwy 62.

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