Surface Temp: 60f
Clarity: Slightly Tannic 18-24-inches
Let us know what you are catching-or not catching-Send your pics of fish, beautiful places, or some of the flies that you have tied. We love to post them on our fishing report! Send to Allen@andythornal.com
Special Fly Tying Session Jan. 15th. Our old friend, Captain Craig Crumbliss will show the Art of Bamboo Rod Making, and teach our fly tying session. More info at page bottom.
Tiger Godwin was catching Brookies on his most recent North Carolina trip. He is starting a guide service up there. Contact us at Andy Thornal Company for contact info.
The topwater bite has been steadily improving. White poppers and slow sinking streamers fished with a slow cadence have been productive. Continue to fish near submerged timber if the fish are being shy. These areas will hold fish, and a slow retrieve with a heavier streamer will trigger bites from less active bass. Be on the lookout for fish up shallow, a popper is a great searching fly to find active fish. Then switch to a streamer and dissect the water around that area.
Trevor Brown went for an hour of 'Therapy' this weekend.
The bass are going to continue pushing up and remaining near shallow water. Think drop offs instead of pounding the bank. They will begin to spawn here shortly so keep your eyes peeled in shallow water. Keep your flies a little deeper than usual and focus on submerged grasslines. The fish are still best responding to shad and bluegill patterns with a slow retrieve rate. The smaller size flies are working, with number 6 brush flies matching the "hatch" the best. Have a few larger streamers tied with either rabbit fur or marabou in case the bass are feeling more aggressive. The added movement in these materials can create some violent strikes. Topwater is still working when fished in heavier cover such as lily pads or at the base of trees. With a slow retrieve back to the boat. The top colors have been yellow and olive. Look for the nervous activity caused by the shad, as this is a sure sign that the bass are near. When throwing baitfish patterns the best place to cast is parallel to the shoreline. This allows you to cover more water. Try varying the depth during the retrieve if they aren't responding to a steady retrieve. They are typically schooling on the windblown side of the lake. Bluegill still are hanging around docks and near any moving water. The best way to catch them has been a heavier tungsten nymph drug on the bottom or a worm fly with a squirmito tail on a jig head. When presenting these flies try crawling them by pulling the fly line to your wrist for a slow gradual retrieve rate. Sometimes bass sized flies get gobbled up by a monster bream when working docks or brush piles. This has been key as they prefer to eat them deeper when they are right above the bottom. When fishing near heavy cover for panfish bumping up to 4x tippet will allow you to still be stealthy but have some extra strength around the wood. Specs(Crappie) are still being caught along deeper grasslines. Use baitfish patterns in white, black and/or brown/olive in sizes 6, 8, or 10. Classic popper fishing is recommended at sunrise when the weather is either a little warmer or foggy. Colors is important as the fish are selective. Start with white as this mimics a struggling baitfish then start trying brighter colors such as yellow or orange. Casting these at the base of trees have yielded some spectacular blowups. Popper dropper rigs are a very good way to fish. Use classic trout flies such as a Pheasant Tail or a Hare's Ear Nymph is sizes 10-14.
Hunter Towery's "Sloppy Jose" jig fly is great for specs. This color is PBJ
The wind will cooperate this week and make it easy to fly fish. The nights will stay cooler but will warm up as the week progresses.
The lake levels are continuing to drop slowly and clearing in clarity. The Peace, Econ, Hillsborough, Myakka, and Withlacoochee Rivers are all at above average levels but are falling. And levels on the Kissimmee River are at below average level for the time of year.
This is a lipped version of the Crease Fly. This very creative 'Crank Bait' is by Billy Williams.
Special Fly Tying Session Jan. 15th. Our old friend, Captain Craig Crumbliss will show the art of Bamboo rod making, and teach fly tying.
5th Tuesday Fly Tying on Jan. 29th. We are confirming the location for fly tying in Lakeland, FL. Hopefully this will be a tradition!
FLY TYING CLASSES ARE ON FIRST AND THIRD TUESDAYS at 6:00PM-7:30PM. No reservations needed. We supply materials and tools (or bring yours.) $10 min purchase requested. Our next tying class is Jan. 15th. Contact us at 863 299-999 for more info.