White River / Norfork River (Mountain Home, Arkansas) — July 15, 2004

Fly Rod & Reel Trout Bum Tournament Check-In # 7

Ouch!!!! I wake up to the pain of someone pulling on my toe!!!! Matt is trying his best to wake me and that is what seemed to work I guess. Glad it was just my toe!!! One thing I have to give Matt credit about here is that no matter how little sleep or what time so far, that boy has gotten up when the alarm has gone off. I have still never heard the damn thing!!!!

As I have tried to impress upon all of you previously, you MUST keep know the water here and the generation schedules and how long it takes for the water to rise or to fall at the location you want to fish!!! I think that kinda gets the point across…….. You just don’t call up a buddy and say, “Hey, let’s wade and fish XX access on X month and X day at 7:00!” You may only get to fish 20 yards of shoreline with that rigid of an itinerary. Some of these guides down here are thinking all the time to get you the best experience they possibly can and one of them is Tom Rogers. OK, so we’re supposed to meat Tom at 7:00. Not a problem. However, what I didn’t know until much later is that Tom had already tied a couple dozen flies and figured out the power generation for the day and gotten all of the gear packed before we had gotten there.

Once at TNT, Tom tells us how the White is going to be low for a little while and how it will begin to rise just about the time we want to go visit Wapsi, and that after that, that the water will be just right to fish the Norfork. Now, I’m not the dullest knife in the block, but that is a lot of head calculating and looking ahead in my book. And you know what……that is what ALL of the guides that we have gone out with on this trip have done. It’s just a different way of thinking to me and that is why I want to pass it along. Do NOT Attempt to fish this area without learning at least a little about how power generation affects the area you may choose to fish. I’m sure ANY of the fly shops will gladly help you out with all of this. OR….just hire a guide!!

OK, so this will seem like a much shorter report than yesterday, but that is only because we were trying to do too much (not the guides fault) and too many things as opposed to this day. So, after we meet Tom, we go to a local gas/deli shop for fuel, coffee and breakfast sandwiches. Tom wouldn’t let us pay a cent!!! After fueling the truck and us, we headed to Rim Shoal on the White River in the C&R area. Tom wouldn’t let you do a thing. If you needed a new fly, leader, tippet, split shot, indicator adjustment, monster tangle (so I’ve heard… ;)), ETC!!!!……Tom would do it for you. I felt guilty actually for as much as he was doing. For goodness sake…I think the guy could easily juggle cats!!! If he already doesn’t.

We caught 22 fish there before noon. However, we needed to leave by then to go visit Wapsi…..the fly tying material people. You all know them. Just look around your favorite shop. I have a feeling you will see the name………ALL Over!!! On our way to Wapsi, the Rogers’ offered to buy us lunch at subway. Man did that sound pretty good on such a hot day. We ate our sandwiches on the drive to Wapsi and I think I even looked at the back of my eyelids for a little while……glad Tom was driving!!! The next thing I know, were geting a private tour of the place and seeing not only what they “distribute” but also what they make themselves.

Our jaws were dropped most of the tour. I just wanted to ask if I could only have “one of everything”. Even at that rate, I probably would have had to rent a cargo trailer too take “one of each” home!!!!

After that incredible tour at Wapsi, we headed to Dry Run Creek and the Norfork National Fish Hatchery. We took, a few photos at this location and would like everyone to know how fun it is for the youth — PLEASE check regulations. Following the sight seeing, we chose to fish. Up until just before 8:00pm we fished and caught a total of 26 fish. Many were really nice.

We hurriedly got off the river and the boat on the trailer due to the impending rain and lightening storm. One of Becky Roger’s favorite places is El Charro in Mountain Home, Arkansas, so that is where I went. Allthough we did NOT try to bum dinner that night, the manager basically cut our bill in half. What a cool man.

By this time it is about 8:45 and we need to get the computer working. YES!!! Matt is good. He has it done and we are on our way home by 11:15. Once there, we packed all of our “stuff” and I washed a load of laundry in the kitchen sink and all smells much better this morning. Well, I catch myself just dropping off (into sleep) in the middle of the sentence. I think it’s time for bed. Take care All. I really need some sleep,


Tight Lines,

Brent & Matt (written by Brent)

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