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Old 02-27-2011, 02:22 PM
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Default North Fork Arkansas River questions

I have been invited to attend a group fishing weekend on the North Fork in Salesville

I read but couldn't quite figure it out. Arkansas has a "White River System" fishing license so folks in MO can fish cheaply in AR. I assume the North Fork is considered part of the "White". Have any of you ever purchased this license. I will catch and release anyway so I have no desire to keep unless the group wants fish.

Also, is there a "Quality" / "Blue Ribbon" area just below the Dam on the North Fork? I am thinking on heading out really early and get some fishing in before the group arrives at the cabin around 4 - PM.

Lastly.... End of March? Streamers?, Scuds? what bugs are working in March. Or should I just plan that the river there is governed by electrical generation and bring the standards?


Anyway.. Any help would greatly be appreciated.

Thanks
CritterGetter
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Old 02-27-2011, 08:22 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

I'm guessing you're talking about the Norfolk river which some people call the North fork of the White river. If I'm correct go down river to the walk in access and fish there till your friends arrive. I just fished there last weekend and stayed at Genes trout resort. I caught several fish right there at the walk in area no more than a couple hundred yards from the parking lot. Caught Browns and Rainbows. Didn't get any cutthroat or Brooks. SWPA posts a water release schedule but they always say it's subject to change. I wish I lived closer to that river. Looking forward to my next visit.
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Old 02-27-2011, 08:28 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

Thanks JC..

I think Gene's is where we are staying. I didn't know if it would be fish-able without a boat. And didn't know if just below the dam was a catch and release area.

It sounds like I need not bother. Just fish from there.

I am working on getting the gages and water readings programmed into my phone... From what i hear, You don't want to be caught.
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Old 02-28-2011, 05:19 AM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

Buy a map at Genes. You would have to drive a couple miles toward the town of Norfolk to get to the walk in access. Where I was fishing you could easily walk away from the river if it started rising. I saw people fishing without boats up towards the dam. If the horn sounds for water release get out immediately, the water is coming up. I also fished from the bank, where the road crosses the Norfolk river, before the town of Norfolk and caught a lot of fish. There's a deep area right under the bridges and many fish. I was on the south side.
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Old 03-28-2011, 04:29 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

I find that many parts of the river you cannot hear the horns. It's best to constantly call the dam phone/advisory number to keep tabs on when the generators come on. This river like the White gets tremendous fishing pressure from both tackle and fly fishermen. I just returned from a 5 day trip that saw the caddis hatching on White and Norfork and there were some great moments. In general the trip was not as productive for our 26 member contingent like it was March of last year. Perhaps the low water or perhaps just the pressure. I've floated the river in the past in a canoe and found it more accessible and covered more water that way. Short of western streams, this is a great alternate for fishermen in the south. Be prepared for tackle fishermen in their 2-35hp john boats to churn up next to you.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:40 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

Thanks Racine... I will make sure I bring some Caddis Nymphs and some Topwater fly's along just incase the bruzers are looking up.

I have had a few fishing friends locally warn me about being caught on the wrong side of the river and having to "Wait it out" So yes I will get the phone numbers and schedules.

As it stands now I think I am the only one of the group not slinging bait. And I am the only one wanting to try some night fishing. I have never tried it and am wanting to see what fly fishing in the dark can be like.

I will hopefully post up some pic's in two weeks. I discovered the lodge we are staying has two camera's upstream towards the dam and down. So, I have been watching where the fly fishers are gathering. And it doesn't look like they have been generating much power as it does look low and clear with lots of fishing pressure everywhere.

I leave thursday morning.

Crittergetter

Here is the lodges link: Cam1 - Gene's Trout Fishing Resort, North Fork River - Up River View
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:43 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

You can't fish from the docks after dark at Gene's. I'm sure you could go up or down river though. Post a report when you get back.
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Old 04-04-2011, 05:14 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

The Norfork was clear and low. We actually didn't rent boats from Gene's because we couldn't get down river without wading. We rented from Norfork resort and fished up and down the White by the confluence of the Norfork.

The Caddis hatch was incredible. I bet it lasted from 11 to 5. They are light collared with a bright green butt. I wish I tied fly's because I really didn't have that for top water. However, I had killer luck with a gold ribbed flashback hairsear followed by a "Disco" green zebra midge.

The surprise was fishing a #10 tunghead rubberlegged brown stone with a #20 pink glow ball on the bottom. 3/4 were browns and 1/4 were bows. The Browns would slam the stone fly. I landed a 20" brown on 6x tippet and he almost ran into my backing. What a rush. That made the day.

I also fished just below the Norfork dam. I is really cold. I mean cold. I don't have neoprene chest waders (wish I did) and I am not making babies any time soon until a few more things warm up .


Below the dam was great practice for streamer fishing and it was windy so I got to practice live a double hall.



Thanks everybody for suggestions and tips they helped make this a trip I won't forget. I am already panning a return trip.
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Old 04-04-2011, 06:42 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

Cool, glad it was a good trip.
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Old 04-04-2011, 09:43 PM
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Default Re: North Fork Arkansas River questions

Crittergetter: Sounds like you had a great trip, congrats!

Larry
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