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Old 06-03-2013, 12:40 PM
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willki is on a distinguished road
Default Central MN

Hi folks. I've fly fished a few lakes/ponds for bass/sunnies/pike in the Nisswa / Baxter / Brainerd area over the years. On this summers trip to the inlaws, I was thinking I'd hit the Miss. near Minni Ha Ha falls (inlaws live walking distance from there) in the cities and while up in Lake Shore fish Gull a bit as usual, but try Stoney Brook as well - looks like it's a managed brook trout fishery from the state map... 14 years I have been going up there and never thought to look at the map! Ugh! Couldnt be more than 3 miles from the inlaws cabin on Gull...

And that, is my question - late June / early July any specific hatches in that area OR is it pretty much terrestrials and interesting wets/nymphs/streamers.

Any thoughts would be very appreciated.
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Old 06-09-2013, 07:36 PM
Join Date: Dec 2012
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jtliving is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Central MN

Hi Willki,

My copy of "Flyfisher's Guide to Minnesota" by Micky O. Johnson says about Stony Brook: "Wooly buggers and girdle bugs are good choices here in the spring. Later on in May and June, cased caddis or pheasant tail nymphs are work (sic) well when drifted into the pools. I love to use a royal Wulff or tent-winged caddis when the water is low." He has a chart for hatches in that general area and notes a couple of good access points too.
I was there one day in our crazy May when SE Minnesota had a blizzard. Unfortunately, the river was blown out from snow melt. So I don't have any personal experience of what works, but it is a very pretty river and a friend said it is an overlooked gem.
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:12 PM
Join Date: Mar 2011
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willki is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Central MN

Thanks for the cool info!

Sounds like relatively generic late spring to mid summer bug patterns or trusted standby's any where that will workout best. In short - no "specal" patterns or anything.

Cool. I've heard that the snow melt and ice out was really tough in the are this year... Bummer to hear you experienced a blown out stream.

There is another trout stream in the are according to the state map, I may have a loo there as well.
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:22 PM
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Default Re: Central MN

I don't have any experience on those streams in your area, but I'd say that your best bet this year will be terrestrials come July, although there will be some bugs flying at all times of day. Hex hatches should start in a few weeks too, if you're not opposed to doing a little night fishing. If you do that, I believe designated trout streams close at 11 p.m.

I would be curious to know how warm those streams get too. There is a chance that those streams will be too warm that time of year to be very productive. But with the crazy weather we've had so far this year, there might be snow on the ground and the water temps will only be 40*.
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: Central MN

Good luck! I've never fished there, but always drive through on the way to visit the in-laws north of Bemidji.
Read my fishing blog
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Old 06-14-2013, 09:42 AM
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willki is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Central MN

Awesome info guys - thanks!

Ill take a temp when there in a few weeks and let you know. I found a few pic's via google, and suspect terrestrials would be solid... Have a super day!

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Old 07-13-2013, 10:03 AM
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willki is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Central MN

Ugh. Despite checking the river out on a 5' scouting mission one evening, I have spent about 10 days within 2.5 miles of it and have not had a chance to cast a line due to work or family (my wife and kids are on vacation, I'm working via the local wendy's wifi.)

My brief scout showed the water to still be cool (low-mid 60's) and a nice flow. It was not ripping, and it begged for a parachute like a mr rapidian or some form of caddis.

The lakes in the area were either at the tail end, or just have a minor hatch or hex's which made viewing the cabin window's in the AM interesting with those bike 1-1.5" long mayflies hanging out. I saw no evidence of those near the brook, but there were a few mahogany duns and light cahills (at least thats what they looked like to me - a whiteish size 14ish may fly) and a gazillion random caddis. there were lots of smaller gray to black caddis on the brook, but at the lakes, there were also tons of what I believe were white miller (about 3/4 inch long head to wing ends and white) caddis. I saw no fish rising, but did spook a nice little brookie when I was bumbling along trying to take a quick look in a few pools within 100yds of the road.

Looks like great dry fly water right now. Very manageable for sure.

It's smaller than I thought, making me glad I did take the short 2 weight. it would be just right for working the brook - though I may have my hands full if one of the larger trout the state claims live there takes an offering.

If I was back in MA, I would have figured it was a stream full of 4-8" natives, and where every now and then, you would latch into a 10-12" fish and it would be amazing!

Pretty though, a combo of marsh, hemlock and alder or poplar I think lined it. If you could convince the family to go picnic at the park where you can park, (they had a canopy, outhouse and some nice fire pits) you could really enjoy a day there.

We may go back up to the cabin tomorrow evening or monday. If we do, I'm going to figure out how to get at least an hour on there.

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