Fishing Report 5/3/2020

How's Fishing?

Fishing has been good.  With the continued Spring rainfalls the stream is high and murky.   Catching trout has been quite the hat trick, but it is possible.  Tenacity and patience will serve you well as an angler at this time.   

  I have posted a few pictures of people fishing, because on average there have only been 8 to 12 people in the entire park.  With the rain coming in this week that will probably be typical. The weekend weather looks great! 

I did happen to find someone actively catching fish today.  He was using a soft hackle in Zone 2.  I recently saw an online post that peaked my interest about fish not biting.  There are a multitude of sayings when the fish are not "on."  A few of my favorites were, "looks like they are living in a different zipcode", "the fish are practicing social distancing from me," "someone must have fished through here before me," "must be dieting this Big Mac didn't deliver."  I am notorious for saying "It's too windy," or It's too nice out for the fish to bite."  We all know no game is fun if you always win.  This is especially true about the allure of fishing.  everyday is a good fishing day, but it's the catching days that "reel," you in!    

I have been fishing size 18 mosquitoes in the evening and sticking with Caddis green or olive soft hackle in the early afternoon.  On my spinning rod I continue to have luck with marabou and roostertails in various colors. 

See you on the stream!

Of Interest:

Daily trout tags, along with a fishing permit, unless exempt, will be required beginning May 16 for fishing at all four trout parks: Bennett Spring State Park near Lebanon, Montauk State Park near Licking, Roaring River State Park near Cassville, and Maramec Spring Park near St. James. Read more about Maramec Spring Park opening and daily trout tag requirements.


A word from Rick and Lucy:

As I write this I pray all of you who are reading it, and your family members, are healthy. We at Weavers care deeply for each and everyone of you who read this report. We feel honored and blessed to have made so many friends in the past ten years at Bennett.

I know this social distancing can make us crazy, but it is the ONLY way we are going to beat this thing. I also know the need to get out of the house, because it makes you stir crazy. It does us. Lucy and I walk daily here in North Carolina but we are extremely cautious to maintain our distance from other walkers. I say this because I understand the need for some of you to still come to Bennett to escape the crazy that is going on in this world right now. I ask every single one of you, if you feel the least bit ill, please, for your sake as well as the sake of your fellow anglers, PLEASE stay home till you are well. If you do come, please maintain that ten foot barrier between you and ALL others. Do not share lures, do not share rods, do not share food, or anything else. We can beat this thing together, but it takes a commitment from everyone! The stronger the commitment, the sooner we get back to normal and to the Bennett we all know and Love......

God bless you all,

Rick and Lucy

COVID-19 RESPONSES (AS OF 4/30/2020)

We will continue to update this page as more information is available.

Conservation areas are operating as normal.
Trails are operating as normal.
Boat ramps are operating as normal.
Outdoor spaces are well suited to increased social distance, and fresh air is a great way to calm your mind. But we must remain diligent in taking steps to make your visit as safe and enjoyable as possible:

If you have been sick in the last two weeks, please stay home for your health and the safety of others.
Travel in a small group of 10 people or fewer.
If a conservation area looks crowded or an area parking lot is full, please do not stop and find another less-crowded location.
Keep a proper physical distance of at least six feet while visiting areas and especially on trails.
Avoid popular spots where people congregate, such as scenic overlooks, fishing docks, etc.
Pack water, soap and/or hand sanitizer.
Get more information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on best practices for keeping you and your family safe at
Missourians are encouraged to review information provided by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services as it relates to COVID-19.

April 2, 2020
MDC Reminds People to Follow Health Precautions While Outdoors

With many people in Missouri heading outside to enjoy the spring weather, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reminds people that it is still critical for everyone to continue to heed all recommendations for physical distancing, avoiding overcrowding, hand-washing, and other public-health measures during outdoor activities. Read more about health precautions to follow while outdoors.

April 30, 2020
Trout Fishing Update

The James Foundation will reopen Maramec Spring Park to a limited number of visitors (maximum of 250 people at one time) on May 4.

Daily trout tags, along with a fishing permit, unless exempt, will be required beginning May 16 for fishing at all four trout parks: Bennett Spring State Park near Lebanon, Montauk State Park near Licking, Roaring River State Park near Cassville, and Maramec Spring Park near St. James. Read more   about Maramec Spring Park opening and daily trout tag requirements.


Water Conditions

Bennett Spring

May 4, 2020
Gage house level is 2.67 feet
Daily Discharge levels:
All discharge numbers are in Cubic Feet per Second
minimum was 84.0 in 1934
25th percentile is 141
Current level is 336
Median is 207
Mean is 277
75th percentile is 321
Max was 1210 in 2017

Niangua River

May 4, 2020
Gage House reading (water level) is 3.12 feet.
Discharge levels in cubic feet per second:
Minimum was 95.8 in 2015
25th percentile is 180
Median is 417
Today's reading is 666
75th percentile is 1100
Mean is 1060
record high max was 9010 in 2017


What's Working?

Click the hyperlinks to browse

From the Fly Case

Zebra Midge

Soft Hackle
Rusty Dun
Rusty Spinner
Pale Evening Dun
Elkhair Caddis
Chartreuse, Orange, or Pink Cracklebacks
Yellow or Tan Caddis
Bennett Blue Cracklebacks
Copper Johns
Prince Nymphs
Blue Wing Olive
Black Stonefly
Wooly Buggers-purple, white, black, olive
Copper Hot Shots
RGN's-golden olive, brown size 14

Zone 1 or 2

Mopflies- cream, pink, white, orange, chartreuse
Megaworms-pink and white, red, white, lavender, green
Bloodworm, Orange, White, pink Squirmy Wormies
Bedspread jig
Brown Roaches
Peacock Jigs
Bumblebee mini jigs
John Deere
John Deere with a yellowtail
Angry John Deere
White grub mini jigs
White thread jigs
Peach Fur Bugs

Light Roe with a red dot Glo-ball
Jimi Hendrix Glo-Balls
Easter Egg Glo-balls
Original Tricolor Glo-balls
White Glo-balls
White Glo-balls with a red dot

Dark Brown with Red Dot Glo-balls
Marabou - black and yellow, moss, ginger, gingersnap, red and yellow, black, Shell and white, white, Tequila Sunrise (orange and yellow), orange, yellow, pink and black, salmon and brown
Rooster Tails - Bumblebee, Yellow Coachdog, Glitter Brown, Skunk, Yellow Roostertail, White Coachdog, Copper Glitter Rainbow, Salmon Fly, Flame Spot

Zone 3

Lucky Lady worms-pink, white, orange, pink and yellow, red and white, black and yellow, mint
Rainbow Powerbait
Sherbet Powerbait
Pink Powerbait
Salmon Peach with or without glitter Powerbait
Fluoroscent Orange Powerbait
Yellow Powerbait
Powerbait Power Eggs Chartreuse or Sunrise
Bentley's Secret Bait Original and Garlic

Weather Forecast

Tuesday: Cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a high near 65. Northwest wind 11 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 69. Light west wind becoming northwest 5 to 9 mph in the morning. Winds could gust as high as 21 mph.

Thursday: A 40 percent chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 67.

Friday: Mostly cloudy, with a high near 61.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 65.

Sunday: Partly sunny, with a high near 63.

Windyville MO
37.72°N 92.92°W (Elev. 1024 ft)

Lunker Club


Emiley Weese Imperial, MO 2 pounds in zone 2 on a black and chartreuse marabou

Scott Westfall from Vandenberg Village, CA 5 pounds in zone 2 on a black marabou


Scott Westfall from Vandenberg Village, CA 5 1/2 pounds caught and released in zone 2 on a black marabou


Calendar of Events

There will be monthly Mayfly Project fly tying nights in the Bennett Spring Church of God Annex, located across from the park office. Supplies and instruction on tying a basic fishing fly will be given. This activity will allow people to enjoy the art of fly tying and learn from experienced Bennett Spring fishermen and women.

All supplies will be provided, but participants are welcome to bring their own. A $5 donation for the "Fly of the Night" supplies is suggested. Donations will go to provide supplies and support for Kid's Free Fishing Day. Everyone's first six flies will be donated to The Mayfly Project, which mentors foster children through fly fishing.

This event is sponsored by Missouri State Parks, the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Mayfly Project. More information is available at .

Additional Mayfly Project program dates:
June 12, July 10, July 31, Sept. 4, Oct. 2
26250 Hwy 64A, Lebanon, MO | (417) 532-4338

Weed Cutting May 19-20

FREE FISHING FOR ALL~Saturday June 6th and Sunday June 7th, 2020

Bennett Spring State Park welcomes the public to fish for trout for free. Fishing licenses are not required in the state of Missouri during this weekend. Daily trout tags and fishing licenses are not required for individuals fishing at Bennett Spring State Park. Free trout tags can be obtained at the park store. All other wildlife game regulations apply.

Weed Cutting June 23-24

Veterans Fishing Day~ Saturday July 11, 2020 Bennett Spring State Park~0630-2030

Weed Cutting August 4-5

Weed Cutting September 15-16

For additional information or questions please contact the Nature Center at 417-532-3925.

There is a list at that gives all the details of other activities, such as hikes that are going on at Bennett Spring State Park through out the year.



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Quote of the Week

Time flies so fast after youth is past that we cannot accomplish one half the many things we have in mind. Or indeed one half our duties. The only safe and sensible plan is to make other things give way to the essentials, and the first of these is flyfishing.


Theodore Gordon

Thanks for reading,


1 comment

  • does this mean they will be stocking the stream again may 16?

    Michael Durbin

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