By Bill Hodges
Calling all trout fishermen! One of our finest regional trout streams, Oklahoma’s Lower Mountain Fork, is only about three hours away at Beaver Bend State Park, near Broken Bow, Okla. We have been going there since the club started, and we return Nov. 10-12, for good reason: Not many area rivers offer year-round access to ‘bows and browns and this beautiful setting rarely disappoints.
Our base for this outing is the (New) Hochatown Lodge, 6613 N. US 259, Broken Bow, Okla. We have a dozen two-bed rooms set aside for members and guests for Friday and Saturday nights at a negotiated rate of $130 per night. Decide if you want a room for yourself or to share one, and then call Hochatown Lodge at 580-494-6099. Tell them to use Bill Hodges’ block of rooms for Fort Worth Fly Fishers. You might ask for Rexie if the clerk isn’t familiar with the arrangement.
Friday night we will all eat at Hochatown Saloon, a past destination, but there are also many places to choose from. The lodge has a covered patio with tables where we plan a Saturday night cookout with a semi-potluck dinner of club-provided burgers and hot dogs, plus any other food attendees bring. Bring your own food for breakfast and lunch on the river.
FWFF Education Director Russell Husted has courageously volunteered to host this event. There are lots of places to fish, and Russell can help with suggestions. Those of you familiar with the river can head to your favorite destinations, but the most popular half-mile stretch is the Evening Hole, a good starting point for those new to the area. Watch for bald eagles, ospreys, buzzards, otters, armadillos and the odd beaver.
We are told that Pat’s Rubber Legs works well in a size 20. Tiny blue wing olive nymphs
such as the RS2, zebra midge and Rainbow Warrior, catch many trout here as well. But dry fly fishing always is fun, and favorites include a small BWO, Adams or Elk Hair Caddis. If none of these are working for you, old standbys include a size 18-20 gold-ribbed Hare’s Ear or Prince nymph. A small midge dropper always helps. A 4- or 5-weight rod is ideal.
An Okie fishing license is required for those under 65. If over age 65, no Oklahoma license is required but you DO need a valid Texas fishing license. Oklahoma licenses can be purchased at Beavers Bend Fly Shop, but save time by buying yours online. A new wrinkle this year is a parking pass (about $5, free to veterans) required anywhere in the park. Buy one online, listing your car or truck plates, or in the park headquarters building on US 259A. Rangers are always checking, so don’t press your luck.
See you there!