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ozark trout fisher

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ozark trout fisher last won the day on August 9 2016

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About ozark trout fisher

  • Birthday 03/19/1867

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Probably somewhere in the woods.
  • Interests
    Forester by day, also fisherman by day, sometimes when I'm supposed to be doing the first thing.

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  1. There is very little resemblance between what (most) Ozark forests look like now and what they would have looked like in the 1700s and much of the 1800s. Historically, "wildfire" was a huge part of the ecosystem that drove almost everything else. Wildfire is in quotes, because only rarely was it ignited by a truly natural source; far more often it was started intentionally by Native Americans for the purposes of hunting, agriculture, etc. Most land in the Ozarks was burned between once a year and once every 20 years: on average once every 3-5 years according to most dendrochronological (i.e. tree ring) sources. This created very open forests where a lot of light was hitting the ground. This meant that grass, forbs, etc could grow and create almost prairie-esque conditions. This in turn allowed the land to support vast herds of bison, elk, etc that it never could today. And the forests were dominated by a mixture of pines and oak, the latter of which obviously produce acorns, and the open conditions allowed them to produce a lot. Now for the most part we control fire. So trees that normally would be killed by fire (primarily maple) creep in, and in general the open conditions that allowed for grass and forb understories do not exist, due to much higher density of trees. There are enough oaks in most if the Ozarks that species like deer can still subsist off acorns easily enough most years, but larger animals like elk and bison could not survive in anywhere near their previous numbers even if they were reintroduced and allowed unencumbered population growth. There just isn't enough browse in close canopy forests. If you want to see a rough approximation of pre-settlement forest in Missouri, I'd suggest visiting Peck Ranch Conservation Area. The combination of regular prescribed fire at similar intervals to historic fire, and other management practices have restored it to about as close a replica as you can get in many areas. And in a pretty vast scale too,, especially if you consider other surrounding Conservation property surrounding it managed similarly (namely Current River CA). You'll find open woodlands, savanna, tons of browse (yes, there are also the very non-natural food plots everywhere to fill in the gaps, but nothing is perfect.) It's no coincidence that this is also where they reintroduced elk. It is maybe the only forest system in Missouri that could support them without causing problems. It also seems to be excellent black bear habitat. It is the only place in Missouri I've seen bears on multiple occasions, and never once in the last decade have I visited without seeing at the minimum scat or other clear signs of their presence.
  2. Hey everyone. I realize it's been several years (at least) since I've been a regular here, but to those few of who have any idea who I am (and everyone else, of course), I hope you are all doing well and are healthy. It's been far too long since I've been able to wet a line in the Missouri Ozarks; I had a four day camping/floating trip on the 11 Point scheduled this month since literally last year. My folks and I were going to do the whole trout section and some smallie fishing dang near to the Arkansas border and were very excited about it...but my folks are a bit on the older side and have a few health conditions, so we decided to cancel it out of an abundance of caution, which broke my heart to a degree that is difficult to describe, but was probably a good call. In any case, here are a few pictures from my recent outings in and around Indiana, which, I'll stress, is not nearly as nice as the Ozarks. I miss you all, and I miss the Ozarks. Catch a whole bunch of fish, and be safe and healthy when I can finally come back to Missouri, ya'll.
  3. Hello, all. It's been a minute. I recently backpacked in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness for a few very chilly and snowy days, took a fly rod, and this forum came to mind when I got back. Here are some pictures. None of them are of the fish, because not one of the 7 or 8 cutties I caught was longer than the cork section of my fly-rod. Blame the snowmelt and the raging flows in the upper Arkansas watershed, or my thin backcountry fly-box at your discretion. Only place I found any feeding fish was in backwaters and beaver ponds. The elk outnumbered the folks we saw outside our party, 5-2. It was a hell of a trip, with several 14ers summited, a lot of avalanche debris waded through and plenty of use for the snowshoes.
  4. But more importantly, does the apostrophe come after the second "s" in his username, or do we add that third one in there?
  5. To answer the topic question, no, I don't buy Miller. Usually Blue Moon Wheat, Coors light on float trips. Pretty picture of an elk, though.
  6. It honestly didn't even look real. I've never seen a smallmouth anywhere near that big outside of a Bass Pro fishtank.
  7. I lost a monster a couple years back in the Big Piney that haunts my dreams (like, I've literally dreamt about it.) Couldn't have been any less than 6 pounds.
  8. That's awesome! I'm surprised by this. Used to hike out there all the time, beautiful area.
  9. OTF's Totally Arbitrary and Meaningless Standards 16-18"= "Good one" 18-20"="Holy crap!" 20-22"= "Welp, that's probably the biggest one I'm catching this year" 22+" I, uh, I don't have experience in this area.
  10. Do you mean Daniel Boone State Forest (between STL and CoMo) of Daniel Boone NF in Kentucky? If it's the latter, there a bunch on the hilltops around Cave Run Lake. I nearly got bitten on two occasions, but it was worth it. They're pretty cool critters.
  11. I realize this probably will not help, but I saw 7 this past summer in the mountains of eastern Kentucky (Daniel Boone National Forest, near Morehead, KY). Found them mostly in rocky, glade-like areas on mountaintops. Wasn't looking specifically for them...was just doing forestry research.
  12. Thanks! Pretty good morning on the water. Nothing of much size, but plenty of action all through. Best right around dawn, unsurprisingly. #16 bh hares ear the star performer. Hit both Baptist and Parker. A bit better at the former, I suppose, but not a real noticeable difference.
  13. Headed back to MO right now for a long weekend...planning to fish the upper Current at Baptist and/or Parker most of the day tomorrow. I'm intimately familiar with that stretch of river, but just curious about current (no pun intended) conditions. It's been ridiculously wet and cool where I've been this summer in Appalachia, but I understand it's a teensy bit different in the Ozarks. Just want to make sure I'm not gonna be fishing over a ridiculously low river/stressed fish, basically. I can pretty much handle it from there.
  14. That is not smart. Slight segue, but I saw a couple of timber rattlers early this morning on a rocky mountaintop in the Kentucky Appalachians. Managed to step out of the way in time. Afterwards I regretted not getting any pics, but in the moment I was fairly intent on getting myself and my crew out of there without any further excitement.
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