Copyright 2018 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Lower Mountain Fork River
Mountain Fork River actually originates in western
Arkansas and flows into southeastern Oklahoma. It is a
total of 98 miles long. The section that holds trout is the
tailwater below Broken Bow Lake which lies in the
Kiamichi Mountains. The stream is within an easy days
drive for anglers from Dallas, Texas; Tulsa, Oklahoma;
Little Rock, Arkansas; and Shreveport, Louisiana. Fly
fishing the Lower Mountain Fork River is a top
destination for many anglers.
The tailwater has a good population of larger size brown
trout and rainbow trout for the first twelve miles below
Broken Bow Dam. Brown trout of up to ten pounds are
The Lower Mountain Fork River tailwater has a variety of
different types of water that ranges from smooth flowing,
slower moving sections to fast water rapids. It contains
an almost four mile long section called "Zone 2" that has
special regulations that requires barbless hooks and
artificial flies and lures only. Only one trout over 20
inches can be harvested.
In addition to the main Lower Mountain Fork River,
Spillway Creek provides additional fly fishing
opportunities of a completely different nature. It flows
through a canyon with fast pocket water and sections of
runs and riffles. The smaller stream offer a completely
different type of water with both brown and rainbow trout.
Fly fishing the Lower Mountain Fork River can be done
wading as well as from a boat. There are sections where
each method has its advantages. Five miles of the
stream is in Beavers Bend State Park.
This river has an abundant population of several
different aquatic insects, crustaceans and plenty of
baitfish, sculpin and minnows. Hatches occur
throughout the year. The larger trout can become very
selective when feeding and realistic imitations usually
work the best.
We have taken sample of the aquatic insects from this
stream and developed a hatch chart and large data
base. Please call or email us for suggestions on what
flies to use. We will be most happy to help you.
The season is dependant on water temperatures
Early Springtime is usually okay, provided the
discharges are acceptable.
The water can get a little too warm for trout during the
Late Fall is probably the best time for catching the large
trophy brown trout because they spawn during the Fall.
Wintertime is a good time to fish the Lower Mountain
Fork River. Trout can be taken on the dry fly during this
Lower Mountain Fork River Oklahoma
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Fishing Report Updated 07/22/18
(See Archive at the Bottom Of Page)
Lower Mountain Fork River Fishing
Report - Archive:
04/17/4 This tailwater has been producing
trout well for most of the winter and early
spring and should continue to do so. Trout
are being taken on our Brown and White
belly Sculpin and Midges.
05/19/14 Two customers ordering
Blue-winged Olive nymphs, emergers,
duns, spinners reporting size 18 BWO are
hatching. Trout are being caught every
time the discharges allow it.
06/24/14 Although this isn't the best time of
the year to be fishing the Lower Mountain
Fork, one angler reported catching some
very nice size brown trout, obviously
holdovers. He is fishing late into the
evening using our White Belly Sculpin fly.
07/27/14 Fishing has been very good the
past two weeks. Lower air temperature this
week will help.
10/18/14 We have been getting some good
fishing reports for the lower Mtn Fork the
past two weeks. Anglers are catching good
numbers of trout using mostly tandem
midge rigs. Our cream and red midge larva
and pupae imitations are working good.
12/04/14 We should be reporting more
often. Fishing has been very good and
customers are using BWO nymphs, 20/18
and brown sculpin shown linked above left.
12/15/14 We had some Texas and
Oklahoma customers send us some good
reports the past couple of weeks. Midges
and BWO nymphs are key.
12/22/14 Two good reports from the past
week. Customers caught several nice trout.
Watch the levels, rain is forecast
01/13/15 Another good report. Good
discharge levels and nicer weather is in the
01/20/15 No reports from the past week but
conditions remain good.
02/07/15 One good report from a customer
using our Blood or Red midge larva and
pupa fished in tandem.
03/05/15 March Browns have begin to hatch
along with BWOs and midges. Lots of trout
04/10/15 A few trout are being caught
when the discharges are low, but it is often
high at this time of the year.
05/20/15 The water temperature is up to
where the fishing is over for all practical
07/10/15 Just a reminder to let us help
you plan your next trip to the river. Shoot
us an email and we can help you select
the best flies.
08/07/15 it won't be long before the cool
air of Fall arrives and the river becomes a
hot fly fishing destination for trout. Send us
an email and let us help you plan your
assault on them.
08/22/15 We received a report from a
customer that he caught a half dozen nice
size trout this past week. Size 20 BWO
nymphs and Brown Sculpin streamer did
09/09/15 No reports from anglers fishing
but discharges have been high at times. Let
us hear from you.
11/20/15 Sorry for the lack of reports local
guide/contact moved but we are back with
regular reports. Stream levels have been a
problem lately with the rain but when levels
are okay, a lot of trout are being caught.
We recommend midge larva/pupa combo,
Brown sculpin streamers and little BWOs.
11/27/15 Customers reporting catching a lot
of trout but having a hard time finding a rock
to stand on. It has been crowded.
12/03/15 No chance of rain for the next
week with highs in the high fifties and low
sixties. Right now the stream is very high or
12/11/15 The stream is still very high and
blown out but there has been less rain
and the lake level should be coming
down. Keep a close check. They may stop
running water soon.
12/25/15 The discharges are currently very
high and will continue for some time. You
will just have to watch the USGS gauge
and/or power company release schedule.
01/01/16 The discharges have come down
some but the stream levels are still far too
high to fish. Keep a close check on them.
01/15/16 The river levels and flows are
staying very high. The only thing you can
do is to keep checking on them. It is getting
closer to getting all the recent rain water
-1/21/16 The flows are 7,210 cfs at 8.16 ft.
Normal flows are about 901 cfs. You will just
have to keep a check on them to know
when you can fish.
01/29/16 The flows are still very high. Sorry,
but you will just have to keep checking them.
They have to come down for you to have a
chance to fish.
02/05/16 The discharges are down to
normal for this time of the year and
pulsing some. Midges, both cream and red
(blood) larva and pupa combinations and
the Brown sculpin are catching trout.
02/12/16 Good discharges and good
levels exist and anglers are catching
trout. Black Flies and midges are
hatching. Fish the slack current.
02/19/16 The discharges shot up above
normal for a day but are back low and in
good shape. The water should warm up
this week and fishing be better.
02/26/16 Discharges are pulsing but low
enough to fish. The water is slightly warmer
and trout are being caught in good
03/04/16 Blue-winged olives are hatching
along with midges. Fish the BWO nymph
until mid afternoon and switch to the dun or
03/11/16 Generation schedule have been
up and down. Right now the flows are at a
normal level but expect more high
discharges. Makes sure you check the
03/18/16 Stream levels and discharges
have been very high for the last four days.
Fish are being caught in good number
when the discharges are lower and wading
03/25/16 The discharges are down to
normal and anglers are catching trout in
good numbers. BWO nymphs and midge
larva/pupa combos get the most.
04/01/16 Stream levels are looking okay
right now and there is no rain in the
forecast for the coming week. Everything
04/08/16 Stream levels are right at normal
for this time of the year and the water is
clear. Blue-winged olives and caddis are
04/15/16 The river has been up and down
staying a little above normal. There is a lot
of rain on the way starting Sunday. Watch
the levels next week.
04/22/16 The stream levels have just got
back down to normal levels. Spotted sedges
(caddis) are hatching as well as BWOs.
04/29/16 The stream is blown out and will
take a while for the lake level to fall back
down and clear up the tailwater.
05/06/17 The stream levels are high again.
You just have to watch the levels. Little
Cinnamon Caddis, BWOs are hatching.
05/13/16 The discharges and stream levels
are still far too high for any fly fishing
opportunity. You will just have to keep a
check on the levels. The link in on your
05/20/16 The stream levels shot up but
are falling back low and giving anglers
some good fly fishing opportunity.
05/27/16 The stream levels are still
high and the water stained.
06/03/16 Not much opportunity for fly fishing
with the high levels and stained water. Watch
the levels and keep checking back with us.
06/10/16 The discharges are down some and
on a more normal summertime rate, mostly
running in the afternoons. This give you more
The water is too warm for trout
fishing. Check back with us for
07/07/16 The water temperature has already
gotten too warm to fish. Not only would it
stress a trout to catch it, they become a little
lethargic in warm water and aren't easy to
catch. You can be preparing a trip for the Fall
07/29/16 The water temperature is in better
shape and only reaching the mid sixties. There
are a lot of caddisflies hatching. Fish early
mornings and late in the day for the best
results. Flows are about normal.
08/04/16 They continue to run water in the
afternoons. Fishing conditions are better in
the mornings because of that. Caddisfly
larvae imitations and small BWO nymphs are
catching fish for our customers.
08/08/16 They continue to run water mostly in
the afternoons. Mornings are the best time to
fish. Use sculpin streamers. The last two
hours of the day is also a good time. Use
adult Cinnamon caddis or Little Sister caddis.
08/16/16 The power company continues the
pattern of afternoon discharges. Fishing in the
early mornings continues to be the best option.
Fish streamers early and hopper/droppers later
in the morning.
08/2/16 The discharges and stream levels are
a little high right now making it tough to not
safe to wade, but it should be dropping down
soon. Little BWO nymphs, and Sculpin
streamer are working.
09/02/16 The discharges and flows have been a
little high the past few day, making it tough to
wade. Streamers, like the Perfect Fly Brown
Sculpin, are producing some nice trout.
09/09/16 They have been running water in the
morning and not in the afternoons. Streamers,
like the Brown sculpin, have been getting the
09/23/16 They are continuing the pattern of
generating power in the morning and shutting
down afternoons. Fish afternoons using little
BWO nymph, midges and sculpin streamers.
10/01/16 The power company has been shutting
down enough to provide some good wading
opportunities. Our customers have been
catching good numbers of trout. Little size 18
BWO nymphs and Sculpin streamers are working
10/14/16 The river has been producing a lot of
action for some. There aer blue-winged olive
hatches and some little sister sedges hatching.
Brown sculpin streamers are catching some of
the larger trout.
10/21/16 The river is back down in good shape
level wise and anglers should be able to catch
good numbers of trout. Brown sculpin streamer
and small BWO nymphs are hot flies.
10/28/16 The stream level has been high lately
but falling. You should be able to catch plenty
of trout late today and tomorrow. Brown Sculpin
streamers are producing some good ones for
11/04/16 Stream levels are running at a normal
level for this time of the season. There are
plenty of trout being caught. Sculpin streamers
are getting the larger trout.
11/11/16 Stream levels are down much of the
time and up at others. You have to get the
discharge schedule and check the levels to
know when you can and cannot wade.
11/18/16 The stream levels are in good shape
right now, but you always should check them.
Lots of trout are being caught. BWOs and
Cream nymphs work good, as well as Brown
11/25/16 Stream levels are down, allowing good
wading opportunity. Lots of trout are being
caught. Blue-winged olives, Cream and Red
midges, are hatching. Brown Sculpin are
catching the larger trout.
12/02/16 We are still getting some good reports
from customers fishing the tailwater. Small BWO
nymphs and Midges, with the larva and pupa in
tandem, are working good.
12/09/16 The stream levels are running about
normal and anglers are catching trout. Midges,
creams and reds, with the pupa and larva in
tandem, are choice flies. The Brown sculpin
streamer is catching some larger size fish.
12/16/16 The stream is flowing at 441 cfs, which
is a good rate, and anglers are catching good
numbers of trout. Although generic flies will catch
the newly stocked trout, specific imitations of
Midges and Winter stoneflies will catch the larger
holdovers much better.
12/23/16 The stream levels is up and down and
you need to catch it down. Fish section A with
midge larva and pupa, Creams or Reds, in
tandem and you should catch good numbers of
trout. Fish that under and indicator.
12/30/16 The river is still in decent shape with
okay levels. The water is a little colder but still
okay. Midges are still the most important thing to
be imitating. We didn't receive any reports from
anyone fishing this past week, most likely due to
01/06/17 The stream levels are up near the
normal level for this time of the season. Anglers
are catching some trout, mostly on midges.
Some are were caught on streamers but for the
most numbers, stick to cream and red midge
larva and pupa fished in tandem.
01/13/17 The stream levels are very low right
now. That makes wading easy and easy to spook
the trout as well. This is likely to change soon.
There's a chance of rain everyday for the next
week. Midges, BWOs, and Winter stoneflies are
the foods to imitate. Fish Sculpin streamers if the
levels rise. The Black Matuka is a good one.
01/20/17 The discharges and stream levels are
back down low and wading possible at this time,
but make sure you check the schedule and
levels. It is likely to change. The weather is
going to continue to be warm. There are lot of
little BWOs and midges hatching.
01/27/17 The stream levels are up a little and
tough to wade in places but should be falling
soon. Our customers reported some good
catches yesterday using the Brown and
Matuka sculpin streamers. Midges, creams and
reds, should catch the most fish.
02/03/17 The stream levels are staying in decent
shape, flowing at 863 cfs at 2.60 ft. Midge, little
Blue-winged olives, little Black caddis and Winter
stoneflies are hatching. Midges, Creams and
reds, with the larva and pupa in tandem, will get
you the most fish.
02/10/17 The stream levels have been running
below normal levels offering plenty of wading
opportunity. Little Blue-winged olives, Cinnamon
Caddis, and Red and Cream midges continue
to hatch. Sculpin streamers work good in low
02/17/17 The stream levels are about a normal
level for this time of the year. Streamers, like
our Black or Olive Matuka sculpin, have been
working good for the larger trout when there is
low light conditions. Midges are the main
insects to imitate.
02/24/17 The discharges and stream levels are
running about normal. There have been some
nice trout caught this past week, the larger of
which came on the Black Matuka Sculpin
streamer. Midges are the main insects hatching.
Fish the Cream or Red midges with the larva
and pupa rigged in tandem.
03/10/17 The stream levels are up to the normal
level and in good condition. We didn't receive
any reports from anyone fishing this past week
but it should have been good. There are lots of
midges and some little Black Caddisflies
03/24/17 The stream levels are in good shape
and customers are catching trout. The stream
is crowded thanks to Spring Break. Midges,
little Blue-winged olives and March Browns are
hatching along with lots of little Black
04/03/17 Customers are catching good numbers
of trout. There are still plenty of spring breakers
around but it isn't crowded. It is best to fish
during the week if you can. Midges, little Black
Grannom caddis and sculpin streamers are
04/27/17 Stream levels are back down and
wading easy in many places. Our customers
are catching lots of trout. Caddisflies are
hatching good. Fish the pupa during the hatch
and adults during egg laying.
05/23/17 The stream levels are running at a
normal height. It is going to be much warmer
this coming week. You better fish while you
can, the stream can get too warm in the hot
06/15/17 The stream has gotten too warm for
good fly fishing opportunity in our opinion.
We recommend holding off until Fall.
09/07/17 We are resuming the reports. The
water temperature is down and trout are
being caught. There are some hatches and
terrestrials are working.
09/22/17 Both the lower fast water section
and the lower river special regulation section
are turning out a few trout. This will only get
better and the weather cools down some
more. There are some hatches taking place
and imitations of terrestrials are also working.
10/13/17 The weather is a little cooler and
stream levels in okay shape. We are getting
some good reports. Blue-winged olives,
Mahogany duns and Midges are hatching
10/27/17 The river is a little high in the
mornings but falling and okay later on. There
are lots of people fishing and lots of trout
being caught. Bridge construction has some of
the stream messed up.
11/04/17 The stream is back down to a good
level and good numbers of trout are being
caught. Send us an email for a fly list.
11/12/17 The river is turning out some good
trout both in terms of size and numbers. There
are lots of Blue-winged olives and Cream and
Red midges hatching. Sculpin streamers are
catching the larger size trout.
11/19/17 We received two good reports from
customers fishing the river this past week.
They caught some nice size trout on the
Brown sculpin streamer. Midges and
Blue-winged olives continue to be the most
important insects to imitate.
11/26/17 We continue to get good reports
from customers. Remember, there are catch
and release sections with barbless hook
requirements and sections with regular state
12/03/17 We received two more good
reports from customers fishing the river this
past week. You can catch plenty of trout in
the catch and release section, or the put and
take section of the river. Sculpin streamers
and Midges, Creams or Blood midges, are
catching most of them for our customers.
12/10/17 Good conditions continue, with good
numbers of trout being caught in all sections
of the river. The larger trout are coming on
Sculpin streamers and numbers on our Cream
midge larva and pupa rigged in tandem.
12/17/17 Conditions remain good with good
numbers of trout being caught. Winter
stoneflies, Midges - Creams and Reds, and
some BWOs are the main insects to imitate.
12/31/18 Stream levels have been up some
but falling and good numbers of trout are
being caught. Midges and Winter stoneflies
are main insects to imitate.
01/11/18 The stream levels are currently
down and wading safe and easy most places.
Cream and Blood midges (red) and Winter
stoneflies are hatching.
05/25/18 Sorry for the missed reports. There
are good Sulphur and Cinnamon Caddis and
Green Sedge caddis hatches. Fish early and
late in the day for the best results.