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Rural Missouri Magazine

Frosty Fishing
Winter Trout Season

by Bob McEowen

For many anglers, the dead of winter is the ideal time to go fishing. Catch-and-release season at Missouri’s trout parks offers a chance to improve skills and enjoy the beauty of an Ozark stream without the crowds normally found during regular fishing season.

The fishermen on our cover took advantage of a brisk winter day to fish Montauk State Park near Licking. At left, Fred Schmidt of St. Louis ties a fly onto his line while standing in Current River, which begins within the park. Besides Montauk, two other state parks — Bennett Spring, near Lebanon, and Roaring River, near Cassville — also offer trout fishing opportunities during winter months.

Winter fishing is also allowed at Maramec Spring Park, operated by the James Foundation near St. James and in Missouri’s wild trout management areas.

During winter months fishing is limited to Friday through Sunday in Missouri’s trout parks. Only flies and artificial lures may be used and all fish caught must be released back into the stream.

Winter catch-and-release season runs through Feb. 13. Regular trout season resumes March 1.

For more information about Missouri’s trout parks log onto www.mostateparks.com or call 1-800-334-6946. Information about Missouri’s fishing seasons is available at wherever fishing licenses are sold.

 

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