Blue River Oklahoma off to an Early Start – Barry Shrader Talks Big Rainbows

| November 24, 2015

blue river oklahoma trout fly fishing report #flyfishing

It has been awhile since I’ve seen Barry in the flesh, but you will find his prose at Drifting the Prairie Ocean. You will find his most current information about the Blue River and photography as well at that site. He guided my bro-in-law and myself once we decided to do the Blue, and although it certainly isn’t all that complicated, that early encounter was a perfect example of the old adage, “GET A GUIDE!” He saved us a lot of time, left us with plenty of information, and revealed a deep concern for the Blue and how important conservation is as it pertains to that river and its fishery – really taking ownership, and leadership as outside forces were moving in with their own interests placed way ahead of the Blue River.

The actual report from Barry is a Pay-Per-View read – obviously necessary to curb a stampede that no one wants. It’s amazing what one tin dime will do to people’s perspectives isn’t it?

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male rainbow trout

A Blue River catch-and-release pig from a couple seasons ago.

[ppw id=”117381086″ description=”HOT SPOT – Blue River Oklahoma Report” price=”.10″]

Even though some of the feature like sandbars have changed, the river is fishing basically the same.  I haven’t had a chance to get to the south wilderness area yet to see how it’s fishing.  The catch and release wasn’t fishing at all at first, but now it is fishing quite well.  There are some large trout up there.  Scott Dittner caught a four and six pounder just the other day.  The area manager says the fish he put in up there averaged 3 pounds.

The island below the crossing is fishing well and upstream from the crossing is fishing good also.  You remember where you caught the nice trout down in area 1?  It was the pool below campsite 17.  I’ve been swinging buggers and soft hackles down and in that pool and doing well.

Hope this helps.

Blue River Oklahoma Fishing Map

Click to enlarge this map.

Thanks for the report Barry! I know the readers appreciate first-hand information about an alternative to the long drive to Beaver’s Bend, and the unpredictability there. Remember? We want to know before we go!

NOTE – This river and the surroundings are very conducive to family outings, although camping is out of the picture. The Blue is a place where outdoorsy kids can adventure and fish quite easily in the south wilderness area. The south can get crowded on holidays and weekends, especially compared to the catch-and-release up north. The northern part has bike-able trails that are easy, but it is devoid of people most often, and there are very few improvements. That northern stretch is more complex to fish, and I NEVER ADVISE taking this on alone. After a few trips with a buddy, it could be done alone – especially if you want all those pigs for yourself!

I think you’ll be surprised by what you find there. It is an aquifer fed river with exceptional water that adds to the overall beauty of the river. I can’t wait to see how it has changed, as it was getting a bit trashy in the last few years. It’s a location that you don’t want to hesitate to hit if you get a good report. Poachers have routinely cleaned out the catch-and-release, and locals will pick the catch-and-kill area clean pretty quickly – especially when there’s a holiday, or holiday weekend involved. There has also been a non-native otter that has apparently wreaked havoc on the trout population. We have seen bite marks on fish, and trout seemed to be disappearing pretty quickly after stockings. Add all this up, and we have a situation where if the Blue says jump (off your recliner), you really should say how high!

I’ve done this river in snow, sleet, ice and rain. Pay attention to the weather (know before you go), because this river was plopped right down on on the Oklahoma Plains, and when the wind comes blowing … it gets cold quick, and it blows so hard you’re done with a fly rod.

For some reason, I seem to have developed a soft spot for Oklahoma’s Blue River over the years, and if you click – MORE BLUE RIVER STORIES – you will probably agree with me. It’s just so close, and lesser known than Beaver’s Bend. If you click on that link, you will have access to clicking onto the stories from many years, and they detail fly selection, rod selection, techniques, seasonal quirks, and much more.


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Category: Fishing Reports, Fly Fishing for Trout, Hot Spot, Oklahoma Report, Paid Reading Content, Technique, TIPS

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  1. shannon says:

    WARNING – I heard from JH today. He went to the Blue River yesterday, and reported, “That place needs two more weeks, and another hard freeze to get rid of the snakes and ticks. It needs a lot more fish too.” All I can say is, now you know before you go. 11/25/15

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