Winter fishing season opens at RRSP on Nov. 14

Thursday, November 6, 2008

With the opening of deer season and the winter catch-and-release trout fishing season opening on the same weekend, turnout is expected to be light at Roaring River State Park.

This year's winter no-creel season begins on Friday, Nov. 14 and continues through Feb. 9, 2009. Anglers have the opportunity to fish at state-owned trout parks, including Roaring River, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.

"Missouri has more than 470,000 firearms deer hunters," said James Civiello, cold-water hatchery supervisor for the Missouri Department of Conservation. "A significant number of those folks also like trout fishing, so I think attendance will be down that first weekend."

The only permits required for catch-and-release fishing at trout parks are a fishing permit and a statewide trout permit, which is valid throughout the entire winter season.

According to Jerry Dean, Roaring River hatchery manager, winter fishing is allowed in the park from the hatchery downstream to the bridge next to the ballfield in Campground #3. Downstream from that bridge is closed to anglers.

During the winter season, fishermen can use flies only and fish must be released back into the river unharmed. Dean said it is advised that fish be released as quickly as possible.

"This is especially important with larger fish," said Dean. "There is a much greater chance of mortality if a large fish is played too long or handled poorly."

A large number of lunkers are still in the stream for anglers to catch. Later in the winter, hatchery crews plan to stock around 900 14- to 15-inch Brown Trout in the stream.

For more information on the catch and release season, call 847-2430.

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