published June 12, 2009 by Ben Adams

Fishing the Sulphur Hatch by John Berry

It was a rainy day and my wife, Lori’s, parents were visiting. We had been scheduled to take them to Branson for the day but had rescheduled for the next day, due to the weather. I checked river conditions and noted that the river was down. I decided to get in an afternoon of fishing. The prospect of doing it in the rain did not bother me. Lori’s parents silently questioned my intelligence and wondered just what the heck their daughter had gotten herself into.

I pulled out my beloved 9 ft., 4 wt. Sage Light Line fly rod and began rigging it. The sulphurs had been coming off during the preceding week, so I tied on a Copper John nymph in size 14. The sulphurs are our major mayfly hatch of the year. They are yellowish orange and the Copper John is a dead-on imitation of their nymphs. I used an 18 inch, 6X tippet, a bit of lead tape just above the tippet knot, and a strike indicator set at the depth of the water plus a couple of inches.

I zipped up my rain jacket and closed the hatch back. I walked the trail down to the top of the shoals. I carefully waded across. The water was still dropping out and the wading was a bit treacherous. Halfway across I stopped and pulled out my wading staff. I always carry a folding wading staff and pull it out whenever I encounter fast heavy water. I carefully made my way across and breathed a sigh of relief when I emerged on the other side.

Come inside to read about John Berry’s day on the river, as well as pick up some good tips on fly stages such as nymphal, emerger and adult/dry.

About the Author

Ben Adams

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