Current River Guide Service

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Fishing trips... 2016

I had the privilege of fishing this past weekend with two different groups of people. On Saturday I fished with Chris Wiley and Lee Saalfeld. Chris hails from Branson, Mo. and Lee lives in Ecuador, South America. They caught some good quality smallmouth, numbering about 25-30, with the best ones going between 15-16 inches.
On Sunday, I fished with a cardiac surgeon and his wife from Littlerock. Arkansas . They had an excellent day also, catching about the same number and size of fish. It was a beautiful two days to be on the river with some fine people!


John Dillard with a 2# smallie!


Marcus Child's with a decent smallie!


I got the privilege of fishing the last two days with some really great guys. A father and son duo, Jim and Marcus Childs of Kansas Ciry area on Saturday and John Dillard, Granite City, ill area on Sunday. The weather was great and the fishing was great, but the catching was a little tough. They caught fish and they were happy!

Had a great time gigging with two brothers, Hunter and Fisher Wadlow and their dad, Richard. We fryed up some suckers, taters, hush puppies and biscuits before dark, then put the boat in the river. We ran downriver a few miles before dark, then gigged our way back upriver. This was the boys first ever gigging trip and they picked up six suckers. They got enough to take home to Park Hills, Mo. to fry. As they were leaving for home they said they were "hooked"!
I fished yesterday on the Current ahead of the rise coming down the river with my good friend, Clifford Foster. We shoved off the boat ramp at Van Buren and started fishing our way downstream. Fished all the way to Smith's cabin. Didn't catch a lot of fish, probably 12, with the best (2) going right at 16 inches. One fat and one skinny!
Later, Riverman

I fished yesterday with my friend, Dave Goehring, Cape Girardeau. We had a good day on the river. Not a large number of fish, probably 20 or so with he two best ones going right at 16 inches. Good healthy fish. A good day to be on the river.
Later, Riverman

I had a great day fishing with Richard Wadlow and his son, Fisher. They are from up in the Park Hills country and came down to do a little smallmouth fishing. We done good on the smallies, probably 35 or so with the best one going a solid 16 1/2 inches. All in all, a good day.  Later, Riverman 08272016

I had another great day on the river with my good friend, Clifford Foster. We caught our limit of hog suckers plus a Yeller. And the best part was we brought them home and eat them!! — with Clifford Foster and Riverman.

I took Bob(Watercress campground host) fishing this morning. We ran up to PinOak, put on the rain jackets and started fishing! The fish are still in the faster water. Bob was throwing a lighter colored bait today and that seemed to be what they wanted. I couldn't get much action on my green pumpkin baits. We probably caught app. 12 or so smallies with the best going a good 14 inches that Bob caught. It was a good morning. Later, Riverman 08/06/2016

I took Bob( Watercress campground host) fishing this morning. We ran up to PinOak, put on the rain jackets and started fishing! The fish are still in the faster water. Bob was throwing a lighter colored bait today and that seemed to be what they wanted. I couldn't get much action on my green pumpkin baits. We probably caught app. 12 or so smallies with the best going a good 14 inches that Bob caught. It was a good morning. Later, Riverman

I've had a good two days on the River. Last Friday, my wife and I sucker fished. She had me down three to zip before I finally put a fish in the boat! But, I managed to catch up, but she caught both of the yellar suckers! Today, we loaded her kayak and headed upriver. Ran all the way to Sugarcamp to put her in the river. I bass fished along behind. Caught several in the 10-12 inch range, nothing bigger. Pulled over about 11:00 in the shade to eat a bite of lunch and take a nap. All I all, a good two days. I've got a couple of photos, but apparently I can't add them after I have written my post! Thanks but no thanks Facebook for changing the format! I'll have to add them in a subsequent post. 
My wife and I took our long time friends, Mike and Brenda Ross to the river today. Put in at Chilton Creek, ran up a ways, set up our chairs, then piled back in the boat and motored up to Blue Springs. It was a beautiful morning for a boat ride! Floated and eased our way back downriver, eat a baloney sandwich, then sat with our feet in the river under our canopy. A great time was had by all! 07222016
This was my view from my office this morning! I had a Good morning. Limit of hog suckers and one Yeller, caught and cleaned by 8:30! Life is good!
Later, Riverman

I do believe I had one of the prettiest young ladies in my boat today, Madi Lucas, from Ohio. And on top of that she knows how to fish! She has big fish of the day, a 15-16 inch smallie, her first ever! We caught between 15-20 today, but only managed to get about half of them in the boat. They weren't holding on very tight. All in all, it was a great day to be on the River. June 29, 2016


I had a good day today. I took my friend, Clifford Foster, sucker fishing. We had a double limit and three yellow suckers caught by 9:30am! Then, the best part was, we cleaned them and fried some up for lunch on a gravel bar. John Conner and Danielle Conner joined us and we had a feast!

 June 25, 2016


I took my neighbor today about eight miles up. The river is still falling and getting cleare each day. The fish are still not real aggressive yet, but that will come. We caught ten or so, with the biggest going 15 inches. Quit about 10:30. We bought had chores to do back at the house! Going again tomorrow to see what it brings. Later, Riverman June 9, 2016


I finally got back out on the River today. Boat had been in the shop for two weeks for fuel problems, not that it really mattered! Took a friend and ran up to Pin Oak and started fishing our way back down. River is falling and still swift. We managed 15 smallies and three goggleye. Nothing to get excited about , but we caught fish! Plan to go again tomorrow and see how it goes. Later, Riverman  June 8, 2016


Well, as you know, it's been raining almost non stop. The river has been up and down for the last two weeks. Not very conducive to fishing! And, on top of that, my motor had to go in the shop! Seems my nine year old fuel line was not ethanol compliant. It separated on the inside and plugged the fuel line. I still don't have it back, don't matter though. The river is headed back up and muddy after the rain last night.
Later, Riverman  05272016


I fished a couple of days the first of last week with a couple of fine fellows, Richard Mendenhall, Columbia, Mo. and Norman Leppo, St. Louis, Mo. We had been trying to get this trip in since last year, but every time we would schedule, the river would flood. But not this time. We had a great two days. The fishing was great, but the catching is off. I'm thinking the bass are going on the beds and they aren't too interested in eating! Got their minds on something else! We did manage to catch a few, though, just not anything big. Oh, well, that's fishing. A poor day of fishing always beats a good day at work. See ya on the River. The Riverman 04252016


I fished again today! Took my good friend, Pat Anderson, out for a little R&R! He's been working 6 days a week since the first of the year and no chances of getting on the river. We ran up to Sugarcamp and started fishing our way back. Never caught a fish till we got down to Hibner Rock, then caught a half dozen out of a little pocket. We thought this is going to be good, then, the wind started blowing out of the sse AGAIN! Seems like we can't get a break on the wind. It was a great day to be on the river, I just don't like fishing in the wind and the fish don't like to bite with an east wind! Oh, well, there is tomorrow. Later, RiverMan


I fished today with Ron Randen from down in the boot heel. We had a good day, in spite of that pesky southeast wind! It kind of slowed the catching down, but still was a great day. Saw several boats trying their luck at snagging some suckers. One fella said they were about done doing their "thing"! I'm taking a good friend tomorrow and try to get some good video to put together a YouTube video. 04162016


I had a great day on the River today with two fine people from Arkansas. We left the boat ramp at 0700 and ran up to just below Paint Rock and started fishing. The wife, Wendy, started us off in the first 10 minutes with a dandy smallie and never let up the pressure all day long. We finished the day with close to 50 small mouth caught and released, the biggest going a solid three pounds with several in the two pound range. Out of the 50, we only had six that were under the twelve inch mark. The fish are very healthy and aggressive. Later, RiverMan 04152016

I finally got back out on the river this morning. It's been a long dry spell! Anyway, ran up a few miles, caught one right off on a top water, then couldn't get another strike. Threw a spinnerbait a little, nothing. Finally went to my old standby, the Senko. Bingo! Started catching smallies. About a dozen in a couple hours of fishing. Best got off, but didn't manage to get one good one in the boat. Out of the dozen, only two were under 12 inches, most in the 12-15 inch range and really healthy. Later, Riverman

I fished today. Put in under the bridge and went down a couple of miles before dropping the trolling motor. I had high expectations today, but it wasn't in the cards. Caught about a dozen of small fish, with the biggest going 14 1/2 inches. But, it was a gorgeous day to be on the River. Just saw a couple of other boats and a few bald eagles. All in all, it was a great day! See you on the River!  2/17/16

I fished the Ellington Nutrition Center benefit tournament hosted by Doug Warren and friends. There were 15 boats in the tourney. Winning weight was 12.44 for five fish. My partner, Billie Towner, and I weighed 8.44#. I believe that is about in the middle of the pack. Oh. Well, that is fishing! It was a great day to be on the river. 2/20/16

Well, we fished again today, went downriver this time. Was pretty Irish when we left the boat ramp at 0830! The fishing was great today, but the catching was off a little. I did manage to catch a nice smallie, 19 1/2 inches, between 3 1/2 and 4 pound. Saw quite a few eagles again today. All in all, a good day! Later, Riverman

I fished this past Friday with a friend from Van Buren. Ran up from the bridge checking things out after the flood. There are a few changes and a couple places that are going to get interesting come summer! We threw small tubes and hair jigs and caught several smallmouth. The biggest went a solid 17 3/4 inches! All in all, it was a good day. Saw quite a few Eagles, mature and immature. Looking forward to getting back out there! 

Later, Riverman  1/31/16



I fished today with John Dillard and his faithful companion, Pearl(his West Highland Terrier). We had a Great day, and the fishing and catching was really good also! We boated between 20-30 smallies with John catching his best ever smallie, a 2.82#! Our best (5) fish would have been pushing close to (9) pound. That would probably put us in the money if we had been fishing a tourney. We caught them on a little bit of everything, Senkos, spinnerbaits, jerk baits and swim baits. John even caught a hefty largemouth. All in all, a great day to be on the River. I also had a great view from my office today! Tight lines and heavy stringers, the Riverman


The gigs were gluon' and the suckers were dyin' tonite! My partner and I killed an even dozen this evening and a couple of them were biggin's! There is some good eatin' coming our way Are you ready Vicky Lofting?


 took Ben Davis and his son,Landon gigging last night. Also, had my son in law, John Conner. We killed a few suckers and came back to the house and fried them up. A good time was had by all!


I took my son, Ben Davis and his son, Landon from Walla Walla, Washington smallmouth fishing for a few hours this morning. The fishing was great, but catching a little slow. We all agreed that a poor day fishing beats a good day at work or school! It was a gorgeous morning to be on Current River.


I've been doing quite a bit of fishing the last couple of weeks. The River has gotten low and clear, but it hasn't stopped the smallies from biting! I've been fishing downriver below Big Springs. We've had some good trips with the biggest fish going 16-17 inches and really chunky. A lot of 12-13 inchers. Probably caught 60-80 smallies with the majority over 12 inches. Hoping we get some rain to put a little color and some water in the River. Tight lines and heavy stringers!
Later, the Riverman

I was asked what they were biting. I'm still fishing the Senko, but have downsized to a 3 inch on an 1/8* Slider head. Still using the freeness pimpkin


I had an enjoyable afternoon on the River with two fine fellows from St Louis, Dave Bueller and his (10) years old son, Mason. We left the boat ramp about 2 pm and headed upriver. We got upriver about seven miles and started fishing and all three of us had fish on on the first two minutes! Mason caught his first ever smallie! We continued on downriver catching enough fish to keep it interesting. We got down to PinOak and father and son doubled up on a couple of smallies. We had a great afternoon. They are staying the night in my guest suite and we are hitting the River again in the morning after a Riverman's breakfast.


I had a great week, this past week. I got to fish with two great guys, Bob Aletano, Greenwood, Mo. and Kent Holder, Nixa, Mo. We fished on Wednesday starting out in the rain with the rain suits on. It was pretty slow until about 10:30 when the rain quit. We tried my usual honey holes, nothing. So, we started hitting the fast water, skinny and deep. We started picking up fish, with the best going 17 3/4 and a real pig at 19 inches. Numerous fish in the 11/13 inch range. Probably 30-35 fish total.

I took the girls, Donna Kipp and Vicky Lofting, sucker fishing today. We had a good day, no, we had a Great day of fishing and enjoying the River. We did really well on the catching part, too! We ended up with (5) hog suckers, (4) yellow suckers, one of those probably going close to three pound. Also, one small drum and a gut hooked 13 inch smallmouth and a few sun perch. There is some fine dining coming up in our near future! Vicky Lofting caught her first ever hog sucker and she was so excited, she actually almost kissed her sucker!
Had a great day on the River with Ron Randen and his neighbor, Winfred "Win" Wilkins from Gideon, Mo. Win got to catch his first ever smallmouth. We left the boat ramp about 0630 and ran upriver. Started catching allies right off, nothing big without between 11-15 inches. We got off the River about 1330 when the wind and heat kicked in. All in all, it was a good day.
Had a great day on the River today with Pat Anderson and his father, Pat Anderson, Sr. We caught fish all day long with h numerous fish over 12 inches. I managed to pull out a real pig. 20.5 inches and 3.94#. The River has cleared real well, probably the best since this spring. I'll be looking for you on the River.
The Riverman

The Rivermom and I had a good day on the river today sucker fishing. Total count was (8) hogs and (2) pea mouth yellers. We fried a few filets with taters and onions for lunch. We're saving the rest for lunch on Sunday after church. It was a great day to be on the river. Later, the Riverman

I fished today with Jess and Patsy Atkinson, West Plains, Mo. They had come over and fished last fall and decided to come back and try some early summer fishing. We had a great day, didn't even get stormed on! Patsy caught our best fish of the day, a solid 18 incher. This qualifies her for the MDC Master Angler award. We also saw the bull elk again this morning. A first for Jess and Patsy, seeing elk in Mo.! Al in all, a great day.
Went to the River today after church. John and Danielle Conner brought their boat and we put in at Chilton creek boat ramp and ran up from there to our favorite gravel bar. Got the Smokey Joe to going and settled back with a cold drink waiting for the coals to settle down. Put some brats on to cook, then went to looking for the buns. Oops! Someone (me) had forgot them. Oh well, who needs buns. Got our lunch eat just about the time the thunder started. Had saw a water patrolman go upriver while we were eating and not about the time the rain was getting there, he came back down and told us there was a bull elk standing beside the river eating upriver from us. So, we all piled in my boat and took off up there and shore nuff, there he was, as big as you please! Was the least bit concerned with us. Got some good pictures and a video. We pulled over to the other side of the river and tried some sucker fishing. Caught two, but only managed to get one in the boat. Maybe next time. Sat under the boat canopy for probably a good hour so watching it rain and watching the elk. It finally let up and we lit out for the house. Later, The Riverman
I fished today with two great guys, Retired Judge Bob Cope formly of Poplar Bluff and his friend from kindergarten, David Powers of Arkansas. We had a great day on the river. Caught some smallmouth and found out that Bob and I know a lot of the same people! We didn't have any wall hangers, but some nice ones. The fishing is heating up along with the temps. I believe they are coming off the post spawn and getting ready to get down to business. So, I will look for you on the River! The Riverman

I fished today with my good friend,Dave Goehring of Cape Girardeau,Mo. The day started off a little rainy, but the fish were biting. We kept the rain suits on till a little before noon when it finally let up a little. Heard thunder a couple of times, but nothing close! Dave a couple of nice smallies, 16 1/4 inchers. One during the rain and one in the bright sunshine. Go figure. All in all, we had a good day, caught probably 20-25 nice smallies with some small ones thrown in the mix. 
Later, The Riverman

I spent the day at the Sports Show at the Rover Center here in Van Buren. It was a good day, made some good contacts. We'll see what happens.

Fished yesterday with Jim Moody from St. Louis , Mo. Had a good day, rover was still a little high, but we managed to catch 15-20 smallies. Nothing over 15 inches , but a lot between 12-15. Later, Riverman

Another fine day on the River with my good friend, Pat Anderson. We left the boat ramp about 0730 under cloudy skies and ran up to the Lambert Hole. Started fishing our way back downstream throwing a little bit of everything to see what their preference was today. The clouds gave way to some sunshine. We tied on some crank baits and spinnerbaits and had our best luck with them throughout the day. We managed about 20 smallies with the biggest going 14-15 inches. We had more over 12 inches than under 12. I've got a tournament Sat. morning, so I hope them big sows begin to bite! Later, The Riverman

I had another good day on the River yesterday with two fine people, Joan Morrison and Robert Ott, from South Carolina. Joan is an Ellington native that likes to come back home to the River she loves. She has been coming the past four years and bringing her friend, Robert with her. We had a good day fishing, the catching was just off a little. We managed probably 25 or so smallies with the biggest going about 14 inches. As Robert said though, we had a Large day on the River. Later, The Riverman


I just got off the River after spending two day s with two great guys to run the River with, Tommy Riggins of Hot springs, Ar. And Doug Hale from West Plains, Mo.
We fished Wed. afternoon from about 2:30 till 6:30. We caught several smallies, but nothing going much over 13 inches. But, today was a different story! Tommy started us off with a 19 1/2 inch smallie and then backed her up with a 17 incher five minutes later. Doug was doing his best to try to stay in the game, but just past that 13-14 inch mark. We stopped at Pin Oak bluff for lunch, then shoved off and started fishing on down the River. I shortly caught a 17 incher and that really started putting the pressure on Doug! A little bit farther, Tommy caught another 19 inch smallie! I think Doug was starting to bluebill a little by then. We floated on down into Peach Orchard and right before dropping into Waymeyer, Doug set the hook and hollered out, GET THE NET! We were right on the shoal, so, I got the Mercury and kept us off the shoal and Tommy ran the net. When we finally got her in the boat, a solid 20 inch four pound smallmouth! Doug and come thru big time! We fished a ways farther down to Raftyard, but just caught a few smaller smallies and by then, it was time to call the dogs, put out the fire and head for home. Later, The Riverman. Hope to see ya on the River

I took Rivermom to te River after lunch today for Mothers Day. We fished a little for goggleye and smallmouth. We didn't get to far upstream because it was looking stormy. We caught a few small goggleye and one small smallie, then the thunder started! We headed for the boat ramp and just barely beat the storm! Maybe we'll have better luck next time. We've got a three day float trip scheduled with some friends the week after a Memorial Day. We'll be putting in at Baptist Camp and floating to Pulltite, about 21 miles. We're hoping for fair weather! 
We had our first party of the year on the deck this evening. Fried up a few fish and taters. Had some good salads and slaw to go with it with lots of sweet tea. May 4, 2015
We fished from seven this morning til six this evening. It was a great fishing day but kind of tough on the catching! We did finally manage to catch a mess. The best of the day was a 17 1/4 inch smallmouth and a 16 inch largemouth. Donna broke her jinx with a nice catfish. We're gonna try for some white bass first thing in the morning, then head for Missouri! We did see a momma and poppa goose with six just hatched goslings! May 2
Well, we're in Alabama fishing below Wilson Dam. Didn't do any good on the smallmouth today, but we did get into some white bass. Had one small male and the rest were in the 14-16 inch range. Got to the hotel and there are bass boats everywhere! Found out they are having a high school bass tournament tomorrow . They are expecting 200 boats! Should prove interesting! May 1
Later, Riverman
I'm headed back to Alabama this coming weekend. Taking the Rivermom and joining up with five other couples from the Van Buren area to catch some of those trophy smallmouth. I'll keep you all up to date on the great fishing down there. We will be fishing the tail race of Wilson Dam on the Tennessee River. This is the very southern edge of the smallmouth range and has the longest growing season for them. That's why they get to be so BIG! If you want a chance at catching a five pound plus smallmouth, give me a shout and I will get you hooked up! Later, Riverman April 27, 2015

We finished out our trip to Alabama this morning with a couple of hours of fishing before heading home. We got on to some white bass action and Bob Todd even caught a Dog fish. This was a new one for me! We threw it back! That thing has Teeth! April 18, 2015


This was our excitement for the day, we had a tug come by pushing two barges. April 17, 2015


Well, we've got another day of fishing in the books. It was a tough day today. They had shut the water off last night and dropped the river app three foot! That really turned the fish off. Then they raised it back up today. The fish didn't know what to do. I only took one picture today. Dave finally caught him a smallie. Tomorrow is another day. April 17, 2015

Another good day in the books. My buddy, Bob Todd caught another 20 inch plus smallie today. I backed him up with a 21 incher! All of our fish were from 15 inches up. We had a little fish fry for lunch with: Joey Crafton, Bill Crafton, Chris Crafton, Red Roberts, Bubba Roberts, Dennis ?(Bill Crafton's brother in law), Bob Todd, Dave Goehring, and yours truly. We're going for that five pound plus tomorrow! April 16, 2015


First day in Alabama. My buddy, Bob Todd, caught a 21 inch smallie pushing 4 1/2 pound. I managed a 15 1-2 inch smallie and then that shut down. Well get'em tomorrow!

Spring is Here and it's time to FISH! I'm headed to Muscle Shoals, Alabama Wed. morning for a few days old smallmouth fishing. They grow them big down there, four pounders are fairly common and it's possible to catch a six to seven pounder! I'll have some pictures and a fishing report when I get back this weekend. April 14, 2015

Spring is officially here Tomorrow! WooHoo! And with it comes thoughts of getting on the River. If you like to float, but don't relish the idea of carrying all your gear for an overnight trip, let Current River Guide Service do the hard work for you. I just purchased a 16 foot new Osagian freighter canoe rated to handle 700 pounds just to do commissary work. I'm scheduled to do a two-three night float trip for a couple of ladies in late May. We will be putting in at Baptist Camp and probably taking out at Pulltite. I'll be hauling all the tents, cots, food, cooking gear, etc. if you think you might be interested in this experience, give me a call and we can set up an excursion for you. Hope to see you on the River! March 19, 2015

The swift shoals and slower deep pools provide a variety of fun fishing opportunities on the Current Rver. Most fishermen go after smallmouth bass with spinning or casting equipment. But fly fishermen have fun too, though it is sometimes difficult to fish deep enough with fly rod to tempt the larger smallmouths in Current's clear water. Whatever you fish with, you'll enjoy the comfort of river fishing out of a boat built for this river.

For something really different, come back during the fall for gigging season. About 80 per cent of the fish population is suckers, and there is a season when you can gig them. Imagine the river revealed at night by lights pointed at the bottom. It is fun, and the way we prepare them, suckers are delicious fare.

Smallmouth are bruisers and they are the dominant predator in Current River. Well, maybe fishermen are the top predators. We'll help you give it a try.


Nearby Clearwater Lake is a good place for crappie, especially when Current River is high from spring rains.


Walleye are not what you think of when you think of the clear Ozark streams. But they are here and make an exciting change of pace. I do not claim to be an expert about catching them, but I can show you where they're at!








Riverman says, 

"Work is for people who don't fish."


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