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Iowa may not be the first state that comes to mind when you think of fly fishing, but it offers some excellent opportunities for anglers looking to cast a line. With over 70,000 miles of rivers and streams, Iowa has plenty of water to explore, including several major rivers and smaller tributaries.
One of the most popular destinations for fly fishing in Iowa is the Upper Iowa River. This river is located in the northeastern part of the state and is known for its crystal-clear water, scenic bluffs, and excellent trout fishing. The Upper Iowa River is home to both brown and rainbow trout, as well as smallmouth bass and northern pike.
Another great destination for fly fishing in Iowa is the Iowa River. This river runs from the north-central part of the state down to the southeastern corner, and offers some excellent fishing for smallmouth bass, channel catfish, and walleye. The Iowa River is also home to some large carp, which can provide some exciting fishing for fly anglers.
In addition to the major rivers, Iowa also has several smaller streams and creeks that are worth exploring. The Maquoketa River, located in the eastern part of the state, is one such stream. It is a popular destination for fly anglers looking to catch smallmouth bass and panfish, and offers some great scenery along the way.
Fly fishing in Iowa can be enjoyed year-round, although the best time to fish is generally from April to October. During this time, the water temperatures are warmer, and the fish are more active. Anglers should be aware that the summer months can be hot and humid, so it is important to bring plenty of water and sunscreen.
One of the great things about fly fishing in Iowa is that it is accessible to anglers of all skill levels. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced fly angler, there are plenty of opportunities to catch fish in the state. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources also offers several classes and workshops throughout the year to help anglers improve their skills.
Another benefit of fly fishing in Iowa is the abundance of public land available for fishing. There are several state parks and wildlife areas throughout the state that offer access to the water, including some excellent fishing spots. The state also has several fishing access sites along the major rivers, which provide easy entry and exit points for anglers.
Overall, while Iowa may not be as well-known as some other states for fly fishing, it is still a great destination for anglers looking to cast a line. With a variety of rivers, streams, and creeks to explore, there is something for everyone in this underrated fly fishing destination. Whether you are looking to catch trout, bass, or panfish, you are sure to find some great fishing in Iowa. So, grab your gear and head out to the water to experience all that Iowa fly fishing has to offer.