Float Tubing Boyer Chute, An Introduction

Jim McWilliams   Thursday, March 01, 2007 8:42 PM

Float tube fishing can be rewarding, but it can have many pitfalls for unseasoned anglers. If you are thinking about float tubing than this introduction to float tube fishing is for you.

About three weeks ago it was a warm sunny Saturday so I headed for the Boyer Chute. This is usually a moving body of water taking in a good flow from the Missouri River, and then letting it back in again a mile or so downstream. No..you never fish moving water in a float tube?more on that later.

The river water was way down, and the ice sheet that covered the Boyer Chute had disappeared after a few warm days. When I arrived at the edge of the chute, I was happy to see that the water was still. There was no water moving in, no water moving out. I unloaded my fishing gear, float tube, pump, tackle boxes, waders, life vest, wading shoes and fins and went to work. Soon the tube was full of air and I was pulling on my waders.

Remember that article about cold water tubing? The water temp was about 34 degrees. I had layered thermals, silks, jeans, and two pare of socks to keep warm. By the time I got the waders pulled on over the padded feet, I was so hot I could hardly wait to get in the water. I found a good place and slipped in and began my favorite past time?looking for the lunkers. Three hours later, I pulled myself from the water with only one hit?a good one that got away. Time wasted? Never a bad day fishing?never.

A float tube is something different to wildlife. Three different times beaver swam very close to me before seeing that I was more than just something floating in their homeland. They slapped their tails and headed below. Birds were everywhere?woodpeckers were even pounding on the logs sticking out of the water. Geese flew overhead, and the scent of the woods was incredible. And?I was still warm.

The water in the chute was quite clear. As I moved about I could clearly see logs and snags on both sides, as well as down the middle. Great fish cover, but these are the items that get you in trouble in moving water?even fairly slow moving water. Your wading shoe and fin, or just a fin will get caught in the fork of a branch or snag and stop you dead in the water?the moving water will pull you out of your tube and the current will pull you down?foot caught, no way out. NEVER float tube in moving water?even if it looks like the best fishing you have ever seen.

With warm weather approaching I am looking forward to spring bass and pike fishing. I have spend most of the last two weeks driving all over South Dakota on business, while keeping an eye out for those hot spots. The population up there is about half that of Nebraska, with more water and lots of fish. Dan and I, along with a few other hearty souls will be heading up there early in the season. If you have never fished South Dakota you should give it a try?incredible fish and lots of them. An annual family fishing license is under $60.00. Not too bad.

I am still working on securing a farm pond for the float tube fest that is coming up. It is easy to get on a pond?but hard to convince a farmer that a crowd of guys will show up and catch and release and not leave any mess. Still working on it though, and I should have some information for you soon.

If one of you out there owns one, or has a relative that will have us, please send some e-mail?we will leave the area cleaner than when we arrived and that?s a promise.

Still thinking about a float tube? Now is the time! Get ready, get going and buy one before the spring prices go into full swing. There is no feeling like having a bass jump at eye level or a pike jump higher than your head and pull you to the center of the lake. A whole different world of fishing, a whole different sport?you give the fish odds and get a small workout to boot.

Keep those hooks sharp! COME ON SPRING!!!

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2 Comments

re: Float Tubing Boyer Chute, An Introduction
3/15/2007 2:01:57 PM  jim says,

maybe it's a fear factor and I have to try it again. I have a smaller river, easily waded but covering long distances is slow on foot. I tried a float tube once but it seemed the current was too fast, unless I only use it to travel faster from hole to hole. What's it like to kick against current in a pontoon style float tube, as I wouldn't want to wade all the way back upstream. The deepest hole is probably 5-6' with the average being waist deep.

re: Float Tubing Boyer Chute, An Introduction
3/23/2007 12:01:24 AM  Derek says,

Jim, Dan said he emailed you. If you still have questions let me know.

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