One of my favorite things as a mountain dweller, is watching snow melt! It’s slightly more action filled than watching paint dry, but more satisfying……because we know our winter is coming to a close. The warmth we have been getting during the day is actually 49 deg, but feels like 60 deg. I have been doing a reptile imitation, just sitting in the sun, trying to convince my mind and body that we have gotten through another winter………
What I watch for are the first arrivals of Spring; Alder Gnat catchers, starlings, Geese, and in the bug department…Skwallas! These Stone Flies are a big bite for fish, after a Winter of little bites. We spotted one last week near Hirschdale, so that’s where Spring is so far. The timing is crucial for birds too. They will need to feed their offspring, and Skwallas make a nice meal for them, as well as the fish. It happens a little differently every year, but will happen….and the cycle continues. It’s nice to be here too, to see another year begin again.
Not to leave you in suspense…..but the fishing has been great, and getting better. The higher flows are not an impediment to fishing. We shift styles…not as many rising fish to eat dries, but they can be caught that way, if you are patient. As far as other styles……bobbers work, and so does Czech or “Merican” high stick nymphing. Streamers are becoming more attractive to fish…..The water temp is 40+ right now, so fish are moving more. There are those who will wait for the warmth of Summer to go fishing. Personally, I enjoy fishing too much to take 5 months off……..
My question is why not go fish? Aim for the Bluebird days in between the weather for fishiest windows……..But it’s so nice out, whether you catch or not, it’s wortha trip….
There are those who consider fishing in the Summer the only rational time to go out……. It is actually better in Winter…..not much crowding…..and the fish have let their hair down….so to speak. There are some hazards….I fell this week, did a shoulder dislocate…. Learned how to self reduce……then went fishing……It’s too fine not to go. I’ve heard that fly fishing is good therapy for shoulders, so that works out well….. Just watch your step out there, and have fun.
The fish are in there!!!! This Bow got Stephen going on a 4wt Sage ESN. Truly a fine time to fish……..
Kara says hi to another Christmas day Bow…..Adam sacrificed his hands…
Air temp 25, water temp, 35……
We have a weather window, sun peeking through, and a fine snow falling…
The river is back in her banks, and clearing nicely.
It’s very easy to get around on the shore, not really needing to wade, nor is it recommended……
The fish have been co-operating with fishers that have a drift….
A stone-fly nymph and a midge would work..nymphing near the bank especially.
Haven’t seen any risers since the flows came up.
Going out now for a walk on the water……
Hope you all have a fishy new year!
It’s big water time……
The warm rain has been attacking the snow pack…..
The river is rising towards 2000cfs.
It’s time for fishing the edges…..
The fish avoid current increases by finding soft water.
You should as well…….
Use a little more weight, say 3 ABs.Hit the seams
And you can use some bling, and/or bright colors.
If you do a seine before you fish, you can see that in scouring flows the menu broadens.
Stones, worms, and Caddis get washed away…might even see a craw flushed out in these flows…..
Even with bigger off color water, you still may see a riser in an eddy.
Keep a sharp eye…..and be careful out there.
Late Summer, warm flows have passed…..
We have lower, but cold flows right now. 150cfs lower in the canyon..
Water temps are mid to high 50s.
The last storm, was our first real one, the flows came up some and then dropped back. It was off color, but is now clear again.
No snow in town….in fact, little up high yet. A little over two feet on top of Mnt Rose, and dustings elsewhere.
I have written about the feeling of Fall in the air, sorry for not keeping up the posts here….When it cooled off, I suddenly got busy again…
I realized recently why I enjoy Fall so much…..
It’s due to the rapid changes that take place. Spring comes slowly, Summer can drag on…but Fall is obvious in it’s shift.
Right now, there are thousands of Coots staged up to fly away for Winter.
I only see this once a year.
Robins are acting different, running around in groups…
My favorite bug indicator, the Brewers Black birds have gone.
There are fewer birds when I go to water…getting quiet.
There is a resurgence of Bugs…Oct. Caddis, several types of Mayfly.
Small Winter stones have shown up too.
The days are nice, air temps 40sto 50s…feels like higher.
Some breezes in the afternoon, a windbreaker is a good call.
The fish have been seeing less pressure from visitors, but locals have been after it.
We know that soon it will take some heart to angle in the snow. So, we are getting it while we can….
Hope all my blog followers can stroll along the river before snow fly!
I have become a “one and done” specialist.
Statistically speaking, our best chance to hook-up is on the first drift.
Approach quietly, analyze the currents, place the fly carefully……
(Like it’s the last drift you will ever make.)
Tend the drift…….and be ready.
Have a plan on how you will deal, if it happens……
And plan on it happening….because it might…