Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday 5/11/15 Report- spinners galore!

Saw a lot of Hendrickson spinners last night, all in the last hour or so of daylight- I was in the TMA/C&R area. The females had bright yellow egg sacks on them. I was nymphing and did well, catching a mix of recent stocker browns, holdovers, Two Year Olds, and a rainbow. #14 Pheasant Tails & #14 Caddis pupa did the trick for me. Local guide Pat Torrey picked up a 22" brown yesterday on a Pheasant Tail nymph. A lot of people have a hard time telling recently stocked large Two Year Old browns from holdovers, so I posted several pictures of one I caught last night. It was about 15-16"- notice the clipped adipose fin, and the orange dye mark (elastomer tag) behind the left eye. These recent intros will range from 14-20" and are unusually fat. Color will vary, but some have bright, holdover-like coloring, some are paler. The true holdovers will not be so unnaturally fat, a year from now they will have normal girth to them. Some of the bigger/fatter ones have been 20" & pushing 4 pounds! Water temps in TMA were 62-63 last night, the night before they were 56-57, This is due to them cutting the release at the dam back by 70cfs, the total flow in the TMA is currently 257cfs (the Still River is coming in at 88cfs). The Still River heats right up during hot, sunny weather, and is now not diluted by as big a volume of cold water released at the dam in Riverton. Today & tomorrow will be hot, with highs mid/upper 80's, then it cools right off by Wednesday- high of 63, low of 43, partly to mostly cloudy, nice. 85-90 degrees for the 2nd week of May is way too hot, too soon.

Hendricksons are hatching all the way in Riverton near the dam now, the upper 2 miles or so above the Still River stays colder and thus the hatches start there later. Still seeing good spinner falls in the TMA (they will go an easy week beyond the hatch), but the afternoon Hendrickson hatch is waning in the TMA and is better upstream of the TMA, all the way up to the dam now. I did, however, get a credible report of a moderately heavy Hendrickson hatch in the TMA Sunday afternoon. There are still good spinner falls in the TMA/C&R- they have been falling in the evening (late evening on hotter days like now), but most days in the mornings also. The hot weather has the green leaves out on the trees now, which means the Caddis cannot be far behind. I'm catching trout on Caddis Pupa
already. I love Caddis hatches, I catch some of my biggest trout of the year during them. Typically they hatch in the mornings, and egg-lay in the evenings, giving you a second "hatch". This is a general rule, we often see them hatching & egg-laying in the afternoons too, especially if it's cloudy- they are a creature of low light.

The  C&R section was stocked 4/28 & 4/29 with thousands of trout trout, including 1,000 Two Year Old Survivor Strain brown trout which average over 16 inches and some of which are bigger and top out at 3 1/2 to 4 pounds- they put in some hefty trout this year. Many are confusing the recent large Two Year Olds that the state put it with big holdovers. Suffice it to say that if you catch a 16-20" insanely obese brown in the C&R section, chances are it was stocked recently. This years Two Year Olds have a left eye orange dye mark & a clipped adipose fin. Trout are being caught on the surface using a combination of Hendricksons (sz 12-14), Hendrickson Spinnners (sz 12-14), Winter Caddis (sz 18-22), Tan Caddis (sz 16-18), Blue Wing Olives (sz 16-24), and Mahogany Duns/Blue Quill (sz 16-18). Heaviest angling pressure has been in the TMA, but the double-edged sword is that it also holds the most fish and the most holdovers/wild fish. Outside of the TMA sees less pressure, but still plenty of trout. Most anglers focus on the major pools, so if you fish the "In Between Water" you should be able to get more elbow room. Trout are currently being caught via all methods: wets, dries, nymphs & streamers with many big fish have been landed over the past week, both holdovers & recently stocked two years.

Subsurface, Hendrickson nymphs (sz 12-14) Golden Stoneflies (sz 8-12), Pheasant Tails (sz 12-18), Olive/Green Caddis Larva (sz 14-16), Princes (sz 12-18),  and Yellow Sparkle Prince (sz 12-16) have been working well, Flashy/attractor-type nymphs, have been working well on the recently stocked trout and on the occasional holdover.

Streamers such as Rich Strolis's Ice Pick are still landing some of the truly giant trout, but unlike a couple of weeks ago when the waters were cold, they should be more aggressively fished in the shallower quick water between the pools, targeting rocks, cutbanks, downed trees and other river debris that create current breaks for the trophies to hold behind. Smaller streamers, such as the famous Wooly Bugger are catching many trout by letting them sink into the deep pools then retrieving with short (two foot or so) quick strips. As always, the key to fishing streamers is to keep moving.... you are triggering the most aggressive trout into attacking, if nothing happens after a few casts, its time to move a few feet to throw into some virgin water. Also play with colors & sizes, it can make a BIG difference. The low light periods of early & late ate the prime times to target bigger trout with streamers, overcast or rainy days too.

UpCountry Sportfishing is always looking for good used fly fishing gear for cash and trade. This is how we get those great items we list on our website and you see on our racks. We buy fly rods, reels, quality classic bamboo, and fly tying equipment etc. Bring in your old items and we can help turn them into something new. Call ahead for an appointment at 860-379-1952.