Thursday, September 22, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Today I had the pleasure of guiding Jack and Rich, high school buddies who are now retired and love to fish. Our original plan was to fish the Camp Layman area but as I crossed the bridge I was shocked to see coffee colored water! The insane thunderstorms last evening must have caused a land slide in the Jamison creek watershed as the water was clear above the confluence. So we drove back to Graeagle and just fished in town. There was a good BWO spinerfall, tons of midge, and a few caddis thrown in the mix. No sign of the Isonychia mayfly yet. Water temps ran 60 - 62.5 degrees from 9am to 1:30pm. With lower water temps the fishing has improved drastically with many rising trout in all types of water.
Jack with a nice MF Cuttbow, yes that's right, a hybrid Rainbow/Cutthroat trout! This is the first one I have ever seen here on this river. Effective flies today were BWO egg laying soft hackle #16, bead head PT flashback #16, and club sandwich hoppers #8 in tan and grey. The fish are really keyed in on the hoppers right now, we saw plenty of aggressive takes!
This was a rare find, the velvety stickseed wild flower. So minute your average bear would just walk on by, but up close they show you their glory. Fall is gaining strength here in the Sierras, and for the fly angler it is the best time of year. Enjoy!
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Scientific Names for the BWO include; Family Baetidae, genera Baetis, Diphetor, Acentrella, Plauditus; Family Ephemerellidae, genus Attenella. Common Names: Blue-winged olive, tiny olive, BWO, and pseudo cleon. These tiny mayflies are rarely absent from the river. Fishable hatches can begin as early as February and continue through June, then start up again in September and last until really cold weather sets in. This year because of our unusual spring and summer I saw hatches all season long here on the MFFR.
Nymphs live in almost all types of running water, but slow to moderate runs hold the largest populations. Nymphs have a habit of purposefully drifting short distances in the current to find a new home (behavioral drift); sunrise and sunset are the prime times for this activity. In the far West, the best hatches occur on overcast or drizzly days. While slow runs can be good places to fish, some of the best fishing is in back eddies, where little duns are helpless caught in the swirling waters and sticky foam.
Emerger patterns are especially useful during the hatch. When fishing a massive hatch, you might try a dun or cripple pattern that is slightly darker or of different size than the natural. Spinner falls are important, so you should always carry a few patterns during the blue-winged olive season. Some spinners actually swim or crawl below the water to lay their eggs, so swinging sub-surface soft hackles is a smart choice. The BWO is your friend no matter how small the hatch is!
A few notes when tying this fly. Place a very small ball of dubbing before you tie in the tails, this will allow them to "perk up". Keep the body slender and dub with tight wraps. For the wing, form it by twisting it slightly and tie it in like a parachute wing. Then take your bodkin and pull the loop into the correct size and shape - then tie off with tighter wraps. A very small drop of glue at the base of the wing after the hackle is tied in makes it bomb proof.
Hook: Tiemco 101 #16-22.
Thread: Olive 8/0 uni thread.
Tail: Two micro fibbets in olive.
Body: Super fine olive or brown/olive dubbing.
Wing: Dun colored Z-lon.
Hackle: Grizzly, wrapped parachute style.