Fishing for the past month has had its offs and ons to say the least. It’s been boom or bust for me most days on the water. While I’ve managed to avoid the skunk, there was a period for about two weeks when I could smell the little feller in the area. Looking back over my notes the slow days coincided with the lower water levels of early October.
The falling night time temps helped a bit but spotting a fish without him spotting you first was the name of the game, and not an easy one to play. The rains of late October brought on a frenzy of feeding activity with cream midges being the most prevalent hatch that I noticed on the water. I’ve gotten a few reports of Fall Caddis being out and about but have yet to see any myself. So they may be on their way, or Ive just missed catching glimpse. Either way the time is right for these good sized orange bugs. The pupa are the dominant form on which the trout tend to key as they are large and tend to tumble around in the stream for a few days before hatching. These bugs are many times called by the misnomer of October Caddis but that is a more western hatch of the Dicosmoecus genus where as ours are of the Pycnopsyche genus and better known as The Great Autumn Sedge, and the large cream colored larva which build cases of sticks and twigs are commonly referred as “stick bait.” The pupae of these bugs migrate to the shore at dusk and crawl out of the stream to hatch on the stream bank at night. The adults hang close to shore with some species laying their eggs on the underside of leaves and waiting for heavy winter rains, while others crawl back into the water near the shore and attach their eggs to the rocks. All of this to say that you will find these bugs close to shore when activity is the highest, and so the fish, and so should be your flies.
The Brown trout spawn will also be in full swing soon enough as well. I would guess that there was a good push with the last hard rain and the spawn will probably peak near or on the next full moon which will be the 21st of November. If in any of you have ever had a knock at the door, a phone ring, or an inebriated room mate interrupt what you were doing then you know how it feels. So when you find those lovers in the shallow water on the pea gravel leave them be and walk a few yards down stream from all the fun and take a look. Most always you will find Bows and Brookies lined up feeding on the eggs that get knocked down stream from the redds. Now is no time to be a purist. Tie on your artfully crafted glo-bug or Y2K and pick on those Bows and Brookies. Recommended Patterns Cream Cased Caddis Larvae Fall Foam Caddis Partridge and Orange Egg Patterns Cream Midges PMD emergers BWO emergers and Dries (overcast, drizzle and rain) Big Nasty Streamers (if it rains hard) Good Hunting ~ Heath Cartee