Yes it still remains hot and that has had an effect on the fishing. Water temperatures on both the Stillwater and Jellystone have been in the 70’s as of late. As you might imagine, fishing has been slow in the afternoons once the 68 degrees mark is reached. Thus I’m doing the early morning thing and that has been paying off. The bite is definitely better early. Mostly we have been fishing a hopper trailed by a small-ish dry fly. The other morning the fish were all over a #16 caddis, but unfortunately most of them were in the 12″ size class. Oh well, beggars can’t be choosers.
Other than hoppers, the surface bug activity has been rather slim. The are trico’s on both the Yellowstone and Stillwater, but I’ve seen nothing but small heads and splashy rises …. nothing of consequence. I’d like to tell you how the nymph fishing has been, but my folks of late have choose to go dry and I’m ok with that. Oh, and during the right conditions, the streamer bite is starting to pick up and should continue to do so until late fall.
And now for something completely different. This last week was not uber busy with guide trips. Thus a buddy and I slipped away early in the morning for a day of exploration via newly acquired pontoon boats on a stream with few trout and fewer folks who seem to care about this water. It’s not unlike fishing in an industrialized agricultural irrigation ditch. But over the years it become one of those places that if I’m really looking for a fatty, it’s the go to place. And yes, earlier this week I was in need of a big fish. Long story short, all was pretty darn quite during our outing until about 11 am although the trico’s were rather blizzard like before then. Once the heat turned on (95 to 100 degrees), so did the fish. I won’t bore you with the details other than to say we did well. But as typically the case, the big one got away. And I do mean he, she, or it was one hell of a big fish.
During the first of three skyrocket jumps, it was obvious the rainbow was way over twenty inches and fat like a piggy. Then it took off on a ripp’n run well into my backing. By applying all the power and tension which I figured the leader and rod could handled, I finally got it stopped and turned and I figured the fish was as good as mine. I figured wrong. For some unexplained reason, the fish was gone and the line was limp…. damn. It took a little time to recover from that experience during which time a few expletives were heard randomly echoing from the canyon walls.
After having hooked up two more nice fish and losing them in the next hole, I finally checked my bug. Well I’ll be damned, the hook was completely straight. Wonder if that makes a difference? Lesson learned the hard way which is usually the way I learn best.
One last thing, let’s all be aware of the water temperatures out there and take care of our finny friends. Start early, stop early, tie flies in the afternoon …. tomorrow will be another day and much like Arnold said ….”I’ll be back”.