Spring so far has been a little fickle. Conditions have been cooler and wetter than normal but there have been so nice surprises. Perhaps the biggest is the return of some nice Hendrickson, Ephemerella subvaria hatches along with strong numbers of Blue Quills, Baetis tricaudatus and Paraleptophlebia adoptiva. With higher than average flows and cooler water temps in the mid forties, the fish haven't always been on them but they are now. Expect the Hendrickson hatches to dwindle but the fish will feed deliberately on them both during the initial hatch in the afternoon and especially on the spinners at dusk. This has been true of the Quill Gordons as well.
Caddis have been very abundant this spring. Along with Early Black Caddis, Chimarra aterimma and Grannoms, Brachycentrus sp. good numbers of Cinnamon Sedges, Hydropsyche sp. began to appear on the water and they are big size 14-16. Use a Tan Caddis Larva but we've been focusing on the emerger stage and the adult stage later in the day. So what does this all mean? Here is a quick list of my favorite flies for the weekend by species. I'm also recommending scuds (size 14-18) as random stomach sampling has indicated that the trout are actively pursuing this important food right now.
For May Flies: For Caddis:
Nymph: Pheasant Tail #14-20 Larva: Beadhead Tan Caddis Larva #14-18
Nymph: Hare's Ear #12-18 Larva: JC's Electric Caddis Larva #14-18
Emerger: Grey RS2 #16-20 Emerger: LaFontaine's Sparkle Pupa Olive or Tan #14-16
Emerger: Pheasant Tail Wet #14-16 Dry: JK's Grannom #14-16
Emerger: Hendrickson #14 Dry: Elk Hair Caddis Brown, Tan or Grey #14-16 Emerger: Pheasant Tail Soft Hackle #14-16 Dry: JC's Peacock Caddis #14,
Henryville Special #14-16
Dun: Hendrickson #12-14 Egg Laying Adult: Spent Caddis Peacock, Tan, Grey #16
Dun: Blue Quill, Parachute Adams #16
Spinner: Rusty Spinner #12-18