It's been a long, hot summer and there have been few breaks of cooler weather. On a positive note, rain has been fairly consistent so water levels were still above average. Finally, we began to see some cooling towards the end of the week and with several cool nights coming over the next few days, trout fishing is back on. Tonight, I fished with John Collins, noted fly tyer and guide/ presenter for Shannon's. I landed a couple of Browns including a little wild beauty and John stuck a few more. There was some activity in the form of Light Cahills and even a few large Hex mayflies likely Litobrancha atrocaudata or L. rigida which we have seen with some frequency on the door of the shop.
About a week ago, Len Ruggia was taking the water temperature downstream of the shop and noticed a thick cloud of Trico spinners in the air above a large riffle. A few caddis are also dancing on the water now. Don't forget terrestrials. When we have a nice stretch of weather the trout will feed actively on insects such as ants, beetles and grasshoppers which may drop into the water from a branch or be blown in by the wind.
Look for hatches to pick up with the cooler weather. Isonychia and Cream Cahills will begin hatching as early as this weekend. In the case of the Isonychia, they are a size smaller (#14) than the spring brood. Because there are small mayflies, either Pseudocleon carolina or Paraleptophlebia debilis, keep those small Adams and Blue Quill patterns handy. The Grey RS2 can be a deadly emerger now. The South Branch usually has a Whitefly hatch, Ephoron leukon and the fish are likely to be eating the spinners in the evening which are white as well as the newly hatched duns. Finally, don't neglect streamers. There are a lot of baitfish in the water right now and the larger fish are seeking them out. The Mickey Finn featured below is a classic.
Local Hatches 8/25/2019:
Morning 5-10 am:
Trico Trorythodes spp. Trico #22-24
Dun Midge Paraleptophlebia debilis Adams or Blue Quill #18-20 Use small #18-20 Pheasant Tails!!
Spotted Sedge Hydropsyche spp. Tan Elk Hair Caddis #14-18, Green Rockworm or JC's Electric Caddis #14-18, LaFontaine's Sparkle Pupa #14-18
Green Sedge Rhyacophila sp. Elk Hair Caddis Olive #14-16, LaFontaine's Sparkle Pupa #14-16
Little Brown Quill Pseudocleon carolina Adams #20 Pheasant Tail # 20, RS2 #20-22
Light Cahill Stenacron interpunctatum Light Cahill #12-14, Hare's Ear #14
Hex Litobrancha atrocaudata and L. rigida Ausable Wulf #10
Slate Drake Isonychia bicolor Iso #14
Tim's Featured Video: The Mickey Finn