Saturday, May 28, 2011

Don't leave me Hi; don't leave me Dry

I was able to make a quick trip to the HI after work on Friday.  I knew they were running one generator every couple of hours, so wading would be perfect.  My goal was to catch the sulfur hatch in the evening.  This was a last-minute trip, so I wasn't very prepared and didn't have a lot of time.  I started at a spot where I usually finish: on the road side of snake island.  On the way towards Snake Island, I saw fish feeding on the surface.  I had an old Cherokee Leader on my 5 weight, so I grabbed the biggest dry fly in my box, and started chuckin.  The fish were hitting it with abandon.  I tried a dropper when the fish stopped feeding, but after snagging a fish, I ditched the dropper, and tied on another gigantic dry fly, the name of which I do not know.  I caught about a dozen in the first hour, and then made my way over to the run above snake island.  I tied on a wet Ted's Stone Fly, and caught one, but the fishing went cold.  I worked my way up river, and then the water came up.  I waded up to a large pool and tied on the largest streamer I could find.  I fished for about an hour using a couple of different streamers, but except for missing a few fish, I didn't catch anything else. The water came down after an hour and I worked my way back downstream hoping for the evening sulphur hatch.  Much to my disappointment, I saw only a couple of sulphurs.  There were, however, quite a few bwos and what appeared to be cahills.  I tried both flies, but didn't have any luck.  I also tried sulphurs without success. A pheasant tail nymph caught a couple of more fish for me, but it was otherwise slow.  The real hatch was extremely small midges; probably size 30-32.  Interestingly, the fish really weren't feeding after 6 p.m..  I ended the day with about 15 to hand, but all of the fish were SNITs except one that was close to 12 inches, and all rainbows.  I must admit, it was a little disappointing except for the first hour where they were hitting the dry flies.  I'm still waiting for the time when the HI will once again produce more quality fish.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Big Easy at the Nationals

I was out of town during the national fly fishing competition in North Carolina, but Brown Trout Zilen a/k/a The Big Easy went and served as a Judge during the event.  Here is a short summary of his report:  As expected, the competitors used long fly rods, long leaders, and homemade competition flies of small size and weighted.  The technique of choice was the euro high sticking method.  The fly line very rarely touched the water.  The leaders were often of different high visibility colors, which apparently served as a strike indicator.  The zones for fishing were extremely small.  Brown Trout Zilen is a dry fly master, but I have a feeling I may see him dredging streams and rivers with nymphs and long leaders in the future.  I wish I could have gone - sounds like a great learning experience.