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  • Sunday, June 17, 2007

    Just Another Day In Paradise

    LOW FLOWS AND GOOD HATCHES
    Some Reports Are Glowing
    Gibbon & Firehole Hit Record Low Flows
    90 days of low precipitation forecast
    .. The Caddis Flies are bailing out of the Madison River and Firehole River in record numbers. The hatches of multiple species start about 11:00 AM and continue until dark, (later?) There are reports of trout to 20" at the Barns Holes, and many of the neighbors report that the Mountain Whitefish seem to be less cooperative and fewer than recent memory recalls.
    .. Yesterday the Gibbon River hit an "all-time" record low flow of 93 cfs. The temperature for the same period spiked to 73 degrees Fahrenheit. This may not seem too significant in light of fact that only five years of data are available.
    .. On the other hand, with 16 years of data to view, the Firehole River also hit a record low flow of 256 cfs, and spiked to 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
    .. Not to be out done, the Madison River near West Yellowstone is within 20 cfs of a record low flow of 317 cfs; a number not seen since 1931, (can you say dust bowl?)
    .. This is data that is more like late July and early August than mid June. The neighbors wonder just how long the good fishing will last, and if this is the year that the NPS will close these two rivers to fishing. Only time will tell.
    .. The NOAA 7-day forecast shows just a slight cooling trend and a minimal chance of significant precipitation. Severe weather and thunderstorms are forecast for the next week. The fish are going to have to endure some very high stress conditions as this season progresses.
    .. NOAA produces an Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service for Yellowstone National Park. The picture for the foreseeable future does not bode well for the rivers in the park. The three month precipitation outlook is for a 33% - 40% lower than average precipitation.
    .. Right now is the time to fish the plunge pool below Gibbon Falls. There is little water, the holes are apparent, and the fish are concentrated. It's a gentle walk and the spray will keep you cool. It's possible to take Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout, and Brook Trout from this location. We've heard of Grayling here but have not verified it. Maybe today; right after the biscuits and gravy.