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  • Sunday, July 12, 2009

    About Done


    Big Beautiful Slicks
    full of veggies and bugs
    it's now or october
    .. As usually happens this time of year, the late emerging caddis flies, (of several varieties,) are erupting.
    .. This is the finale of the early season on the Firehole River. Early morning, (through about 9:30 AM is just O.K.) - evening, (starting about 7:30 PM is good but fading fast.)
    .. We've been fortunate this year, (as have the fish,) given the cool days and occasional cool showers. It reminds us of the days of yore - but they are gone.
    .. Fish the Firehole River today and tomorrow, maybe even as late as Friday, (it may hit 85 on Thursday,) - but there are much better choices.
    .. Nez Perce Creek is in prime shape. It's the choice of most of the neighbors until we head toward the Gallatin River.
    .. The Upper Firehole River is spectacular. The Little Firehole River and Iron Spring Creek are very good but will become more problematic as the weeks pass.
    .. The Madison River has held up very well this year, and a two fly rig of your choice will delight those who like to dance in the morning and evening.
    .. As your friendly neighborhood Realtor is fond of saying: 'location, Location, LOCATION. Just where are those pesky fish?
    .. The fish are in the shade, the cool springs, and deep holes. If you are the sort of fisher that believes you only get your money's worth from your waders when water is lapping at your armpits - you will chase away more fish than you catch.
    .. We seldom hear folks talking about stealth wading; probably because the mindset of wading fishers is to use all of their waders. The deeper the better!?
    .. Right now it's time to be sneaky both on the shore and in the water. Skirt the holes and undercut banks; then fish them gently. Pounding holes and prancing through runs will freeze the fish. They know it's warm! You should too.
    .. Most surface flies for this encore should be sparse and gently presented. The hopper nymphs are too few, right now, to cause much of a dent in the piscene psyche.
    .. The majority of large fish have either gone to cooler pastures, or have become nocturnal. A very few hang out in places that are cool and tough to get to.
    .. Beetles, ants, damsel flies, & damsel fly nymphs, can be sent over deeply undercut banks in the hopes of raising large fish.
    .. Stealth and low light are the key to presenting these imitations, (watch your shadow, tread lightly, cast gently, and move on.)
    .. There are many log jams, sweepers, and deeply undercut banks on the Firehole River and, on the Madison River. These are places that provide nearly perpetual shade, and cool water for the diurnal feeding monsters. Cast to them. The worst that can happen is you lose a fly - whine!

    .. This is also a good time to exercise your option to fish until 10:00 PM, as the park regulations allow. We've said it before and we'll say it now: a mouse or great giant hopper ripped through likely spots will work at night from now through the end of the season, (but it's not very rewarding on the Firehole River for another three months.)
    .. We're fond of using beat-up flies this time of year. A shredded Goddard Caddis is a wonderfully sparse fly that can pass for many stages of caddis, (nymph, emerger, spent.)
    .. If used in tandem with a 'fancy emerger pattern' or soft hackle it will be about all that's needed for the next few days on the Firehole River.
    .. The same combination will get you through to the 'Hopper Time' on the Madison River. And, that's just around the corner. My how time flies.
    -------USE DEM WADERS !!