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  • Saturday, October 02, 2010

    A Pair To Draw To

    Firehole & Madison Red Hot
    temperature - not catching
    "Hey, what's not working for you?"
    .. This is most bizarre. There was no snow in September at our elevation. There was very little precipitation of any kind.
    .. Right now is the traditional time for crappy weather, Big Baetis, Big Caddis, and large numbers of giant fish running up the Madison River from Hebgen Lake. Not so!
    .. October is here and it looks like late July. The flows are down, the temperature is up, small caddis and terrestrials dominate the fly choices, nymphs are a close second, and the worm crowd on Hebgen Lake is scoring big time in the estuaries as we await some semblance of our normally harsh fall weather.
    Antelope Fire
    .. The Firehole River is running at a consistent 73° F and the long range weather forecast suggests only a gradual cooling of our temperatures for the next 10 days.
    .. There may be gentle showers on Monday or Tuesday and again Thursday or Friday of next week, but it will be well into the following week before the lethargy abates and activity gets down to serious stupidity.
    .. Yellow's are beginning to dominate the color palate around here, frustration dominates the catching psyche, and neighbors from far and wide are enjoying the gentle entrance into fall.
    .. Fisher folks continue to grumble about the delayed arrival  of "real" fall weather - they're greatly outnumbered by the hoards of park visitors.
    More than one way to . . .
    .. The west side of Yellowstone National Park is hazy and smoky from the fires in and around Yellowstone. The Antelope fire has grown to over 5,000 acres and is only about 20% contained [check INCIWEB for details on all the nearby fires.]
    .. Fish are actually being caught, even in mid day, by the most persistent anglers.
    .. Dredging and re-dredging deep dark runs with a variety of nymphs and streamers will finally wear out the poor gullible fish.
    .. There have also been some early morning baetis to fish to. That second cup of coffee will just have to wait.
    October ?
    .. Anglers are being very creative in approaching fish in their parking spots. Crawling and waiting and observing, (a hot and sticky business in this weather,) are seen more often right now than is usual. Extra energy and creativity are also being exhibited by folks exploring those normally "too hard to fish." locations.
    .. A smattering of large, (October?) caddis are beginning to appear on both rivers. Dry/dropper combinations should be in order for those times when the river speaks with forked tongue. There are times, and right now is one of them, that the mixed messages from the water befuddle even the most sage of fishers. Go with it!
    Small tributary - big slick
    .. There are, not surprisingly, better places for catching than the ones adjacent to the easy parking places and pull-outs.
    .. The Firehole River above Old Faithful, (in the canyon between the bridge and Kepler Cascade,) has some very large fish. It's a chore. About 10 minutes down and two weeks back up, but for some hardy fisher folk it's worth it.
    .. If you're not afraid to catch large numbers of brilliantly colored Brook Trout, try the bicycle path to Lone Star Geyser. There are eager fish to be had and lots of shade to keep you cool.
    .. There are several places along the Madison River where small streams from the plateau debauch into the larger river. It's not always apparent where they are - BUT - seek them out and fish just below in the merged streams.
    .. Don't, if you want to catch the fish, walk through the water in the deep dark slick downstream from these places. Sneaky is the watchword for these places. The water is cooler and the fish are happier.
    .. Of course, not to put too fine a point on it, many of the neighbors have abandoned the glories of these two famous rivers and traipsed on up to the Gallatin River.
    .. We're headed there now. More to follow.
    A Spey load . . . .