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  • Saturday, July 21, 2012

    Too Hot - High Or Low

    For Man And Beast
    visitors wearing neoprene waders

    .. It has got to be a true shock to the psyche of the tweedy set. They've packed their finery. They've read the books. They are armed with rods of herculean proportions. They are ready to strut their stuff on the glory waters of Yellowstone National Park and the rest of Southwestern Montana.
    .. They forgot their short pants. They never had a short-sleeved fishing shirt. They wear socks with their sandals. Their waders are full of powder and their sweater is packed and ready. Oh Well!
    .. It's not too early to dream of blinding and slashing strikes at terrestrial bugs. Of course the experts would have you believe that the dainty flies are holding their own as fish fodder - mostly true for some famous places.
    .. The weather has been of the standard variety for this time of year. It's been hot, punctuated with gentle showers on occasion.
    .. The showers and blessed coolness of the afternoons has slowed the final molt for our local grasshoppers - but there are a ton of the nymphs ready to fall into the rivers.
    .. White millers have sprouted like dandelions as have the evening caddis, and a few spruce moths have also shown up.
    .. For the moment the catching game goes something like this: morning spinner fall, (peaks about 7:30 or 8:00 AM,) followed by recreational wading, lunch and a nap in the shade - then caddis in the late afternoon and evening, (be on the water about 5:00 PM or so.)
    .. This schedule will get you through the day on the destination waters of Yellowstone National Park. The neighbors are already fishing beetles, ants, small hoppers, gaudy rubberlegs, and San Juan worms on those waters with fewer elbows and more fish.
    .. The Yellowstone River is a destination for some fishers that remember the glory that once was. There are some large fish to be had - true enough. On the other hand, it looks like recruitment is up and should you just want a pleasant fishing experience we recommend it highly.
    .. Social fishers are clogging the parking lot at Slough Creek. Everything from hoppers to PMD's are pricking fish.
    .. Get there now and fish all day. Ignore the experts, if you dare. These fish are eager and hungry. By fishing hard you will contribute to their advanced degrees. But today, (and maybe tomorrow,) they really are just like any old hungry trout. Throw it - they'll eat it.``
    .. If you can find Snowflake Springs, you can find fish on the Gallatin River. If you can get past the beaver ponds and through the woods to the upper meadows on Fan Creek you can fish with the bears and elk: you will catch some of the prettiest fish in the park as well. Say hi to the horse packers and mounted rangers for us.
    .. Ask the visitors about their big flies. They probably won't mention the damselfly. Nor do the visiting clerks at the feather merchants.
    .. In passing we'll just note that there are trout that can, (and do,) take the blue lady from the grass overhanging the deep undercut banks. It may look foolish to the uninitiated, it may feel foolish when you do it, - BUT -  casting to the grass can take some monsters in  the mid-day doldrums.
    .. Park your car in the evening shade and walk the gentle trail to Osprey Falls. Take a picture of the monster clouds. Sniff the burnt smell in the air.
    .. Go above the falls and catch a mighty Brook Trout with every other cast. If someone got there before you it might take a half dozen casts - damn!
    .. Nothing really new right now. Catching is all in how you do it.