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  • Saturday, July 02, 2016

    So Soon ?

    "THE" WEEKEND
    Y'all Get In Line
    some come to fish
    WORTHY OF A PORTRAIT
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    .. We've been lax about reporting the stupendous visitation that is happening in Yellowstone National Park.
    .. We've been mostly avoiding the fishing opportunities inside the gates of that hallowed arena. Just too many elbows.
    .. While the fishing and catching have been O.K. "in there:" the catching has been somewhat closer to glorious in other places.
    .. So suddenly it's the Fourth of July. We're caught off guard. This is the time when even a ground squirrel can cause a monumental traffic jam.
    .. This is the time when most bears and buffalo have moved out of the river valleys and all of the 500mm lenses are trained on talus slopes in search of the wily pica. Raw nature at it's most wild.
    LOOK MA - NO HANDS
    .. Even mayflies cause a ruckus and draw huge crowds at this time of year.
    .. The sun is at it's hottest. The park is hitting peak humidity and afternoon thundershowers are a blessing to those of us acclimated to the high country.
    ..  Record traffic is anticipated this weekend, (along with other records,) through Tuesday of next week.
    .. Personal vehicles have remained at a steady high point while tour buses and motor homes have increased their presence over the last few years.
    .. Pedestrian polo, bison boffing, and ground squirrel popping are popular vehicular pastimes - along with fender benders and center line parking.
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    .. The Firehole River is approaching all time low discharge rates, (within 6 cfs today,) and is holding at a steady 73° F temperature.
    COACHMAN - NOT YET FORGOTTEN
    .. Afternoon thundershowers have ameliorated the big temperature spikes over the last few days.
    .. Many visitors have this little stream on their bucket list. They'll fish it hard during their visit.
    .. Morning is best. Get off the water by 10:30 or 11:00 AM, (or earlier.)
    .. Use a PMD, BWO, Coachman, or Royal Coachman on the surface. Swing a soft hackle for guaranteed success. There are better places to catch fish but the neighbors back home won't be as impressed. Grasshopper nymphs are beginning their final molt.
    .. The Madison River is running at 75° F, (and more some days.) It's flow is up a little bit thanks to the discharge from the Gibbon River but, it's still about 300 cfs below it's median discharge for the day. It's over 1,000 cfs below it's record high.
    CAN YOU MANAGE A 6' CAST ??
    .. Successful catching on the Madison River benefits from intimate knowledge of the deep holes and in-river cold water springs.
    .. Ask the counter help at your favorite feather merchant about these places. Better yet hire a guide if you must fish the river.
    YELLOWSTONE SALLY
    .. There are places, right now, indeed, on the Madison River where a 6' cast from the bank will take fish.
    .. Some of these places will yield a dozen fish of various sizes every hour. Look for noses in the darkest water and the spring holes adjacent to river banks with sandy/gravel from old surface springs. 
    RUBBER BAND CADDIS
    .. Caddis is king right now, (though there are still some stoneflies of various sorts to be found.)
    .. Little yellow stoneflies can bring up the noses with a gentle cast, perfect drift, and patience of a saint.
    .. Grasshopper nymphs are thick around 7-mile bridge and the Barns Holes. There is, sadly, very little deep and dark water in these places. Try the sinuous meanders over at Baker's Hole for better opportunities, (yes you will have to walk out of sight of the car.)
    .. Watch the birds. Swallows and osprey are abundant this year. Even the eagles are fishing the Madison River with ease, (low flows and concentrated pods of fish - dontchaknow.)
    FURNACE AND GREEN CUL de CANARD
    .. We've been on the Gallatin River quite a bit lately. The grasshopper nymphs are in their final molt. A few ants are scurrying about, beetles are apparent, and caddis is king.
    .. Little yellow stoneflies are crawling along the shoreline, zinging in the air, and invading ears of fishers. There are other stoneflies as well. Pick your favorite stonefly nymph pattern and have a good time, (on top or down below.)
    CHAMOIS WORM
    .. The mayfly hatches seem to be a bit better than in recent years and you can fish to the hatch if you find it.
    .. Riffle breaks and both ends of pools are concentrating fish right now. There are a few in-stream cold springs in a few deep meander bends. Ask your local source.
    .. There are some outsize fish to be had on the Gallatin River in Yellowstone National Park: you just have to find them and coax them. We've been using the simplest of lures: a chamois worm. Sink it deep and slow drift it in the dark of a deep meander bend.
    Sierra Bright Dot
    .. Deeper into the interior of Yellowstone National Park the catching is very good.
    .. Just as close to us as the canyon sections of the Gibbon River there are still a few stoneflies working. This is good water for your favorite ugly attractor flies.
    .. You can float large nymphs, soft hackles, or pretty flies and be duly rewarded in the shallow riffles.
    .. Fish the edge of the tree shadows, tall banks, and those few giant boulders that we know and love so well.
    HORNBERG
    .. There are still morning possibilities in the big meadows. They are mostly dry now and intrepid anglers that know the meanders are doing well with small streamers.
    .. The undercut banks have large fish that suspend near  the surface and sip detritus as it goes by. Close observation, (especially in the late afternoon and early evening,) can provide a fish to brag about.
    .. Flatten out and squish together the wings of a Hornberg Fly and drift it slowly just beneath the surface, (use a bobber if you must.)
    .. Both Obsidian Creek and the upper Gibbon River are rife with eager fish. Anything thrown at them will catch them. BUT, - stroll gently and low! Short leaders and short, precision casts are the ticket here.
    .. Far and away, (toward the north and east,) it seems that gangbusters is the word. We've had a few reports from the glory waters and famous places but haven't gotten up there yet.
    .. Click on over to PARKS' FLY SHOP for the up to the minute reports and tips for the waters over that way.
    .. It's dark out. The thermos is full of hot water and there's enough coffee to fill it. We're headed to Notellum Riffle. See you on the other side of the traffic jam.
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    WALLPAPER:  DARK HOLES ON THE MADISON RIVER