It's always entertaining in the shop this time of year. You can always tell who has been on the river the night before... They're the ones that skip that ubiquidous question "is it happening yet" and head straight for the 1X because apparently 2X wasn't enough for the big one last night. Others try but just cannot hide that smirk that shines through tired eyes because things aligned just right for them. Still, they're here to reload too as the night holds so many mysteries and they can't stop thinking about releasing another big fish into the darkness.
Yes, it's time to start staying out late and looking for the Hex in all the usual spots. Don't forget though, that they're alternatives too as the streamer bite has been good on sections of river that do not see a big hatch. This rain we'll be getting should keep it going as well.
I know a lot of folks wait all year for June and only fish the Hex... and that's perfectly okay by us. HOWEVER, if you're out head hunting this June, please remember that this can be a particularly vulnerable time for these big fish. There are a few things you can do to keep these fish around for next year.
First, take the temperature of the water you are fishing. Anytime the rivers reach 70 and above, fish can become oxygen stressed and hooking them and playing them is not going to help.
Second, size up your rod and leader so that playing the fish doesn't take an "hour." We get the hero stories every year in the shop of how an angler has to play their big fish for 20 minutes or more... It's painful to hear about, especially when you try and tell us that fish swam away just fine.
Third, if you're getting a picture, it doesn't need to be a full on photo session. Please, keep those fish in the water, lift for a quick photo and then get them back in the water. Don't worry, even without a picture you can come in and tell us about the moster you caught!