Now is the time all the dry fly anglers converge on streams in the evenings, sleep deprived and scratching at mosquito bites from the night before hoping to get that big fish they heard feed, but was tucked behind a log for an impossible cast. The stuff dreams are made of as we toil through the long winter and dream of rising browns and brookies. Lashing hair and feathers to hooks in the hope of fooling Mr. Big Brown with a stout 0X leader and a headlamp we trodd through the swamps of the north woods on a dark journey. The sound of the mayfly wings beating overhead and the flights of bugs moving upstream in the twilight. Pure magic.
Hex are finally starting, isonychias have been consistent as well as light cahills with nice fish up on the bugs. One of our shop customers landed a 20” brook trout in the flies water this past week, congratulations Mark, on a beautiful brookie. Keep an eye on water temperatures and please use consideration and stream etiquette in the popular evening locations. Pick up a Bugstopper Hoody to keep the ticks and mosquitoes at bay while waiting for the spinner fall.
Early morning and daytime fishing has been somewhat inconsistent, but attractor patterns with a dropper have been producing fish. The often overlooked soft hackle and smaller streamers will fool fish this time of year. The bigger fish really do seem to be on a nocturnal feed, which makes sense when you see the bug biomass on any given evening.
Roberts Yellow Drakes, Alex’s Daytime Drake and Parachute Iso have been solid performers. McCoy’s isos, hex and brown drakes have been fooling the wariest of fish this season.
Didymo is present from CCC Bridge down to below Sharon Bridge. CLEAN, DRAIN and DRY your gear, boots, waders, anchor lines, anchor and watercraft. Please help to stop the spread of this nuisance species. Please DO NOT fish that section of the river and hop back into the river above CCC or another area river or creek.
The Boardman River has been fishing well the past few weeks and the water temps have remained cool despite the high daytime temperatures of the past few days. Nymphing has been the most consistent for anglers but also rubber legged attractor patterns, droppers, and smaller streamers have been productive. Swinging soft hackles and covering more water can be a key to finding fish on the Boardman.
Little Manistee, Pine and Platte Rivers
These rivers have been seeing drakes and hex, but keep an eye on the water temperatures when hitting some of these smaller rivers. The Pine will remain cold and the trout seem to be happy to still eat streamers and stoneflies during the day.
Grand Traverse Bay
Smallmouth are moving in and out of the shallows and carp are showing up in some of the flats. Water temperatures have finally hit the 55-60 degree mark in the shallows, so get out and chase some warm water fish while you wait for the evening hatch. Gobie, Clouser’s, crayfish patterns will get their attention. Sneak around the flats and rocks and use fluorocarbon leaders or tippet to increase your chances of catching one of these awesome fish.