When I got there at 4, the crowd wasn’t too bad on the Refuge. I had a stretch of water to myself for a bit, and then the evening crowd showed up and started creeping closer. I caught three, missed two, and broke off one. I knew that wind knot was going to cost me. I’m not sure if those missed and broken off were any bigger than 16″. All of the action was on mayfly patterns of some kind or another.
Nice light on Miller Butte.
Fell for a small mayfly emerger.
Took a Parachute Adams as it was starting to get dark.
There were at least 30 cars in the two Refuge turnouts (craziness) as I headed north to Blacktail Creek. There was a pretty good mayfly hatch when I got there, and again in the evening. I caught three, lost one, and missed two on small mayfly emergers. I also missed one on a small cinnamon ant in between the hatches. Aside from one guy who didn’t stay long, I had the water to myself.
There was the occasional weather that never hit me.
I was targeting another fish, when this nice cutty surprised me.
It took about five fly changes before I finally figured out this great cutty.
We started hiking shortly after nine and made the mistake of heading to the river too soon, where it was wide and deep and not very fish-able. We didn’t see anything in that water anyway. We realized our mistake, got back on the trail, and headed below Lehardy. We weren’t seeing much there either, until I had a fish move, but not come up, for a golden stone. We continued downstream further, but didn’t see anything. When we started back upstream, I again tried the seam where we saw that fish, and it came right up for a salmonfly dry…and I pulled it right out of its mouth. Further upstream is where the fun began, where we found quite a few rising fish. I ended up landing one and breaking another one off when I got a little eager setting the hook. Mike caught one, lost two, and broke one off when it ran under a log. Katy caught two and lost two. All of the fish either caught, missed, or broken off were at least 20″. There were lots of salmonflies, golden stones, caddis, and mayflies out. It was a good day, which Katy obviously won.
The only fish I landed, which fell for a golden stone dry.
Katy’s first fish of the day.
Another nice cutty Mike landed.
Katy’s second fish…wow!
I hit up the Blacktail Ponds stretch of the Snake. I caught 4 or 5, the biggest being 16″, while the others were small. I brought a few other good fish up, but couldn’t get them to eat. I used terrestrials mainly. Wet flies may have fooled more fish, but it is late July so I stuck with dries. The water is in pretty good shape, and should be perfect in a week or so.
Note the two bull moose in the middle ground.
Hammered a smallish hopper grand.
Today I hit up the trailhead stretch of — Creek. The water had silted up some since Wednesday, but the fish were still looking up regardless. I caught five, lost four, and missed a couple more. All of the action was on small stimulators. There were plenty of stoneflies about, at least three different species. It was the hottest day of the year so far.
The water was a wee bit high to fish the canyon.
Came right up for an olive stimulator.
Perhaps the best example of a fine-spotted cutty I’ve caught.
A friend and I hit up the Lewis today. We started out above the falls and walked all the way to the lake without catching anything. We might have had a few grabs on streamers, but it’s tough to tell for sure. There were a few tiny stoneflies about, and mayflies started hatching as we made our way back to the car. With that on our minds we moved to just upstream of the the confluence with the Snake. The bugs were out down there and we did pretty good on size 16 dries. I caught six with three being in the 16″ range and missed a couple as well. Mike caught three, one of which was an 18+” beauty, and missed a few more. The weather wasn’t great to say the least…rain, hail, wind, and temps in the low 50s. Nonetheless it was a good day.
Stormy weather over the Snake.
Cuttys saved the day!
Mike’s nice cutty.