Katy, Mike, and I hit up the downstream Moose stretch. The forecast called for strong winds, but we hoped to find risers regardless. Both of which proved to be true. At the first spot, we found quite a pod rising and were able to fool a few. I landed three, the biggest of which was 14″. Mike landed a nice 16″er, while Katy lost a donkey and broke off another nice fish. At the other spots further downstream, I landed an 18+” beauty and Katy caught a nice 16″ fish. Quite a few were missed throughout the day as well. All of the action was on midges. We tried skwalas in a few spots, but nothing. Eventually the wind picked up enough to put an end to the fishing.
Mike playing a nice cutty with the Tetons as a backdrop.
The fish putting the bend in the rod above.
Katy’s colored up cutty.
The fish of the day fell for a #18 Griffith’s Gnat.
With how much I already worked in the week, I took the afternoon off to avoid OT and fished the upstream Moose stretch. My plan was to fish midge dries when I found risers, and to work skwalas over the promising water when there were no heads. I caught four, lost one, and missed a couple more on small midges. On the big skwala dries I caught three, broke one off when it swam between my legs, lost two, and missed a couple more. The one that broke off was the biggest fish of the day. Interestingly I only saw one stonefly, but apparently some of the cuttys are looking for ‘em. It warmed to a pleasant 50° and was only slightly breezy. A good day.
The Tetons in their spring glory.
The first fish of the day was sipping midges.
Hammered a skwala in the eddy created by that rapid.
An underwater portrait.
I hit up the Moose stretch this afternoon. Since there were already people on the water, I just hoofed it downstream to where we’ve had luck with risers in the past few weeks. At the first spot I brought one up to a skwala, but didn’t get a good hook set. At the other spot, they had their feed buckets on. I fooled five, but only landed two. All took the smallest midge dries I had. As I hiked out I checked one other spot that usually has risers, and managed to miss one and land two others. All those landed were in the 12-16″ range. The wind made things challenging at times, but otherwise it was a pretty nice day. I saw the first bear tracks of the year and the first osprey.
The mountains appeared to get some steady snow.
This cutty got into some fast water and had to be chased downstream.
The last fish of the day took a #20 midge emerger.
Time to start carrying the bear spray.
The recently opened Blacktail stretch was today’s destination. With reports of skwalas out, I covered a lot of water with a skwala dry. Nothing. Still a little early I guess. When the wind started howling, and I had given up hope of finding any heads, I switched to streamers. I ended up catching six, losing two, and breaking off another two. All those landed were in the 12-16″ range. A white Bead Head Flash Zonker seemed to work best, but I got a couple on a black Conehead Bugger as well. A pretty good day, though it never warmed up to what was forecasted. I was able to watch a coyote at a relatively close distance for a couple minutes, a first while fishing.
This view will never get old.
Hammered the zonker while it was dead drifting.
Notice the leech on the gill plate.
The biggest of the day.
The Green below Fontenelle Dam isn’t known for its number of fish, but for their size. I’ve wanted to get down there for a while, and with an itch to get out of the valley, I thought I’d check it out. I was on the road at 7:30 and on the water shortly after 10. I rigged up with a San Juan Worm and a Zebra Midge trailer, and was soon into two big rainbows, only one of which I landed. As I worked my way upstream, I caught three more nice rainbows and a small brown. At a point where the river got narrow and deep, I finally caught what I had been hoping for: a big brown. In the same water I also broke off a giant rainbow. Interestingly, all of the rainbows took the worm, while both browns took the smaller midge. After losing my rig, I decided to hoof it back to the car. My plan was to be on the road at 4:00, but when I got back I spotted two big ‘bows rising to BWOs, which had started to hatch in good numbers. Unfortunately by the time I re-rigged, the wind had started howling, which made it impossible to get a good presentation. Though I didn’t get anything on a dry fly, it was a great day exploring new water. I’ll head back for sure, especially when the browns are running up out of Flaming Gorge. I was back in town a little before 7.
Some great water with amazing bird life.
Two rainbows of this size were landed.
Only one of this size was landed, though an even bigger one broke off.
The picture doesn’t do this fish justice, as this is easily the biggest brown trout I have caught.
Mike, Katy, and I hit up the Moose stretch. The water was slightly off-color with the recent crazy temps, but we were optimistic we’d still find rising fish. Katy got things started catching a nice fish on a streamer in a deep pool. Continuing downstream we found some risers in a spot where they are easily spooked. I managed to fool one, but it threw the hook as Katy was trying to net it. At a spot we expected to see risers, we didn’t, but a few fish were looking up nonetheless. Here I caught the smallest fish of the day, 12″, and foul hooked a 20″ beauty when I was late on the hookset. Katy caught another beauty on a streamer in the tailout of the pool. A side channel just downstream is where the fun began. We found a pod that had the feed bucket on, and amazingly they didn’t spook when we started catching them. Katy caught two and broke one off, Mike landed two and lost one, and I landed two and lost two. All the fish were in the 14-18″ range, and all were fooled on small midge dries. On the walk out Mike and I each manged to catch another nice fish on dries. It was a great day, especially for March, though the post holing on the walk back was not fun.
Katy getting things started right.
The smallest fish of the day.
Unfortunately I fouled this donkey when I was late on the hookset.
Mike with one of his nice cuttys.
Katy landing another fine cutty, with Mike on net duty.