August 22nd-The Chill of an Early Fall?
Good Morning Folks, it is a nippy 32 degrees this morning, and the annual speculations of fall are in the air. I believe, we are still a week or two away from making any overall conclusions of the beginning of Autumn, it does however begin an angler thinking of Baetis, brown trout, and bugling elk! Thoughts of the Firehole are not too far away either, maybe those pesky Drake Mackerals, the golden yellows of turning aspens, the glories of Fall are coming to a theater near you. Not to jump the gun too much, lets talk about fishing in the here and now. August has been very good this year with consistent dry fly fishing throughout the month. If you can escape the winds of the past couple of days, hopper and beetle fishing has been very good throughout the upper half of the Madison. Wow is there a lot of small fish eating in the float stretches-it bodes well for the next coming years. But there is also plenty of small fish from 4 to 5 years ago that have reached maturity, and there 16 inch forms are slurping in chilly dogs and flying ants. What a year so far in Yellowstone, very few days have been lost due to dirty water from afternoon thunderstorms, or hordes of biting bugs, or overcrowding. PMD’s, Heptagenia, Epeorus, and Baetis have been seen on the Lamar, Slough and Soda Butte rivers. Fish are tuned into the surface, although it can taken persistence and several fly changes before hitting on the right candy for each fish. Wolf and bear sightings have also been numerous, making the drive to the river even more enjoyable. The Gallatin is fishing strong, with Spruce Moths still dive bombing the icy pocket water of this gorgeous mountain stream. After the Moths have gone the way of the ghost, try hoppers, and flying ants. Make sure to cover those banks, as sometimes the fish in the Gallatin need a little coaxing to be tempted out from their hidden domains. Callibaetis are peppering the surface of almost every still body of water in the region, look for gulper action to continue for the next couple of weeks. It is never too early to begin tying Baetis patterns, as I will bet, that this coming week, we will see their importance increase significantly.