02/02/11
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.    Blue-winged Olives
2  .  Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
3.    Midges


Stream Conditions in the Smokies:
It sure is pleasing to see continued warm weather come into the Smoky Mountain
area, especially considering most everywhere else in the nation people are really
suffering from continued extra cold and severe winter weather conditions. The front
will pass today and we will see highs only in the low forties for the next few days with
nights dipping down into the twenties at nighttime. There's some chance of snow
through the weekend but I doubt it amounts to much. They are showing 18 inches of
snow on LeConte but I think that will increase when they post the new numbers later
today. It is exactly 3:30 AM (I can't sleep when I've been in bed most all of the time
sick with distemper) and the Little River is over the 4 foot mark and 1450 flow, so it's
currently far to high to fish. I'm sure that will fall about as fast as it rose because the
rain was needed. I was able to go outside and walk around some yesterday for the
first time in a week. Although I am very weak, I'm getting better fast. Last night, I
thought we were getting blown away but it was also comforting to know we were not
under tornado warnings like some areas of the country.

I do think the recent warm temperatures will help level out the early season hatches
(provided things stay close to normal)
because all the aquatic insects were
developing behind schedule as of about two weeks ago.
I looked at some
samples of BWO nymphs, Quill Gordon, March Browns, Blue Quills, Grannom
Caddis larvae, Rock Worms, and a few other species samples that all appeared to
be far behind developing to the stage they normally exist at this time of the year.
The water has simply been to cold, too long. It has slowed the development of the
thorax and their wing pad areas were not beginning to become very obvious. The
recent warm weather and more normal water temperatures will change that fast,
otherwise we would have had delayed early season hatches. My guess is, if the long
range weather reports are half accurate, we will see the hatches turn out to take
place very near the normal times in the early season.

Keep in mind, although the hatches may start and end a few days early or
late, the sequence of how they hatch,
from one species to another, will not
change. It will always stay the same.
 

Also keep in mind, that if a certain hatch begins and the weather suddenly
turns cold, the early developed insects will continue to hatch even though
the water temperature drops drastically;
however, those same insect species
that exist a good distance upstream that were slightly behind in developing, will
stabilize and hold off to hatch when the water temperatures return back to the
normal temps for the hatch to occur. This causes small, isolated hatches to occur at
various parts of a stream.

Small isolated hatches do not necessarily make the fishing poor or the
hatch of any one insect less effective for catching trout.
They will all
eventually hatch and the trout will have the same amount of food to eat from it.
Keep in mind, the insects the trout eat on the surface
is probably less than one
percent
of the insects they eat from the hatch. Think in terms of matching what
is about to hatch, not just matching the hatch.

The horse apples about relating the intensity of the hatch to the catch is something
that only exist in the minds of anglers- namely those that don't know how to fish a
hatch in the first place. In fact, if someone has the time to hang around the streams
and follow the sporadic hatches, they
can often catch far more trout than they
could if a particular hatch occurred intensely and lasted only a short time.
On the other hand, if you have only a two or three day period of time to fish, and the
hatch is very light, and you don't have the opportunity to keep fishing, finding and
following the hatches, you may end up disappointed.
The huge hatches don't
make the big difference. It's how you fish them that makes the big
difference.
Trout eat them one at a time.


Down and Dirty  (some are clean) Tips and Recommendations for Fly
Fishing Destinations - Part 15
Just keep in mind that it is strictly one opinion that happens to be mine. The intent is to hopefully
give those interested a general idea of what to expect. Most likely every guide, affiliated business
entity and local angler will have a different opinion. These streams also have full coverage on our
Perfect Fly Stream Section.

Blue River Colorado
The Blue River is one of Colorado's better trout streams but many anglers don't
think so simply because it's located within an hour or two of Denver. It's also often
judged by its waters up near the dam below Dillion Reservoir which is located near
the main Interstate highway that crosses Colorado east to west. It's there some
huge size trout exist. They feed on mysis shrimp that come through the dam at times
and are a part of the overall quality of the fishing but also distort the overall quality
of the stream. When anglers get out from behind the shopping centers and
downstream where the state of Colorado has rated twenty miles of water as the
"Gold" class water, you will get an entirely different impression of the stream. It's a
beautiful small stream that flows through a gorgeous valley. It also has a good
population of wild rainbows, browns, cutthroats, and brook trout. Kokanee Salmon
(and big brown trout) also run out of Blue Mountain Reservoir up the river during
the Fall.
Check out some of the photos. This is an "A" class stream.

Roaring Fork River Colorado
The Roaring Fork River is a big river. It is very, very diversified. It starts out as a
small, meandering meadow alpine stream in Colorado ski country near Veil where's
there's plenty of smaller cutts and brook trout and then flows at a very steep decline
for miles through what's called it's middle section. This is some of the best looking
pocket water you will ever see. It has plenty of willing trout and flows through some
beautiful country. The middle section picks up the water from the Frying Pan River,
an "A" class trout stream. The lower section of the river picks up the water from the  
Crystal River and flows from Carbondale down to near Glenwood Springs before it
empties into the Colorado River. It's lower section is usually best fished from a drift
boat. You have plenty of options and lots of water that's rarely crowded because of
all the other streams in the general area of Colorado. All the trout are either native
or wild and they are plentiful from its headwaters to the Colorado River. I'll give it an
"A" class rating.

Green River Utah
The Green River flows a long way through the state of Wyoming and has several
sections of excellent water for trout. These will be mentioned later when we get into
the state of Wyoming. For now, I wanted to mention the most popular fly fishing
destination in Utah and it's the Green River below Flaming Gorge Reservoir. It's
located in extreme Northeastern Utah near the Wyoming state line.

This stream is mostly a drift boat stream. It has an eleven mile long trail that follows
the upper section but wading is often very difficult or impossible. On low water, it is
great but other than that, there's little fishing to do unless your in a boat. The river
has a huge population of rainbows, brown and some cutthroat trout. The species
vary some in quantity depending on which section of the river you fish. Just below
the dam it flows through a very deep, beautiful canyon or gorge. It's the most
popular section with clear, green water; plenty of trout and sections of fast water
rapids. I'll give Utah's Green River (Flaming Gorge Tailwater) a weak "A" and
mention again, it's mostly limited to drift boat fishing.

Copyright 2011 James Marsh