Bring on the Hendrickson’s!

Date:  4/28/11

Water flow:  650 CFS

Visibility:  Clear       

Water temp:  40*F early a.m.

Water conditions:  A little high due to recent rains.

Hatches:  Hendrickson’s 12-14, Winter/Summer Caddis 18-22, Mahogany Duns/Little Blue Quills 16-18, Blue Wing Olives 16-20

Comments:  There have been a few Hendrickson’s hatching midday at the end of the upper TMA , and I have noticed a few further upstream as well.  Some fish are responding and violently slashing at the emergers and most times letting the adults drift by.  Dry fly fishing can be frustrating and many anglers are bedazzled by the large numbers of floating mayflies that fish ignore.  In the weeks to come trout will wise up, quickly identifying drifting mayflies as a significant food source and start taking them on the top as well as the nymphal forms.  In the meantime many fish have been put in the net by actively fishing the nymph or emerger patterns deeper in the water column at midday when these mayflies are most actively hatching. 

     Mahogany Duns and Little Blue quills are hatching as well, though they are in much smaller numbers and overshadowed by the Hendrickson.  These smaller hatches often take place in back eddies and along the stream bank, so be on the lookout for action in these areas and react accordingly. 

     Winter/Summer Caddis are hitting the water shortly after sunrise with good numbers of fish feeding on them in slack water areas of the river.  The pupae is the key player here, with long legs like oars these insects breastroke to shoreline grass, rocks, and debris to hatch, and its this swimming motion that drive trout crazy.  Fish your pupae pattern with twitches of the rod tip to emulate this action. 

     Most of our fishing is still being done with French Nymphing techniques especially in the high water that has been produced by spring rains and Dam fluctuations.  This method really shines in these high water scenarios.  Leaving the stream bank is rarely needed to land some hefty resident browns that escape the high water flows by migrating to milder currents near the shore.  For those of you employing these methods here are some good fly choices.  JW’s own Kahle worms in lime green and pink have been doing a bang up job on the Farmington for months now and are still producing. 

     Golden Stones 6-12 is another excellent pattern with a million ways to tie them, I like to use a simple straight forward, easy, and durable tie such as polish woven nymphs.   Appearing the same from all sides when awash and having the light underbelly contrast with the darker top, combined with a tungsten bead makes this fly a great choice in fast turbulent runs.   

Male Hendrickson on left and Female on right

Pheasantail Nymphs 14-20 are a good choice mimicking many different mayfly species.  Green Rock Worm 12-16 are an essential on the Farmington with tons of these insects showing up in stream samples taken with a kick seine.  As a reminder JWFlyfishing has finally been able to get a goodies store squared away and if you are in the market for some JWSlinky coiled sighters this is just the news you have been waiting for, so check it out!  We even have the ½ and ½ coiled sighters (my own personal favorite) with two contrasting colors so streamside vegetation and sunsets become a hindrance of the past.  Good luck out there and go catch some fish!

JW