Posted on August 16 2016
For you early risers, the trico hatch offers an opportunity to sharpen your dry fly skills. Be on the river early and look for a cloud of the little buggers swarming over a riff (Cedar Waxwings will be having them for breakfast). Get downstream in a quiet pool below the riff and wait for the fish to start feeding. Most literature says the spinner fall will occur when the temp hits 69 degrees. I've gotten to the river when the air is 67 and found the water covered with spinners. Play it safe and get there early. If its windy or it rained hard during the night, sleep in. Tricos don't like cold water, they can be found on the big river, the lower half of the west branch and on the upper east branch below Shinhopple. If you get there early you can fish duns. The fish eat them but the main attraction is the spinner fall. Six-x will do the trick but seven-x will give you a better presentation. The yearling trout (they are now about 9 inches long) will be up in pods and are quite easy to fool. There are big fish eating the spinners, look for slow takes with bigger wakes and/or big noses. Its a thrill of a lifetime to hook and land a 20 incher on seven-x.
The WB in and around Deposit remains the place to be. The guides that are still working the river are all up there. The sulfur hatch is waning but I received a report from Rick at the Troutfitter, who fished Monday, that he found good sulfurs at 10:30 in the morning. Instead of going back to the camp for lunch I headed right from EB trico fishing to the WB sulfur hatch. A fools errand (it not only cost me the price of a Wendy's crispy chicken medium combo) but today was cloudy, there was less of the warm rain water in the river and as a result the water temp was much colder. Sulfurs are fussy, they like to hatch at about 52 degrees. That happened at 10:30 Monday but it sure didn't happen between 11:15 and 2:00 today.
If we ever get a break in the hot humid weather the upper big river is begging to be fished. The fish are fine and they have gotten a well deserved rest from angling pressure. Wait for a few cool nights thatlower the river temp and have at it. A rainbow that is well rested is a handful for any angler.