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Stats vs ouija board.

Posted on August 02 2020

Sitting home on a Sunday afternoon in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic there was ample time to tally up both June and July fishing results.  The stats book I brought home only goes back to 2010 but even ten years is enough to put things into perspective.

As I anticipated both months were very good. June of 2020 was nosed out by June of 2011 by a mere 2 fish. July also finished second all time losing out to 2012 (the best year by far I've ever had) by 22 fish (If only I'd fished last Thursday - maybe, just maybe).

More interesting was the percentage of fish over 17 inches.  In June it was 21%.   In July it dropped down to 10%, with browns of over 17 inches making up less than 8% of the browns caught. The only July with a lower % of big browns was 2012.

What does it bode for the future - clearly good things.  The rainbow population has very few big fish.  Yes there are some 19 inchers and a very few twenty inchers but most of these fish are past their prime and will be gone by next season. The good news with rainbows are the 2 year olds (now about 13 inches) and the three year olds (now 16/17 inches. Both year classes are good sized and should provide excellent rainbow fishing for the balance of this and all of next year.

The browns puzzle me.  Last year there were a good number of seemingly healthy large browns.  This year during the big bug season and into June there were plenty of big browns. Since mid June they have virtually disappeared.  There are always fewer browns caught (by dry fly guys) as the season progresses but this year is more extreme.  The good news is the huge two year old class that I can't stop blathering about.  Why?  Unlike rainbows most of whom live only four years, browns can live 8 or more years.  The two year olds should provide us with great fishing for many years to come.

The outlook for the rest of this year?  Very good.  Assuming the sulfurs keep appearing at the present rate of two hatches a day there should be plenty of dry fly fishing well into August. As things cool down there should be fall olives, isos, stenos and epherons hatching.  With cooler weather and a good rain the entire system will open up and fish that have not been fished to for over two months will again be fair game.

Patch that leak in your waders, tie on a new leader and prepare to enjoy the next two months on the river (common sense tells me there probably won't be any football games to watch).


  • ZETQaFlSPgbzXCN: August 05, 2020


  • mMahTFWuXkqUK: August 05, 2020


  • Ed Smith: August 03, 2020

    Thanks for your analysis and optmistic outlook for the future. The numbers do look good for an excellent population of rainbows and browns for the next several years. Thanks again

  • Dennis : August 03, 2020

    Good morning. I am very excited about the fall fishing. Maybe in QAndA you could expound on the September fishing on the river. Less people less boats hopefully more fish
    Thanks again for all the stats

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