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Wind Knots and Tailing Loops

Posted on August 19 2023

Am sitting home watching the water levels SLOWLY recede. With three serious rain events in less than a week the ground is saturated and the tribs are going to be slow to recede. In addition the reservoirs are now at an above average level and the releases have been increased. I believe the releases are supposed to be cut back on September first but I don't have the FFMP plan here at home to check.

With all the warm rain water it's hard to tell, but I believe the temp of the release from Cannonsville has been creeping up which would indicate that the cold water beneath the thermocline is about used up. If so, the sulfur hatch may soon be at an end.

Frank wants to know about my reject flies. They are lasting proof of my ineptitude as a tyer. Once in a while I sort through them for ideas. Surprisingly some evoke pleasant memories of days gone by.

Taylor - Right now I'm tying only duns and they don't work.

Ed J. - Positioning yourself in the stream is often overlooked as a way to make seeing your fly easier. If you are using a dark colored fly fish with the western sky as a background, The silvery colored water will let you see an olive or iso easier. If a sulfur or Cahill is your fly, turn around and fish towards the black surfaced water and the fly will stand out better. Another helpful trick is to try to follow your fly as your cast unfolds above the water. If you know where it lands it much easier to keep track of. 

Louie - False and I, use binoculars to spot risers from the (parked) car.

Dennis - The rain Gods are more likely to ruin the fishing than increased releases. As things now stand we once again have the entire river system to fish. By far the hardest place to catch fish is in the "Sulfur Zone". All we need is lower water levels and continued average or below average temps. There are isos and olives hatching and fish eager to eat them in the less pressured areas. 


  • Dennis 2: August 20, 2023

    With the benefit of another day of data, I now think:
    BR will be bit around 2000 cfs by Wed
    BK will be just below 450 cfs on Wed
    WB (Hale Eddy) will be below 1100 cfs on Monday and maybe 700 cfs on Wed

    The estimates for the WB and BK changed the most because their rate of decline slowed as the plots deviated from a straight line. Sadly things seem to be a bit slower than I originally thought

  • Dennis: August 19, 2023

    I hope you are right. It will be nice to fish rested fish and less crowds
    Thanks for answering

  • BT: August 19, 2023

    With bad eyes as well one thing that works for me is to throw a short cast where I can spot my fly and then throw a longer one. Helps me key in on it for a cast or two.

  • Dennis 2: August 19, 2023

    One other thing, you can surmise from the USGS data is it looks like the overnight low temps on the WB at Stilesville is running about 1°F below last years values in July and August. Last year the low tempo hit 50° F about Sept. 1. All else being equal (it hardly ever is), the 50° mark will be hit about a week later this year. The sulfurs started late this year, maybe they will last longer this year.

  • Dennis 2: August 19, 2023

    Yes the flows are coming down slowly. If there is no rain, the flows will fall pretty much in a straight line on a semi-log graph. If I print out the data and draw the lines, it looks like by Monday the WB will be close to 700 cfs, on Wednesday, the BR will be close to 2000 cfs and the BK will be around 300 cfs. The curves should flatten close to their “normal” values so it might be a bit slower to actually get to those values, also they and the BR are really a sum of different streams each likely with its own rate of decline, so it could be a day so off from my estimate.

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