July 16, 2021
Gas $2.89 Partly cloudy, 90 degrees.
I inspected my boot and threw them away after giving SIMMS more of my money. The new boots won’t arrive for a while, so I scrounged through my collection of old retired boots and selected a pair in reasonable condition for the conditions.
So, I tried to head out a little earlier than usual and I was clear across town and headed north when I realized that I had forgotten to change and was wearing blue jeans and a t-shirt. So, I turned around and that cost me 40 minutes. I would still arrive at the river around noon.
Tom Kept me company most of the way as I listened to troubling news about the mysterious decline of brown trout in the rivers of Montana.
I went to the upper reach and scouted some other spots I’ll try in the future. I was hoping for rising fish. I nymphed instead. Only bringing a few to hand, I moved on down to the lower section.
There was a truck parked in the lot and I was concerned about making the hike in with two rods, worried that I wouldn’t get my favorite spot, but went on down the tracks with the afternoon sun beating down. The railbed emanating heat like a bed of coals, the shimmering air above tracks distorted the view like a mirage. I marched on, head down, looking for the markers of progress, the transducer with its blue cover marks the beginning on the long straightaway, a discarded Tums container marks the mid-point of the straight, at the beginning of the s curve the sonorous flow of the river reaches your ears, then the pile of discarded buckets as the tracks begin the curve back to the trestle, it won’t be long now, and I look up and see that I have arrived at the trail that will take me to the river.
My beer of the day was a Sam Adams lager, which is best served ice cold, so I carried in a little soft side with my snack and beverages on ice. I had another beer escape from under a rock the other day, so the cooler may be the new normal for me...
I took the euro rod up to the head of the run and fished the deep pockets and worked my way down a way catching rainbows and browns before heading back to my stash for a cold beer and the dry fly rod.
I broke open a case caddis to check on the color.
When I entered the pool, I didn’t see anybody else, but after a while a saw a guy working his way upstream, he was working the water methodically and it took a while for him to get within earshot. “Which way are you fishing”, he cried out. “I’m just working this pool”, I declared. “I’ll just head up around to above the next set of rocks”, he replied. We talked for a spell about the river and the fishing and the damn dam. He was down at the island in the morning are reported a decent hatch and dry fly action. I invited him to fish the pool with me, but he declined and bushwhacked around me. Now that is etiquette!
Picking up my rod I put on a new leader and tied on a #16 compradun that I had tied last night. I cast to rising fish and missed three before bringing one to hand. I was pleased that my fly tie was working.
This fish is really pretty I just love the par marks and he deep rich colors.
And it was a good match for the naturals.
The catching was good, but they began to get selective as the hatch wore on and the number of refusals was maddening. I switched to a puff daddy and caught a few more.
I was taking another break when SRO showed up, I didn’t have time to get back up to the head of the run before they came through and anchored up. Not sure if they caught any, if they did, I didn’t see it happen.
This guy came to visit as I finished my beer.
I was time for me to leave, I wanted to stay a bit longer but had some end of day obligations to take care of at home.
I was going to sticker the guy's truck, but he was gone when I got back, maybe he stopped after the SRO raft came through.