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The Preseason Shakedown

Healthy wild upper river rainbow on the nymph.  Keeping them wet!
Healthy wild upper river rainbow on the nymph. Keeping them wet!

It is time.  I fished the upper on Tuesday and the lower on Wednesday.  It wasn’t really on but fish were on the nymph pretty good in both places.  A few and I mean like 2 opportunities each day for fish feeding on dries. However, the weather reports are making every angler start to swoon.  Warmer overnight lows in the mid to upper 30’s and even the 40’s next week are in the forecast.  The daytime temps are hitting 55 to 60 in the next 10 days!  Water temps will be on the rise, water levels will be low, and fish are going to be on the move as the bugs start doing there thing.  The Preseason Shakedown has begun!  Get those flies tied, get all your gear together, wait anxiously for your Scott G2 repair to come back and your new Simms Wading boots to arrive, and start thinking about dry fly fishing.  Because the trout are gonna start thinking about eating dries too!  We also just had a full moon, the time change happens on Saturday and the days will now start to get longer and longer on our way to summer!  Its FISHING SEASON PEOPLES!!!

I will be tying a bunch of dirty dries for the Skwalla and March Brown hatches that are sure to be happening simultaneously over the next few weeks.  Drakes are not far behind and with this low water that we are having April could be bloody spectacular!  Salmon Fly Nymphs are already starting to move and even the Golden Stonefly Nymphs that hatch at the beginning of summer are starting to wake up from their winter hiding holes.  It’s a mad dash to get ready and find days to get on the water.  Call in sick, take vacation, or at worst…just blow off some work.  I already got my boss to schedule a day of hooky to go fish with me.  Another part of the shakedown is fielding calls and emails for trips which is starting to happen.  This spring is looking to be one of the better springs for fly fishing we have had.

Its also that time of year where the river comes alive not just with trout but with bugs, which is why we are all getting super stoked.  I love seining the river and looking at the naturals, it gives me inspiration for new patterns, lets me know how healthy the river system is, and it helps me get into the mind of the trouts and the river.  With plans to get a Phototarium which is a big plastic view box for fish and bugs, I am really hoping to delve ever deeper into the world of aquatic insects and trout.  There is a large shift for keeping our wild fish wet when angling and it is a movement I fully support.  A fellow guide made a great point: “Fish pics don’t sell trips, good fishing does.”  Keeping these wild trout wet during handling is only going to bolster and strengthen this fishery and put more fish per mile in our river.  As this season starts I encourage all anglers to keep fish wet as they handle them, take flies out while fish are in nets, try not to handle fish, take photos of fish while in the net or in a photo box, and get lots of action shots.  Shots of people fighting or working fish are really cool.  These fish are wild and we want more and more of them to fill our river so lets treat them as such and make this fishery better with every season!

Anyway, the river is starting to wake from her winter slumber and once again fill her waters with life…and hungry trouts.

Tamarack

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