The Spring. It has been a pleasure and an absolute blessing to wake with the river this season. All of here were denied access to our waters and outdoor escapes this time last year. 2020 can eat it. We all lost our ability to escape; whether it be our places of worship, our communities, our outdoors, our families, it was all a cluster.
After not being to come out of hibernation and wake with the river last year I felt always disconnected from it. I never felt like I was fully understanding what she was saying. Having the constant disconnect to its tole. This season season has been quite the opposite.
The spring has started off fantastic. Warmer and sunnier than usual, and with less runoff and high water than I anticipated. It’s here now, but already on the downward trend. As an angler and a guide the spring is a little different. While this valley is a farming community and things are just now starting to grow….the spring is on its way out in fly angler terms.
You have winter, then mid February hits and that’s the start of the early season for me. March and April are Spring…May is its own thing…its called caddis. While BWOs, Skwallas, and March Browns round out our spring bugs. There is this transition month of May that brings the Yakima River two things. The bigger flows of irrigation, and the caddis hatch. The fish get pushed into the bank due to the heavier than normal flow…and the caddis are there for them to eat. Works out great for anglers. And while May isn’t technically Summer…its not really Spring either. It’s just caddis.
Caddis are best described as an aquatic moth. We have lots of different kinds in the river that hatch from May to October. The big ones are Mother’s Day Caddis or the Brachycentrus numerosus, or American Granom, and the October Caddis or Dicosmoecus Gilvipes. We will focus on the mothers day.
The scientific name even says numerosus, as is numerous or a fuck ton. And if you’ve witnessed a decent caddis hatch you know. Sometimes the bugs are so thick you can see the other side of the river, you’re eating and shit. And so are the fish. On the Yakima fish are post spawny, hungry, and the flows are jacked….so they need calories. And shoveling caddis into their mouths is what these feesh do.
The caddis hatch brings about the bigger number days on dry fly eats, but fish in general are more inclined to take a fly as we get into the month of May. Things start working for the anglers advantage unlike the spring where the trout typically has the upper hand. Water temps, flows, metabolism, food sources, and weather all shift and the angler has a few cards to play. The Yakima is a caddis river, especially the lower end. The time is almost nigh.
Chucking elk hairs and pupa patterns tight to bank, where two inches closer adds two inches to the troots tail. It’s a fun time to fish the Yakima. And this season is shaping up to be DECENT!
The Mother’s Day Caddis Hatch is already starting to fill up. Check that calendar and schedule a fish chasing day…bring your mum! It’ll be wicked fun.
I can’t thank everyone enough for coming our for trips this spring, for the fly orders that I am still behind on, for the help with the shenanigans, and the continued support of your local trout guide. I appreciate it greatly. This spring has been one of the busiest in the past 7 YEARS! of guiding. The 2021 season is looking really busy and super fishy!
See ya riverside anglers. We back in the flow this season anglers. Get it, get Bent, and chase troots.