scenes: brief road trip south

rainbow on size 18 BWO dry

Cold at home. In fact snow hit the ground. So I headed south across the border to a Trout Town on a wide tailwater river. The weather was slightly better but still behind schedule for May. Most days it was fairly cool. My dog’s water bowl was frozen most mornings.

I camped in a section called Mid-Canyon to try an avoid the ever present wind. The dry fly fishing was for the most part poor. I rarely saw a head/nose break the surface in spite of some good hatches. Most surface disturbances were trout displacing water when feeding on emergers an inch or two below: BWO’s. I still managed to catch several on dries: Klinkhammers and Parachutes while sight fishing.

There were no sipping trout on the banks or even in collector areas, or on the flats. And there were few fish feeding in some of my favorite side channels. The water was as low as I have ever seen it. That’s a ongoing condition out West. There was high wind and a lot of sun. Not the best conditions to find large rising trout.

side channel

Trout would bulge (emerger feeding) in the riffles when clouds rolled in, then disappeared when direct sun light returned. It was a yo yo (fish up, fish down) event on days with a mix of sun and cloud. Fun to watch as it became so predictable.

3 feet of shucks and spent insects against shore
main river
fly shop
another fly shop
side channel

10 thoughts on “scenes: brief road trip south

    • Darrelln09; Some of the photos do look SD like but “no”. I was in central Montana on the Missouri river. The Trout Town is Craig. It is between Great Falls and Helena. Great, well know river, esp for dry fly angling. One of my favorites.

  1. There should be a window of greatness sometime soon in that wonderfully wadeble low water. Or, they’ll raise it. Good to see that border open!

    • Jim: Yes, next month (and end of this month) should be good. I don’t think they’ll increase flows significantly based on Fly shop info, snow pack , etc….but never know. Like you, I’ll take low water on all rivers for wading and sight-fishing. Hope all is well.

  2. Great post, great photos, nothing like shaking off winter. It’s been cold here in SE PA, blanket hatch of Hendricksons on the Delaware ignored by the trout last week.

    • C of B: Usually your fishing season starts before our Rocky Mt. season so surprised you are also behind schedule. Having family back east I was aware weather/ Spring has been cooler than usual but thermometer has jumped lately. Hopefully Delaware will come alive and the trout will start surface feeding on Hendricksons and other other mayflies or caddis. Thanks for dropping in and for kind comments on post/photos. Tight lines.

  3. Amos: No quarantine. Border is open. Going down to USA they may ask for proof of vaccination. I’ve gone twice and have not been asked but carry proof (paper and on phone). Coming back Canada customs requires/expects that you’ve filled out Arrivecan app. with proof of vaccination. Pretty easy Arrivecan stuff as I’m not a techy and I did it. No issues at border going and returning. Hope all is well.

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