small yellow flies

Local rivers are settling. Water temperatures are rising into the right zone and with that insects are making a strong appearance and trout are becoming much more active. I’m seeing a lot of the small stoneflies, especially hatches of Yellow Sallies. Here is a recent tie for the faster riffle sections: size 16.

And a tie for slower river sections, size 16.

Pale Morning duns are also starting. Like the Sallies they are light yellow/ cream in color. Some have a slight orange or pale green tint to them. I prefer this hatch as they ride the river surface for a fairly long time before taking flight. Trout can relax and sip on them.

The small fly hatches, unlike the big flies, tend to go on for weeks on end and some for months. They tend to be consistent and dependable. Last year  I fished Pale Duns from late June into late September on one of the local tailwater rivers. That’s reliability!

Catching a large rising trout on a small fly is always a real challenge and quite special when a connection is made and one landed. Here are a few taken on small dries…

late october

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Nice weather for a change. Light sweater conditions in the afternoon and minimal wind. The dry-fly season on the Crowsnest river has been extended a little. Finding rising fish is getting harder but there are still some around. Bug life is weak but there are just enough midges and small olives around to entice some good fish to feed on the surface with the low, slow, clear water conditions. The river is still producing if you’re willing to hunt. I walked it this past Sunday. It’s an afternoon game. The low arcing Autumn sun creates long afternoon shadows and the trout like feeding in these darker river sections once (if) the bugs get going.

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I started fishing the Crowsnest river in 2001. Seventeen years later it still amazes me the quality of the trout that inhabit it given its size. Best of all you can search for them with your eyes and try to fool them, often in the shallows, with small dry flies. You get to watch the trout react to your impression; you get to see it all unfold. Engaging, visual angling. It’s why I fly fish…

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Here’s a nice Crowsnest rainbow that was located feeding on a shadowy bank. Caught on a size 18, BWO hacklestacker pattern.

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same rainbow

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post storm

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A big snow storm this week. Some melting occurring. Rivers still low and clear. Brief angling days for the dry-fly angler. It’s usually a 2 to 5 pm event.  This past Saturday trudged through the snow to the Crowsnest river. In the bright sun and low water conditions fished to some surface feeding rainbows on my knees.

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last

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naturals and an impression

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great flat water

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snowbanks show off the hatch