Finally, some consistently warmer weather is on the way! This also means skwalas! We’ve been seeing them pop on the upper river, and below is a picture of Sam with a big cutty that came up for a dry. It’s finally feeling safe to say that we can throw some dries on the upper Yak!
With these big stones popping on the surface, expect that the nymphing will also be very effective. Pat’s stones, 20-incher stones, really any stonefly nymph in size 8-12 will work. Look for shallow riffles, and don’t be afraid to fish the very, very shallow water. It’s not uncommon to find fish in a foot or two of water this time of year, so cover everything. With that in mind, keep your nymphing setups light and shallow, on 3X leaders and tippet.
As far as the dries go, don’t feel like you have to see fish rising to throw them. They’ll always be looking up for a big bug to float by, so throwing a single dry all day will find fish whether you see fish rising or not. They probably won’t be as active in the morning, so throwing the nymphs until about 12:30 is pretty typical for this time of year.
We tend to throw our skwalas with a 7.5′ 3X or 4X leader. We also like a really long drift to cover as much water as possible.
1.) Bullethead Skwala – Size 8-12
2.) Oswald’s Rastaman Skwala – Size 10-12
3.) Bugmeister – Size 8-12
4.) Flatwing Stone – Royal – Size 10-12
5.) Britten J Stone – Purple – Size 10-12
6.) Olive Stimulator – Size 8-12
7.) Chubby Chernobyl – Purple, Peacock – Size 10-14
As I mentioned before, cover as much water as possible and don’t be afraid to fish very shallow. Fish will be looking up, so it’s better to be too shallow than too deep this time of year. Don’t worry too much about tippet size, we fish a lot of 2X and 3X.
1.) Tungsten 20-incher Stone – Size 8-12
2.) Pat’s Stone – Olive/Brown, Coffee/Black, Tan/Brown, Brown, Black – Size 6-14
3.) Tungsten Pat’s – Brown/Black, Olive/Brown, Tan/Brown, Black – Size 6-12
4.) Extended Body Stone – Size 8-10
5.) Jigged Squirmy – Pink, Red – Size 12-10
6.) San Juan Worm – Pink, Red – Size 8
7.) Pheasant Tail – Size 12-16
8.) Jigged CDC Pheasant Tail – Size 12-18
9.) Frenchie – Size 12-16
10.) Pearl Perdigon – Size 12-18
It’s easy to overlook streamers with the great dry fly and nymphing action, but they can be just as affective as the weather starts to warm up. As usual, trout spey is a great option to cover a lot of water, but a single hander with a sink tip works great as well. Vary your approach, change depths and action as much as you need to get it dialed in.
1.) Woolly Bugger – White, Olive, Black, Brown – Size 6-12
2.) Carey Special – Size 8-10
3.) Slumpbuster – Black, Olive Natural – Size 8
4.) “The-One” Sculpin – Olive, Black, Natural – Size 4
5.) Dali Llama – Olive/White, White, Black/White, Black/Olive – Size 6
6.) Sculpzilla – Tan, Natural, White, Black, Olive – Size 4-8
PLEASE REMEMBER: Bristol is closed to the public! Do not plan to use it all, the gate has a lock on it. If you are going to drop off a shuttle before we open, please give us a call the day before.
We will now be open on Sundays from 9:00 – 1:00! We’re excited for the season to get going, and excited to see everyone back in the shop!
As usual, if you have any questions then give us a call at (509)674-2144.