Flies Float, Phones Don’t
The waters are high and off color.
Water temps are in the mid 40’s.
It’s a nymphing and streamer game.
So I wake up late and head on up to the Coeur d’Alene River. Why wake up late? It’s not even spring yet, no reason to be on the river at 5 o’clock. Things don’t pick up until 10 o’clock or so.
I head on out around 7 o'clock and get to the river around 9 or so. I fish for a couple of hours, mostly nymphing. I picked up a couple on the Batman Nymph and a few more on a Brown San Juan Worm. Not any love on the pheasant tail or the copper johns. OK, batman is the ticket today, so is the worm.
I move up river a bit and I hit this deep wintering hole. When I say deep, I mean deep. It’s at least 25 foot deep this time of year.
I’m nymphing away and I see a swirl. Then another. Dry Fly? In North Idaho, in the middle of March, and it’s not even noon?
Watch The Water - Fly Fishing Trick
One of the things I encourage folks to do is pay attention. Watch the water. See what the fish are doing. Don’t always do what’s conventional or what the supposed experts say.
I tie on a Crystal Yellow Stimi with Rubber legs and trail a St. Joe Favorite. I put on the Stimi because, frankly, I love that fly. Whether or not yellow stones are coming off, doesn’t matter. That fly simply catches fish. The St. Joe favorite is my favorite imitation of a blue wing that I had customer tied for the St. Joe River….but works everywhere. The pattern sits real high on the water and is good in faster current….like what you run into a log on the St. Joe.
Bam! Fish on….Yellow Stimi, Bam! Another fish, Bam! Again! In a thirty minute period I caught about 6 or 8 fish.
Another thirty minutes or so go by and things slow down a bit. I change it up. I walk about 100 feet up river above the hole and take of the St. Joe Favorite and put on a March Brown. I haven’t seen any yet…but……BAM! Bob’s your uncle. March Brown bite.
I’m guessing all told in about an hour and a half I could a couple dozen fish.
One of my goals this year is to become a better streamer fisherman. The fish in this area love a dry fly. Nymphs do well in off days. I’ve fished streamers often enough, but I just don’t think I’m that expert on it. I probably fish dry flies with either a dry or nymph, dry, or emerger dropper 65% of the time, a double nymph 25% of the time…..a streamer…..about 10%. So, I ditch my 4wt and go to my 6wt streamer rod.
One of my favorite streamers is a Sparkle Minnow Trout Slayer. It’s another pattern that I took commercial that was a personal favorite. It’s conehead to get down, has black and yellow and copper….really good for almost all water conditions. I cast a few times in “junk” water just to get my cast back in the groove.
Now I throw into the pool, I’m tense as anything with anticipation. We all know that streamers catch big fish.
It was my eighth or ninth cast I think when I get hit, and I get hit hard! Oh, this was a nice fish. I fight her and bring her to net. I’m going to call it a good 18”-20” cutty. I pull out my phone to go to snap a picture, this is Facebook material and bragging rights!
Fish flips and flops, phone drops, and Bob isn’t your uncle now.
I drop my rod, drop my fish, and my phone is at my feet in the water! Turns out, flies float, and phones don’t. Sorry my friends no photographic evidence. It’s the one that got away.
New Fly Shop CDA River
Also, for those of you that live in the Spokane, WA and Coeur d’Alene, ID area, there’s a new shop on the CDA River. Dustin Stetson and his girlfriend Katie Hoyt run The River Fly Shop right on River Road on the CDA river.
Absolutely great people, passionate about fly fishing, and passionate about opening up the sport to all folks….women, kids, everything….just the kind of people we want in this industry. It’s great having a shop right on the river. If you haven’t stopped in, do so.
Dustin is an accomplished guide, they run a drop for floaters, and they are just all around great folks. Stop by when you’re on the water and pay them a visit. They will be there with bugs, leader, floatant and all the essentials if you find yourself short on the water. Rumor also has it that Dustin is getting his beer permit....so even if you don't need anything.....there's a cold one at the end of the day!
Until next time my fishy friends………Phones don’t float!