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Ronan's report

Thursday 1st September, 2011

As the glowering sun drives the burners out to the playa to torch the man, I've been working the fast water. Caddis, crawlers and stones are living here too, greedy for faster water and a faster supply of food. The trout uncomfortable in the warming clear and low water of the long pools and sweeps are getting refreshed in the bubbling white water. Some may be hiding in the depths, content to wait it out in the deep, but others are fins out flying through the turbid currents giving us a chance to catch them even under the bright still day of late summer.

This is probably the first time this year you've be able to even approach and wade this water, let alone fish it. Should you even wade it now? Got your old man stick? You can pretend it's a monopod or snake beater. This stretch has been a lethal torrent where only the largest boulders have been able to hold until now. As the water has fallen, they've become the landmarks for a maze of slots, pockets, short riffles, seams, eddies and drops. Mind the danger and watch your footing but wade hard, much of this water gets walked by with doubtful glances and rarely gets fished since the wild currents bring near instant viscious drag. Getting close can make the difference unless you have a natural affinity and talent for hyper-spastic mending.

It's tough fast short-run nymph fishing and if you're not aggressive, you might as well take a siesta in the shade, assuming you're lucky enough to find some. Aggressive means you need weight, get down fast. A czech nymph rig can work but lacks some versatility when things get out of reach. I like a short leader with 5' of straight tippet to a two fly rig (a big shot with stonefly or BH attractor and a small weighted caddis tailer 12" off the bend).

Sort out the straight fastest, fast through the whole column, shallow and mid-depth micro runs where you won't think of standing; fish can't hold here either. Skip them unless it runs smack into a boulder, and you're going for the pillow in front of it. Typically, you'll have solo and clusters of large stones seperated by several feet that neck the swift channels.

(Sorry all. It's late and I'm a slow writer! I'll roll on with it next week.)


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