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Ronan's report


Tuesday 02 September, 2014

The heat, good rain, and great plant growth have lead to a bumper hopper season. A healthy grasshopper population, although the ban of the agricultural community, is what makes western North American rivers amazing to fish in the late summer, despite poor casting and line management skills. Any asshole with a flyrod can plunk foam and rubber tied to a hook in a narrow stretch of water that holds fish.

And the fish will come.

Midge, after midge, after trico, after midge; a trout has to expend little energy constantly sitting in a feeding lane taking every nymph or bug that floats right to it's mouth. But the chance that a giant package of protein with twitching legs will provide a full meal with one strong rise is too much to pass over for most trout. Hoppers, crickets, beetles, or ants, anglers should know how to take advantage of it!

For the first time it was seems like too long, I was able to spend an afternoon on a local mystery river. This was a section I had never fly fished, although I have been through doing population work. At the access point, a pair of hardware anglers were just returning to a truck with very discouraging reports.
"The fish aren't here anymore and the only ones they caught on their 4 inch Rapala double treble lures, were really skinny damaged fish."
They travelled 3 hours to fish this amazing river, spent an hour walking the banks near and access and were certain that the recent flooding and local people had decimated the fish populations.

Unfortunately, some of the fish were skinny, but the worst part was many of them had debilitating injuries, such as the hook scar in the eye of the trout in the picture. The pressure on this river is truly apparent, in the number of trucks parked, the garbage and and trail damage on the banks, and the condition of the fish. I think reputation of the great streamer water and this great hopper season has been a big factor on the state of the fishery. Would it be better to add more access to fisheries and spread the pressure or reduce access and make people walk in, concentrating pressure at easy access points? The solution to that one might take many nights of whisky...

Ignoring that heavy stuff, this is the time for terrestrials! So in Alberta, get out the foam and rubber, forget those delicate casts, and go fishing on a hot afternoon!

Tying up some of those good looking Saltwater Bugs that Lars posted,
Harps


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