Got Bug?

Got Bug?

Easterncaster | Thursday, 7 May 2015

Mother Nature's annual cruel joke on fly fishermen is once again under way - clouds of Apple Caddis (Grannoms or Brachycentridae) have assembled and are flying up river. One humorous facet to the whole 'Caddis Experience' is listening in on the diner parking lot conversations of the non-fly fishing drivers as they try to clear their windshields from the gooey-protein-mix that their wipers spread ala a Jasper Johns' device painting.


Caddis pic
Apple caddis

Caddis green

Caddis arrival can be very misleading to fly fishermen. Most see the bugs, see the fish rising and think that they have the cat in the bag. Ha!
After a dozen or so fly changes, and hours of frustration, many snip off their fly one last time, reel up and head to the bar sans fish interview. The same old story of a pea-brained, magnificently spotted, no-thumbed animal winning out is told year after year. "They just would not take my fly... ."

Been there, done that. Done doing that.

Me, I smile at the caddis clouds just as I do apple tree blossoms - a beautiful part of the scenery but that's not what's going. There is other bug on the water and the fish know it.

While simple, not too fancy patterns like above, can work at times when fish are rising and the Cloud-o-Caddis is hovering, often the best choice is an entirely different pattern - a mayfly spinner. Some think it a change-up where you are giving the fish something different to look at - true in that sense, but more importantly it's an acknowledgement that there are other bugs about. 

I was futzing around swinging pupae and taking a fish here and there, semi blindly and to be honest rather boringly. Not enough success to meet my demand. At times (this would be one) you need to stick your nozzle closer to the water and observe. And that is what I did the other evening. There were pounds of caddis adults on the surface yet every once and while in the ranks an interloping spinner. I knotted on a #12 Hendrickson spinner and began feeding fish.

egg spinners 2
5:5 BT2