Across the prairie ocean this morning there was a grey slate colored envelope engulfing the whole. As it is with an overcast sky I have this belief that the fly-fishing will be good. With an overcast sky there's no glare or casting of shadows. Therefore to the river Blue I traveled.
I arrived at Scotty's shortly before noon and he was cooking Scotty burgers so of course I had to have me one to go. You can't go wrong with a Scotty Burger.
At Seventeen as I was killing the burger I noticed the riser's popping up in the pool below. Yes...the noses were coming up...not abundantly but enough to make a fly angler want to toss a dry. In the Prairie Schooner I had already convinced myself that the noses coming up were after midges but once I got to the river's edge I realized how wrong I was.
The bows were after a mayfly with the color grey, or Adams, and to me they seemed a rather large size. My best judgement told me size 14 but I usually don't carry a dry that large to the river Blue. However, I remembered Ralph James Ole Grey pattern and I just happened to have one about size 18. It went on the tippet.
The first five minutes of casting resulted in absolutely nothing but eventually I would get two takers...just couldn't get a hook in them. Then...the noses went down appearing not to return for sometime.
Standing there in the river I kept thinking about how the riser's were acting with their fast and hurried almost panicked like rises and this led me to believe that a wet in the surface film would capture bows. Even though there were Mayflies on the surface... sometimes it's hard to distinguish between a surface rise and emerging rise.
I tied on a soft hackle and decided to fish it as a true wet...no indicator, no weight, just fly. It worked like a charm.
Cast and drift, cast and high-stick, plus the cast and swing all produced, and the most rewarding part of my hour at Seventeen was that trout were captured in all parts of the pool. I ended up with seven to hand and each came from a different area of the pool. I will say the favorite presentation of this wet for the trout was definitely "on the swing".
Leaving Seventeen the next stop was Chris's Pool and here the riser's were frolicking also but I completely ignored that fact. Unlike Seventeen, the bugs at Chris's Pool were black as midnight. I stuck with the soft hackle and cast it across the wide spans of the lower end.
I must have missed twenty fish at Chris's Pool. Casting across the spans leaving the slack in the line made it rather difficult to get a hook-set. I would end up bringing another three bows to hand. After bow number three the poor soft hackle looked as ragged as I, and it didn't look like it would fish anymore.
However before leaving I looked at the extreme lower end of Chris's Pool where the channels are, and it was there a flurry of frolickers was taking place so I waded down. At the channels there is a rock I call "Diamond Point" and you can stand behind it and cast downstream in the channel. It's a tight cast but with care you can pull it off. Today, I should have pulled bows out of that channel but that soft hackle was definitely done. I left the pool, and the soft hackle fished as a true wet today will go to the retirement village for flies in the ole fly-tying room.
His life was short...but well spent.