As is usual this time of year, action slows on most waters. As waters warm (or drop then warm) fish seek the coolest places which hold the best dissolved oxygen amounts. Usually these are the depths making fishing tough, but steady springs or sizable, cooler creeks entering can be refuges. Thus these can be potential locations for action. If it is not possible to fish at depth, spring holes, or creek mouths can be locations for action. Speckled dun flights or dry damselflies in the early can bring surface action on many still waters.
You might find some surface action early in the day from gulpers, but the summer slump is impacting the shallows almost everywhere. Here’s the good news: even with drawdown things look good for holding water to last through the fall months when fishing will pick up again. If you want to get out now, fish deep where cooler waters act as a refuge for fish. Thus full sink lines, small leech patterns or deeply presented midge pupa under an indicator will be the best ways for action.
Reservoirs at lower elevations as well as those that are shallow: this means Chesterfield, Daniels, Hawkins, Tewnty-Four Mile, Springfield, Twin Lakes, are warming. Thus trout fishing in these is slowing. Your best bet is to try deep water with a full sink line to present leech and midge patterns as fish will go there to seek cooler conditions until we get to the fall months.
Looks like we are around the peak of action in many still waters thanks to damselfly and speckled dun hatches. Chesterfield, Daniels, and Hawkins reservoirs seem to offer the best, although they are warming as expected in mid summer. Take your favorite patterns dry and wet, for these. Early in the day is a great time to be on all of these, and before the wind comes up Daniels offers good shoreline fishing. So does Twenty-Four Mile but on a smaller scale. Twin Lakes is still produces fast action for warm water species.
Discolored water is from wave action caused by wind. When you see this discolor, fish at its outside edge. Fish will forage there for food forms washed from the banks. We can recommend taking fly patterns !
All are beginning to warm up. Chesterfield has damselflies and speckled duns going around coves, weed beds and shallows, but fish are moving to deeper water, so #3 sinkers and such become more important. Same can be said for Daniels. As Hawkins warms action there will slow. For Springfield Res., midging with a strike indicator seems to produce best with fish rising to callibaetis duns near sundown.
Great action is provided on Chesterfield, Daniels, Hawkins, Twin Lakes, and Springfield from damselfly actions. Nymphs are sure to work around weed beds, shallows and transitions. But watch for fish taking adults on the surface. Then swith to your dry patterns for a great fly-fishing kick.
If you enjoy fishing damselfly life cycle patterns, Chesterfield Reservoir is the place for you. Set up a floating line and head for coves, transitions and shallows having lily pads and/or submerged weeds. Daniels is also fishing well with damselflies providing action as well as speckled duns beginning to show. Walk the east side shoreline and present damselfly life cycle patterns until wind comes up, then launch your boat or ‘tube and head for the upper end. Slowly troll a small leech using an intermediate line as you go. Watch for fish taking adult damselflies on the surface. On seeing them switch to a floating line to present your favorite adult imitation. This technique will also work on Springfield, Twenty-four Mile, and Hawkins reservoirs. If you do not have responses to damselfly life cycle patterns, midge pupa under an indicator will bring action so long as you find the taking depth.
Drakes have come & gone everywhere on the river. On the Harriman-Last Chance reach mornings and evenings offer the best fishing with PMDs in decreasing sizes (bring life cycle patterns in #18-#22) providing daytime action, then flavs bring evening action. Hoppers are not significant yet, but ant and beetle patterns will bring action anywhere on the river. So will evening caddis flights. On the middle and lower river, a few golden stones can still be seen, but sallys are more numerous, so medium and small stimulator and dry muddler patterns will work well. Likewise, no hoppers of significance yet, but ant, beetle, and PMD life cycle patterns can bring action. Don’t overlook streamer patterns if you will be on the river during evenings.
It’s the same as earlier this week: damselflies are what’s bringing the best action on all these. Now speckled duns are beginning to show here & there, so they may be the next bug to bring action. Want to escape to new waters? Try such as Aldous Lake (cutthroats only), Paul Reservoir (cutthroats only), Horseshoe Lake (put and take grayling & ‘bows), or Harriman Fish Pond (‘bows and brookies). Get in touch with us to see how to get to these and fishing strategies for fishing them.