[I’ll be going off the grid for a week or so beginning in the afternoon on 8/22, so if you leave a comment here after that time, it may be a few days before I can respond to it. In any case, thank you, and I’m planning to return!]
I was in the creek at 7 a.m., a bit early for the trout to be rising seriously, but I noticed several fish sipping in the low calm waters under the willow trees. The stream temp was a safe 60 degrees F., as it has registered through the summer, thanks to a multitude of springs throughout this section of the creek.
The long rod was necessary to keep my casts above the streamside vegetation; and a nine-foot leader tapered to a 7X point seemed the best way to present the tiny Trico spinner imitation so not to frighten the breakfast scene.
Tricorythodes is the smallest mayfly I keep track of and attempt to imitate with an artificial fly. The adult insect is tiny, about a quarter of an inch (3 to 5 mm, with tail) in length, just a pinch or two larger than the midges that I’ll drop on a spring creek in the winter season. When the egg-laying females, or spinners, are hovering above the early morning stream, they can resemble (as someone once noted), “a slow-moving white cloud of dust.”
I greatly enjoy casting over the Trico spinner fall and find it simultaneously relaxing and challenging. The white wings, tied with Poly Yarn, reflect just enough light to allow me to track its drift on quiet water. If I see even the slightest drag on the line and fly, it’s time to retract the line slowly and make another cast. It was tough work today, but an hour after I began, the long deep pool by the parking lot was dimpled with rise formations.
I inched my way into the water as slowly as a heron falling asleep. When I was nearly waist deep, I began the back cast, making sure the line was well above the grasses and away from willow branches. Timing seemed especially critical. It would all be over once the sun shone directly on the water, unless I wanted to continue by switching to an Ant or Beetle.
It had been a long time since the pool had favored me this well. Small wild browns and native brook trout rose to the Trico pattern as the naturals hovered in formation over the creek. As each of the brooks and browns regained its balance in the pool and scurried off, something in the spirit of an angler said a word of thanks.