Sunday, March 10, 2013


( Soulay Gibson with a gorgeous chrome hen from the Muskegon Thursday-Looks like a B.C. summer run)
March is coming in like a lion with cold, now rain -then snow! But the steelhead are on their time clocks and we had a fun week when the weather was colder with Doc Zaccheo, Soulay and Jamie from Grosse Point, Brent from Chicago and John from Columbus. The warmer weather brought out everyone and their grandmother Friday and Saturday and the river was a zoo to say the least. It makes my steel hunting nose have to work harder since many anchor their boats" right on" primary lies and send the fish scurrying into hiding lies. Yesterday even the night bite didn't happen since the fish were so pummeled to death, chummed the hell out of,  everything under the sun thrown at them and were petrified!.Today, the river is a totally different system with calm, rain, and fog- how difference a day makes.
Water levels are perfect at 2100 cfs...BUT...water temps are extremely cold...33/34 F with all the ice on the reservoirs.
( The Smack Fry !-hook; Octypuss Gamakatsu-thread: UTC fl. red : wrap on hook shank and tie off, egg; Otter Tangerine pierced through and super glued to red thread- cut off top to allow room for wing materials, switch to gray or white thread to tie fly, wing from bottom up: Silver Belly Minnow and FL. Pink Senyo's Laser Dub Hareline,top feather: Barred Mini Marabou Sand or Tan, topping: two strands lateral scale Mirage flashabou, eyes; Fish Skull Living Eyes-Wind color- Clear Cure Goo
It's all about biological drift at this time of year, photo tropic sensitivity and water temps which dictate a steelhead's metabolism and willingness to take the fly. The 3:00 afternoon warmest part of the day is critical since a one or two degree water increase can get the biological drift moving : little black stones wiggling down river, midges and scuds moving and the few Chinook fry scurrying about. This activates the selective/reflective curiosity of a pool pent up steelhead and triggers the bite. The dusk bite is pure spawning aggression and the fish's need to move and make something happen-even though water temps aren't allowing it. Fish every pool very slowly and for a longtime -" flog the water, run and gun" don't work so well like fall conditions since we are still winter fishing and the short term forecast sees temps in 30's and nigh time lows in the teens. I personally love these conditions since it keeps the steelhead aggressive longer and not totally love sick in the spawning rut.
( Brent and John enjoying yesterday's lunch; Mongolian Rib Eye, roasted new potatoes and Vidallia onions in olive oil and roasted red peppers)
Believe it or not I saw a new lake-run brown spawning redd earlier in the week and the many redds we have seen this winter are those fish. Seeforellen brownd from Germany are known to be late winter spawners and even though there is not much Seeforellen blood left in our browns, it most still carry some weight.The browns taht have spawned are lurking the sucker water for dace, fry, chubs, darters and sculpins. The stream trout are goring on tiny black and olive stone flies, midges and scud/sow bugs. Saw the first rising trout to the few midges that were about yesterday right in back of the boat and we saw two adult stones on the surface, but water temps will delay that- last year it was 70-80 degrees at this time!
( The dusk bite is important for big resident and remaining lake runs)
( The Dirty Dozen for the Great Lakes )
Ws still have some prime dates open this spring but they are going fast !-email or call us and we'd love to have you!
( The best dry fly action of the spring is coming soon- little black stone hatch- with the cold waters it will be a long in duration hatch and the trout will pig out heavily-combine steelhead and dry fly trout action in one trip on the Muskegon !)