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Oh for cold water!

Beautiful tiger in spawning colors (Rick Wallace)

October, fall, cool weather, colorful leaves ... NOT! It seems like just when we thought the weather would turn cold and the ponds would cool down we are still finding 80 degree days and warm surface temperatures.

Not only does this confuse use, it seems the fish are confused as well. Go deep, cruise the shore, keep near the surface -  sometimes all of the above, sometimes none of the above. Trying to figure out what works trys one's patience. The fish are hitting but it requires patience and diligence.

A review of the reported flies that got hits shows almost equal surface to subsurface action. Terrestrials rock with beetles and hoppers providing some exciting action. I personally had 10 fish come up and bump my fat albert #10 tan without opening their mouths. Fortunately, one or two did which was a nice reward.

As noted in other places, the fish are still shedding their summer doldrums. They look healthy and fight hard which is a problem. They don't seem to have the stamina. I guess it takes time swimming around chasing minnows to build up their conditioning. BE CAREFUL! Don't fight the fish to exhaustion.

Take a look at the EXCEL report through October.

See the details in the EXCEL spreadsheet.

What information is collected?

Fly data is collected from your census sheets. Each fly is uniquely identified but listed once even though it may have fooled several fish. Flies are identified by:

  • Fly Category (streamer, nymph, etc.) - What are the fish eating? Where are they feeding?
  • Name - The name of the fly. Some names are quite bizzare.
  • Color - light, dark, olive, green, black ... the list goes on and on.
  • Attributes - Beadhead, depth fished, size, parachute ... what ever the angler feels is unique or important.
  • Angler - Who held the rod that cast the line that had the leader that had the fly that the fish hit.
  • Date - The day the fly was hit
  • The same fly on different days is counted once for each day.
  • The same fly on the same day by different anglers is counted once for each angler.
  • The same fly hit multiple times by for the same angler on the same day is counted only once.

It sounds complicated but just list your flies on your Census Sheet and read the report. Remember, you don't have to land a fish for the fly to count! Hits and long distance releases as well as fish brought to net were fooled! We all want to know what works.

I hope you will find this report useful and that you will share your experience. The more information we have the better the report becomes … and we all benefit.

So, please fill in this data on your census sheet. As we go through the season, this report will be updated so be sure to check it out BEFORE you leave home!