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Artistic view of a Male Pteronarcys californica (Pteronarcyidae) (Giant Salmonfly) Stonefly Adult from the Gallatin River in Montana
Salmonflies
Pteronarcys californica

The giant Salmonflies of the Western mountains are legendary for their proclivity to elicit consistent dry-fly action and ferocious strikes.

Lateral view of a Onocosmoecus (Limnephilidae) (Great Late-Summer Sedge) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
This specimen keys pretty easily to Onocosmoecus, and it closely resembles a specimen from Alaska which caddis expert Dave Ruiter recognized as this genus. As with that specimen, the only species in the genus documented in this area is Onocosmoecus unicolor, but Dave suggested for that specimen that there might be multiple not-yet-distinguished species under the unicolor umbrella and it would be best to stick with the genus-level ID. I'm doing the same for this one.
27" brown trout, my largest ever. It was the sub-dominant fish in its pool. After this, I hooked the bigger one, but I couldn't land it.
Troutnut is a project started in 2003 by salmonid ecologist Jason "Troutnut" Neuswanger to help anglers and fly tyers unabashedly embrace the entomological side of the sport. Learn more about Troutnut or support the project for an enhanced experience here.

Lastchance
Portage, PA

Posts: 437
Lastchance on May 8, 2010May 8th, 2010, 2:42 am EDT
I was fishing the Little J last night and ran into a very, very good rusty spinner fall. The only problem was that I didn't have any rusty spinners. They looked to be 14s or 16s.

Questions: 1.) did anyone else experience this hatch? 2.) are they sulphur spinners?

Yesterday afternoon I was organizing my sulphur box and decided I didn't need the rusty spinners because I've never seen them. Can I spell ass? yes I can. LOL! I've only ever encountered the straw colored spinners.

Bruce
SlateDrake9
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
SlateDrake9 on May 8, 2010May 8th, 2010, 7:29 am EDT
I never leave home without a good supply of rusty spinners in sizes 12-22. They cover such a broad spectrum of bugs and so many times are fished in low light that exact colors of different spinners doesn't matter to the fish, only the fisherman.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
JOHNW
JOHNW's profile picture
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
JOHNW on May 8, 2010May 8th, 2010, 12:40 pm EDT
Bruce,
I was on the river last night as well.
I would guess yes to sulphur spinners but there were also a couple of different cahils around and a few caddis to go with that. It made things real interesting as the fish started to target specific stages of different bugs. Or as I like to think of it HEAVEN. TO top it all off I only saw 3 other guys and they didn't care for the type of water I was fishing so I had over 100 yards of river all to myself :)

If you ever see my car on the river feel free to come looking for me you'll recognize ED's brand on it.
JW
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on May 10, 2010May 10th, 2010, 5:03 am EDT
Bruce,

I think for the most part a great many anglers over-look spinners. They can be on the water at almost anytime and not always in the big swarms we generally think of. I have watched isolated Epeorus and March Brown females on the down wind side of sweepers dipping their rears in to little areas of broken water to deposit their eggs. I feel the fish are used to seeing them and they may not be a bad idea as a searching fly when otherwise the hatch seems slow.

Swisher & Richards and others have discussed fishing them early in the morning after there was spinner activity the night before.

I would suggest Syl Neme's "Spinners"...It's an interesting book.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
TNEAL
GRAYLING. MICHIGAN

Posts: 278
TNEAL on May 13, 2010May 13th, 2010, 2:55 am EDT
Early season spinner falls may be on the water at any time, depending on the weather. It's common here in Northern Michigan to have Hendrickson spinners in mid-morning, once the day starts to warm.
I feel for JOHNW.... I regularly fish a several mile stetch of water on which I have seen a total of one other fisherman in 27 years... lots of very nice brook trout..
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on May 13, 2010May 13th, 2010, 6:28 am EDT
Tim wrote:

"I regularly fish a several mile stretch of water on which I have seen a total of one other fisherman in 27 years..."

Damn Tim, I didn't know that was you! Hey! You should of slid down and I would of shared some of Lisa's famous "GORP" with you...He, he!

Take care! Always good hearing from you! Don't you over-work them Brookies now! We don't want to upset good old Rube Babbitt, eh!? They are all his fish after all.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
TNEAL
GRAYLING. MICHIGAN

Posts: 278
TNEAL on May 13, 2010May 13th, 2010, 8:41 am EDT
The first brookies that Spence is speaking of were planted in the AuSable river system (MI) by Rube Babbitt, the very ancient conservation officer. In that capacity, he covered from Bay City to the Straits of Macinac on horseback. Those first brookies were transported in milk cans from a hatchery in Caledonia, NY.
Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on May 14, 2010May 14th, 2010, 6:11 pm EDT
So THAT's how they got in there! I wonder if that's also how brookies ended up in tributaries to the Rifle as well...

BTW, see my post on the "Fly Arsenal questions..." thread about the joys of having a nice section of water all to yourself. There's no other way to fly fish in my humble opinion - I see other fisherman, I generally go the other way...

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...

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