I fished a stretch of the upper Current the day before Thanksgiving. It was a classic nasty, late fall/early winter day, with precipitation coming down alternately as rain, sleet, and freezing rain. It was terrible weather to be sure, but it is also the kind of conditions the Blue-Winged Olives love.
I got to the river at noon. The very upper reaches of this river are crowded, even on nasty days like this. So I selected an access that is further downstream from where most fish, but still plenty far upstream to be good trout water.
From the moment I got to the river, the bugs were on the water and the trout were rising. I tied on a #20 Blue-Winged Olive dry, and picked out a fish that was rising steadily against a bluff bank across the river. I caught the fish on the second or third cast. It was a regulation 11" brown trout. Nothing special, but still a nice fish on a small dry fly. Frankly I have plenty of trouble fishing any dry fly #20 or smaller, so I'm happy with any fish I catch on such a fly.
I got into something of a zone pretty quickly, and the day ended up being one of the best I've ever had on a stream. Trout rose steadily for several hours, and I managed to catch plenty of them. It was wet, nasty, and cold, and I was chilled to the bone. Still, this is exactly what I was hoping would happen. I have been searching Missouri's trout streams all fall for a good Olive hatch, and have only been rewarded with a few sparse hatches. The weather has just been to sunny and warm, and the water too low. But this was the day that would make up for all of that.
Finally, at about 4:30, the hatch had pretty much petered out. I tried with a nymph, and then a big streamer, but it was over. Just like that, the best day of my 2010 season had come and passed.
By the way, the rain/sleet that I fished in turned to snow yesterday (Thanksgiving), and we got a pretty good dusting of the stuff. The temperature is well below freezing now. Fall is past and winter is here, but at least I got in one good day. Now it's time to get serious about tying the midges up for winter fishing.
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach