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

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

Dorsal view of a Amphizoa (Amphizoidae) Beetle Larva from Sears Creek in Washington
This is the first of it's family I've seen, collected from a tiny, fishless stream in the Cascades. The three species of this genus all live in the Northwest and are predators that primarily eat stonefly nymphs Merritt R.W., Cummins, K.W., and Berg, M.B. (2019).
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.

Report at a Glance

General RegionMissouri Ozarks
Specific Locationmedium sized spring-fed creek
Dates FishedJune 11, 2011
Time of Daydawn to noon
Fish Caughtwild rainbows
Conditions & Hatcheswater temp mid-60s
air temp-mid-60s to upper-70s
hatches-none to speak off, a smattering of caddis with a few Cicadas landing on the water
creek slightly high and off color

Details and Discussion

Motrout's profile picture
Posts: 319
Motrout on Jun 11, 2011June 11th, 2011, 11:34 am EDT
Well, we had some much cooler weather with some rain last night, so I decided to head down to the creek, the same one I reported warm water conditions on a couple days back. Water conditions were much better when I arrived at the stream at dawn, with the water temperature at 64 degrees. The water was just slightly high and off color, but that only makes the fishing better. The air temperature was in the mid-60s (almost exactly the same as the water temperature) the sky was cloudy, and there was a light drizzle. I thought to myself that these were excellent fishing conditions-if the water temp could be just a couple degrees cooler it would be perfect. There were very few bugs on the water (the thirteen year Cicadas are winding down, and I tend to see the most of them on the water in hot, dry conditions.) So I thought it would be a perfect day to fish attractor dries. I started off with a #14 Royal Wulff, and I never did change. The majority of the fish were still holding in the riffles, but they were feeding actively and I caught maybe a dozen fish through the course of the day, and probably missed twice that many (there are a lot of fingerlings in this creek that have a hard time taking a #14). Most of the fish were just typical small stream rainbows between 4 and 9 inches, with one 12 incher thrown in that made for a fun fight on my light rod. I love fishing in cool, cloudy, drizzly weather. It sure beats the heck out of the hot, dry stuff we have been experiencing, both for the fish and the fisherman.

The best part though, was instead of water temps in the 70 degree range, they were in the 64-67 degree range. That's still a little higher than I'd like to see, but it's sure a step in the right direction. The fish seemed to have survived the heatwave okay. At least I didn't see any dead ones.
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach

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