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Lateral view of a Female Hexagenia limbata (Ephemeridae) (Hex) Mayfly Dun from the Namekagon River in Wisconsin
Hex Mayflies
Hexagenia limbata

The famous nocturnal Hex hatch of the Midwest (and a few other lucky locations) stirs to the surface mythically large brown trout that only touch streamers for the rest of the year.

Dorsal view of a Pycnopsyche guttifera (Limnephilidae) (Great Autumn Brown Sedge) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
This specimen appears to be of the same species as this one collected in the same spot two months earlier. The identification of both is tentative. This one suffered some physical damage before being photographed, too, so the colors aren't totally natural. I was mostly photographing it to test out some new camera setting idea, which worked really well for a couple of closeups.
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.

Wbranch has attached these 6 pictures to this report. The message is below.

Report at a Glance

General RegionPA section of Lake Erie
Specific LocationLower & upper Elk Creek
Dates FishedMarch 14 - 16
Time of Day8 - 12 & 1- 6
Fish CaughtDropbacks, skippers, and fresh fish

Details and Discussion

Wbranch's profile picture
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2635
Wbranch on Mar 27, 2012March 27th, 2012, 11:12 pm EDT
My friend and I had three full days of very good spring steelhead action. We don't keep accurate count but I'd say we landed at least thirty fish in three days including two browns, about six 16" - 18" skippers, and the rest adult fish at least 24" long.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.

Posts: 29
Orn on Mar 28, 2012March 28th, 2012, 4:24 am EDT
These fish are beautiful, and really big too! Looks like a great start to the summer for you!
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Mar 28, 2012March 28th, 2012, 8:28 am EDT

I was at my Monday evening winter tying group a couple Mondays back and the guest tyer was saying he and a couple nephews had a banner trip up to the Pere Marquette just the week before. Wouldn't tell me exactly where they were though...;)

From that smile on your face we can see you were having a great time. :)

Good fishing!


"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
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Mar 28, 2012March 28th, 2012, 4:27 pm EDT
Geez, Matt, you've been a busy boy lately! Looks like egg patterns with strike indicators?

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Wbranch's profile picture
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2635
Wbranch on Mar 29, 2012March 29th, 2012, 2:42 pm EDT
Yes, this warm weather has really given me a jump start for the 2012 fishng season. I've fished three days for steelhead and eight days for trout already and it's still March. I've had a good start to my trout fishing and probably landed at least two dozen fish. I'm fortunate to live in a state with many Delayed Harvest or No Kill trout streams and many are within an hour of my home.

Yes, you caught me redhanded! Those are egg patterns - I guess that is as bad a using the infamous Green Weenie (just kidding Louis!) You know what they say "When in Rome do as the Romans do" well eggs and steelhead go together like bacon and eggs or salt and pepper. Besides the creeks I fish are just full of loose shale and if you are using nicely tied nymphs you better be a proficient fly tier, or have lots of money, because it is easy to loose at least a dozen rigs a day. PA permits the use of two flies so you might be losing two dozen a day. Glo-bugs, Blood Dots, and sucker spawn are a lot easier to make and catch just as many fish.

It's funny I never used any kind of indicator when I used to nymph but for steelhead I do use them. Not so much to detect a strike because when a steelhead takes your fly there is no doubt you've had a strike! It yanks the fly line. I use it to keep the fly and split shot suspended off of the bottom to minimize getting snagged.

BTW that net glove I'm wearing is just amazing! My wife got it for my b-day a couple of years ago and it works really well in controlling big fish. It clips to my hip pack with a toggle and is on an accordian cord that has considerable reach to it. When the fish is tired I slip my hand into the glove and tail the fish. It lets you remove the hook and do a photo op without the fish banging around on the rocks or slipping back into the water. I think it cost about $22.00 and is a good purchase if if you land larger fish.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Martinlf's profile picture
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Mar 29, 2012March 29th, 2012, 5:44 pm EDT
Green Weenie, never heard of it! ;>
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Pryal74's profile picture
Escanaba, MI

Posts: 168
Pryal74 on Mar 29, 2012March 29th, 2012, 10:30 pm EDT
Great pictures and fantastic fish. I use the exact same strike indicator and probably a similar set-up. Keep up the good work!

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