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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 Zapada cinctipes (Nemouridae) (Tiny Winter Black) Stonefly Nymph from the Yakima River in Washington
Nymphs of this species were fairly common in late-winter kick net samples from the upper Yakima River. Although I could not find a key to species of Zapada nymphs, a revision of the Nemouridae family by Baumann (1975) includes the following helpful sentence: "2 cervical gills on each side of midline, 1 arising inside and 1 outside of lateral cervical sclerites, usually single and elongate, sometimes constricted but with 3 or 4 branches arising beyond gill base in Zapada cinctipes." This specimen clearly has the branches and is within the range of that species.
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.


Posts: 278
TNEAL on Jul 4, 2014July 4th, 2014, 12:02 pm EDT
anyone using automatic reels anymore?
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Jul 5, 2014July 5th, 2014, 7:42 am EDT
I have one collecting dust on the shelf...Given to me by my stepfather.

A good friend told me that back in their hey-day you could hear them up and down the Au Sable. Guides could pole and fish with one hand. :)

Mine is a Shakespeare Silent Tru Art Automatic...Made in good old US of A.

Back in 1993 George Griffith published a book, "For the Love of Trout" and there's a couple pictures in there of him using one. One on the back slip cover...Front cover of slip cover has Bob Summers floating ole George down the river in an Au Sable Riverboat. Bob Summers is a cane rod builder that apprenticed under Paul Young.

My copy's signed :). The late Craig Perry, a guide and friend, used to be the caretaker for a few years at the Barbless Hook where TU was founded in 1959 on the Mainstream.



On the dock at the Barbless Hook there is a plaque commemorating the founding of TU there. George used to have a large sign up on a pole for the canoes that read, "Don't let it be said, and said to your shame, that all was beauty here, before you came."

On the new DVD, "The River" there is a short on Bob Summers and he relates that the first gathering and discussion was at the Barbless Hook, but the first formal meeting was elsewhere.

What any of this has to do with automatic reels I do not know! Sorry Tim, for my ramblings...It must be a form of tourettes! Too many mosquito, black fly, and no-see-ums bites! Made me goofy in the head.
"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
Roguerat's profile picture
Posts: 456
Roguerat on Jul 5, 2014July 5th, 2014, 10:56 am EDT
I've never seen an automatic reel actually in use, either. My father-in-law still has his (another Shakespeare, must have been popular back in the day) from the early '50s, mounted on a solid fiberglass rod as a set. He grew up just south of Baldwin, MI, and regularly fished the Pere Marquette as a kid in the '40s until '56 or so...one heck of a childhood! Norm's in his early '80s now and has a lot of fond memories.
I've hefted the rod (heavy overall, really tip-heavy) and played around with the retrieve trigger-mechanism- it'll zip (strip?) line in pretty fast.

I just got back from a week on the Upper Platte (the Michigan one) and I'll try to post some pictures soon.


I Peter 5:7 'Cast your cares upon Him..'

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