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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.

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.

About "Mystery Creeks": If you recognize one of these, you already understand why I'm keeping it a secret. I'm not as strict as some anglers about hiding where I fish, mostly because I don't expect to substantially affect fishing pressure on already well-known or simply unpopular waters. But there are some gems where I don't want to add a single unfamiliar bootprint to the mix, due to the fishing, their wild character, or keeping a friend's secret. They're all "Mystery Creek" here—even the lakes.

Landscape & scenery photos from Mystery Creek # 249

Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
There used to be a well-maintained road running up this creek. Now, not so much.

From Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
One of the last fish of the night, a bit blurry, but with too pretty a throat to pass up.
The road that used to follow the creek used to pass through what's now the air alongside that cutbank.

From Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
A nice redband rainbow.
First fish of the day
Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington

On-stream insect photos from Mystery Creek # 249

Cases made by larvae of some sort of Chironomid midge, which I photographed with my bug kit back in the studio.

From Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
This Calineuria californica female was captured and placed in "bug jail," but was released when I saw it was loaded with eggs and about to drop them, and I could tell it was the same specis (albeit different gender) I photographed a few days ago.

From Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington
Thousands of midges swarming over a sunny pool.

From Mystery Creek # 249 in Washington

Videos from Mystery Creek # 249

Cinygmula par mating flight

It's remarkable what thick hatches, and especially spinner flights, can come from a species few anglers have ever heard of. The genus Cinygmula is thought to produce unremarkable spinner flights, but this one would certainly have gotten the trout going if it weren't happening just before dark on a small stream where there isn't a lot of nocturnal feeding.

Closeup insects by Troutnut from Mystery Creek #249 in Washington

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