The summer vacation for kids and teachers is over. Families are enjoying one last hurrah at the beach or pool as we enjoy a beautiful Labor Day weekend! We should all pause and remember the workers whose suffering and fight for honest and equitable treatment and commensurate compensation for the labor humans do set the global standard and created a middle class in our nation.
We are on the cusp of the weather turning, too, but I am afraid the summer heat returns - to the joy of the beach goer but the chagrin of the trout angler. Our patience will pay off as a new Fall season for Trout is about to begin.
Let’s look back at a report from a few years ago, I can hear the voice of the author and am reminded of Ecclesiastes 1:5, “The sun also rises,” (also the title Hemingway’s first novel). Things are not so different now than that first weekend of September 2018: “We're in a window of pleasant weather this Labor Day weekend but it looks like it will be back in the heat starting Monday afternoon. So how are the trout doing? So far, thanks to many of us leaving them alone, the trout are fine. There were nice catches in the Gorge today and that will likely continue for the rest of the weekend. The flows are the big story. After four years of low water, levels are excellent and there is rain in the forecast again. Looks like after we get through much of the coming week's heat, there will be a more sustained cool down as far as weather goes. So pick your spots and remember that timing and temps are everything. Better days are on the way. Isonychia and Light Cahills are still a good bet at dusk. BWO's have been hatching sporadically. They are small size 20-22. Fish those Pheasant Tail nymphs and trail an RS2 in either Grey or BWO. Tan Caddis are another constant. Have an assortment available in sizes 16-18.”
In the meantime, fill your fly box, scope your spot, and be ready for the fall. Aptly called the October Caddis, (Trichoptera: Limnephilidae; Dicosmoecus), are the largest caddis and become active in September. We may continue to see them through November if conditions allow. These are cased caddis who swim to the shoreline, crawl out of the water to shuck their pupal case then fly into the safety of the trees. Trout are hard wired to gorge on the swimming pupa as they load up on protein for the coming winter. Fortunately, Tim Flagler has cracked this code and offers some advice on how to locate the likely stretches of water where this phenomena may have already begun in the article from Fly Tyer linked HERE. His companion video for tying a soft hackle October Caddis is worth watching, even if you do not own a vice (yet).
Tightlines, everyone! The anticipation and moment before clearing the cusp is the best part. See you out there, Roy B.