Fishing on the Bow has been quite productive over the past month. Excellent weather and consistent water temps have made spending time on the water enjoyable for us and the fish. As of late flows have been lower, opening opportunities for bank anglers to fish water inaccessible during higher flows. With the sun lower in the sky and cooler overnight temps, it will take a while for things to get started in the morning, so no need to get out too early, there is still plenty of surface action to be had so don’t leave your dry fly box at home!
Photo by Jeff Medley
Blue Winged Olives (BWO’s) are in full swing, and fish are keying in on them. Don’t be afraid to go small, 18 is a good “go to” size. Keep in mind that fish can be selective for emergers at the beginning of a hatch. Make sure you have a few in your box. RS2 or Brooks Sprout are consistent producers. As with any small, hard to see dry fly, a larger dry tied on ahead of an emerger serves as a great indicator. For adult patterns, comparaduns and parachute BWO’s are our favorites. If the BWO action isn’t on, small midge patterns can be worth a shot.
Photo By Nick Berenyi
October Caddis are lining the bushes along the banks of the river. This large caddis provides a good-sized meal for trout trying to bulk up for winter and a large caddis fly makes for a good option as an indicator fly. They will skitter across the surface of the water to lay their eggs. Don’t be afraid to imitate this by twitching or even skating a dry fly. While this isn’t necessarily a prolific ‘hatch’, it’s certainly worth having a few in your box. Andersson’s bird of prey is a tried-and-true pattern that imitates the nymphal stage and a good old elk hair caddis in a size 8 will do the trick for adults.
Backswimmers and Boatmen have also been bringing plenty of fish to hand over the last few weeks. While imitations can be fished under an indicator, a swung presentation seems to work best. Streamers and boatmen make a great duo. Try fishing them in tandem to pick up those picky fish that might refuse the streamer. Further, foam backed patterns that rise in the water column when paused can be deadly.
As always, hopper dropper rigs are producing once temps warm up for the day. Using small droppers is critical this time of year. Occasionally, a hopper without a dropper can provide a better drift and entice those fish that have seen plenty of hopper dropper rigs to rise.
Finally, it won’t be long until browns will begin constructing their redds. These are cleaned gravel patches where brown trout lay and fertilize their eggs. These spawning beds are critical for future generation of fish and the health of the fishery. Fish on redds are vulnerable and need all the help they can. It goes without saying but avoid targeting fish on redds and walking on/around redds as this will suffocate the eggs.
Nymphs: Boatmen Black or Tan (14-16), Tungsten Bead Pheasant Tail (18), BWO Killer (18)
Dries: Elk Hair Caddis Orange (8-10), Almost Dun BWO (16-18), Comparadun BWO (16-20)
Streamers: Rolled Muddler (8), Peacock Bugger (6-10), Bow River Bugger (4-8)