Lower Clark and How Not To Create A Hatch

With too many errands to run and not enough time in the day off to get them all done, of course we went fishing instead. I mean, we’ve got priorities around here! I’d gotten the raft ready to roll but the drift boat was already on the hitch so… Off to the lower Clark Fork we went, and the fish there are feisty. It was a bright sun and high heat kind of day, so we had the river to ourselves other than the freight trains and PMDs. Fish were munching the spinners early, but the cripple patterns were taken in slow tailouts, and the 12 foot leader and a reach cast were the keys to success.

Glassy water and high sun might throw the fish off, but we still managed to rope some nice fish early.

Jayme hooked a few hot rainbows in the first miles, and then the heat really came on and we put the rods up and cruised most of the float. We were approaching a good run and were rigging up a new plan of attack when the dog jumped into my lap while a big boat box was open. The largest mayfly hatch I’ve seen all year happened in the boat, with everything from size 20 rusty spinners to size 12 cripple drakes suddenly floating downriver and in every nook and cranny of the boat. It would have been a beautiful sight if they were real bugs, instead of hours of tying floating by. I’ve got what we recovered spread out on the table to organize back into their little homes now. Well, it was fun while it lasted. Fishing is good and the heat is on. Headed up the Blackfoot in the raft for some streamers till noon and big fluffy dries until the takeout. Tying all these lost mayflies can wait.

What I got back after an excited springer spaniel meets lap incident. Probably missing 30 percent of what was in the box, but I needed an excuse to tie some flies anyway. Why couldn’t it have been the rubberlegs box?

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