Sunday, September 6, 2015

Bitterroot September Outlook

My last post was about tactics for surviving (SURVIVE!) the always  sometimes brutal stretch of mid August we've come to know and love: Not much hatching other than the seemingly ubiquitous hopper hatch and long, hot afternoons to keep them fishes down sulking. While the Tricos have kept the morning bite going it is certainly not my favorite part of the fishing calendar, staring at microscopic black parachutes in the wee morning hours waiting for a giant sipping to sip. Not my favorite medicine. Sip That Syrup.  But then it's over, as if a mirage, and the blistering August heat is a thing of the past.  The sweatshirts, waders, and the Ravalli county fair all signal the first cool mornings and the turning of seasons into my absolute favorite : Fall Fishing Is Here!!!!

Autumn has few detractors that I know of so this is mostly a bandwagon jumping rant with no hipster credit to be gleaned ("I was into fall fishing waayyyyyy before all these other people were"). However.  Brown trout blend in with the leaves changing colors and they look extra pretty. The Rainbows come out in the afternoons to eat flotillas of mayflies with cool composure. Eagles and Ospreys are seemingly in every tree from bend to bend. Add to that the swarming crowds of summer are long gone and their is something resembling SOLITUDE to found out on the river again. That is truly the best, the feeling of having a ten mile float of river to your lonesome self and pod after pod of risers to shoot at. Something close to Heaven.

But back to those Autumn Browns. ..

I Love Goooooooold!

Brown trout this time of year are as eager and willing to eat a fly as they will ever be. The ever elusive Salmo trutta takes a break from its reputation of being the picky eaters of the trout world and in indulge in a month-long spawning / killing spree that would have made even Luca Brasi jealous. Anything moving around their territory is fair game right now, the skated dry fly, the swung nymph , and the biggest thing living in your flybox are all dead to rights anywhere near them. Their extra splash of seasonal golden color matches the surroundings and makes for super cool pictures. It also adds to their growing nut-fire self confidence and makes them believe they are invisible. They are not. Not when they come charging out of woodpiles and ledges to crush any suspected would-be assailants. God I love these fish when they aren't finicky f@#$s.

This all means it is time to revel in the glory ride into the sunset that is Autumn flyfishing in Montana. The scenery, solitude, and dry fly bite gets as good as it ever will. The smart anglers and those just getting the last sunny day of indian summer will all be rewarded with the best season (in my opinion) that the river has to offer. Nothing left to say but "set the hook, fish awwwwn!" .

Chromer. Steelhead bae'.

Last Bow' of Summer.

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