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Old 05-02-2008, 08:00 AM
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PeteCz PeteCz is offline
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Question Evening Hatch Question

Last evening I fished along the lower section of the Little River Trail, above Elkmont. At about 7:30p there were two types of bugs hatching in a flurry of bugs and the fish went into a frenzy. I one pool I counted 15 different fish leaping out of the water in rapid successions. They weren't sipping...they were jumping. First off I was amazed at how many fish were in the pool, but also I couldn't believe how they were acting with reckless abandon.

I have seen little dinks act this way from time to time, but it was usually limited to one or two small fish. This time was much different. There were a few small ones, but many of the fish were pushing 6" or more. What would trigger that behavior and what the heck could I use to catch them? I tried a couple different flies for a few minutes but then just stood there and watched, amazed.

Also, I have never been too deep into entomology, but based on last night's experience, I can see that there are times when matching the hatch it not only helpful, but imperative. You can't always just sling a PA or Stimi and catch fish...

The first type of bug is what I believe was a Yellow Sally. It was yellow, had a forked tail and what looked like two sets of wings while it was flying. All the pictures I see of them are in Nymph form or are resting, so I'm not sure, but I'm reasonably confident on that one.

The other was more of a mystery. It was a mayfly with a mostly translucent body with an orange thorax between size 14 and 16. What was that one?

And regarding the leaping fish. I couldn't tell if they were catching bugs as they were taking off or out of the air (it didn't look like it). In a situation like that what would you try to throw to them?
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Old 05-02-2008, 09:08 AM
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My son experienced that same scenario early last June just before dark...he had fish jumping right next to him in one of the pools in the campground....one night we stood on the upper bridge looking upstream and in every pool the fish were leaping out of the water like crazy....hope someone can enlighten us bug challenged feather flingers as to what the fish are actually after.
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Old 05-02-2008, 11:25 AM
tennswede tennswede is offline
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Little Yellow Stone and Light Hendrickson respectively.
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Old 05-02-2008, 12:33 PM
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I've never witnessed one of these massive evening hatches yet...all I've seen are a few scattered flies of various sorts. There is one that I saw 2 weeks ago that's bugging me (no pun intended), because I can't seem to determine what exactly it was. It was just about sunset on Straight Fork, almost at the park boundary. There were a lot of small grayish mayflies dropping eggs, but the one that caught my eye was a very large, very light green mayfly - it had to be at least a #12, maybe larger. I'm assuming it was a dun, since the wings were opaque. None of the pictures I have been able to turn up on the 'net quite match it...if anyone might know what it was, I would appreciate it, if just to settle my curiosity.
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:13 PM
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Go to the website troutnut.com

There is a section for the various insects, including mayflies. It was probably a green drake.
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:14 PM
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For sally's I like a good ol yellow elk hair caddis in comparable size or you could use Palmers, but in low light having a hair wing would be easier to see...have some orange bodied EHC could help in that multi hatch, or use a hair wing fly like the Harrops pattern which gives a cross profile of both caddis/mayfly to cover bases...
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:25 PM
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I went there...it's a good site for that sort of thing, but I really couldn't find a match there. I don't think it was a Green Drake, primarily because of the stream I was on; for the most part, aren't they limited to Abrams? Plus, it didn't really look like one.
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