MFO Season

July 25, 2013

All that HOT weather we have had in the last two week has had it’s effects on the fishing both in the ponds and on most rivers.
As the drake hatches fade away and water temperatures climb into the 70’s trout make their way to their summer spring hole retreats. Somewhere in every small trout pond their is spring water entering the pond from the bottom. Because of this 55 degree spring water trout manage to survive the heat of summer and mid-seventy degree bath water by lounging around on the bottom in the bubble of cooler water. It’s known that trout will not leave a spring hole until fall like temperatures cool the pond enough so trout can roam about again in search of a meal.
I will say the location of spring holes on trout ponds are very guarded secrets because fish stack in an area about the size of a foundation of a house. Fish anywhere else in the pond and you are fishing in bath water with no fish. The one dead giveaway of a spring hole is the splash of small trout chasing tiny caddis that hatch and skip around on the surface there. If you are on a shallow trout pond and see this activity you should anchor within casting distance and use a full sinking line with some sort of drake nymph. A maple syrup works well. Cast as long a line as possible and let it sink enough to be close to bottom. Now retrieve your nymph slowly with your rod tip aimed down the line and close to the water. When a strike comes try to strip set the fly with a straight tug on your line keeping the rod tip low. If you miss the fish your fly will only move a few inches encouraging the trout to strike again. Lifting the rod to set a the hook removes the fly all together with not chance at another strike.
Fish the hole from all angles until you start getting fish then concentrate on that area. Fish will stack in the coolest water and are often eager to get grab a nice morsel of food close by.
Our river have also seen a rise in water temps. The East Outlet so mid-70 degree temperatures during the peak of the heat but is now back down to the mid-60’s do to the cooler nights of the last few days. There are still fish throughout the river but bigger fish are harder to come by with few daytime hatches.
Fish on the Moose River are stacked around the dam area with the best action right at first light. There is usually a feeding frenzy as bait get flushed thought the turbine and into the dam pool.
The West Branch is still fishing well with plenty of big fish in the upper stretches of the river above Little A Rapids.
One thing you want to keep in mind this time of season is it may take 20 different flies to catch 10 different fish. We are catching fish on small dry caddis, big stonefly imitations, nymphs along the bottom and soft hackle west in the film. It takes a big bag of tricks to pull off a good day of catching.
OH I called this report MFO Season for a reason. Manditory Family Outing season is in full swing. Get those cookouts and family gatherings done because fall conditions aren’t that far away.