It looks like we’ve arrived at our typical August slow down, and exactly on time. August 10 has always been the date that anglers seem to vanish and Craiglandia enjoys a little peace and quiet. Shop staff goes from overtime to extra fishing time, and many of our guides grab family or friends and take a little vacation before things ramp back up to full speed in a month.
It’s not as user as it once was, however. 15 years ago there’d hardly be a boat on the water, largely due to some gnarly drought conditions and associated warm water temps. This trend was pretty consistent until last summer, when we experienced some phenomenal fishing in August and early September. This year, we are already beginning to experience the same. And due to the cool summer we’ve experienced, it may turn out to be even better.
Though recent storms have had a negative effect on the morning Trico Spinner fall, we’re expecting excellent morning fishing for most of the month, followed by the typical mixed bag afternoon dry fly fishing. Hoppers, crickets, ants, damsels, Callibaetis, Pseudos (oh no!), etc.
Attractor fishing is always best in August and September. So if you’re the type that would rather throw a Royal Stimulator than match the hatch, nows the time. Attractors that are historically productive include the above mentioned Stimulator, Royal Wulff, Parachute Adams/Purple Haze, Trudeau and Mark’s favorite the H&L Variant.
The upper river has been fishing better than the lower, but I expect things to improve down low in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, we’re still finding some slabs upriver that you can convince to eat a dry. And many of those fish are in phenomenal condition, like the one pictured above that Lisa caught while fishing with guide Lindsey Channel. And while we all love to net a heavyweight Brown like that, the 16-17” class Rainbows are really lighting it up right now. Not the biggest fish, but first to the backing!
If you’d rather be nymphing, sub-surface fishing has been excellent. We did have an adjustment in the river last week that caused some weeds to break loose, but not so bad you couldn’t get it done. Typical Caddis, mayfly and sowbug patterns work great, and the Zebra always rules during August
So if you’re looking for a version of the Missouri with good dry fly and nymph fishing but not as many folks to compete with, give it a go in the next 4 weeks. We’re still open 6:30am to 8:30/9pm. Give us a call if you need an up to date report!