One of our new shop All-Stars speaks today on the Headhunters Blog.
Max is a recent graduate of University of Montana. He has been a great addition to our fantastic fishy staff here in Craig. Max wrote this about his fishing day a few days ago. Thanks Max.
One addendum…there are fish rising to small dry flies now! It has just happened with daily PMD and caddis events.
Pictured above is my good friend and fishing buddy Travis Rehm, with an awesome Missouri River brown that he caught on a size 18 BWO spinner this week. High wind speeds during the afternoon screwed up the Blue Wing action so we didn’t find as many heads as we would have liked, but we did find a few rising fish and were able to get them to eat—but only a few. So we mainly fished small dries blind along the shallow grass banks.
It has been my observation that one of the most productive techniques lately is this blind dry fly fishing. I look for small riffles in shallow water, usually less that a foot deep, and fish the inside seams with small attractor-dries that I can see i.e. Parachute Adams, Bloom’s Parachute Caddis, Hi-Vis Spinner etc.
The fish that I have found feeding in the shallow, quick water have been the easiest to catch, whereas the podded up fish in the slick water have been the trickiest—so if you find a fish up feeding right next to the bank in the shallows it is likely that it will eat on the first pass. It is also likely that it is a nice brown. The presentation is more important than the pattern for these fish (in my opinion) because the Mo has been somewhat between hatches this week so fish aren’t seeing a ton of food on the surface (also my opinion).
I haven’t seen an epic day yet this summer with small dries, but the brown in this photo is a perfect example of what you can catch on any given day while we wait for the caddis and PMD hatches to really take off.
One thing I have learned during my short time here at Headhunters is that The Missouri is the only river where I can go out in an evening and catch four or five quality rainbows and browns on tiny dry flies, and still feel like I got my ass kicked because I was unable to get one of the really big noses to take my fly down. Humbling is an understatement. I learn a little more about fly fishing and a little more about myself every time I fish this river.
The clouds this week and ever-increasing water temps should bring some phenomenal dry fly fishing our way. Needless to say, I’m stoked!
Thanks Max for the report. Max wrote this about the fishing a few days ago and the small dry fly deal is happening. Many of our guides have been enjoying the blind dry fly game as of late. They believe you can net just as many tossing a blind dry than you can with the nymph. Hmm. The Missouri is a dry fly river. Honest.