Spring was wet. Then a hot summer, ending in smoke. Now a cold, wet early fall.
And through it all, the honest to goodness fact is I just did not go fly fishing many times this summer.
Matter of fact, my calendar shows the fewest fly fishing trips in recent years, probably ever.
No doubt my pretending to be a golfer played a role, but there were times, sad as it seems, when I just didn’t “think” about going fishing.
Blame the weather.
And, just to keep the record straight, I’ve talked with several pretty serious fly fishers who told me the same thing — that their fishing trips were down this summer.
How ‘bout you?
Well, that’s gonna end for Fishful!
Last weekend I hit the mainstem Flathead River on one of those afternoons when the sun shone brightly and warmly through blue sky.
Justin Lawrence, owner of Lakestream Fly Shop in Whitefish, had told me fishing had been good in the mainstem Flathead, especially during the “hot” part of the day.
“Sizes are good, too,” said Lawrence, “Probably a few late bigger cutts heading back to Flathead Lake after spawning.”
Lawrence recommended “mahoganies” and blue winged olive patterns.
I’d learned about mahoganies years ago while fall fishing the Bitterroot River near Hamilton.
I was surprised fall trout could be fooled with size 10 Mahogany parachute patterns. But they worked!
Another trip I hadn’t made this summer was over the hump to fish the lakes on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation.
So the next day I headed over the big hump towards Browning.
By the time you read this story, I’ll have fished a couple of lakes on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation.
Olive scuds, orange-tailed prince nymphs, and water boatmen!
There’s still plenty of good fishing left before big game hunting.
Jerry Smalley’s Fishful Thinking column appears weekly in the Hungry Horse News.