A few weeks ago, I hit the St. Joe with some friends in a yearly gathering of friends, family, flyrods, campfires, banjos and guitars. The flows were good. But the days were blazing hot (until the hail-bearing thunderstorm hit) and the water warmed up by late afternoon before cooling in the evening. Not much was hatching during the day, just tiny midges in the late afternoon. The normal magic hour, when the evening transitions from merely dark to “too dark to see” and even the biggest fish lose their caution toward dry flies, seemed to be shortened to the magic half-hour. Morning, noon, and night. I had most success with a size 14 elk-hair caddis. A cast to likely spots brought up occasional nice fish during the day – gotta love the cutts love of dries. Of course, if the better fish missed/refused, it was game over and time to move onto another fish. There wasn’t much of a mayfly hatch (I often see PMDs this time of year or yellow sallies) but mayfly emergers were effective in the evening. As always, I love the colors of the westslope cutthroats, from the orange bellies of the “pool bosses”, to the bright markings of the fish in the smaller creeks. Also, the streamside wild flowers – Pedicularis, paintbrush, shooting starts, etc. are just icing on the cake. I look forward to this trip every year, both for the fishing but especially for the company.