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I have been to this small lake in Eastern Washington twice in the last week, both times there have been lots of trout taking bugs of the top. Sometimes they are sucking bugs and you here that pop, most of the time they are coming all the way out of the water, sometimes they are taking something just under the surface and I see there tails go in a circular motion, but I haven't been able to see any bugs on the water, in the water, etc. I have been trying lots of different patterns with very little success. Has anyone had this experience and found a pattern that has worked well? The only thing I have caught them on is a size 22 black midge, but half the time I can see them swim up to it and then swim away. About the only way I can get any to take the midge is to start twitching it and a lot of times it is when I am pulling the fly across the top of the water that they take it. Any suggestions on patterns and techniques would be appreciated.
 

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From what I understand, if you can't see what they are eating above or under the surface, but see hords of fish slurpin' away all around you, they might be slurpin' the thick clusters of "Daphnea". I was at Cady Lake last year and saw at least 100 risers ALL around me slurpin' at these "single cell" animals. It drove me nuts that they wouldn't take anything I threw at them. Is there such thing as a #50 Daphnea pattern? Probably not... Tan Caddis work best for me though when the "Dry Fly" season is on there. Caught my record 22" Kamloops there and had half a dozen or so go tail out 2' torpedoing at my dry fly(the most awesome natural display of fish eating I've ever seen!)

Peter ><>

"Follow Me and I will make you fishers of Men" Matthew 4:19
 

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It sounds like you're doing most of the right things. Being observant and aware of what's going on around you are more than half the battle. Many times the fish are keying in on midges who are "buzzing" on the surface (that's why the English call 'em "buzzers") and are attracted to a fly that is moving and leaving a bit of a v-wake. At this time of the year fish can be taking many varieties of midges ranging in size from 12 to 24 or smaller, and in colors from black to gray to tan and even rusty orange. Things get easier when the Callibaetis mayflies really start coming off.
 

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All who fish still water have had this experience. Don't worry you're not alone (in fact, there is probably a support group for this). I have found that trout often key on a specific insect that is acting in a specific way. With so many shucks floating in the surface film, they find a way to tell the live from the dead. For example, they may be keying on the wiggle of the chironomid as it finally breaks the surface film, so a good emerger pattern with a twitch and pause method may be effective. Another effective method is to place a chironomid pattern at a depth of 8 inches under a strike indicator. Finally, make sure your tippet is not stretched or wrinkled and is fine enough not to noticed in the clear water.
Half the fun is figuring it out. If it were easy we'd get bored.
Happy fishing.:thumb
-herefishy
 

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I used to know it all---but now that I'm older I seem to forget it all.

I don't think that they make a hook smaller than a 32. And that hook is too big for even that fly. If you have ever seen one of those flies it would be about the size of the head of a pin,maybe even smaller. I think that if you tried a Griffeth(sp) gnat it might work. that is like a bunch of flies altogether.

Jim
 

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I think you can go too tiny at times. I created Bob's Famous House Fly Mini- Poop fly. It calls for a # 86 hook and you need a microscope to see it.
It works well but since I am a C&R man, I had to abandon it because I was unable to unhook the fish, mostly because it was caught in their teeth in a cavity somewhere.
I've been tying # 84's to see if I can correct the problem. Pay me $10.00 and I give you the receipe.
Bobl:rofl
 

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i have one simular i use a tiemco #78 put it in my vice and wait for a fly to land on it. when it regurgatates i seal it with head cement the #78 dosn't get caught as much in there teeth
 

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I had similar problems in the UK last year. It appeared that fish were taking small buzzers (chironomid)from beneath the surface. I found a fly pattern on the net called a 'Tiny Miracle', its a type of midge tied small with a glass bead, with peacock herl for the thorax and a body of black thread. It took quite a lot of fish on the local lakes here. Here's the difference, it is tied on a size 16 hook or smaller. I now vary the peacock herl colour and thread to red, black and olive.

Take a look at it :-

http://www.diptera.co.uk/patterns/q_t/tiny_miracle.htm

I would like to hear any success stories.

:9
 

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Daphnia Article

I love these discussions about trout behavior.

As I recall from my own experiences, when trout behave aggressivly in stillwaters it is either because they are excited to be surface feeding or because the insect that they are feeding on are swift in emergence. Diptera are typically quick emergers. They can have a drying time from 3 seconds to 1 minute depending on weather and species. Some of them are similar to caddis in the fact that the emaergence is instant. They form an air bubble in their emergence shuck and when it splits at the surface the midge is dry and in flight.

My suggestion is to keep trying to entice the fish by skating techniques. When a fly is skated on the surface it can simulate a midge that is somewhat stillborn or has a mutated wing which will not properly allow them to fly from their shuck so they end up buzzing around on the surface until their wing is straightened out and able to take flight.

A technique that has worked for me is to match the size midge with an emerger. I'd suggest something sparse but buggy at the head. Maybe a Soft Hackle or Stiff Hackle (same as soft hackle but using dry fly hackle). Cast it out and wait for it to sink a little. Sometimes it can take a minute or two for the surface wake to go away. Begin your retreival slowly and at the end try and speed up the retreival to simulate the emergence. This should produce good results.

Note: This works for me but it may not work for you.

I fish therefore I lie.
 

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Smutting Trout

Tie a #20 Griffiths Gnat on a Tiemco 900BL with palmered Grizzly slightly larger than you would normally tie - size 18 will do. Use a long (12-15') leader tapered to 5 or 6x. Pick a big fish and concentrate on catching it - follow it around if you must.

Position yourself with your back to the wind and cast downwind to the spot you think the trout will rise next. Keep your false casts to a minimum and make sure your leader straightens out. Maintain contact with the fly. Use a slow hand twist retrieve to bring the fly back against the wind riffle. Note the nervous water your fly makes. If the wind is a bit more than a light ruffling of the water, leave the fly tight against the line with no retrieve. It will still look like it is moving.

If there is no wind and the water is dead calm, bring the fly back with short, quick 1"jerks, being careful not to drown your fly. There will be no need to set the hook (you'll break off) as the fish will either pounce on the fly (that looks like it's doing touch and goes) or simply roll up on it with all it's weight.

Leland
 

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WW,

After re-reading your post (you may want to ignore my "smutting trout" reply), I thought of a day I had many years ago on Quail before it was screwed up. It was a Corixa (waterboatman) hatch. At first, I couldn't tell what was happening. Trout were up everywhere. Some porpoising, some splashing (like you described), some swirling (ditto) and lots of slurping (ditto again). I couldn't see what was rising because I wasn't looking for flies above me dive bombing the water. Turns out, the female Corixa were diving down (did you see dimples on the water also?) to do their egg-laying thing and the trout were taking them at the surface before they flew off. I tied on a fat #10 wet black gnat (a holdover from a California trip) and began to whap it into the water. The rest was history.

Leland
 

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I think boatmen are late season fliers. Like July and August. The young hatch from their eggs after a winter incubation if i'm not mistaken.

Someone should open the Entomology book and correct me if I am mistaken.


I fish therefore I lie.
 
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