I spent my second morning on the Frying Pan River nymphing midges in shallow riffles. I started out on a wide riffle at a lower access point, and caught a brown on a holographic midge larva. After fishing for thirty minutes I wasn’t seeing the midge hatches I had the previous morning in the upper sections, so I moved upriver. I found a good midge hatch and rising trout that lasted for two hours. Dead drifting zebra midges, holographic midges, and black fly larvae under an indicator accounted for a dozen fish by lunch time. The majority of the browns and bows I caught were between nine and fifteen inches. Some larger brutes not willing to rise (the reason I was nymphing) would occasionally bite, and tear off across the river. Most of these trout were big rainbows, between three and six pounds, and went ballistic once hooked. The Thingamabobber would dart under, and a big bow would go airborne before I got a chance to set the hook. One memorable twenty inch plus brown ate the fly, and was down river in six seconds into the backing. I gave chase thinking I got through the initial run, until it swam toward an angler on the far side. To the angler’s surprise the trout swam at him in a series of jumps, leaping up, breaking me off and nearly hitting him. I think the fish actually hit his fly rod, and it definitely splashed him a little. He shot me a bit of a look, either because I was laughing, or he was trying to figure out where the fish came from. Keep in mind I was over a hundred feet above him, on the opposite side of a wide river. Once the hatch slowed, the bite did as well. I headed back into town for lunch.
The midday fishing was a little more work than the morning midge action. I focused on working up the river from the lower sections, covering the rougher areas where few anglers were fishing. I hit the slow edges off rough water using the rubber legged nymph and Sparkle Pupa above. One section of river had a series of riffles where the river washed up along the red rock bluffs. The bubble line hugged the ledges, and the water was just a little deeper against these bluffs. I managed to catch ten fish in one of these runs, and all of these spots looked like they held three times that many fish. Instead of changing flies, I just kept moving, trying to see what was around the next bend. The Frying Pan would change dramatically from narrow, swift chutes to wide sections of shallow broken water, and even some deep slough type sections. I gravitated to the faster sections where the trout were in predictable holding lies, and aggressively feeding. Before dark I pulled out my Scott G2 for some dry fly fishing when the midge clouds and drake spinners hit the water. The trout were focused on the size 22-24 midges, and could have cared less about the size 10 drake spinners on the water. I ended the day with a few more fish in the net before heading back into town. In the latest video post I filmed more fishing on the Frying Pan River.