It is 50 degrees.  It rained yesterday and it will rain tomorrow.  One of the pleasures of the first big cold front of the fall is the willingness for the trout to chase streamers.  Spring you get a few follows, but those trout that do chase intend to eat the fly.  In the fall, you get fish eating the fly, yes, but a lot of fish nipping, swiping, leaping over, slashing under, following, spooking, and so on.  Fall streamer fishing is smaller flies, floating lines, and great fun.  Anticipating this, Lance called me yesterday and invited me for a quick streamer fish and, within minutes of launching, I was happy he did.  This fish was sitting at the head of a shallow log cover and it shot upstream, clobbered the fly, leapt, and dogged.  The trout are in prime shape right now.  Perfect water temperatures, and pre-spawn spunk.  The river maples are red and the other leaves aren’t far behind.   The afternoon olives hatched but the trout didn’t get on them.  We were happy to pitch streamers the rest of the float, catching some and flashing lots.  It’s a good game, even on the days that, amongst all the follows and slashes and flashes, they just won’t eat the fly.

Tomorrow looks to be one of those rainy, all-day, 50 degree soakers that is the definition of a fall streamer day.  Yesterday they wanted flashy flies, tomorrow maybe darker flies.  The forecast is for an inch of rain.  There should be some streamer fishing tomorrow and Friday, as long as the clouds hold.  Going into a sunny weekend, anglers should mix in some nymph, dry and dropper, or wet fly rigs.   We’ve been doing a lot of good on the bright days fishing small nymphs under unobtrusive dry flies.  A few keys to dry and dropper fishing:  fine fluoro tippet, 22-26″ between the flies, long drag-free drifts, and work the midstream drops and color changes.  Keep changing.  It seems that nymph fishing has most in common with dry fly fishing.  Keep making slight alterations.  Switch a fly.  Go deeper, shallower.  Finer tippet.  Find what works…because, if you are nymph fishing between 10 am and 3 pm in the fall, the trout are probably feeding…it’s up to us anglers to find out on what.

Volunteer Opportunity:  Planting Cedars on the Manistee, Saturday, Sept 25

You’re invited to participate in another Anglers of the Au Sable planting on Saturday September 25 at 9:30 a.m.  We will meet at Old Au Sable Fly Shop and caravan to the location: The Deward area of the Manistee. We will have burgers and brats along with cold refreshing beverages on hand.   If you have planted there before please feel free to go directly to the location. (just let me know you’re coming to ensure enough food and beverage is ready)

Please RSVP to me at [email protected] or 517.930.0622.  Also, your choice of burger or brat!!