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Coldwater Fly Fishing Trout, Salmon, Steelhead, etc...

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Old 07-23-2012, 04:41 PM
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Default Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

With the crazy heat waves rolling across most of the country lately and drought in a lot of areas it is really important to remember to pay attention to water temps. In trout streams, when the water reaches 70 degrees, do the right thing and reel up your line. Catching and releasing fish in warm, less oxygenated water can be detrimental.

Also, it is important to note that river temps generally peak in the evening. So just because the sun is angled low and the air feels cool, the fact is the evening is the worst time to fish! Sunrise till noon, when the water is cold and the fish have recovered, is the best time during the dog days.

It's wild how this heat has effected the rivers here in Missoula. The flows are still excellent, with most rivers running at historic average and some still flowing above. But even with plenty of water, every major river in the area has seen temps creep up to 69 or higher. We are getting a little break in the heat right now, so hopefully the waters will cool slightly. It's supposed to be too early to have to worry about water temps...but then again, not much has been "normal" when it comes to the weather trends of the last few years.
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Old 07-23-2012, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

I agree totally. I live in the land of triple digits. The tailwater I fish is still doing fine with the water temps but the D.O. has dropped off a bit. Still okay but another month of this heat and maybe not. I watch the stream gauge regularly.
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Old 07-23-2012, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

I agree as well. My little C&R stream is dying. No snowmelt and little rain. DOW has posted it for no fishing. Normal cfs for this time of year is in the 50 to 60 range, today it's 6+, and warm. It'll peak at around 60 with a big gully washer storm, then back to 6-ish. Fished the North Branch this morning, clear, flowing hard, 56 degrees. Go figure..
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Old 07-23-2012, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

jcw355, I gather that you are a frequent visitor of Beavers Bend. How is up there? I am just harassing sun fish at the ponds near my home, and occasionally trying to cast my fly lies to catch a neighbor’s sports utility truck. Summer is really boring here.
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Old 07-23-2012, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

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Originally Posted by texastroutbum View Post
jcw355, I gather that you are a frequent visitor of Beavers Bend. How is up there? I am just harassing sun fish at the ponds near my home, and occasionally trying to cast my fly lies to catch a neighbor’s sports utility truck. Summer is really boring here.
I haven't been since the end of March. It was the day we had rain all day and we only went because it was planned out way in advance. I haven't read too many reports on beaverbendflyshop.com. Mostly depends on the poachers in the red zone. I wish it was closer for me, 3 1/2 hour drive. When work slows up I might try taking a during the week trip to avoid the crowds.
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Old 07-23-2012, 11:07 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

Oh man, this is really terrible to hear, because I'll be SW of Missoula for the last week of August. Please tell me Rock Creek is going to be fishable...
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Old 07-23-2012, 11:19 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

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Oh man, this is really terrible to hear, because I'll be SW of Missoula for the last week of August. Please tell me Rock Creek is going to be fishable...
Rock Creek is absolutely fishable. Just hit it early to be easy on the fish and it's gonna be the best fishing anyway. Last week of August is still quite a ways away, it could fine. It could be bad. Keep an eye on the charts. The Rock Creek station gauges temp as well as flow, which is great. Water levels on the creek are normal and will continue to be.

USGS Current Conditions for USGS 12334510 Rock Creek near Clinton MT
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Old 07-24-2012, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

I'm with you Dean.

I am not trout fishing at all in my home state of Wisconsin. There is discussion of closing the waters to fishing as was done during the drouth of the late 80's to early 90's. A poll on our local BB 52% say the Wisconsin DNR should close all or some of our trout streams.
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Old 07-24-2012, 04:18 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

On the Housatonic River here in CT, it's actually illegal to fish within 100' of a tributary in the summer. The fish stack up in those "thermal refuges"
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Old 07-24-2012, 06:22 PM
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Default Re: Hot days and low water, give the fish a break

100 feet. Mmmmmmmmmm sounds enticing. Long casts. Haha!
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