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Old 08-18-2013, 09:33 AM
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Default It just shut down

Got out fishing this past week. Had some time to duck away during the week so hit a Front Range stream for a few hours. It is a stream I've fished many times before, but this time everything was shut down. Beautiful drifts through great trout water got no strikes. Slap a beetle down under an overhanging branch and nothing. Drift a nymph through some trouty water with no strikes. No one hits my small parachute adams when it floats through some soft water, usually a guaranteed hit. Switched between nymphs, dries, terrestrials, emergers, streamers, and soft hackles. Most of the time it was like the water was deserted.

It was a beautiful day, great water levels, nicely overcast with some occasional drizzle, not too much wind, during the week so barely anyone on the water - I expected them to be going nuts. There was an olive hatch and for a bit some trout were hitting the surface, but not the numbers I expected. I knew the fly they'd take, my go-to olive fly, so caught a couple and moved on. The ones rising were smaller than I'm use to. Managed to get some to rise to beetles, a 14 parachute hare's ear, and a pretty decent one took a Rosenbauer rabbit's foot emerger fished in the surface film. But not a single fish on a nymph.

I don't think there has been a fish kill or anything, these waters are fished by a lot of people and I think there would be some info on it. I think it was just one of those times that the fish slow down even though everything seems right. Ever experience this?
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:46 AM
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Default Re: It just shut down

"Ever experience this?"

Oh soooo yes, sight fishing for Steelhead. You can see them in the Pool and there's no way you're going to get their attention.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:48 AM
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Default Re: It just shut down

I had almost the same experience last Friday.

Familiar stream, good flow, good temps - no fish.

Then I noticed that every patch of sand had the same set of 3-4 different fresh boot and paw marks in it. This went on for almost two miles of river.

I then went to a different part of the river and things improved.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: It just shut down

You were probably fishing behind me.

edit> After Monday night's monster storm?

Last edited by nickj; 08-18-2013 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: It just shut down

Days like that are confusing and the only certainty is it will happen again.

Dave
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:08 AM
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Default Re: It just shut down

Just got back from the same experience, every hole I came to had either mergansers or cormorants in them, I wish I could shoot them.
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Old 08-18-2013, 12:30 PM
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Default Re: It just shut down

Quote:
Originally Posted by nickj View Post
You were probably fishing behind me.

edit> After Monday night's monster storm?
Actually it was Monday before the storm. Perhaps the pressure change before it hit?
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: It just shut down

That's my thought. Rio Oso is changed significantly... If you haven't seen the flow chart from Monday night, it went from around 25 cfs to 330 cfs in about 15 minutes. I fished it Friday, some of the wider sections appear pretty much untouched, others...major reconstruction. I can only imagine what it did to the fish and the insect life in the stream.
edit> I fished where the bear lives, Monday morning. Slow to start, #20 Tunghead Red Zebra Midge ended up being the menu of the day. I generally float it off an Elk Hair Caddis, got a couple on that as well.
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Last edited by nickj; 08-18-2013 at 02:24 PM.
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Old 08-18-2013, 02:16 PM
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Default Re: It just shut down

The usual cause in my part of the country is high water temps and lower water.

When this happens to me this time of year, I take out my thermometer and take a water temp. I find that fish hit more in the early morning after the water has cooled overnight.

Even though you are in the mountains and your streams are cooler than mine, the fish do get used to what is "normal" for their water. So you might want to start comparing temps for when they are feeding and when they are not.
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Old 08-18-2013, 02:35 PM
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Default Re: It just shut down

I think most of us have a day like that sometimes. That's why it's called fishing, not catching. You just hope it isnt too often. Water temperature, barometric pressure, or maybe just temporarily bad mojo. Tomorrow is another day.
Enjoy the scenery, the fresh air, and the time outside. It still beats watching TV.
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