Strawberry Cutts & Bows

stenacron

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Terrific day on Strawberry Reservoir here in Utah today with the full menu on display as water temps hit 60* F! Clear day with light/variable winds allowed for fishing well into the afternoon (not always a given at the Berry). Chironomids dominated early-to-mid morning (egg-layers and and hatching), then they gave way to Callibaetis nymphs bobbing to the surface in force with duns on the water by 11:30a. Final act was the mother-of-all Damselfly hatches after lunch with the shoreline covered in freshly hatched damsels by 1:00p when I called it a day.

Fished a team of buzzers early on a floating line with several fast twitches followed by 10-count pause between. The lake went to class during the peak of the Chironomid hatch making it tough with no chop to break up the surface or work the flies.

Peak activity was 11:00a-1:00p window where fishing a #10 Tequila Booby on point w/ Rickards Stillwater Nymph on dropper kept me in constant action. Fish were at their fighting peak in these warmer water temps as I got deep into the backing a few times.

Best in show... a silvery Triploid Rainbow in peak fighting shape!
03 RNB.jpg

Teefers! Gotta watch yourself popping the flies out this time of year.
04 CUT.jpg

Fins like shovels on these Bear Lake Cutts... meant for digging deep and bull-dogging once hooked. Off he goes!
05 CUT.jpg

Star of the show today... Tequila Booby!
Recipe_stillwater_Tequila Booby.jpg
 

fatbillybob

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I remember daphnia egg pattern as a big fly for strawberry. What time of year are those fished? Do you ever just strip streamers there? Being from Cali I did not know any better the few times I have fished Strawberry. I was stripping wooly buggers and on fire! Locals were looking at me funny.

Do you just dead drift the booby/nymph combo?
 

stenacron

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I remember daphnia egg pattern as a big fly for strawberry. What time of year are those fished? Do you ever just strip streamers there? Being from Cali I did not know any better the few times I have fished Strawberry. I was stripping wooly buggers and on fire! Locals were looking at me funny.

Do you just dead drift the booby/nymph combo?
Once the water temps in the shallows exceed 67* F it starts to lose its ability to retain proper dissolved oxygen levels that trout need to thrive and they start to switch into survival-related patterns. In large/deep reservoirs like Strawberry this means retreating to deeper/cooler waters. Problem is that most of the trout's primary food items are found in the shallow food shelves. Zooplankton (including Daphnia) can be found in the open water and trout will filter feed on them during the summer. Strawberry develops a hard thermocline during the heat of summer... hard enough to provide a physical barrier to Daphnia and clusters of them pile up just above the thermocline (this line while show up on fish finders). You can fish cluster flies on a fast sinking lines to get to these fish, but it can come at a price. Even thought the temps where the fish are feeding are in their comfort zone, the top third is very warm and lacking in oxygen. Fighting a fish on fly gear, netting, unhooking, and releasing them can result in high mortality rates. Even fish that swim away in a normal manner could be experiencing a glazing over of their gills and will plunge to their death. Once surface temps get into the mid 60s I head for other (higher) lakes until the cool temps return in early Fall.

I fish the Booby in a 2-fly rig on a slow-sinking (intermediate) line. I strip off about 13 rips and cast out as best I can behind the tube. I'll kick slowly until the rig straightens out and continue creeping along for 2-3 minutes while it sinks. Then I stop and strip it in as fast as possible and the fish smash it! Fish that take it on the creep are usually split over the two flies. On the fast strip they take the Booby 90% of the time.

The rig looks like this:
06 Booby Rig.jpg
 

fatbillybob

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Joe,

Thanks for the lesson! I have never fished such a rig in that maner. I will have to try that some day. I never really think about water temps in still water and how fish are effected. I fish still water very rarely but think about doing so this summer since streams are so low in the West this year. I will have to rethink fishing keeping an I on water temps.
 

FlyFlinger2421

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Terrific day on Strawberry Reservoir here in Utah today with the full menu on display as water temps hit 60* F! Clear day with light/variable winds allowed for fishing well into the afternoon (not always a given at the Berry). Chironomids dominated early-to-mid morning (egg-layers and and hatching), then they gave way to Callibaetis nymphs bobbing to the surface in force with duns on the water by 11:30a. Final act was the mother-of-all Damselfly hatches after lunch with the shoreline covered in freshly hatched damsels by 1:00p when I called it a day.

Fished a team of buzzers early on a floating line with several fast twitches followed by 10-count pause between. The lake went to class during the peak of the Chironomid hatch making it tough with no chop to break up the surface or work the flies.

Peak activity was 11:00a-1:00p window where fishing a #10 Tequila Booby on point w/ Rickards Stillwater Nymph on dropper kept me in constant action. Fish were at their fighting peak in these warmer water temps as I got deep into the backing a few times.

Best in show... a silvery Triploid Rainbow in peak fighting shape!
View attachment 37087

Teefers! Gotta watch yourself popping the flies out this time of year.
View attachment 37089

Fins like shovels on these Bear Lake Cutts... meant for digging deep and bull-dogging once hooked. Off he goes!
View attachment 37090

Star of the show today... Tequila Booby!
View attachment 37091
 

FlyFlinger2421

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What size booby eyes so you use on the #10 hooks? I am going to use some of these on the reservoirs I fish here in Colorado. I have been using black articulated bugger style flies tied on #10 or #8 1/80 oz jig hooks with a second fly attached. They work quite well in early spring and fall right up to ice up. I am anxious to try that fast strip after slow trolling for awhile. I went to the articulated fly because I became frustrated by missing strikes.
The fish typically hit hard and drop it immediately or there are a series of taps with no solid takes.
 

stenacron

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What size booby eyes so you use on the #10 hooks? I am going to use some of these on the reservoirs I fish here in Colorado. I have been using black articulated bugger style flies tied on #10 or #8 1/80 oz jig hooks with a second fly attached. They work quite well in early spring and fall right up to ice up. I am anxious to try that fast strip after slow trolling for awhile. I went to the articulated fly because I became frustrated by missing strikes.
The fish typically hit hard and drop it immediately or there are a series of taps with no solid takes.
I use 6 mm (~1/4") Booby Eye foam cylinder and cut them to 1/2" long and bevel the edges before tying in.

I started timing my kick time this year to figure out what level the fish are feeding at. It's usually somewhere around 8-12 feet. I'll start out stripping after just a minute of kicking with my intermediate line (1.1" per second sink rate) and just keep stretching the time out until I hit fish and then repeat it from there.

I think you will enjoy fishing this fly.
 
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