Sunday, August 14, 2011

We left Breck at 2 a.m. and got on the water at 4:45 a.m. We are very superstitious about Taylor River trips, and have a certain itinerary and rituals that are performed. The Taylor is just that type of place. Now the traditions depend on whether we go over cottonwood pass, or over to Gunnison and up
the Taylor Canyon. The summer trips have mandatory stops at 711 in Buena Vista, and 5 hour energy shots taken at the bridge at the Taylor C&R, and a laundry list of other small details including specific playlists. The number one detail is to have all rods and rigs prepared to go the night before, but that is usually a requirement on every trip.

We fished with headlamps, and used the strong settings to spot the fish and soft settings to not spook them once they were located. It was a full moon, but regardless it was amazing to see how heavily these tailwater fish feed at night. The reason we went before sun up was to see if a rumor we heard was true:  that many of the hogs come down from above the top boundary at night to feed. This theory was hard to prove or disprove, because unless the water was relatively shallow and slow you couldn't really see well enough to scan thoroughly. With that said we did hook and land a pig Brown at around 5:30 a.m.

25" male caught pre-sunrise
Also even in August, the night time temperatures at the Taylor are right around freezing, which means at-least one wardrobe change between dawn and the 80 degree mid-afternoon temps.

This little mayfly, presumably a spinner, hitched a ride on my hat for awhile

The morning, post sun-up fished very slow, but as soon as some of the PMD's started popping things heated up. The hatches were so intense by mid-afternoon, the river looked like a highway of caddis, midges, yellow sallies, and baetis similar to a Star Wars city scene, yet with monsters looking to suck down anyone taking an extended rest on the surface.

PMD cripple pattern securely in the corner of the mouth

It was one of those rare days where we caught far more fish on dries and unweighted emergers than nymphing, which made the day a ton of fun locating un-pressured fish in pocket-water, and presenting double dry rigs.

Adult midge dry was a great producer all afternoon

As the evening came around the fish started taking caddis, and pmd spinners pretty regularly. We even got a large rainbow sitting in front of a rock in the more pressured area of the C&R to come up and eat a caddis pattern. He broke the tippet in one headshake (6x...rookie move).

No idea what these are, but liked the color

We definitely knew what these were

We left the river at 8 pm and saw these giant thunderheads in the East. 

Trip Highlights:
Great Weather
Great top water fishing
Relatively uncrowded Taylor for a Saturday
15.5 hours of fishing time  vs. 4.75 hours travel time

Trip Lowlights:
Pre-sunrise temperatures
Flash floods in South Park
Lost many flies, and ran out of the best flies (not a surprise)
Didn't see any rainbows over 24''

1 comment:

  1. Nice Fish Guys! I just got back from the Taylor a few weeks ago, and the night fishing was the best producer. We also spotted fish with our headlights, and then presented the flies to them. a lot of fish took a mysis, but we also got a fair share on dries in the middle of the night. Keep up the good work!