The Crooked has been a great late fall destination for us these last couple of weeks. The white fish are starting to spawn in the tail outs and the trout are keying in on their eggs. If you find the whitefish chances are there are a few trout right below them looking for any wayward egg swept up by the current. Nymphing a #16 mayfly pattern with a little weight is a great choice with an egg as the dropper. We like to put these bugs under a small airlock or bigger foam dry fly that can act as a stealthier indicator.
Look for BWO’s the next few days, this cloud cover should spur on a good hatch and the fish will be looking up. Size 18-20 hackle stackers have always worked well for us if the fish are refusing our normal offerings, usually a purple or olive haze in the same size range. The Baetis will be around all winter and some of the best dry fly fishing to be had can be in 30 degrees with snow on the ground and nobody around! One more thing to try is a small sculpin or leech pattern in the slow deep water. This time of year especially fish are hungry and opportunistic, a larger meal can really get them excited and produce some of the larger, more aggressive trout.
Suggested Dries: Purple Haze #18-22, Olive Haze #18-20, Hackle Stacker #18-22, Parachute BWO # 18-22, BWO Soft Hackle #18-22, Biot Soft Hackle #18-22, Griffith’s Gnat #18-22, Still Born Midge #18-22.
Suggested Nymphs: Glo Bug #14-18, Unreal egg #14-16, Two Bit Hooker #16-20, Zika Jig #16-18, Twisted may #16-18, Olive Hares Ear #18-20, Juju Baetis #18-22, Rainbow Warrior #18-22