The Metolius continues to be good, with good hatches in the afternoon and early evening, good nymph fishing and good streamer action for Bulls and the occasional aggressive Rainbow that wants a bigger meal.
Blue Wing Olives (#18-20) are the key spring hatch, but late March through early May is Cinygmula (#14-16) time, which are close relatives to March Browns, although they look like a 2 tailed PMD. Speaking of March Browns (#14), when I was on the river Wednesday I saw a hatch of March Browns and the fish were eating them well. I also saw (wait for it)….ONE single Green Drake float by in the eddy I was fishing. Nothing came up for him.
These early hatches are a biological defense for the future of the species and not terribly uncommon to see a small hatch of aquatic insects weeks before the main hatch occurs seasonally. If there was a flood or drought, or bad weather or forest fire or catastrophe, the species would live on even if the main hatch was wiped out. Cool, eh?
Now there a lot of caddis out too. October (#8-10) Silver Stripe (#12), Brown (#12-14) Tan (#16) Grey (#14-18). Caddis are harder to identify at a glance of the adult than that of Mayflies, but we know Glossoma, Brachycentrus and Rhyacophila are common to the Metolius and are on the hatch chart for spring time.
So far, when I’ve walked past the holding tanks for the chinook smolt, they are still in the tanks. So they have not been introduced to the river and made in to Bull Trout snacks. When you ask? I don’t know. I was looking at some old photos of Bull Trout fishing and saw one set from a particularly memorable day that was in May. Best day of Bull Trout fishing I have ever had, and they had just set the chinooks free. Speaking of Bull Trout, we have some of the coolest and best streamers we’ve ever had. Come and check them out if you’re on the way to the river. You’ll need an 8 weight to cast most of them, but you should be fishing an 8 for BT’s anyway, so as not too over play the big ones and release them quickly and safely.