Friday, June 24, 2016

Trout Lake Report: The Party's Over

You're on the lake at the exact moment of the solstice. Hello, Summer.

You launched at the far north end. The plan is to work your way over to the west bank to see if there are any more Drakes.

You have the Drake box in the vest, but you begin with a Damselator.

The damsels are swarming.

The fish are there. You get some bumps and a hookup, but it comes undone. You work your way around the first corner.

In the long stretch of submerged reeds you find a fish taking damsels with relish. You see three rises in quick succession. On one of them the fish comes clear out of the water. You think it has a yellowish look to it.

You drop the fly in the center of those rises and wait. There it is. You set the hook firmly, and it stays on. A Brown for sure.

The next stop is the inlet.

There are fish here, too. You get two Rainbows to grab the Damselator.

You keep on going. You look ahead; the west side is deserted.

You follow the shoreline and continue to fish the Damselator, but nothing comes to it.

Nearer to your goal you tie on a Drake dry.

You get to your destination. You fish up and down the stretch where you quickly caught two nice fish on the last trip. Now it becomes quickly apparent that the hatch is over. You see a few Drakes. Birds are avidly taking them, but the fish seem to have moved on. You wait to see if you're early (you know you're not), but nothing changes. It was fun while it lasted.

While you're waiting you see a flash of vibrant blue against the high bank. What kind of bird is that? You will determine later that it's a Lazuli Bunting. That's a first for you--a life bird, as birders say. That is some consolation for the end of the hatch and the lack of fish.

You head back. You want to fish the inlet again, and then cross over and fish the shoreline down to the takeout. You tie on a big muddler.

On the way the wind comes up.

The eagles don't mind.

You, however, would prefer a calmer evening. You fish around the inlet and in among the submerged reeds, with no luck.

A Great Blue heron comes sailing in on the wind and keeps a wary eye on you until you move on.

The sun is almost behind the mountain. Time to cross over to the other side.

You trail the big muddler behind you and right away get a hit and a hookup.

You cast it out again.

A third of the way across you get another hit. This time it's a big old Rainbow, the biggest you've caught this season. It's plenty long, but its girth and weight are what impress.

You make it to the other side and begin to work the muddler along the shoreline.

It's slow on this side. You manage one fish, a Rainbow that seems especially small after that last hefty specimen.

It's still blowing, and it's cold. Not what you had hoped for on the first day of Summer. You had planned to use up every bit of daylight, staying out until the full moon rose. But the clouds are here to stay. You'll have to miss the Strawberry Moon.

Looks like the party's over for now.


  1. And the lights go out until next time.

  2. I'm a bit envious of the Lazuli Bunting sighting...the Great Blue heron is nice, too...