Picabo Angler

Pee-Ka-Boo is a Native American word meaning "Shining Waters."

Picabo Angler is a destination: A full-service fly shop & outfitter located on the banks of world-renowned Silver Creek

July 5, 2016

July 5, 2016


This is the time of year on the Double R Ranch where it helps to bring a Guest who holds several entomology degrees. Depending on where you were on the Ranch water this morning, you might have encountered Blue Winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns, Tricos, Callibaetis, White Miller Caddis, Damselflies or small dark gray winged caddis. And, I might have missed a species or two! It is just delightful, especially if you are a fan of the mayfly. Even if one can tell the bugs apart, what stage of the insect is appealing to the trout? Mama never told me that life would be so perplexing. When you can’t figure things out, the best strategies might include a #20 Adams, a beetle, a flying ant or a Pheasant Tail soft hackle. While that might be the equivalent of raising the white flag, it does bring fish to the net.

Over the next two weeks look for the White Miller Caddis to gradually wane and the early morning action to stem from the diminutive Trico mayfly. It is time to pull out the Trout Hunter 14 foot 7X leaders and size 22 to 24 Trico dries, all of which are available at our Picabo Angler fly shop. Your Stream Keeper enjoys the solitude of getting out on the creek at 6:30 a.m. to fish the hatch of green bodied female Tricos, several hours before the spinner fall. I am alone in the profound silence and calm of the creek. It is not for everyone, particularly late sleepers. I don’t recommend such an early arrival if you are a junkie for fast action. I rig up a #20 Harrop Trico nymph on a new 7X leader the night before, sip my morning coffee in the float tube and await the Trico life cycle to unfold before me. There is some brief action on the nymph before the females start to hatch and a lull in the action while the hatched females ripen their eggs in the streamside brush. Plenty of time to think through your most recent relationship blunder or complete the Sudoku puzzle before the madness of the spinner fall ensues.   

Those Damn Damsels are starting to show up daily. Me, I hate when the damsels emerge in the middle of a great Trico hatch, would prefer not to fish blind, and hate how the dry damsel patterns twist my leader. But there is no doubt that some nice trout can be taken on dry damsels. Picabo Angler has some dry damsel patterns that look like they would not corkscrew your leader, and cutting back to 4X might not be a bad idea either. My personal belief is that the most underutilized flies on Silver Creek are damsel nymph and dragonfly nymph patterns; pick up a few unweighted offerings and swim them across the stream before the adults start to hover. You might be surprised!

The weather will be key this week for those Members who have quite a drive to the Double R Ranch. The forecast calls for calm early morning weather with the wind picking up by noon each day, so set the alarm and pick up breakfast on the fly at Mickey Dee’s.

Doug Andres, Stream Keeper, Double R Ranch