A Modest Report

Saturday, April 1

Reported by Jerry Ron

Smokey River     Flows 1.5 cfs     Water temperatures 19 degrees

Quit your job, sell the house, leave your wife and kids! If you aren’t on the water right now, you are missing the best fishing of the season, the decade, dare I say century? Yes, I dare say. Century. To put it mildly, the upper Smokey is on FIRE!!!! Not like last July when it actually was on fire due to the severe drought and a cigarette butt flippantly tossed out the window of a burnt orange El Camino with a homemade rod vault and two long-hairs in the front seats up in Snipe Canyon. But seriously, top off your windshield wiper fluid because the bugs are so thick your wipers will not be able to keep up with the deluge of splattered carcasses. Things are heating up like things that heat up and get really hot, and you’re home online looking at fish smut. Weak. I’m willing to stake my reputation as a 25-year-old fly shop manager that this will be The One. Quit being a wussy and get your ass out on the water.

Our Orvis endorsed, Dorsey approved, TU affiliated guides are reporting days of 300-400 fished hooked on half day trips guiding near-sighted, one-legged parkinson’s patients. They are fishing four fly rigs with a hopper, copper, dropper, on-topper. That’s a hopper pattern with a weighted nymph and a midge with a thingamacluster (see image below) tied above a Morrish Mouse. Taper down your tippet, running 30lb. Maxima to the rodent and ending it with 14X fluoro to the size 31 cdc soft hackle rubber leg zebra midge. They are only taking odd sized flies on the Smokey right now. Go figure. Not to worry, we have tons of Kamigatsi odd size hooks in the shop. Add two AB splits between the second and third fly, cast straight across the current to the far side of the run, mend two and a half times upstream and then twice downstream, then swing the entire rig through the run until it comes tight. Drag the mouse and now-drowned hopper up into the scum line, let it all sink back down to the bottom, then skate the mouse up the near side of the run and wait for the fun. Simple. If you don’t get an eat in the first two swingdriftskates, tie on a size 18 hi-vis parachute adams. Our guides are taking 95% of their fish on small dries drifted downstream anyway. If you don’t hook up in the first ten casts… you suck. Come book a trip and we will teach you how to not suck, or to suck using a two-handed rod. It’s all switch rods these days, and if you don’t have one, you suck.

Ten Day Hatch Forecast:

Between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. – hoppers;

From 6 a.m. to 6:15 a.m. midges, yellow sallies, black caddis, tan caddis, pale morning duns, ants, beetles, green drakes, march browns, salmon flies, spruce moths, rock worms;

From 6:15 to noon – tricos (they are size 74 and you will not be able to see them, but they are there…trust us);

From noon until dark – sparrows.

Recommended Flies – First, whatever flies you have in your fly box sucks, so throw it all out. They won’t catch fish. Phil’s Rubber Ass Stone, AK’s Swallow John, Bloody Navel, Improved Sickle Cell, Matt’s Moose Knuckle, Olsen’s Flying Pickle, The Binge and Purge, Chernobyl Diaper, The Tightey Whitey, The Hipster, John Wilkes Booth, and Two-tone Flashback Articulated Royal Hare’s Ears.

Shop Specials this week: Zebco Leader Wallets, xxx-small Patagonia calfskin wading belts; shop logo biodegradable strike indicators; Lefty Kreh fly casting videos in Betamax; Rio 16 weight indicator switch line; Power Bait.


A typical bronze trout caught by one of our guides and then handed to this chump ass client.

ThingamaclusterThe Thingamacluster – So buoyant it sets the hook for you!

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