Wilder on the Taylor’s Master Fly Fishing Guide Ben Riedel shares important updates on current river conditions and bugs to use in his latest Taylor River Fishing Report September 2021.
The unofficial start to our fall season has begun. Nights are getting longer and a little colder. Pair that with cloudy, overcast weather, and you could see premiere mayfly hatches on the Taylor River. We have had some “fall like” days already and have seen amazing Trico, BWO, and Slate Drake hatches. It should only get better.
Today should be the last day of 250 cfs out of the reservoir. Starting tomorrow, 135 cfs will be the release for about a month. A significant drop in flow isn’t necessarily bad. Wading will become easier, and fishing those hard to reach places will become possible.
Mornings on the Taylor River consist mostly of midge hatches. Nymphing small midges on the bottom is rarely a favorite technique, but it is effective! Use imitations such as a Zebra Midge #18-22, Black Beauty #18-22, and WD40 #18-20.
Balmy, cloudy mornings could see small BWOs mid morning. Nymphing with Pheasant Tails #18-20, Hare’s Ear #18-20, and Micro Mayflies #18-20 should be most effective. If the hatch progresses and you start seeing eats on the surface, switch to a dry or dry dropper (P. Adams #18-20, Para. BWO #18-20, Barr’s BWO Emerger #18-20, Pheasant Tails, and Micro Mayflies).
By early afternoon you should start to see mayflies regardless of weather. So far, sunny days have meant wary fish and nymphing most of the afternoon. Cloud cover will often bring a heavier hatch and fish more willing to move in the water column. Size 18-22 Blue Wing Olives have been the most abundant, but an intermittent smattering of Slate Drakes #14-16 and PMDs #16-18 allows for some bigger dry fly fishing. A #16 P. Adams with a #20 Micro Mayfly dropper is a good place to start.
Moments absent of a hatch, we have found success throwing grasshopper patterns in shallower water near the bank. Try covering a lot of ground with a #8-12 PMX, Para Hopper, or Chubby Chernobyl, you might be surprised at the number and quality of fish willing to sit in a foot of water.
The Dream Stream is fishing the best it has all summer! Consistent Trico and Blue Wing Olive hatches in the morning have provided excellent dry fly fishing (P. Adams #18-20, Barr’s Emerger #18-20, Cripple BWO #18, Loop Wing Emerger #18-20). There has often been a second hatch of BWOs throughout the day, seemingly dependent on a little cloud cover. Look for mayfly mating swarms over the stream and expect females to come back to lay eggs shortly. Small Rusty Spinners #18-20, P. Adams #18-20, and BWO Thorax #18-20 imitate egg laying adults pretty well. The hay is getting cut this week and the machines will be scaring terrestrials into the water. Try using terrestrial patterns such as PMX #8-16, Para. Hopper #8-12, Chubby Chernobyl #12, Flying Ant #12-16, #12-14 Caddis.
The ponds are still fishing pretty well throughout the day. Bright sunny days can feel tough because the fish are so spooky, but stealthy approaches and delicate casts will be rewarded. Hoppers, large Caddis dries, and flying ant patterns are good searching patterns. There has been a reliable midge hatch in the morning. They are small. Unfortunately small, but a #22-24 P. Adams or Black Beauty has taken fish when presented well. Focus on the inlets when the fish aren’t rising vigorously all over the pond.
Best of luck and pinch your barbs,
Master Fly Fishing Guide
Wilder on the Taylor
Taylor River Fishing Report September 2021