Grey Reef has and will continue to provide excellent fishing. Baetis are dwindling, but with the afternoon thunderstorms they made a strong surge. Midges are the focus right now. Keep your mouth closed because the atmosphere is polluted with these lovely little morsels. The river bottom is growing algae, WHICH IS PERFECTLY NORMAL AND GOOD. This will cause the long dredging rigs to preform famously if you like to pick stuff off of your rig. An emerger rig with 3-4′ of leader, light tippet and a pair of reasonable midge or baetis patterns will have you burned out by mid afternoon…seriously.
A little algae talk: Grey Reef has and algae bloom which is surrounded by incorrect ideology and I will discuss a bit of that. Of course, this discussion is premature as the algae isn’t and issue for another month and a half.
By July 10th or so, on a normal water year we should be aquatic vegetation reach the surface. This vegetation will create the appearance of riffles. If you fish theses “riffles” you are going to have a frustrating day. The slicks between the riffles are where the nymphing and much of the dry fly activity will happen. These weed beds also create excellent structure for streamer fishing.
The “weeds” are partially responsible for our prolific aquatic insect situation.
In high water years you may not even see the weed beds until they drop the flows in September, like the past 2 years.
On years with low or normal flows (like this year) the algae will grow on the rocks and there will be a day of floating stuff as the BuRec ramp up the flows for the irrigation demand. This is easy to predict and mitigate. This generally happens the first week of June.
Using the long, heavy dredging technique that you use in the spring for summer and fall fishing will cause you nothing but frustration. If you opt to approach the fish in the column and stay above the bottom of the river it will produce beyond what you might expect.
Bottom line is if you are hooking “goop” on every cast…change your approach. If it isn’t clear call us. We would love to make your experience great. Fish where the fish are and with what they are eating…sounds simple right?
Grey Reef is the atypical trout stream. It requires a different approach. Once you are able to switch gears the experience will be like the sun coming out from behind the clouds.
Pic: Dave MacGruber with his 28″ brown with guide Trent Tatum from a couple weeks ago. We would rather the angler and fish take the spotlight…