We are still in the rhythms of summer fishing on the Yakima, and not a heck of a lot has changed since our last report, although we have seen water temperatures starting to cool down slightly, more so in the upper river than the lower canyon.
Fishing has been best early in the day with big dries like Chubbies, Gypsy Kings, Stimis, and PMX in #8-12 still taking plenty of fish. With smoke lingering in the valley, the sun has not been showing in full force, making for a better dry-fly bite into mid-morning and even the early afternoon hours. Hoppers and other terrestrial insects are getting going once the day warms up, so if the fishing slows down on the stonefly-esque patterns, try switching it up to a Morrish or Dave's Hopper, or if you want to buck the trend and fish flies that our trout don't often see, try tossing a smaller parachute ant pattern, either behind a larger dry or all by itself.
We are starting to see a slow but steady drop in flows, which signifies the beginning of the flip-flop and our annual draw-down to fall flows. As the river continues to drop, we will see the fish start to pull away from the banks and begin to find holding water around mid-river structure like shelves, rock gardens, and woody structure in the water. Keep this in mind when fishing over the next several weeks, if you aren't finding fish in their usual summer haunts, it's time to mix it up!