Location: Yakima River
Weather: Cool temps with highs in the 50s. Rain storms moving through and cloudcover.
River Conditions: ~1100 cfs @ Umtanum 4-5 feet visibility, mid 50s to lower 60s for water temp. Find river flows HERE.
Hot Flies: Coffee, Black or Orange Pat's (#6-10), Waltz Worm Caddis Nymph (#12-14), Orange Gypsy King (#8-12), Wybie Hares Ear (#14-16), BWO Nymphs (#14-18), Black WD-40 Midge (#16-20), Jighead PT (#14-16), Purple Haze (#14-18), Parachute Adams (#14-20), Blue Wing Olive Parachute (#16-22)
Bug Scene: BWOs popping in cloudcover, caddis nymphs active subsurface
BWOs have been hatching 2-3 p.m. in cloudcover and low winds. When the wind picks back up, it seems to put the insects down and prevents them from flying. October Caddis have been hatching in higher numbers the further upriver you go. Nymphs have been moving around though and an orange-colored fly fished subsurface has been getting some attention. Sculpin are also active and we’ve been finding a few fish on streamers.
Fishing Forecast: Nymph the mornings, watch for the hatch and throw dries in the afternoon
Flows are quite low right now and fish will be concentrated in the deepest water. Look for current seams, drop-offs and deep structure for fish to be holding in. Transitions from fast currents to slightly slower water will have fish looking to snatch a meal while having enough oxygen and cover from the current.
Nymphing in the mornings when things are still cool will be the most effective technique right now. Fishing an Orange Pat's (#8-10) trailed by a Black WD-40 (#16-20) or a Jighead PT (#14-16) is a good bet. Tie these 4-6 feet below an indicator, with or without weight. If you find you aren't hooking fish or aren't tapping bottom often, add weight or depth to your rig. Other great patterns to try would be Soft Hackle Caddis (#12-16), Sexy Waltz Worm (#12-16), and a Wybie Hares Ear (#14-16).
When the insects begin hatching in the afternoons it's time to switch up and fish to risers. Look for trout rising in slow runs and in slow seams and foam lines close to the bank. You will also start seeing some BWOs flying just above or on the surface. Fishing two dries of slightly different sizes and patterns will help to find what pattern they are keying in on while also making strikes easier to see. Fishing a larger Purple Haze (#14-18) and tying a Blue Wing Olive Parachute (#16-22) behind it will help you to see when a fish takes the smaller back fly. Make sure to work over a pod of rising fish for a while. Fishing at a downstream angle will help to minimize drag and allow an efficient drift.