Nowhere else have I had large fish rise to dries and seemingly kiss them, actually pushing them out of the water without ever opening their mouths, only to refuse the offering. Like all fishing destinations, the Provo River can be very kind to anglers at times and relentlessly cruel at others.
Fishing conditions have remained excellent as we reach the halfway point of October. Water levels are noticeably lower than the typical summertime flows that we had seen over the previous few months, but we are having no issues finding the fish and having productive days on the river. The brown trout are becoming very aggressive and territorial as the spawn gets closer, and this is an excellent time to catch some trophy fish that are much harder to find during the majority of the year.
As the weather continues to get colder, insect activity on our rivers will continue to transition. Terrestrials are on their last leg and quickly disappearing, although they can still be found in a bit higher numbers on some of our smaller streams around the Uintah Basin during the warmer parts of the day. Caddisflies are still out, but their hatch has been much smaller in both quantity and duration. Having both of these bugs in your fly box in the event of a hatch taking place is still a good idea.
We are beginning to see both smaller mayfly and midge hatches taking place. These bugs are significantly smaller than the naturals that we see during the summer, so it is very important to match your tippet size to your fly. Going down a tippet size to get a more realistic presentation can make all the difference in one’s day. We have been having very fun days throwing both midge and mayfly dries.
With the brown trout being in pre-spawn mode, streamers have been the most effective way to catch larger fish by a large margin. A lot of the larger and more mature trout have become less interested in feeding and much more focused on the upcoming spawn. These fish are undergoing hormonal changes that they make them extremely territorial and aggressive towards anything that comes near their space. The most productive times for our streamer fishing has been mornings and evenings, but they have certainly been effective throughout the entirety of the day.
If you’re looking to get away from the Provo River, the fishing continues to be great on some of our smaller streams and lakes. Terrestrial activity will continue to diminish with each frost, but grasshoppers have still been out during the hotter parts of the day at a lot of locations. Attractor patterns like stimulators and humpys have been bringing fish to the surface, but we also recommend going loaded with streamers of various sizes this time of year.
The flies that are producing the most fish for us at the moment are small mayfly dries, nymphs and emergers, caddis larvae and pupae, midge larvae and dries, small ant patterns, and streamers.
When you fish your fly line, it will pick up dirt and pollen and consequently, it will not float as high or shoot well. If your line is not performing as well as it used to, bring your reel in anytime. We will gladly put your reel on our line cleaning machine where we will clean, rinse, dry and recondition your fly line. We do several per day for our customers. It takes about five minutes, while you wait. Your fly line will perform better, last longer, and the price is right… Free!