I fished my favorite river late last week. You’ll be surprised to know I did a little early winter Euro nymph fly fishing. It’s the first time the rod’s been out in several months. If you are a regular RiverKeeper Flies reader, you know how much I enjoy dry fly fishing. I love watching a trout rise to my fly.
Snow was in the forecast, so I knew hatching insects probably wouldn’t happen. I threw in a second rod just in case, but honestly, I didn’t expect to use it.
I found a few friends while fishing the upper section of the Metolius below Allingham Bridge. (Remember, the river is closed above Allingham Bridge until next May.)
Look carefully at the image above. Did you locate the second otter looking like a rock? It was taken within the last hour of light and produced a flat-light image.
The three otters I saw are a curious bunch, playing and eating around the areas I fished that day. They disappeared but returned later in the afternoon and continued moving upstream.
I looked forward to fishing my Beulah 10′ 3 weight Euro nymph rod, but it takes a little getting used to. Euro nymphing is so different than dry fly fishing. First are the knots.
Here is the initial set of flies I chose. The top fly in the image is a Pheasant Tail Perdigon attached to the tippet ring with 18 to 20 inches of 6X tippet. A shorter piece of 6X, about 5 inches, is tied to the tippet ring and the tippet ring is attached to my running line/leader. I tied a Rainbow Warrior Perdigon to the shorter piece of monofiliment.
I fished this setup for a while with no strikes.
I left on the Pheasant Tail Perdigon as my bottom fly and switched the top fly to an Olive Perdigon. It didn’t work either.
I just completed another fly tying video on my RiverKeeper Flies YouTube channel, demonstrating the Olive Perdigon.
I noticed a few mayflies floating down the river…only five or six, but no trout were rising.
I decided to tie on a size 18 $3 Dip and a couple casts later landed a small Whitefish.
That was it for the day. Perhaps the otters had something to do with my success.
If you are interested in previous Euro nymph posts, here are my favorites:
I’ll leave you with an image I really like of fading light on the river as the snow began to fall harder.
I wonder if a trout is hiding there?
Enjoy…go fish, stay safe!
Ron (above note) and I fished that hole a couple of weeks ago – no less than 8 otters came thru, playing, eating, fighting with each other over a fish, and just putting on a beautiful nature show for us. Even when the fishing’s slow on that river, it is magical! Thanx for the excellent photos!
I may have been there at that time. I was standing in the middle of the river and several otters came swimming towards me. I just stood there, frozen. Such a wonderful sight and makes fishing even more enjoyable.
Love your photos and stories
great photos, John….. the otters and bulls have been in that hole for a few weeks now… but a buddy had some luck with a Sexy Walts…. slam that day… bull, brown, rainbow, and whitey….