Yesterday morning I was able to fish Oatka creek in Scottsville for about an hour or so. And It started with taking a few stream samples to find out if the rumors are true. The rumors of golden stones! I had heard reports of some guys seeing some stones flying around in the evening as of late, and based on what I found, the rumors are true!
My samples turned up the standard march browns and crayfish, but also some really big golden stone fly nymphs. I'm talking a #10 or better. And plenty of them. A lot of fun to watch them crawl around. And they are really fast too!
Now the fishing - I could see fish rising in the flat water above the bridge in Scottsville. The trout were gently sipping away at something I couldn't see. Midges? Small mayflies? I made a guess and put on a small mayfly emerger. It soon became apparent that I did not have the right fly, as not one fish even moved to look at my fly. I then went to a small midge emerger. And this too was ignored by the trout. I then remembered that the trout have been seeing lots of mayflies come off the water in the evenings. And again the next morning if the conditions are right. This prompted me to tie on a #14 hair wing march brown dry fly(even though the trout were feeding on something much much smaller.) This change seemed to work. I was now getting trout to look up and even move towards the fly. But still no takers. So what do you do when you seem to have the right fly, but still no taker? You go down in size of course! So on went a #16 march brown dry. Boy was that the difference. Almost every trout was now moving to the fly and many fish came up to take it. But I had to be right on with my cast and it had to lay softly on the water.
I think the reason why the march brown pattern worked so well was because the trout have been so conditioned to seeing them and feeding on them for several weeks now that they just can't resist taking advantage of a well placed dry. This tactic has worked well for me in the past too. In fact I have had some of my best dry fly fishing in the mornings. I am beginning to realize that the trout may just be more willing to take a properly presented mayfly during peak hatch periods in the morning, than during any other time during the day. But, like anything else it probably requires more research.
Look for golden stones in the evening along with everything else. That means you can probably start fishing a #10 or #12 stimulator during the evening hatch.
Enjoy the photos!