Historic Trico Year on the Bighorn

Historic Trico Year on the Bighorn

September 24, 2015 4:39 pm Published by Leave your thoughts
Trico Duns covering the Adipose yesterday morning.

Trico duns covering the Adipose

While the Midge emergence was certainly incredible this spring, it pales in comparison to the trico emergence that we have seen for the past three weeks. Duns and spinners continue to bring thousands of fish to the surface daily. This is no small fishing window either.

Anglers are getting on the water by sun up to get in their spot for the dun emergence that starts at day break. The majority of the duns emerging in the mornings will be females with a light colored body. Patterns with a pale olive, pale yellow or white body will match these insects very well. Expect the best dun fishing to be from 6:30 am to 8:00 or 8:30 am.  Snowhoe duns, cdc duns, cdc biot duns, hackle stackers, sparkle duns and parachutes will all work when fishing to dun feeders. Expect each pod on the river to respond differently to your offerings.


Bring a Snorkel

After the duns taper off hurry up and wait for the spinner fall to occur. Be ready to go by 9:30 am for the spinner fall. You can find Bighorn trout feeding on tricos until noon daily.  The fish tend to respond best to patterns fished in the film right now, especially during the spinner fall. Think outside the box from your traditional spent spinner also. When there are this many bugs on the water sometimes it is best to “break” the hatch and show them something a little different.

First off SLACK IS NOT EVIL  when fishing dry flies it is good. Getting the right drift is everything. Believe me when the current is pulling on your leader or tippet the trout can tell. If you are fishing straight up to a pod and the current starts pulling on your line it will make your fly move faster than the naturals. Dead giveaway to the trout that your pattern is a fake.

Two things can help this – Don’t lead the fish too far with your fly. The longer it takes for your fly to get to the fish the more chance there is for the current to drag your line and fly. Working on laying a delicate cast just above your target. 2nd – add length to your tippet, this will help reduce the amount of drag on your fly. Also use a finer material. I have been using 5.5X and 6X Trouthunter Fluorocarbon tippet for all of my fishing right now.

While presentation is everything here is a few patterns to have during the spinner fall. Renegade, Griffith’s Gnat, Quigley Cluster, Skittering Midge, Sipper Midge, Harrop’s Paraspinner and cdc trico spinner.

At this rate based on the number of bugs still out there each day I would expect the trico emergence to be great through mid October, especially with the awesome weather we are having and the higher than average water temps. I expect fishable numbers to be around until November.

P.S. We have the all new Hardy Zephrus rods in stock and they are incredible. Stop by the shop and give one a try.


Most anglers only carry black imitations for tricos. Be prepared to carry patterns with lighter body colors as indicated by this female dun shown here. Pic – Steve Galletta

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This post was written by Bighornangler

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