Guadalupe River Report
January 29, 2010: The bug hatches on the Guadalupe continue to be nice, if not always predictable. In recent days we have seen the better hatches on sunny days, with mixtures of tricos, midges and caddis. On these days, getting on the water early can result in nice fishing throughout the day. On overcast days the bugs get going in the late morning and are a mixture of midges, some caddis, PMDs and various other mayflies. On the overcast days, you can take your time getting to the river, as the fishing doesn’t tend to pick up until later in the morning. I expect this cycle will continue through the next few weeks, or until air temperatures start to increase on average.
The fish seem to respond to flies best when the hatches are strong and have been fairly selective when the hatches are not as strong. If you pick the right flies to start, the fishing can be very good; if you make 12-18 drifts in an area known to hold fish, change flies, weight, depth or a combination of all three. It can be a little frustrating to start, but once you have it dialed in, the fish are responding well.
I have not seen any suckers begin to make spawning beds yet, but expect that we will start to see signs in the next week or two. Once that begins, and the suckers start to release their roe into the river, the trout fishing will get a lot easier, and sucker spawn patterns a must.
Fly Patterns that I have been favoring are very similar to the earlier part of the month and include (in the mornings) smaller black pheasant tails, black RS2 or a black zebra midge fished below either a red worm, peach egg or prince nymph and (in the afternoons) green caddis emergers, hares ear nymphs, black midge emergers or BWO emergers fished below a prince nymph, hexagenia nymph or San Juan Worm. I have added in slate drake nymphs and even a few sucker spawn patterns to my mix with nice results on both.
Warm Water Report
January 28, 2010: We are starting to see some early season bass fishing throughout the Hill Country. We have had a few warmer days in between fronts and the bass and sunfish have responded nicely on those days. It is still early for going all in on bass, but if you keep an eye on the weather and pick one of the warmer days (in the upper 60s or low 70s) after a succession of warmer day/night temperature cycles the bass fishing can be very good right now.
Fly Patterns for this time of year are almost all streamer patterns fished deep and slow. Crawfish patterns, wooly buggers and big nymphs that are heavy and can be fished on the bottom are your best bet until the spring. Vary your depths and work the flies slowly for better success.
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