Gray Reef River Report
Current Streamflow : 503 cfs at Grey Reef, 535 cfs at the Miracle Mile
The reef has dropped and is coming into prime shape nicely with flows hanging around 500 cubic feet. This means we have opportunities for dry fly fishing, specifically hopper fishing the banks. Our guides have been reporting better fishing downstream of Govt. Bridge, as the weeds are thicker towards the top.
Our most productive nymphs have been PMD nymphs/ emergers, leeches, and annelids. Some of our favorites this summer have included Theo’s North Platte Emerger (sz. 18, purple or olive), the Spark-a-lid (#12-14, red or purple) and Copper-rib RS2’s. Whether fishing the Reef or the Mile, it’s a smart move to pair up a smaller bug (i.e. midge, baetis, etc…) with a larger attractor pattern. Pine Squirrel Leeches, Sparkle Worms and Flossy Worms are all good attractor options.
The Mile's flows are slightly lower than normal which means fish concentrating in the juicy looking water along seams and up in the deeper riffles. There have been some good golden stone, pmd, and caddis hatches and fish are looking up for them. Trico's have arrived, which means big fish looking up for small bugs. Hoppers are on the banks and summer feels like it is still in full swing so don't get stuck looking at an indicator. Now's a good time to throw dries and dry dropper rigs until the hottest part of the day when hatches begin to dwindle and nymphing starts make sense.
While you’ll probably get your numbers with bugs, streamer fishing remains our favorite way to fish the Reef and Mile. Sink tip lines with a 6 or 7 weight rod, or trout-sized spey rods lined up with Skagit heads and MOW tips are awesome tools to cover water efficiently and present flies deeper in the water column where the carnivores are lurking. If you want to try your hand at “the two hander” on either the Reef or Mile, we love the patterns of Eric Ishiwata. Ish’s Kool Herc (olive/tan or chartreuse/white) or Ish’s Snitch (red/tan or olive) are a couple of very safe bets. For the single-hand angler Cream or Olive Mini-Dungeons are a newer pattern we’ve fast grown fond of but Goldies, North Platte Spiders and other classics are all good options. Ask about them next time you are in the shop!
For info on guided float trips to the Gray Reef, hit the LINK
For info on guided trips to the Miracle Mile, hit the LINK
Recommended Flies ::
Nymphs: Foam Wing RS2 #18-20, Sparkle Wing RS2 #18-#20, Foldover Baetis #18, Split Foam Back #18-#20, #18-22, Mayhem Midge #18-20, Micro May #18, Pine Squirrel Leeches #10-12, Midge Larva #18, Sparkle Worm #10, Annelid #14-18, Pig Sticker #8.
Dries: Para Adams #18-22, Sprout Midge #18-22 Griffith Gnat #18-#20,
Streamers: Dungeon's (Regular and Mini), Bottoms-Up #4, Crazy Dad #4, Platte River Spider #8, Monkeys #4, Peanuts #4, Zoo Cougars #4, 'Nilla Bugger #10, Thin-Mint #8-12, Sparkle Minnow #4-6, Rusty Trombone
Also, for you two-hander fisherman try: Ish's Grand Master Pheonix, Ish's Snitch, Ish's Maxi Tube, Goblins, Thin-Mints #8-#12 (double & regular), Hobo Speys, Platte River Spiders.