Location: Pumphouse (Radium is a no go)
Weather: Sunny and warm for January!
Water Flow: (gauge is iced estimate 250-375CFS)
Flies: Flash Tail Mini Eggs, beads–6-8MM any color, #14-18 prince nymph, Ultra Prince, #18-20 mercury RS2, #18-20 BH Barr’s Emerger
Detailed trip Report
Driving over the rim of Gore Canyon we saw open water below Pumphouse but wanted to drive down to see if we could find the first open water of the season at Radium….no such luck.
Drove back to Pumphouse and fished the main channel below ramp 3. The water was a a little slushy out of the gate, but certainly not unfishable. Having fished the particular run a number of times, I knew based on the weight I had and length that I should have been finding bottom but I wasn’t because part of the leader below the indicator would sit on top of the ice. I kept adding weight and getting longer until I could make a drift and tick bottom despite the slush in the water. That ended up being a leader 10 feet long and 5 AB splitshots…now that dredging! It doesn’t make for the best of drifts, but this time of year getting the flies down to the fish is more important than a perfect drift. As the day warmed, I started shortening up and gradually reducing the weight.
Around 2 the water cleared up and we nymphed up a few more fish…couple whitey’s, a couple good browns and an absolutely beautiful day with the entire river to ourselves.
Also be sure to check out the Ketchum Release Tool- Keeps Your Hands warm on Cold Windy Days & Makes releasing fish easy!