Monday, June 6, 2011

Its All About the Hatch

Our annual spring trip to West Grand Lake was ignited by a well timed and exciting combination of unique happenstances. After suffering through several dreary weeks of rain and cold, the skies parted early Friday afternoon pushing thermometers into the 70s. This sudden transition signaled a titanic eruption of Hendrickson Mayflies that in turn whipped the salmon into a feeding frenzy. Trolling the lake surface with flies and DB Smelts, in a variety of combos and colors, we finally hit gold with anything containing the color “pink”. In a long day of patrolling the lake from the landing to Hardwood Island, Marks Island and finally all the way to the mouth of Whitney Cove, we succeeded in bringing 20 salmon to the boat. Most fish caught were between 15-17 inches and included one well fed football shaped monster registering 18 inches.

Surface trolling was the way to go this year as the hatch had fish feeding close to the lake surface. The biggest salmon of the day was caught on the surface in about 45 feet of water at 1:00! In the excitement of the swarming salmon, we quickly abandoned our downriggers, lead core and Luhr-Jensen lake trolls (targeting Togue) and instead fished floating flyline with streamers or 8 lb mono with DBs. The results were easily one of our best days trolling the lake.

Arriving back at the Grand Lake Store the fly fishing community was abuzz with news of the hatch and the store’s supply of Hendrickson imitators was completely sold out. Despite the high water levels plaguing the stream at this time, many brave fly fishermen were cautiously attempting to fish some of the smaller pools further away from the raging waters found near the dam.

In the end, three of us kept 6 salmon that we smoked on Sunday afternoon and will certainly be enjoyed for weeks to come on toasted morning bagels with a dollop of cream cheese! As we busied ourselves with carefully cleaning the silverside beauties, each were absolutely FILLED with Hendricksons, again reminding me that sometimes it’s all about the hatch!!

For More Fishing on West Grand See:
West Grand Lake Exposed
Spring Fishing 2010

Many other fine stories of adventure exist concerning the waters of West Grand Lake. If interested in finding more type West Grand into the search bar on the side of this blog and you will be direct to additional stories!


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  2. Yup, there I sat in Chuck E. Cheese pulling tickets out of the game and get the phone call from the Rabid Outdoorsman. The words I remember amongst the 346 excited kids was, "the hatch is on and I'm on fire"...

    I'll be sure to give you the Chuck E. Cheese birthday party lapel pin as an award for your "take that Duckman" moment...

  3. TE, Then even with your degree in entomology you will still someday find yourself sitting by a stream side going crazy trying to figure out why the fish won't bite your perfect fly imitators! LOL! My favorite part about fishing is that there is always something new to learn and when you think you finally have it all figured out you realize you don't and still have a long way to go!

  4. DDH, The said B$TCHN slap was only administered because you were sorely missed on our annual event.

    Was on the pond this weekend and noted your BASS was still there awaiting your triumphant return. We must soon fish!

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  6. Those are some awesome looking landlocks..looks like the DB got some action..Pa Vose turned me onto those last year!


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