Sometimes the Salmonfly Hatch is Golden…

June 16, 2012

Sometimes the Salmonfly Hatch is Golden…

The Salmonfly hatch is just like Christmas, only less predictable and the weather is a lot nicer... It's filled with joy, anticipation and typically a little bit of let down after getting it all built up in your head about how good everything is going to be. You spend days, weeks, maybe even months depending upon your level of obsession, filling your head full of unrealistic expectations. You're like a drug addict, every year you find yourself chasing that \"first time high\" that you got the one time that you got the hatch all timed out perfectly and the bugs were emerging and the trout were all linining the banks looking for them and crashing anything that hit the water no matter how bad your drift was.

Just so you don't think that I'm a big blowhard hype machine - THOSE DAYS ARE FEW AND FAR BETWEEN!!! I have been fishing the Salmonfly hatch every single year since I was 5 years old, that's 25 years this year, and in those 25 years of chasing the Montana Salmofly Hatch, I've hit it perfectly 3 times... That's right, three, not 30, not 10, not 5, 3... Now I've caught fish on big dries every single year I have fished the hatch, that much is true. So don't fret, it's not like you can't catch a hatch even as an average angler without a ton of spare time. But if you want to get \"the day\" you had better have a lot of spare time on your hands and the ability to take off more than one day. Consequently I haven't really timed it perfectly since before I had kids when I could just leave all responsibilities behind and spend 4 days on the water at a time. But with all of that said there's something about the Salmonfly Hatch that a lot of anglers forget and miss, the so called \"Golden\" lining to the hatch...

Amongst all of those flying orange and bronw helicopters buzzing around in the air and crashing into the water are a few of their cousins - the Goldenstone. 

An often overlooked compatriot, the Goldenstone is a bit smaller, a bit more gold and tan than orange and brown, and the trout eat them just like a big pteronarcys californica. Best of all, almost nobody looks to throw a Goldenstone immitation in the middle of all of the bigger more celebrated Salmonflies, and that's just a nice little advantage for the knowledgeable fisherman. There's plenty of good Goldenstone immitations, but my personal favorite is to take a Chubby Chernobyl in a size 8 or 10 and a dark tan or light brown marker and dull the body a bit and trail it behind a bigger Salmonfly pattern. You'll be surprised how many times the Salmonfly will float through a great piece of water get ignored, and the Golden floating behind it gets whacked. So the next time you're in the middle of the hatch and things are a little slower than you would like, toss a Goldenstone and see what happens.

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