Potential. That’s what makes the White River so interesting to fish, especially on high flows. Every time you dunk a fly in this river, it could get snatched up by some beastly creature. It teases the senses, watching a foam hopper floating over the edge of a drop off, or a streamer wagging side to side behind a boulder. When you’re fishing big flies for big fish, it matters little if bites are few, just make another good cast with confidence, and float on your merry way. Sooner or later your fly will be in the right place at the right time, and then…..put on your gator wrasslin boots.
I must extend a big thank you to Steve Dally and Kevin Symes for spending Tuesday evening with me on the White, it was one to remember. Hoppers fished a little slow for us on the big big water but still pulled a couple of nice fish. Switched to 8wt/30ft sink tip/big streamer combo right before dusk – good decision that was. Steve has been in the boat with me with his fancy camera for both of my biggest brown trout captures. I’m just gonna roll with the good fortune, and Steve, when would you like to go again mate?
Half to one unit of water in the a.m. hours is fishing really well with double nymphs under an indicator or hopper dropper style. Pheasant Tails, Copper Johns, Root Beer midges, Wotton Super midges, and Wotton Whitetail midges are all pulling good quantities of rainbows and the occasional brown. Some fish will take the hopper too on the low flows especially if you keep it small, like a #10-12 Fat Albert, Western Lady, or Moorish hopper. In the afternoon/evening, when the big flows come rushing down the valley, switch to bigger hoppers like #6-8 Western Ladies, Moorish, Rainy’s, or Chernobyl style bugs fished near the bank. If you’re feeling adventurous, pick up your 8wt and chuck a big streamer that looks like a small trout. The river has been recently stocked and big browns love little trout snacks.
Minimum flow in the a.m. hours is producing loads of fish, and some good ones too. Anglers are doing well wading at either Quarry Park, Ackerman access, or floating the river in personal watercraft. Scuds and midges are the top producers, make sure you have some Root Beer midges and Hunchback scuds #16-18. Watch for swift rising water as early as noon though, and when it comes it comes hard – both units wide open. That swift heavy flow can be fished effectively with hoppers or streamers, but mind the sweepers and docks.