All is well on the White River. Plenty of blue sky, mild temperatures, hatching caddis, hungry trout, and other glories of spring. Gotta be one of the best quarantine locations on Earth.
I wouldn’t call it low and wadable, but flows on the White have been very hospitable to boaters and bank fishermen alike for the past few days, sliding past at an easy 6,000-7,000cfs. The flow has been increasing sometime in the afternoon, up to 10,000-12,000cfs. Caddis have been hatching strong between 10am and 2pm most days, and the trout are willing to eat them in a big variety of water columns and river structure scenarios.
Jigged caddis pupae imitations (Mother’s Day Caddis, Nick’s Fat Cadass, Prince Jig) are great for presenting near the bottom even in significant depth or current, and otherwise make a great weight to help drag down a lighter weight midge (DW Whitetail) or soft hackle (Dally’s Tailwater Soft Hackle in caddis green).
Dry flies (E/C Caddis, E/Z Caddis, Klinkhammer Caddis) have also been producing along the edges of the river where the current slows and the depth decreases. Rainbows rise and slash at the surface making little splashes. Browns just neatly tilt their head up, jaws slightly open, allowing their prey to simply drift into their mouth, barely making a ripple on the water.
If the bugs aren’t hatching for whatever reason, whether it’s too early or too late or too cloudy, large Rubberleg nymphs have been producing, especially when fished tight to structure or deep with split shot. Midges (Ruby, Rootbeer, DW Whitetail) are also strong early in the morning prior to the best caddis activity.
Norfork has been fishing well flowing at a very stable 2,600cfs. Daphnia cluster flies (the Blob, Cheeto, Y2K, and other such wonders of the fly tying world) have been catching the fire out of rainbows. Quality rainbows, cutthroats, and the occasional brown are falling for Sunday Specials, DW Whitetail and Super midges, Hunchback Scuds, and Rubberleg nymphs.