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Exploring up the Skykomish

By Troutnut on September 10th, 2020
I've been meaning to check out the scenic country headwaters of the Skykomish for a while, more for the scenery and variety than for the fish, which I expected to be mostly the same 6-12" rainbows and coastal cutthroats found in all the other rivers on the west slope of the Washington cascades. I was also looking to practice Euro nymphing some more, and the Foss River has some ideal stretches of pocket water for that. Starting late in the morning, I was successful early and often. Then, toward mid afternoon, the action shut down completely. I went from catching fish in every pocket to seeing no sign of them in extremely inviting pools. The water temperature was optimal, but the fish were just off.

For the last hour of daylight I drove to the South Fork Skykomish and fished a couple of promising pools. Fish finally started rising intensely right at dusk (to what, I'm not sure), and I caught six small rainbows on dries.

Throughout the day there were no noteworthy hatches, but I did find a couple of bugs worth photographing. I'm especially curious what a near-mature Ephemerellid nymph was doing in the river in mid-September, but I've not yet had time to put most of my recently collected specimens under the microscope and see what they are.

Photos by Troutnut from the Foss River and the South Fork Skykomish River in Washington

Closeup insects by Troutnut from the Foss River in Washington

Male Doroneuria baumanni (Golden Stone) Stonefly AdultMale Doroneuria baumanni (Golden Stone) Stonefly Adult View 18 PicturesI found this stonefly on some streamside vegetation. I didn't see any in the air in several hours of fishing.
Collected September 10, 2020 from the Foss River in Washington
Added to Troutnut.com by Troutnut on September 19, 2020
Ephemerella aurivillii Mayfly NymphEphemerella aurivillii  Mayfly Nymph View 11 PicturesThis is a puzzling one to identify and I'm not sure about the species. The maxillary palp (
The palp on the maxilla of an Ephemerella nymph (detached and photographed under a microscope) is highlighted in red here.
The palp on the maxilla of an Ephemerella nymph (detached and photographed under a microscope) is highlighted in red here.
Palp: A long, thin, often segmented appendage which can protrude from certain insect mouth parts such as the maxillae. Also known as the < />palpus.
)
is present and segmented, and the maxillary canines are not strongly serrate laterally. I think it's Ephemerella, not Serratella. The ventral (Ventral: Toward or on the bottom.) lamellae of the gills on abdominal segment 6 have a clear median notch with a depth at least half the length of the lamellae, which points toward a couple of uncommon species (most likely Ephemerella alleni), but the abdominal tubercles (
A few (not all) of the abdominal tubercles on this Ephemerella needhami nymph are circled.  They are especially large in this species.
A few (not all) of the abdominal tubercles on this Ephemerella needhami nymph are circled. They are especially large in this species.
Tubercle: Various peculiar little bumps or projections on an insect. Their character is important for the identification of many kinds of insects, such as the nymphs of Ephemerellidae mayflies.
)
and coloration don't fit that species. To add to the confusion, none of the above species are expected to emerge in the fall, as far as I know. I'm going to call this one Ephemerella aurivillii for now, but that's highly uncertain.
Collected September 10, 2020 from the Foss River in Washington
Added to Troutnut.com by Troutnut on September 19, 2020

Quick stop on the Green River

By Troutnut on September 9th, 2020
I had some errands down near the Green, so I stopped on the way back at Flaming Geyser State Park to wet a line. There was some nice-looking water, but I wasn't catching much until near the end of the day. I left early in the evening, not wanting to take my chances with the "high theft area -- do not leave valuables in your car" warning signs at the parking lot.

Photos by Troutnut from the Green River in Washington

 From the Green River in Washington.
LocationGreen River
Date TakenSep 9, 2020
Date AddedSep 18, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraNIKON 1 AW1
 From the Green River in Washington.
LocationGreen River
Date TakenSep 9, 2020
Date AddedSep 18, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraNIKON 1 AW1
 From the Green River in Washington.
LocationGreen River
Date TakenSep 9, 2020
Date AddedSep 18, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraNIKON 1 AW1

Updates from September 5, 2020

Photos by Troutnut from Silver Creek in Idaho

 From Silver Creek in Idaho.
StateIdaho
LocationSilver Creek
Date TakenSep 5, 2020
Date AddedSep 18, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraiPhone XS

Updates from September 4, 2020

Photos by Troutnut from Silver Creek and Trail Creek in Idaho

On-stream insect photos by Troutnut from Silver Creek in Idaho

Female Baetid spinners were abundant subsurface looking for substrates to lay their eggs, and they found my waders. I'll update the ID for this picture after identifying the associated male spinner. I caught several fish on a small brown soft-hackle fished as a crude imitation of these spinners before the fish all started taking Tricorythodes spinners instead. From Silver Creek in Idaho.
Female Baetid spinners were abundant subsurface looking for substrates to lay their eggs, and they found my waders. I'll update the ID for this picture after identifying the associated male spinner. I caught several fish on a small brown soft-hackle fished as a crude imitation of these spinners before the fish all started taking Tricorythodes spinners instead.
StateIdaho
LocationSilver Creek
Date TakenSep 4, 2020
Date AddedSep 19, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraNIKON 1 AW1
 From Silver Creek in Idaho.
StateIdaho
LocationSilver Creek
Date TakenSep 4, 2020
Date AddedSep 18, 2020
AuthorTroutnut
CameraNIKON 1 AW1

Closeup insects by Troutnut from Silver Creek in Idaho

Male Baetis tricaudatus (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly SpinnerMale Baetis tricaudatus (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly Spinner View 12 PicturesSome notes from identifying this specimen under the microscope:

1. The hind wing has three longitudinal veins (Longitudinal vein: Longitudinal veins are the major long veins running length-wise through an insect's wing, connecting the base to the outer margin, or the major branches from those veins.), but the third is faint, short (about half the length of the wing), and close to the wing margin.
2. Then antenna is brown fading into white at the tip, and the base is ringed with white.
3. The joints of the tarsal segments on the middle and hind leg have fine black markings.

It was also collected in association with a female spinner.
Collected September 4, 2020 from Silver Creek in Idaho
Added to Troutnut.com by Troutnut on September 18, 2020
Female Baetis tricaudatus (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly SpinnerFemale Baetis tricaudatus (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly Spinner View 5 PicturesThis female spinner was deceased when photographed, so the posture is unnatural, but it was a substantial hatch and clearly worth imitating (with wet flies to imitate the sunken ovipositing females) so I went ahead with the photos.

It was collected in association with a male spinner.
Collected September 4, 2020 from Silver Creek in Idaho
Added to Troutnut.com by Troutnut on September 18, 2020

Updates from September 3, 2020

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