Big Thompson - 03/30/13
Got out yesterday, Saturday, to the Big T. Water level had been raised to 60 CFS a day and a half before which was perfect. Easy to mend. Water clarity was excellent though I'm not eagle eyes anyway, at least not in terms of spotting trout. Ice is off the river. A few snow/ice shelves along the bank but that's about it.
Very warm and partly sunny in the upper section of the Big T (as in below Estes Park but above Drake). Got to the river about 11 a.m. Every single hole was taken (not kidding)! Still managed to find one of our holes that is usually not taken (but that's not a guarantee anymore either). Fishing was very good!
Browns and mostly 'bows.' The bows were nicely colored. I landed around around 10-12 overall. Lost about 6. My partner did a little better than me. Nothing big though.
The trout were taking natural BHGR Hare's Ear and Flashback PT (no BH), both in sizes 18. Didn't really need any weight though there were a few deep holes where you'd want to add it.
Early on was much better. Got cooler later and the fishing shut off. My buddy switched off to an egg and they were still taking for him. I'm too snooty to throw an egg (not really, more like too lazy to tie it on with a stinger hook and fix the egg in place). It wasn't necessary to toss tiny midge patterns. Nor was it necessary to use 7x. They were not leader shy. Go with 6x. It'll be easier on your eyes and in handling when you tie on your fly.
Some fish were pretty eager in taking flies but the strikes were not hard. Most strikes were obvious but a few were on the subtle side. The water is still cold so the majority of the fish were not squirming when they came to hand. Definitely more so with the browns. Still, the trout were not loggy when fighting but the water needs to warm up a little.
Check the web for the CFS before going. Fishing is usually off for a day with any substantial change. Best advice, go mid-week. You'll have a lot more room.