The Big Muskegon and Manistee are continuing to become true eastern and western tailwater in the summer: midges, caddis, bwos, cahill's, ants, scuds- just like the San Juan. With the very cool/cold week water temperatures and flows have become ideal and the hatches really took off!
Yes!..I'm very aware that we are in the land of BIG AND BIGGER!...Hex, mousing, streamers- I love them all!. But being an east/west coast minutiae freak, what is going on now and for the next two months will blow your mind!...and you'll never want to see another steelhead and salmon!- not really!,... but dry fly trout taking size #20's...long 6x tippets, three/four weights is an epic experience! - especially if you watch every trout suck your fly in right in front of you.
Our spring stocked Wild Rose, Gilchrist browns and Eagle Lake rainbows ar betting fat and pushing the 10-13 inch range- holdover surface feeders are 14-18 inches- some leviathan 20 inch browns will focus on larger caddis/mayflies at dusk, preferring to hunt crayfish along the shore.
This morning we stopped fishing after 20 trout landed in an hour and half window. Water temps have plunged with a week of 'global cooling'- 50's-60's, into surface temperatures ideal for dry fly trout ( NOTE: unfortunately the USGS temperature gauges are installed at the 'worst spots' on the Muskegon and Manistee- by the top spill dams operating from warmed up ponds currently operating now. The water temps actually cool as you get farther downstream with all the thousands of springs, cool night- especially on the Muskegon , thus cooling the water- although the bubbler operations are providing "ideal" comfort (dissolved oxygen being as important or if not more important than temperature ) for the fish regardless of actual Fahrenheit temps- mid 60's are ideal for total surface orientation for the fish!- Bob nymphed a riffle that we hammered the trout on dries the other day and only took one trout- meanwhile we hooked several dozen on dries- total surface orientation at this time of year due to low clear waters)